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'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

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'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby EdwinSm » Fri 11 Oct 2019, 03:31:57

Is this a revenge attack (too early in the day for me to say one way or another)? And if it is how will Iran retaliate?

An explosion has caused a fire on an Iranian tanker near the coast of Saudi Arabia, Iranian media say.

The vessel, from Iran's national oil company (NOIC), was 60 miles (97km) from the Saudi port city of Jeddah when the incident took place, reports said.

The ship's two main storage tanks were said to be damaged, causing an oil spill into the Red Sea, but no-one was injured.

NOIC claimed the vessel was hit by missiles, but did not provide evidence.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50011218
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Cog » Fri 11 Oct 2019, 06:30:36

How terrible for them. We may never know the true cause of this unfortunate maritime accident.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sat 12 Oct 2019, 12:27:36

Am I the only one who thinks that a rapid move toward HEV's (which are totally viable with the modern technology today) as a policy and toward energy independence would be far smarter than endlessly fooling around in the Persian Gulf, Middle East, etc. to the tune of $trillians makes a TREMENDOUS amount of sense?

If the Europeans, etc. want us to police the oil in the gulf, then they can damn well PAY for it.

We could use the money far more wisely for things like education, infrastructure, balancing the budget, medical care, and on and on. Oh, and if need be to get the ball rolling, for a tax credit for HEV's.

Surely once people got used to the idea of HEV's and saw the tremendous gas mileage, especially in the city compared to ICE's, and the dealers were selling a lot of them, then there would be no reason not to continue to use them. Oh, and higher volumes could only help relative pricing compared to ICE's.

To me, it's only a matter of time until really bad things happen in the Persian Gulf region between various oil producers / political factions, and why should it be our job, forever, to referee that or get in the middle of that -- and the US bear all the expense?

It was one thing being "the world's policemen" when we could afford it. We clearly no longer do so. Time to wake up and smell the coffee.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby evilgenius » Sat 12 Oct 2019, 13:01:03

What's the effective blast radius of an oil tanker designed to be used as a weapon?
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Cog » Sun 13 Oct 2019, 01:16:51

Rockdoc123 might want weigh in here but I don't believe crude oil by itself is particularly explosive. It burns just fine though. Now if the tanker was carrying distilled products like gasoline that is a different story.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby evilgenius » Sun 13 Oct 2019, 08:43:44

That's what I mean. A tanker could contain anything. As far as I know, nobody checks them to make sure they are carrying crude oil, or that they are empty. So many tons of TNT is how kiloton and megaton output are measured. And, I think, if something like that went off underwater the impact of it would be fairly staggering. Iran is probably limited in some way, but the Straits of Hormuz are pretty narrow. I wonder what they can get close to? They must be able to park them in among a host of other vessels. I see pictures of that sort of thing, tankers outside of ports, all the time. Are there ever enough tankers in one place that if the majority of them were destroyed it would impact world oil supply due to lack of transport? Maybe it's not a worry? Their limitations place boundaries not only on them, but, in this conspiracy laden world, also upon anyone attempting to mimic them. It seems like some authority ought to be checking, so that the possibility is taken off the table.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Sun 13 Oct 2019, 11:38:24

evilgenius wrote: Are there ever enough tankers in one place that if the majority of them were destroyed it would impact world oil supply due to lack of transport? Maybe it's not a worry?

For what it's worth, Statista, which seems to have pretty reasonable information overall, places the number of large oil tankers globally just shy of 7400, as of 2018.

https://www.statista.com/statistics/264 ... e-by-type/

As of the beginning of 2017, the Maritime Executive, which seems to be a decent source of Maritime news, placed the global capacity at nearly 535,000 bulk tons, and nearly 39% of the global large shipping fleet.

https://www.maritime-executive.com/arti ... t-revealed

So it seems to me that the risk there would be causing a critical bottleneck somewhere like the Straits of Hormuz, becuase it's hard (for me) to imagine one or even a few such ships taking out, say, a couple thousand large tanker ships in even a coordinated single attack at multiple locations. (Presumably after one large attack, preventative measures would be taken, kind of like how the world got as excited as a hornet's nest for awhile AFTER 911).

Your point seems valid to me, but given all the global squabbling, especially in OPEC countries -- good luck getting cooperation for a reasonably priced, effective effort to check all container ships before they, say, near all large ports BEFORE something like this happens. (Based on history of human cooperation and checking on such things ahead of time.)
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 13 Oct 2019, 18:41:36

For combustion you need both fuel and Oxygen/air. Take something as volition as denatured alcohol, pour an ounce in a cup and light it. It does not explode, it burns and it burn where the valors meet the air and they get the right fuel/ air mix. Tankers are not especially explosive. LNG might be different if the tank were holed and a bunch leaked out, that might be interesting but still of relatively low yield.

I recently read a book which claimed that Germany was developing a very high yield explosive device. The theory was to disperse a bunch of kerosene aerosol from rockets and then send an igniter rocket through the mist. Supposedly the shock wave was quite tremendous. But the air had to be almost perfectly still for it to work.

I have heard several old mariners tell of being trained to use diesel to put out a fire. If you apply enough it lowers the hot parts below ignition temperature and also smothers the fire. However if you soak a toilet paper roll with diesel and light that it will burn quite nicely for a long time. Great way to start a bunch of wet wood.
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Re: 'Explosion' on Iranian oil tanker off Saudi coast

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 13 Oct 2019, 18:44:15

It’s hard to say the significance of these tanker attacks. So far they are pretty low level annoyance type affairs. Yet they must weigh on the faith investors put in the system. At some point they will effect the market. Just not sure when.
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