Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Robot Submarines & Oil-Sucking Domes

What an amazing world in which we live, at least according to the oil industry spokespeople. Here I was worried about the environmental impact of massive quantities of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico. Some sources said it's 1000 barrels a day, others say 7400 barrels. That's a difference of 268,800 gallons per day. Is that big? Frankly I'm surprised they don't have some sort of meter on the hole where the oil comes out. Maybe Home Depot can hook them up for the next time. But in any case, it doesn't even matter apparently. Technology will fix everything.

In this futuristic world in which we currently live, the first line of defense involves robot submarines that swim around deep in the gulf and try to flip a 450-ton valve at the wellhead to shut it off. Shockingly, that doesn't seem to be working, though there are reports of some whales swimming in the oil spill. Can't we train them to plug the leak? What about Shamu in Orlando? Can't we get freakin' Shamu to use an oil-plugging laser? Trained killer whales with lasers working in tandem with robot submarines. That will stop the leak for sure, if the giant Nazi squids don't sabotage the operation.

The second line of defense for the rare cases when robot subs don't work is a giant oil sucking underwater dome. Today I learned engineers are designing this very thing. True, such devices haven't been used in deep water before, and some estimate it will take a month to be built and arrive at the scene, but what a great idea. They could save some time by just using the roof of the Superdome to capture the oil. But please make sure to tell the whales and the robot submarines, as we wouldn't want them to get sucked up into the magic dome with all the oil.

Wednesday I predict we'll hear about rocket propelled fire sponges, followed by microscopic alloy space needles on Thursday. But then the message will change dramatically on Friday when the oil hits the Chandeleur Islands and pictures of pelicans covered in oil start making the internet rounds. But the best part of this futuristic tech world in which we live is that BP stocks will take a short-term hit but ultimately continue to grow dramatically in value. But for now, I'm praying for the robot subs.

1 comment:

meghan said...

Who knew I could get more angry with each passing day?