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Steel Catenary Risers: The Need for Stability

Steel catenary risers are large metal structures used to attach floating rigs, petro-chemical facilities and housing units to the sea floor. These steel risers must be able to withstand harsh currents, extreme weather and a variety of other elements to keep platforms and other structures stable and able to operate as they are intended. The designers of these unique structures must continually monitor how their risers perform, making needed repairs and watching for any malfunction or problem that may arise. New technology enables the manufacturers of the steel risers to continually maintain and improve their riser designs.

By performing and monitoring seakeeping analysis reports, they are able to improve their rises and keep them compliant with both federal and international guidelines. OSHA, the petroleum industry as well as the Environmental Protection Agency closely monitor how the risers handle extreme weather conditions and if they show signs of stress from strong underwater currents. The stability of the deep sea, steel structures is vital to the safety of the workers. It is also important when trying to maintain efficient productivity levels and keep operations moving smoothly.

The EPA relies closely on reports from both manufacturers and the managers of operations on platforms and rigs when it comes to the stability of the steel catenary risers. If a riser fails while supporting an oil rig, the resulting damage can be extensive. Not only would there be damage to the rig and platform, but loss of workers’ lives and extensive amounts of destruction in relation to the environment.

OSHA (the Occupational Safety and Health Administration) is concerned with the health and safety of all workers employed on the rig or platform. Any resulting injuries due to a malfunction of the rig or the breakdown of equipment can result in extremely high fines. Defects found in steel catenary risers can lead to the compromise of an entire platform. Even if no one is injured, an investigation would uncover possible safety hazards that make the platform unfit or too dangerous for operation.

The harsh environment in which risers are placed also plays a direct role in their design and structural integrity. Manufacturers must account for every aspect of the environment from deep sea underwater currents to hurricane strength winds. The force of both sea level and underwater elements can offer distinct challenges for individuals who must design the structures to withstand both extremes at the same time.

Steel catenary risers must be able to, not only support, but secure the platform and protect it from unexpected shifts and changes in the weather as well as the ocean currents. The need for stability is imperative when workers’ lives and the safety of the environment are at stake. Companies must be able to trust the structures they use so they can remain in business and increase productivity.

Seakeeping Analysis

Seakeeping analysis is measuring how a watercraft or any other water vessel can withstand conditions while on the waters. A ship, or a boat in that case, that has perfect sea keeping ability is referred to as seaworthy, and it will be able to operate efficiently and effectively even when in very high seas. What is normally used during such analysis include a number of things among them the steel catenary risers.

Sea keeping ability is measured using the following factors.

Mission

This is one of the first things used in seakeeping analysis. Where is the ship intended to operate? Or what will be the role of the ship while on the high seas. Basically, mission is one of the key factors used when it comes to seakeeping analysis.

The Environment

Just like mission, the environment also plays a significant role as it is one of the measures. Normally, what is looked into are the conditions under which the ship or the boat is going to operate. The conditions can be described as wind speed, sea state, and geographic region. Additionally, all these conditions can be combined.

Ship Response

How is the ship going to respond to the external and environmental factors? Ideally, the responses are the function of the environment and the ship’s features and characteristics.

Seakeeping analysis impacts directly on the design of the vessel. Ship motions are very vital for determining dynamic loading of the crew, cargo, structural element and even the ship components. It is put under great consideration when determining key dimensions of the sea vessel. Additionally, it will play a key role when you are creating the general arrangements of the ship interior.

Factors That Affect Seakeeping

When it comes to seakeeping analysis, there are multiple factors that can impact directly on how the ship will respond correctly. Some of these factors are highlighted below.

Size

Practically, the larger the ship, the lower motions it will have than a smaller ship. Why is this case? Ideally the relative size of the wave is lower.

Stability

Normally, when a ship is stable, it will tend to follow a wave more close than the one that is less stable. In short, a ship with more stability will have high acceleration, but with very low amplitude of motion.

Displacement

Displacement plays a key role when it comes to seakeeping analysis. A ship that is heavy will have low motions when compared with a lighter ship.

Human Factor

This is often one of the most critical factors when it comes to seakeeping, especially when it comes to smaller vessels. You certainly have to stay injury free, get sufficient sleep and avoid sickness.

Freeboard

The larger the water vessel, the lower its chances of it immersing. Deck immersion is normally one of the seakeeping analysis criterion. It actually affects the mission abilities of quite a number of water vessels.

Basics and Uses of Hydrodynamic Analysis

[Posted on December 11th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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Hydrodynamic analysis, the branch of fluid dynamics that deals with liquids in motion, is an important part of technology anything oceangoing or aquatic. Everything from ships to off-shore structures undergoes some form of this analysis. As the world increases its demand for energy, off shore structures are getting built in more extreme conditions, from deep water to arctic platforms, which require rigorous analysis before being built. Looking toward the future, hydrodynamics is helping solve the uncertainties around tidal generators, possibly turning it into a key energy resource.

Uses in the Energy Sector

The emergence of very large crude carriers has lead to an increase in single point moorings to allow the carriers to load and unload their cargo without the need for a large facility to house them. Given the cost of upwards up $387 million for a single terminal for even one of these moorings, performing solid hydrodynamic analysis is important, as any disruption can have major effects. Iraq is using the moorings to potentially double its output, and is planning to achieve this with only 4 facilities.

For offshore platforms that support drilling, operators need reliable and predictable performance, as well as prediction of wave loads that comes with accurate analysis. The analysis will also determine the safe operation conditions for offshore platforms.

Future Uses

With alternative energy becoming a larger part of the total energy market, tidal generators are being looked at as a way to harness tidal energy to cleanly generate electricity. It is not yet known how much energy can be extracted from the tides, and research is ongoing. This uncertain extends to all scales, from a single device to entire tidal basins.

What to look for

When looking for a company to perform such an analysis, you’ll want to look for a few things to make sure the company doing your analysis will do a good job. There are a variety of software tools used for this analysis, and you’ll want to make sure that the company you’re vetting uses at least some of the following software:

AutoHydro

Comflow

DeepC

Flow-3D

HydroD

Mimosa

OrcaFlex

Simo

Wadam

You’ll also want to make sure that the technology company you’re looking for has experience with many projects. While a theoretic background is also useful, teams with experience with real world projects in a variety of different environments will have the background to deal with any problems that come up.

Hydrodynamic analysis is an important part of any technology effort for aquatic structures, and making sure you have a reliable company that uses the latest techniques and software will ensure you get solutions to the challenges you face.

Features of Single Point Moorings

[Posted on December 4th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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Single point moorings are loading buoys anchored offshore, serving as an interconnection for tankers load and offload liquid or gaseous products. The buoy contains a bearing system that allows part of it to rotate around the moored geostatic part. A vessel can be able to weathervane around a buoy’s geostatic part when it is moored to it. A moored vessel can then rotate itself into a dominant environment, with the system minimizing loads on a buoy’s mooring system. This system can also be used when a vessel that one would like to moor is approaching the buoy.

Some of the single point moorings buoys are off the shelf products that offer various standard features, while others are custom designed. A mooring system, which consists of lines as well as anchor points, is designed to meet the requirements of a vessel and the local environment. Mooring systems are combined with fluid transfer systems, enabling the connection of subsea pipelines to a tanker. Fluid transfer systems include submarine hoses that are between the Pipeline End Manifold (PLEM) on a seabed and a buoy as well as the hoses that are between a buoy and a tanker.

Fabrication can be provided for single point moorings, including procurement, technology, construction, and logistics. Steel fabrication capacity is required if a company is to sustain the needs of a client who wants to develop oil and natural gas fields in increasingly remote geographic locations. To ensure that a client can achieve production at sustainable costs, steel fabrication facilities have to be able to meet the increasing demand for mooring systems. In addition, the technology and fabrication has to be done in a proper manner. The design and workmanship of the systems should also meet stringent rules that are in force.

Some of the offers available for single point moorings include the fabrication of the buoy body. Components for the mooring and anchoring can also be provided. A customer can also be provided with a product transfer system, such as the ones used for loading or offloading gas or liquid products. Auxiliary components can also be provided, including boat landing, handling, and lifting equipment. Navigation aids and power provisions can also be provided. Once the system has been set up, it could be an independent facility or an integrated system as part of an offshore platform.

Hydrodynamic analysis provides a critical insight into the behavior of water and other liquids, which affects water-borne vessels and related facilities, as well as containers that must manage liquid holding as well as liquid flow. Such an analysis provides key inputs into the designs of water locks or how the engines of a vessel perform with the turbines while producing a boat’s momentum. For a client who is considering a major project such as dredging, vessel production, harbor design, or a new water channel, this analysis plays a vital role in decision making and resource allocation.

Three Ways To Benefit From Anchor Analysis

[Posted on November 27th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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When you anchor anything – a boat, an oil rig, or anything else, you need anchor analysis. Using software, you can enter in a variety of variables and learn what is going to happen. As waves and winds are factored in, you will learn whether the anchor you have is sufficient or if you need to explore another option.

There are a lot of things that can go wrong when you anchor a boat. This is why more people in various industries are taking advantage of Orcaflex. This is a software program that can assist with anchor analysis so you can learn more about the environment and help you to choose the right anchor.

If you’ve ever gone in search of anchors in the past, you know there are many options. There are different sizes, weights, materials, and even claws. How you choose an anchor is dependent on the environment you will be in when you need to anchor. If you are in calm waters, you won’t need as big of an anchor as you would where there is a lot of wind.

One way to benefit from anchor analysis is to be able to calculate worst-case scenarios. The anchor you buy may work at one wind speed but once the wind increases, it may cause more waves. This may be sufficient enough to pick the anchor up from the ground, which means your boat or other vessel is no longer anchored.

Another way to benefit is to figure out what you need for the environment you will be working in. You shouldn’t have to buy multiple anchors to try and figure out how to keep your vessel in place. This can be a costly game of trial and error. The better solution is to make calculations and purchase the anchor you need the first time around.

Yet another way to benefit from anchor analysis is to learn what issues you could encounter. This will make it easier to train your employees on what should be done in the event you get into deeper water or the weather takes a turn for the worse. When your employees are trained in these situations, you can ensure that things go as planned.

There are too many accidents on the water because no one bothers to analyze their needs. They make a quick judgment call and hope for the best. You cannot risk lives and risk damaging equipment all because you couldn’t be bothered with some analysis.

There are firms and software programs available to help with anchor analysis. This means you have no excuse not to obtain the analytical reports you need prior to going out into the open water. Your anchor needs to work, regardless of the conditions that you could potentially face. You just need the reports to tell you the details.

Orcaflex Is A Necessary Component To Working On The Water

[Posted on November 20th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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Issues happen on the water all the time and Orcaflex works to prevent these. Analysis of moorings, tie-downs, buoys, rope materials and potential marine conditions can help you to make better decisions for your business. You don’t want to run into problems and when you have analysis you can count on, you avoid problems more often.

The last thing you need is a marine accident investigation to take place because you failed to use Orcaflex to learn about the water conditions. All it takes is a little extra wind or waves to throw a major wrench in your offshore setup. Regardless of whether you’re drilling or you’re setting up a fishing expedition, you need to plan for everything.

When you have the right analysis software, you don’t need to worry about whether you are making the best decisions because the reports will give you confirmation one way or another. You simply need to work on training employees so they understand how to use the software to pull the necessary reports.

Orcaflex is only going to be as good as the person working the program. This means that employees need to be trained on it. You should then ensure that employees are training new employees so everyone is capable of using the software. When more people are capable of analyzing the data, you can avoid mistakes on the water.

If a buoy isn’t capable of dealing with strong winds, you need to get a stronger buoy. If a mooring is loose, it may involve vessels being pulled up from the water. You don’t need an accident to take place on your watch. Not only is it going to cost you money, it could cost you lives as well. Additionally, you may face a significant amount of bad press due to an accident that could have been avoided.

The water is not as friendly as many people believe it to be. If you’ve ever been out on a boat during a tropical storm, you know the wind and waves can be very violent. They can cause a significant amount of damage and put a lot of people and equipment at risk. All it takes is one situation where the analysis isn’t done to cause a devastating outcome.

You need to work with worst-case scenarios. You won’t know how to prepare your boats or your staff unless you do. This will ensure you avoid problems altogether. If you plan for a worst-case scenario with Orcaflex, you will get the reporting criteria you need to make the necessary adjustments to your ties, your buoys and everything else.

When you work on the water, you have to be prepared. The only way to be prepared is with sufficient analysis. technology software can do the analysis so you don’t have to. Orcaflex is used by top technology firms around the globe.

Marine Accident Investigation: Get The Answers You Need

[Posted on November 13th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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A marine accident investigation should always take place following an accident. Regardless of whether it was a boating accident or an offshore drilling incident, you need to know what went wrong. Without knowing, you are likely going to make the same mistakes again – and this can cost you a significant amount of money.

The worst boating accidents have been due to someone not paying attention. It may have to do with not paying attention while driving a boat or not paying attention to the overall conditions. With a little analysis on the front-end, many accidents could have been avoided.

You may find out from the marine accident investigation that mooring analysis could have prevented an accident. The moorings are used to keep boats and other vessels tied down. They are permanent structures that go into the water. Depending on height, width and material, they can only handle so much weight. The waves and the wind can play a dramatic role in whether the moorings hold up.

Even offshore drilling has been exposed to a variety of problems. A marine accident investigation can be ordered for these incidents as well. By carrying out a full investigation, you can learn what went wrong. Sometimes what caused the accident couldn’t have been foreseen. In most cases, however, they are entirely preventable.

With a marine accident investigation, you can learn what went wrong. The next time you go out into a boat or set up an offshore drilling project, you will know what to do differently. You may have to order more analysis of the environment or you may need to focus on other things. You may even need to concentrate on training your employees on different scenarios that can occur on the water.

Not knowing is what will get you into trouble every time. You want to know about your employees and about the weather. So why wouldn’t you want to know about what caused the marine accident? Investigations can take place by companies that know how to dig deep into the problem, review damage, and run analysis based upon the conditions that were encountered when the accident took place.

The more answers you have about why the accident took place, the more precautions you can take in the future. Marine accidents can cost money and cost lives. You don’t want to be associated with these and this is why a marine accident investigation needs to be ordered before you proceed.

Once you get the answers you need, you can make the necessary judgment calls to change the training protocol, order better materials, and change some of the ways materials are engineered. You may even decide to invest in some technology software that can provide you with better analysis. This will help you prepare for more scenarios when you’re in the water.

3 Reasons For Mooring Analysis

[Posted on November 6th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]

 
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No one wants to deal with marine accidents and mooring analysis can prevent this. A boat or other vessel needs to be tied down when it’s at port and this means that the mooring needs to be adequately grounded. Through the use of advanced software, analysis can ensure that all aspects have been considered.

When you schedule mooring analysis, there are several things that should be included in the report:

  • Wind and wave capability
  • Shielding of pier
  • Options to lock vessel
  • Pre-tension for mooring setup
  • Rope properties

No one wants to see their boat drift away and this is one aspect that the mooring analysis can help with. If the mooring is not stable enough, the boat is going to be tied to it. As the wind and waves rock the boat, it may cause enough pressure that the mooring breaks away, causing both the mooring and the boat to drift away.

Another reason for the analysis is to help with a marine accident investigation. If there was any kind of accident involving a boat or other vessel that was tied up at the pier, investigators are going to look at the mooring. If the mooring wasn’t placed properly to begin with, it could be what caused the accident.

A lot of damage avoidance can be put into place with mooring analysis and this is the third reason to get the analysis when putting a mooring in place. Hurricanes can wreak havoc on the land and the sea. If a mooring is only capable of handling a certain amount of wind and wave action, then you need to know this. Some docks or piers will have warnings of when you shouldn’t tie your boat up.

There may be instances where you want to bring your boat onto land. If the mooring has not been analyzed or it is not stable under the current conditions, you have to do what’s right for your boat. You don’t want to lose it to the sea, so you have to secure it in one way or another. If you cannot rely on tying it up in the water, you may have to bring it out of the water entirely. This way you won’t have to worry about problems where it could be washed away.

If you’re dealing with severe weather, you want to make sure you drag the boat or other vessel up the shore enough that waves cannot wash it back down. This will keep your boat safe no matter what kind of weather you are dealing with.

There are all sorts of reasons for scheduling a mooring analysis. Once you have the analysis in hand, you can provide the necessary notifications to boaters. You can also train your employees that work on the dock or pier to help with securing vessels to the mooring.

Riser Analysis and Off-Shore Drilling

[Posted on October 23rd, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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Riser analysis is vital to your offshore-drilling company. It offers you information about the type of riser you need, the quality of your riser, and any problems you might have or be having. There are a number of different types of flexible risers, and with riser analysis, you can determine which riser will work best for you.

Stewart Technology Associates has used OrcaFlex technology to analyze risers. The software allows the company to look for critical issues and to determine solutions with all the information needed. This software is one of the most effective products in the marine technology world, and it’s used with over 170 organizations all around the world because of its quality. Stewart Technology Associates offers this technology and the ability to perform services like riser analysis, CE marking, jack up analysis, and others.

Your riser is an important part of your business. Risers are used to transport materials from the seafloor or below to your platforms at the surface, where you can then transport and use the materials. Risers often are referred to as pipelines, as they are essentially vertical pipes.

There are a number of different types of risers you can choose from including attached risers, steel catenary risers, flexible risers, and others. Attached risers, for example, are often used with fixed facilities because they won’t be moved often or at all. Steel catenary risers are often considered the best value for your money, as they are flexible and can be made hundreds of meters long. They are often attached to floating platforms that may move, and they are sometimes curved to withstand more movement than other types of risers.

Pull tube risers are threaded through the center of the facility, which means that there are actually two pipes in use. The pipe on the sea floor is essentially pulled up through the secondary riser to allow the transport of fluids and gases.

Flexible risers were made to withstand vertical and horizontal movement. This means they can easily be used with floating facilities that have to move or be moved often. This is commonly used because of the ability of the risers to stand up to the changes in the ocean’s movement, and buoyancy can be changed to suit the area and needs of the particular riser.

With riser analysis, you can be certain that your riser is working correctly, so you won’t be leaking important materials or trying to work with a pipe that doesn’t want to function in the environment where you’re completing offshore drilling. Stewart Technology Associates has worked in the industry for over 20 years and can help you determine the best riser choice for your needs or work with you to analyze the risers you already have.

Why Are Flexible Risers Needed For Offshore Drilling?

[Posted on October 9th, 2013 by Bill Stewart]


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Flexible risers are needed for offshore drilling. Without the use of risers on the ocean, it would be near impossible to access most of the world’s gas and oil supplies. Risers make it possible to obtain the gas and oil in the ocean’s crust and floor, and to do so, must be hundreds of meters long in some cases. These pipes must be strong and flexible to withstand changing ocean conditions and need to be able to hold up over time against salt, damage, and use.

Flexible risers help connect platforms to oil and gas below the surface of the ocean. They also help to transport fuel to platforms where it can be packaged and transported to nearby oil refineries or stations. There are many types of these risers available, and with riser analysis you can determine which type will work best in your particular situation. While there are many types, there are two main forms that most people will work with. Those include the steel catenary rise and bottom-weighted riser. While both are similar, they have significant differences that can make your work easier when implemented correctly.

Of the types of risers available, the one that offers the most benefits for the price is often the steel catenary riser. This riser has flexible steel pipes, is designed for deep-water drilling, and can be hundreds of meters in length, which makes it easy to connect your platform to the ocean floor and beyond. Normally, these operate between 2,000 and 5,000 psi, and they have a diameter of 8 to 12 inches.

Flexible risers such as the steel catenary riser often costs less to manufacture. Because of the amount of steel being used, the cost impact can be significant and beneficial. These risers are very dependable, and they resist high temperatures, pressures, and can be flexible to work with the changing patterns of the ocean.

At Stewart Technologies, you can select these risers or other styles that you prefer. Another solution you may prefer includes the bottom-weighted riser. This riser is similar, but it has a rigid elbow and horizontal parts made with titanium for strength. Stewart Technologies can help you determine the best choice for your drilling needs through riser analyses, so you don’t spend extra money on the wrong item. With the right tools, your drilling will go smoothly and allow you to work with fewer dangers on the job. With low-cost and lower-cost solutions, you can select the right piping and risers for your business, the location, and your needs.

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