Pressure inside the well rose slowly yesterday to 6,720 pounds per square inch from 6,700 pounds per square inch at the start of the day, an encouraging sign that the well may have escaped damage following an April 20 explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig.
The new, tighter-fitting cap gives the company the ability to collect as much as 80,000 barrels of oil a day, more than the estimated flow rate. This compares with about 25,000 barrels of oil captured with the previous system.
BP resumed work on a relief well that will permanently end the risk of further oil escaping, Wells said. The relief well is within about 100 feet from the planned interception point, according to BP and Allen. The well may hit the leak this month and permanently plug it by mid-August