RESEARCH PAPERS: Offshore Mechanics

Three-Dimensional Scour Below Pipelines

[+] Author and Article Information
J. Fredso̸e, B. M. Sumer

Institute of Hydrodynamics and Hydraulic Engineering, Technical University of Denmark, Lyngby, Denmark

E. A. Hansen

Dansk Olie og Naturgas A/S, Ho̸rsholm, Denmark

Y. Mao

Research Institute of Water Resources and Hydroelectric Power, Hohai University, Nanjing, China

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng 110(4), 373-379 (Nov 01, 1988) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3257075 History: Received January 01, 1986; Revised January 28, 1988; Online October 30, 2009


This paper deals with the scour below pipelines exposed to a current. In a typical field situation, the scour pattern along a pipeline is not uniform; the scour holes are interrupted with the reaches where the pipeline is partially or totally buried. This paper focuses on the longitudinal extent of the individual scour holes. A simplified picture of the process is given to describe the longitudinal dimension of a scour hole. The sagging of the pipeline is an essential element of the process. The effect of sagging on the final scour depth is investigated, using a two-dimensional laboratory model. A simple equation to calculate the length of individual scour holes (the span length) is developed. The practical application of the equation is demonstrated by an example.

Copyright © 1988 by ASME
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