The Depths of Perdido

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Oil platforms are cool, they’re like huge man-made islands just sitting there in the sea.  But unlike islands, oil platforms actually float on huge underwater structures that are then anchored by massive cables to the ocean floor.

Operated by the company Shell, the oil platform ‘Perdido’ is the world’s deepest, operating at a depth of nearly 8000 feet (2450 meters). Built in Finland and then assembled in Texas, the oil platform is nearly as tall as the Eiffel Tower. The huge structure was put into place over the Alaminos canyon in 2009.

The oil platform pumps oil from over twenty wells that are tapped into three underwater oil fields –  the Great White, the Tobago, and the Silvertip.  The oil is pumped through a huge 27-mile (44-km) network of pipelines, and the rig can process the equivalent of 100,000 barrels of oil each day.

With so much infrastructure at such a deep depth, robots are used for repairs and maintenance whenever possible.  As you can imagine, there are some crazy things living at such a deep depth.  Check out this video about some of the creatures that live over a mile and a half (2.4km) down into the deep.

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