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The Dome Project In Pictures

The Dome Project In Pictures

With options for containment running low and the environmental disaster widening to more regions of the Gulf Coast, the next step in containment is the use of a 98-ton, four-story structure to stem the leak. The basic idea of the "Pollution Control Dome" is that it will stop the leak, equalize the pressure and allow for the leaking oil to be pumped to the surface. Although this will do nothing for the oil already leaked, this may substantially cut the spill's environmental impact until other mea
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

With options for containment running low and the environmental disaster widening to more regions of the Gulf Coast, the next step in containment is the use of a 98-ton, four-story structure to stem the leak.

The basic idea of the "Pollution Control Dome" is that it will stop the leak, equalize the pressure and allow for the leaking oil to be pumped to the surface. Although this will do nothing for the oil already leaked, this may substantially cut the spill's environmental impact until other measures can be implemented. Containment domes of this nature have worked in shallow water, but the method has never been tested in water this deep.

What does the dome look like and how is it constructed? Click ahead to see.

By Paul ToscanoPosted 4 May 2010

Dome In The Water

The pollution containment dome is lowered into water in attempt to divert one of the leaking vents at the root of the Gulf oil spill.
Photo: AP

The pollution containment dome is lowered into water in attempt to divert one of the leaking vents at the root of the Gulf oil spill.

Constructing the Dome

Welders at work on the Pollution Control Dome being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon, as BP rushes to cap the source of the oil slick.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

Welders at work on the Pollution Control Dome being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, as BP rushes to cap the source of the oil slick.

The Containment Contingency

Although this will do nothing for the oil already leaked, the dome could substantially cut the spill's environmental impact until other measures can be implemented. Containment domes of this nature have worked in shallow water, but the method has never been tested in water this deep.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

Although this will do nothing for the oil already leaked, the dome could substantially cut the spill's environmental impact until other measures can be implemented. Containment domes of this nature have worked in shallow water, but the method has never been tested in water this deep.

Capping The Leak

The dome will work by capping the spill at the major site on the ocean floor. From there, the oil can be pumped to the surface and salvaged.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

The dome will work by capping the spill at the major site on the ocean floor. From there, the oil can be pumped to the surface and salvaged.

Constructing the Dome

A welder at work on a pipe from the Pollution Control Dome (behind) being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

A welder at work on a pipe from the Pollution Control Dome (behind) being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.

The Pollution Control Dome

View of the the Pollution Control Dome being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

View of the the Pollution Control Dome being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.

Welders at Work

A welder at work on a piece from the Pollution Control Dome (behind) being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

A welder at work on a piece from the Pollution Control Dome (behind) being built by steelworkers at the Martin Terminal worksite in Port Fourchon.

Bringing The Oil To The Surface

An engineer next to the top hats used to connect a pipeline to the Pollution Control Dome. For comparison, the original pipeline was only 7 inches in diameter.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

An engineer next to the top hats used to connect a pipeline to the Pollution Control Dome. For comparison, the original pipeline was only 7 inches in diameter.

Working On The Dome

Welders at work on the Pollution Control Dome.
Photo: Mark Ralston | AFP | Getty Images

Welders at work on the Pollution Control Dome.

Wild Well Control is one of the companies overseeing the construction of the dome. Part of their work includes building a second identical dome that can be used if the first attempt to cap the well is unsuccessful.

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