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Academic Integrity and Ethics in Science & Engineering -NSF AY-REU Fall 2012 *. Karman N. Ghia School of Aerospace Systems University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati Ohio. October 5, 2012. __________ *Author acknowledges assistance of Santosh Dungi, Michael Cline and Seezan Prajapati
Academic Integrity and Ethics in Science & Engineering -NSF AY-REU Fall 2012 *
Karman N. Ghia
School of Aerospace Systems
October 5, 2012
*Author acknowledges assistance of Santosh Dungi, Michael Cline and Seezan Prajapati
in preparing the PowerPoint presentation
Concepts and Cases
Definition “To take ideas or writings from another and pass them off as one’s own.” (Webster’s New World Dictionary, 2nd College Ed., Collins)
Don’t do it!
What are the penalties for plagiarism?
You must give creditwhenever:
Someone else’s words:
When don’t you have to Give Credit? - When Something is General Knowledge
-Create and enforce high standards
-Promoting well being of general public
-Ensuring competence of professionals
- Is it justified because it is in our own best interest?
State the Problem
Get the Facts
“It was unethical for Engineer A to fail to give credit to Engineer B for her part in the design.”
Cost to make safer cars
12.5 million cars x $11 = $137 million
180 Deaths, 180 Injured, 2100 Burned Cars = $ 49.5 million
Accident on April 2010
Owned by Transocean
Was under lease to BP from March 2008 to September 2013
Located in the Mississippi Canon Block 252
Leakage of high pressure of methane gas explosion let to fire on the Oil Rig on April 20th , 2010
After burning for 36 hours approximately, Deepwater Horizon Rig sank on the morning of April 22nd , 2010.
Location of Deepwater Horizon
Human: 11 died, 17 injured,
6,814 dead animals: 6,104 birds,
609 sea turtles, 100 dolphins and
Sothermammals, and 1 reptile.
Oil Spill covered 580 square miles
Polluted coastal areas
Beaches inconvenient for scuba diving, fishing, swimming
3 leaks in Riser
5000 Barrels of oil leakage per day
Flawed testing procedure
Insufficient testing done on the foam cement slurry before the actual usage
No clear guidelines for the negative pressure test to check the integrity of wellhead seal assembly
Flawed Safety System
The heating, ventilation and air conditioning fans and dampers were not electrically classified upon gas detection.
The emergency systems in operating blowout preventer of the oil rig faces many potential problems that limits its functionality.
Allowed drilling without needed permits
Insufficient safety checks
Am I to Blame?
Misjudgment due to unwarranted assumptions
Wrongly concluded that the well integrity has been established
Lack of evaluation process after cement placement
Flawed Cost Benefit Analysis
BP wellhead’s blowout preventer are not fitted with an remote-control for emergency use
Down play seriousness of issue:
- Actual 24000 barrels were leaked instead
of 7000 barrels
- Operation was already 5 weeks late and
adopted riskier procedures to save time and money
- In late march 2010, blowout preventer was damaged in a previously unreported accident and workers were afraid that they could get fired for
raising safety concerns that might delay drilling
Slowness to react
Government intervention was late due to political system in USA
BP rejected help from other countries with expertise
Lack of professional attitude
‘I want my life back’ comment made to Americans.
Went for a yacht holiday in the midst of the crisis
BP president reconfirmed that the damaged well’s maximum release rate hovered around 5,000 barrels a day. However Professor from Purdue University estimated the release rate to be 65,000 barrels a day.
BP bought sponsored links for Yahoo and Google so that they could manipulate search results for company safe image.
If BP managers were public (i.e. Fishermen or people who live by the coast) they may want to know the actual amount of oil spill and their affect on livelihood and health.
The authority and environmentalists also need the actual data to take the appropriate measure to solve oil spill. Thus, BP should not underestimate the spill rate.
Code of Ethics:
- Use the liner/tie back option and 21 centralizers. Also run the cement bond log test
Finding the best Compromise:
- Safety should not be linked with cost or time
External Whistle-Blowing Agencies:
- Engaged an external auditing company to have a whistle-blowing hotline where employees can file allegations against their own company anonymously
Respecting the Hierarchy of the company:
- Instead of risking his job by stopping the work immediately, one should consult with his colleagues and supervisor regarding the problem.
Internal Task force:
- To ensure critical equipment\'s are always in good condition
Liner/Tieback has a higher chance to succeed in cement lift, but takes more time and cost to build than long string casing. BP decide to us long sting casing because of less cost and less time consuming.
Instead of 21 centralizers requested by the model maker, BP engineer used only 10 centralizers. Centralizers are used to prevent the risk of gas flowing up the annular space around the casing due to formation of channels in the cement
Skipped cement bond log test that determine whether the cement has bonded to the casing and surrounding formation to save time, about 9 to 12 hours. Also taking the test would have cost $128,000, cancelling it will cost only $10,000
Modified Blowout preventer used had a increased risk of failure. Blowout preventer is a device that automatically cuts the pipe and seals from the well to prevent the oil leaking from the well in case any failure in system occurres.
BP engineer should have chosen line/tie back casing and more centralizers installation to avoid drawbacks
Cement bond test should not be ignored due to high price and to save 9 to 12 hours of working time
Even though BP did the right things in terms of cost benefits analysis, it should not be used here as it concerned lives of the workers on the oil rig platform and the marine lives.
BP was able to save $128,000 without the cement bond test, however due to explosion and oil leakage, they were fined $37.2 Billions. They had to pay more than the amount they should have spend on well design, centralizers and cement bond log, i.e. they under estimated the amount of money needed to pay if any accident occured.
BP management decision that led to accident could have been averted by the Deepwater Horizon rig personnel\'s who had concerns regarding the safety. Even though after the whistle blow by the personnel\'s, the workers fulfilled their duty. If every workers had abandoned their responsibility, no action would have been taken by the company
Workers should respect their colleagues’ live and public’s health and have respect for company. Their outweigh respect to the company led to tragedy. Thus the workers took the wrong decision.
Some workers are partly to be blame for not reporting what was going wrong. It could be due to BP ‘s culture too. Workers did not report as they understood that the act of raising safety concerns could delay the work and that they could lose their job.
The company might have fired some workers to protect the company’s image and respect the company. However they neglected respect for individual worker’s honesty and dignity.
Not the first accident in BP history
- March 2005, Explosion in BP’s refinery in Texas City, Texas; 15
workers died, 170 were injured, 4,800 barrels of oil was found in
Alaska, 5000km away from the refinery in Texas.
BP was warned to check pipeline in 2002, but ignored it and paid $12 million fine.
BP violated its own policies and made 18 hours work shifts daily for 75% of the workers
BP fails to learn from past mistakes:
Violates its own policies and code of ethics
Huge trade-off in safety for lower cost and for saving time.
Management does not share the same safety view as the employees.
Introduction, continued -
Code of Ethics References
“Here the issue does not allege a danger to public health or safety, but is premised upon a claim of unsatisfactory plans and the unjustified expenditure of public funds.”
“As we recognized in earlier cases, if an engineer feels strongly that an employer\'s course of conduct is improper when related to public concerns, and if the engineer feels compelled to blow the whistle to expose the facts as he sees them, he may well have to pay the price of loss of employment.”
“We feel that the ethical duty or right of the engineer becomes a matter of personal conscience, but we are not willing to make a blanket statement that there is an ethical duty in these kinds of situations for the engineer to continue his campaign within the company, and make the issue one for public discussion. The Code only requires that the engineer withdraw from a project and report to proper authorities when the circumstances involve endangerment of the public health, safety, and welfare.”
“Engineer A does not have an ethical obligation to continue his effort to secure a change in the policy of his employer under these circumstances, or to report his concerns to proper authority, but has an ethical right to do so as a matter of personal conscience.”