How Anchor Analysis Can Ultimately Save Your Project

[Posted on April 23rd 2014 by Bill Stewart]


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Whether you are in the oil drilling industry or any other offshore venture, you need to be aware of how anchor analysis is a necessity. When you use an anchor in the water, there are a lot of variables that need to be considered. If you fail to use worst-case scenarios in your analysis, you may not be prepared for what you actually face on the water.

Every day, there are maritime accidents in the news. Much of these have to do with the boats and rigs being unprepared for the conditions. It is likely that you are going to be in the deeper seas and this means being exposed to depths that require seakeeping analysis.

You have to know what to expect before you go out onto the water and at Stewart Technology, we use the latest OrcaFlex software to tell us about various conditions in order to provide anchor analysis. We take a variety of factors into consideration, including:

  • Depth of water
  • Height of sea swells
  • Salinity of water
  • Temperature of water
  • Likelihood of waves

The more that we know about the sea conditions, the better we can advise on using an anchor. Steel anchors are commonly used in order to anchor a boat or a rig, but you have to be sure it is of the best alloy and that there is enough chain attached to all of it.

Various types of anchors are used as well. If you do not use one that is heavy enough, the waves are going to push the anchor along the sea floor. This is going to cause you to drift significantly, which is what you may be trying to avoid. You can avoid accidents simply by having the right anchor in place – and that is the kind of analysis that we provide to our clients.

Your project is likely of the utmost importance. If it is like others within the industry, it is expensive with various investors involved. You cannot risk having an accident that prevents you from completing the project because it could mean the end of your business. A bad reputation is the last thing that you want to create while on the water.

A little bit of planning with anchor analysis can ensure that you are well-prepared for all of the elements when you go out onto the water. We will establish worst-case scenarios so that you are prepared for anything that Mother Nature may throw at you. From there, you can choose the best anchor as well as other equipment so that your project can be carried out regardless of the conditions that you face.

You cannot always do the analysis on your own and when you want a third party to weigh in, it can save your project from disaster.

The Benefit Of Steel Catenary Risers In The Open Sea

[Posted on April 16th 2014 by Bill Stewart]


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Steel catenary risers are commonly used throughout the offshore drilling industry to add to the stability of a rig in regards to the waves and depth changes. It’s important to understand the actual benefits of using steel within the risers as opposed to another material.

The characteristics of steel are significant. When steel is used, you can rely on the strong metal to last within almost any environment that you place it in, including deep sea conditions.

There are various alloys that need to be considered when you look at steel catenary risers. Much of the alloys are capable of performing in various conditions. You need to be keenly aware of what kind of waters you are going into so that you can choose a rise that will provide you with all of the benefits that you require. You don’t want a riser giving out on you because of failure to choose the best one.

You have to consider such deep sea conditions as:

  • Depth of water
  • Pressure
  • Salinity
  • Temperature

All of these are going to affect the performance of steel catenary risers. Just as you need to have anchor analysis, analysis needs to be conducted with the risers as well. The benefits are abundant due to the steel construction, though there are still variables that need to be calculated before you can take your rig out into the deep waters.

Once you understand the mechanics of catenary risers, it will be easier to figure out exactly what you need. You will be able to obtain help with this based upon what the analysis comes back as.

Whether you have engineers on your team or not, you have to consider what you are dealing with. You cannot take the benefits of steel for granted when you go out on a rig simply because there are other factors that are going to work against you.

Various accidents have occurred on the oil rigs because of a failure to understand the water pressure, the depths, the temperatures and other factors. Especially when there are more rigs going into deep waters and even into the Arctic, you have to figure out what that means in terms of preparing the rig – and the steel catenary risers are a big part of the equipment that you need to take with you.

When you take the time to have a significant amount of analysis run, you can have definitive numbers to help you with a rig design. You can factor in worst-case scenarios, too, so that you can make adjustments once you are out on the water if the temperature is colder or if the depths are deeper than you initially anticipated. This will ensure that you maximize on the benefits and avoid an accident or other issues.

Learning From A Past Single Point Moorings Accident

[Posted on April 9th 2014 by Bill Stewart]


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There are many considerations in the marine industry that can pose possible threats to industry property and employee well-being. Understanding those considerations and possible risks is crucial to running a safe and profitable operation. One of the key elements to keeping your own company and your  employees safe is to understand risk factors, and to keep yourself well informed of current and past catastrophic marine events as they pertain to equipment similar to your own. Single point moorings are one tenant of marine industry which can pose a threat to your business and employees when all safety measures are not adhered to. Although every operation would like to boast a zero accident rate, this is rarely the case. When catastrophic failures do occur, fellow marine industrialist would do well to pay attention and learn a lesson.

One recent accident involving the single point moorings of a deep water GOM operation makes an appropriate object lesson. In 2011 this operation experienced a failure at the tether chain of a free standing hybrid riser. This catastrophic failure caused the buoyancy can and free standing flow line riser to separate. The air can, weighing 440 tons rose suddenly to the surface while the riser suffered complete collapse. The event was investigated thoroughly in order to establish just what might have caused such a large scale failure.

The investigation of the single point moorings quickly located a compromised link in the tether chain which was connecting the buoyancy air can to the hybrid riser. It was later determined that the link failed because of a past welding repair which had been performed on it. The investigation determined that the defect in the link had been grinded down. The  void was then filled with weld material. Once heat treated welding repairs are not permitted in accordance with DNV’s chain standard. It was also found during the investigation that three other links in the tether chain had also been repaired in a similar way, compromising the structural integrity of these links as well.  Weld repairs of this nature create a weakness making the links more susceptible to cracking.

Although in this incident there were no employee injuries or fatalities to report, the risk factor was great. Avoiding such risk should be a critical part of your business plan.

Stewart Technology has been helping marine industries understand and assess risks like these for years. Our expert consultation services can help educate you and your employee base on the best and safest marine practices concerning your single point mooring system and steel catenary risers.

The Importance of Seakeeping Analysis

[Posted on April 2nd 2014 by Bill Stewart]


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If you have a watercraft, then the main thing you may think about is how much fun you have with the vessel. While this is important, you should always be aware of the safety. This is why it is important to have a Seakeeping Analysis done. There are a few things to keep in mind with this.

What is Done With This?

One of the best ways to see how important this analysis truly is is to see what all is done with this. The environment will be analyzed as this plays a pivotal role with any watercraft. With this they will look at the way the ship responds to different situations  as well as factors that may affect seakeeping with the boat or ship. This could include aspects such as the size, stability, displacement and more. One of the biggest things they look at is the human factor as this is what will play the biggest role when you are out on the water.

Chances are it is Needed

Another thing to keep in mind is that you may be required to have a seakeeping analysis done. It may be required by the government in order to get the proper licenses for your watercraft. You may also find that the insurance on the boat requires you to have this. Since it tells where the weaknesses are on the boat the insurance company will be able to fully understand the risk of insuring the vessel.

Perfect for Buying or Selling

When you are buying a boat or ship, especially if it is used, you want to make sure you understand the condition the boat is in and this analysis is one of the ways you can do it. It will help you to understand whether this is something you want to invest in or not. It is also a great tool to use when you are comparing different boats. When you go to sell your boat or ship, it is good to have this analysis done and handy as it will help to sell the boat faster as sellers will know what to expect with this vessel.

Whether you are dealing with a personal boat or a large ship for your business needs, it is important that you have a seakeeping analysis done on it. This will ensure that you understand the issues the boat has and the ways that you can correct this. When you take your boat out, even if it is to single point moorings you want to make sure you are safe as possible and that is the main reason for the analysis.

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