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How the Oil Well Pressure Test Works

How the Oil Well Pressure Test Works

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Published by The State Newspaper

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Published by: The State Newspaper on Jul 19, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Pressure testing

How engineers are using the newly-installed sealing cap to perform a pressure test on the cap and the well bore below the seafloor: • Government agreed to BP’s plan if data is reviewed every six hours; test may take 48 hours 1. Lines closed to collection surface vessels; oil flows out only through cap’s top and its choke and kill lines 2. Valve inside cap and kill line closed 3. Choke line closed slowly; may take two hours; frequent pressure readings taken 4. Well closed; if pressure readings low, test stops; if readings high, test continues After test, all valves reopened; officials will decide next steps Connects to Risk manifold Pressure could blow oil through weak spots in well casing making and up to vessels well kill more difficult Low pressure readings indicate oil leaking out; well bore could be damaged

Kill line

Choke line


3 Leaking hose delayed test a second time

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Bad news

High pressure readings indicate pressure can be maintained, well is intact
© 2010 MCT

Good news

Source: Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center Graphic: Judy Treible, Tim Goheen

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