Effective and economical Arctic recovery solutions for ice covered waters and frozen tundra using the Bell-Vac system have been developed to assist with spill preparedness and response for the Chukchi and neighboring Beaufort Sea exploration in Alaska.
Utilizing the equipment is advantageous in the Arctic due to the effectiveness of the recovery procedures which minimize the environmental impact of the clean-up by shrinking the footprint of the activities as well as greatly reducing the affected surface area in terms of the depth of the recovery.
Utilization of the Bell-Vac would allow for trained technicians to remove just the top surface area of the ice rather than other methods that require chipping, digging or other intrusive means of recovery. Frozen tundra and ice procedures incorporate steaming to change the viscosity of the oil back into a liquid at which point the vacuum system transfers the oil directly into a holding tank. In addition, the portability of the equipment and the capability of reaching distances of 1000 feet from the equipment provide versatility in achieving clean-up goals without damage to ultra-sensitive areas of Arctic wildlife habitat.