Research Papers: Ocean Engineering

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011101-011101-6. doi:10.1115/1.4040722.

Dynamic vertical bending moments are determined for a military vessel hull in still water and under head waves, with a weakly nonlinear method. The domain for hydrostatic and undisturbed pressures integration is time-variant and generated with a quad-tree adaptive mesh algorithm, on which exact formulations for pressure on polygonal elements are used. Linear radiation and diffraction pressures, on another mesh superimposed with the aforementioned one, are calculated with a frequency domain code. Results are compared with published experimental ones for small and large wave heights.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Research Papers: Offshore Technology

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011301-011301-13. doi:10.1115/1.4040799.

Recently, drillship moonpools are getting longer and wider for the higher operability. With this trend, violent internal flows are getting more concerned in terms of the safety and operability, which have been reported during the operations even in mild seas. Also, it is well known that the internal flow gives higher resistance during the transit of drillship. In this study, to see the effect of larger damping devices, a series of experimental and numerical study was carried out for the four moonpool designs; the ordinary plain moonpool, the moonpool with a recess deck, the moonpool with an isolated recess deck (island deck), and moonpool with a combination of island deck, splash plates, and wave absorber. From the model tests, it was found that the internal flow of the moonpool was significantly reduced by the application of the wave absorber. In case of the moonpool with the island deck, the sloshing mode oscillations was not observed due to the gap flow between the inner wall of the moonpool and the recess. For the in-depth understanding of the flow behaviors and characteristics, the internal flow of the moonpool has been investigated using Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes based computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code. The various moonpool designs were simulated to identify the effect of each device for the internal flow reduction of the moonpool. The CFD analysis results with regular waves, the water surface responses inside moonpool such as the flow pattern and resonance frequency, were compared with model test results and showed reasonably good agreements.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011302-011302-13. doi:10.1115/1.4040473.

Here, we present the concept of an open virtual prototyping framework (VPF) for maritime systems and operations that enables its users to develop reusable component or subsystem models, and combine them in full-system simulations for prototyping, verification, training, and performance studies. This framework consists of a set of guidelines for model coupling, high-level and low-level coupling interfaces to guarantee interoperability, a full-system simulation software, and example models and demonstrators. We discuss the requirements for such a framework, address the challenges and the possibilities in fulfilling them, and aim to give a list of best practices for modular and efficient virtual prototyping and full-system simulation. The context of our work is within maritime systems and operations, but the issues and solutions we present here are general enough to be of interest to a much broader audience, both industrial and scientific.

Topics: Simulation
Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011303-011303-12. doi:10.1115/1.4041302.

This work is motivated by the need to identify the fire and explosion risk on liquefied natural gas carriers (LNGCs) developed by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd., because the main engines are designed to use highly pressurized natural gas (about 300 bar), which has caused vague fears of fire and explosion risks. In this context, to identify the risk of fires and explosions quantitatively, a fire and explosion risk analysis (FERA) was carried out for the LNGCs. This paper, as a part of the FERA, presents the results of a preliminary investigation on the effect of introducing the highly pressured fuel gas system into LNGCs on the fire and explosion risk especially in the cargo compressor room. This study is conducted in a comparative way considering the risk contribution of each parameter that could impact on the fire and explosion risk. The effect of the highly pressured fuel gas is indirectly taken into account by the change of the initial leak rate in the system. To identify effects of the considered parameters quantitatively, dozens of simulations for the selected gas dispersion, explosion, and fire scenarios were carried out using FLACS and KFX. Based on the simulation results, it is concluded that, in case of the LNGCs, the effects of the initial large leak rate due to the high pressure in the fuel gas pipes on the fire and explosion risk are not significant compared with the effects of other parameters such as leak amount, leak location, and leak direction.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Research Papers: Structures and Safety Reliability

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011601-011601-17. doi:10.1115/1.4040561.

Designing reliable and cost-effective floating bridges for wide and deep fjords is very challenging. The floating bridge is subjected to various environmental loads, such as wind, wave, and current loads. All these loads and associated load effects should be properly evaluated for ultimate limit state design check. In this study, the wind-, wave-, and current-induced load effects are comprehensively investigated for an end-anchored curved floating bridge, which was an early concept for crossing the Bjørnafjorden. The considered floating bridge is about 4600 m long and consists of a cable-stayed high bridge part and a pontoon-supported low bridge part. It also has a large number of eigen-modes, which might be excited by the environmental loads. Modeling of wind loads on the bridge girder is first studied, indicating that apart from aerodynamic drag force, aerodynamic lift and moment on the bridge girder should also be considered due to their significant contribution to axial force. Turbulent wind spectrum and spatial coherence play an important role and should also be properly determined. The sway motion, axial force, and strong axis bending moment of the bridge girder are mainly induced by wind loads, while the heave motion, weak axis bending moment, and torsional moment are mainly induced by wave loads. Turbulent wind can cause significant larger low-frequency eigen-mode resonant responses than the second-order difference frequency wave loads. Current loads mainly contribute damping and reduce the variations of sway motion, axial force, and strong axis bending moment.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011602-011602-11. doi:10.1115/1.4040573.

This paper studies the application of Dynamic Bayesian Networks (DBNs) for modeling degradation processes in oil and gas pipelines. A DBN tool consisting of a matlab code has been developed for performing inference on models. The tool is then applied for probabilistic modeling of the burst pressure of a pipe subjected to corrosion degradation and for safety assessment. The burst pressure is evaluated using the ASME B31G design method and other empirical formulas. A model for corrosion prediction in pipelines and its governing parameters are explicitly included into the probabilistic framework. Different sets of simulated corrosion measurements are used to increase the accuracy of the model predictions. Several parametric studies are conducted to investigate how changes in the observed corrosion (depth and length) and in the frequency of inspections affect the pipe reliability.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011603-011603-8. doi:10.1115/1.4040562.

This paper presents a study of traditional netting materials subjected to disinfecting chemicals during fish farming and treatment of net cages. A series of tests were performed in order to study the effect of various concentrations of disinfecting chemicals on the tensile strength of Raschel knitted Nylon netting materials. Simulated spill of diluted hydrogen peroxide (HP) to the jump fence during de-lousing did not affect the strength of the applied new and used knotless nylon netting samples. Hydrogen peroxide reacted with biofouling forming gas bubbles, but this did not result in reduced netting strength. The performed tests did not indicate any effect on netting strength from a simulated single, traditional bath disinfection as performed at service stations applying the disinfectant Aqua Des (AD) containing peracetic acid (PAA). However, increasing the AD concentration from 1 to 10% resulted in a strength reduction of 3–6%. Simulated spill of concentrated AD on the jump fence of a net with copper coating residuals resulted in a severe reduction in strength of 45%. This strength loss was probably a consequence of chemical reaction between copper and Aqua Des, and uncoated netting did not experience any loss in strength subjected to the same chemical exposure. These findings from application of AD should also apply to other PAA disinfection chemicals with trade names as, for example, Perfectoxid and Addi Aqua.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011604-011604-7. doi:10.1115/1.4040800.

Conical connections are important structural members for the integrity of most types of welded tubular structures. They are for example used in traditional jacket structures for oil and gas production and in monopiles for support of wind turbines where an optimal design is aimed for. From contact with the industry, it is noted that there is uncertainty about the basis for the stress concentration factors (SCF) for conical connections in design standards for fatigue assessment. This is related to how fabrication tolerances are accounted for and how a transition in thickness from the cone to the tubular or the cylinder should be made to minimize stresses due to thickness transitions and fabrication tolerances. Analytical expressions for stress concentrations at conical transitions are outlined in this paper to get a better understanding of the effect of thickness of the cone and the cylinder. By a proper basis for fatigue design, it is possible to control additional stresses from thickness transitions and fabrication tolerances at these connections.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011605-011605-8. doi:10.1115/1.4040721.

Pipes, especially risers, pipelines, and umbilicals, are extensively used in the subsea production system. Umbilical, as a controlling component of subsea production system, as well as other pipes, will resist reeling, unreeling, and additional processing before on-site installation, which might lead to yielding and plastic deformation of the pipe. This plastic deformation often results in low cycle fatigue (LCF) issue of the pipes, and how to effectively estimate the corresponding fatigue life has become a topic of practical engineering interest. In the present paper, a structural strain method is applied to determine the elastic core of the pipe and to calculate the pseudo structural stress. The pseudo structural stress concept has been applied to analyze the pipe in LCF regime. Further, the results obtained have been compared with the experimental and other available data. It can be seen that the results coincide well with the experimental data. In addition to the demonstrated effectiveness, the key advantage of this pseudo structural stress approach is the simplicity in dealing with girth-welded pipe sections, since finite element stress analysis is unnecessary.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Research Papers: Piper and Riser Technology

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011701-011701-8. doi:10.1115/1.4040414.

Flow of gas in pipelines is subject to thermodynamic conditions which produces two-phase bulks (i.e., slugs) within the axial pipeline flow. These moving slugs apply a moving load on the free spanning pipe sections, which consequently undergo variable bending stresses, and flexural deflections. Both the maximum pipeline stress and deflection due to the slug flow loads need to be understood in the design of pipeline spans. However, calculation of a moving mass on a free spanning pipeline is not trivial and the required mathematical model is burdensome for general pipeline design engineering. The work in this paper is intended to investigate the conditions under which simplified analysis would produce a safe pipeline design which can be used by practicing pipeline design engineers. The simulated finite element models presented here prove that replacing the moving mass of the slug by a moving force will produce adequately accurate results at low speeds where the mass of the slug is much smaller than the mass of the pipe section. This result is significant, as the assumption of point load simplifies the analysis to a considerable extent. Since most applications fall within the speed and mass ratio which justify employing this simplified analysis, the work presented here offers a powerful design tool to estimate fatigue stresses and lateral deflections without the need of expensive time-consuming inputs from specialized practitioners.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011702-011702-16. doi:10.1115/1.4040835.

The presence of dents on steel pipeline wall may constitute a threat for pipeline structural safety. Experimental testing results supported by numerical simulations are reported, in an attempt to assess the structural integrity of smoothly dented (nongauged) steel pipes. Ten experiments on 6 in diameter X52 steel pipes are reported, where dented steel pipes are subjected to bending and pressure loading, in order to estimate their residual strength and remaining fatigue life. Six specimens were subjected to cyclic bending loading, whereas four dented pipe specimens, following cyclic pressure loading, have been pressurized to burst to determine their ultimate pressure capacity. Numerical simulation of the testing procedure and, in particular, the loading pattern of each specimen (denting and cyclic loading) has also been performed so that local stress and strain distributions at the dented region are calculated accurately. Based on the finite element results, a simple and efficient fatigue assessment methodology is adopted, to estimate the remaining fatigue life and the predictions were found to compare with the experimental results. Finally, following a parametric numerical study, strain concentration factors (SNCFs) for dented pipes subjected to bending are calculated, to be used in fatigue life assessment.

Topics: Pressure , Pipes , Steel , Stress
Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011703-011703-21. doi:10.1115/1.4040974.

The ultimate strength of metallic pipelines will be inevitably affected when they have suffered from structural damage after mechanical interference. The present experiments aim to investigate the residual ultimate bending strength of metallic pipes with structural damage based on large-scale pipe tests. Artificial damage, such as a dent, metal loss, a crack, and combinations thereof, is introduced to the pipe surface in advance. Four-point bending tests are performed to investigate the structural behavior of metallic pipes in terms of bending moment–curvature diagrams, failure modes, bending capacity, and critical bending curvatures. Test results show that the occurrence of structural damage on the pipe compression side reduces the bending capacity significantly. Only a slight effect has been observed for pipes with damage on the tensile side as long as no fracture failure appears. The possible causes that have introduced experimental errors are presented and discussed. The test data obtained in this paper can be used to further quantify damage effects on bending capacity of seamless pipes with similar D/t ratios. The comparison results in this paper can facilitate the structural integrity design as well as the maintenance of damaged pipes when mechanical interference happens during the service life of pipelines.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011704-011704-10. doi:10.1115/1.4040801.

Large-diameter thick-walled steel pipes during their installation in deep-water are subjected to external pressure, which may trigger structural instability due to pipe ovalization, with detrimental effects. The resistance of offshore pipes against this instability is affected by local geometric deviations and residual stresses, introduced by the line pipe manufacturing process. In the present paper, the JCO-E pipe manufacturing process, a commonly adopted process for producing large-diameter pipes of significant thickness, is examined. The study examines the effect of JCO-E line pipe manufacturing process on the external pressure resistance of offshore pipes, candidates for deepwater applications using nonlinear finite element simulation tools. The cold bending induced by the JCO forming process as well as the subsequent welding and expansion (E) operations are simulated rigorously. Subsequently, the application of external pressure is modeled until structural instability (collapse) is detected. Both the JCO-E manufacturing process and the external pressure response of the pipe, are modeled using a two-dimensional (2D) generalized plane strain model, together with a coupled thermo-mechanical model for simulating the welding process.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster
J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011705-011705-11. doi:10.1115/1.4040798.

Vortex-induced vibrations (VIV) can lead to fast accumulation of fatigue damage and increased drag loads for slender marine structures. VIV responses mainly occur at the vortex shedding frequency, while higher harmonics can also be excited. Recent VIV model tests with flexible pipes have shown that higher harmonics in the crossflow (CF) direction can contribute to the fatigue damage significantly due to its higher frequency. Rigid cylinder experiments show that the CF third-order harmonics are more pronounced when the motion orbit is close to a “figure 8” shape and the cylinder is moving against the flow at its largest CF motion. However, there is still lack of understanding of when and where higher harmonics occur for a flexible pipe. Therefore, significant uncertainty remains on how to account for fatigue damage due to higher harmonics in VIV prediction. In the present paper, representative VIV data from various riser model test campaigns are carefully studied and analyzed. The key parameters that influence the magnitude of the third-order harmonic stress are found to be the bending stiffness, the reduced velocity, and the orbit stability. The experimental data are analyzed in order to assess the impact of each parameter on the third-order harmonic stress. A preliminary empirical response model to estimate the maximum CF third-order harmonic stress based on these identified structural and hydrodynamic parameters has been proposed. The results of this study will contribute to reduce the uncertainty and unnecessary conservatism in VIV prediction.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Research Papers: CFD and VIV

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011801-011801-10. doi:10.1115/1.4040508.

Harbors are important infrastructures for an offshore production chain. These harbors are protected from the actions of sea by breakwaters to ensure safe loading, unloading of vessels and also to protect the infrastructure. In current literature, research regarding the design of these structures is majorly based on physical model tests. In this study a new tool, a three-dimensional (3D) numerical model is introduced. The open-source computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model REEF3D is used to study the design of berm breakwaters. The model uses the Volume-averaged Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (VRANS) equations to solve the porous flows. At first, the VRANS approach in REEF3D is validated for flow through porous media. A dam break case is simulated and comparisons are made for the free surface both inside and outside the porous medium. The numerical model REEF3D is applied to show how to extend the database obtained with purely numerical results, simulating different structural alternatives for the berm in a berm breakwater. Different simulations are conducted with varying berm geometry. The influence of the berm geometry on the pore pressure and velocities are studied. The resulting optimal berm geometry is compared to the geometry according to empirical formulations.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Research Papers: Ocean Renewable Energy

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):011901-011901-7. doi:10.1115/1.4040834.

A wave energy converter must be designed to both maximize power production and to ensure survivability, which requires the prediction of future sea states. It follows that precision in the prediction of those sea states should be important in determining a final WEC design. One common method used to estimate extreme conditions employs environmental contours of extreme conditions. This report compares five environmental contour methods and their repercussions on the response analysis of Reference Model 3 (RM3). The most extreme power take-off (PTO) force is predicted for the RM3 via each contour and compared to identify the potential difference in WEC response due to contour selection. The analysis provides insight into the relative performance of each of the contour methods and demonstrates the importance of an environmental contour in predicting extreme response. Ideally, over-predictions should be avoided, as they can add to device cost. At the same time, any “exceedances,” that is to say sea states that exceed predictions of the contour, should be avoided so that the device does not fail. For the extreme PTO force response studied here, relatively little sensitivity to the contour method is shown due to the collocation of the device's resonance with a region of agreement between the contours. However, looking at the level of observed exceedances for each contour may still give a higher level of confidence to some methods.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

Technical Brief

J. Offshore Mech. Arct. Eng. 2018;141(1):014501-014501-8. doi:10.1115/1.4041581.

This paper presents a time-domain hydroelastic analysis method for bridges supported by floating pontoons in inhomogeneous wave conditions. The inhomogeneous wave effect is accounted for by adopting different wave spectra over different regions along the structure, then the time history of inhomogeneous first-order wave excitation forces on the floating pontoons can be obtained. The frequency-domain hydrodynamic coefficients are transformed into the time-domain hydroelastic model using Cummins' equations. The linear hydroelastic responses of a curved floating bridge with end supports, subjected to irregular waves with spatially varying significant wave heights and peak periods, are investigated. Moreover, sensitive analyses are performed to study the effects of the inhomogeneity on the hydroelastic responses. The primary results indicate that the inhomogeneity of the waves has a significant effect on the dynamic responses of the floating bridge.

Commentary by Dr. Valentin Fuster

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