In Deepwater Well Construction 101, we covered some of the basics of drilling oil wells in 5,000 feet of water. Now, you have a chance to hear from someone who actually knows what they're talking about.
Shell drilling engineer Joe Leimkuhler recently presented "How We Drill for Oil and Gas" at the Aspen Ideas Festival of the Aspen Institute. It's 50 minutes long, but packed with information and good graphics (the poor video resolution doesn't keep the point from getting across).
My takeaway is that there is a right way and a wrong way to design a deepwater well. There is a right way and a wrong way to manage the activity. While Leimkuhler judiciously avoids jumping to conclusions about the root cause of the disaster before all the facts are in, it's clear that Shell would like the public to draw a clear distinction between Shell and BP's deepwater operations.
Well, since the embed didn't work, try this link.