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[Group 04] Offshore Platform

Week 4

posted 17 Jun 2013, 02:55 by John McGuckin

Some serious work was put into the design of the final two platform structure in order to have everything ready for our last critical session. The superstructure was redesigned to be more structurally stable with many more members added to take the loads. An impressive GSA model of the whole structure was created for the structural analysis.

The height of the structure was finalised through fluid mechanics calculations as well as taking into account the industry standards. Detailed calculations were carried out to produce the lengths of all of the through-leg piles. To get an estimate of costs, one of the group members had to become a British Library Reader in order to get hold of a seemingly rare book which was suggested by the clients.

North Tech gave a slicker-than-ever presentation complete with an animated fly-through created from the AutoCAD model. Overall the industrial clients, AMEC, give us very positive feedback. Their main point of concern was that the topside was too congested and needed to be simplified with larger members. This gave us a lot to do before the submission of for our final report the following week.

Week 3

posted 5 Jun 2013, 02:03 by John McGuckin

Choosing not to celebrate the very important English public holiday of “Late May”, all group members gathered in the computer lab and got to work.

With the type of structure finalised, North Tech got straight to work on the detailed design of the steel jacket structure. Lots of work was put into the environmental loadings, the foundation design as well as structural analysis including joint design.

Losing a couple of work days due to lectures meant that a push had to be made to produce deliverables for the third critical session. The session with AMEC went well with everyone participating and much more confidently. Their main concern was the structural design of the superstructure, and this was no surprise as work had only begun on it the previous day.

We received good direction from AMEC for the next week as it was recommended that we should proceed with the two-platform design as opposed to three and we should use through-leg piles. 

Week 2

posted 23 May 2013, 03:18 by Group Design Projects Imperial

Week 2 got underway with most of the group working hard on calculations. It was decided that as to not waste resources on the development presentation only the two “English” should present. This tactic didn’t pay off with the development presentation scored harshly by the class, with a lower mark than that received from the sell-confessed “Simon Cowell” style judging panel.

After it was clear that we had not fully assessed and compared all our available options for the offshore processing facility the group had to backtrack slightly as to produce a viable second option. For a while the FPSO (floating processing storage and offloading) vessel was on the cards as runner up to the jacket, quite a renegade option for a gas field in 22m water depth. In the end the group settled on the submersible structure as our best second option to the steel jacket despite the last one being installed over 50 years ago. 

A lot of work was put into both options for Thursday’s presentation and report. Structural loads and load paths during construction, transportation, lifting and operation were assessed. Foundations for both were designed. Sketch Up models of our different superstructure arrangements were created.

The students were a lot less shy about making the most of the food provided by AMEC this week. The critical session went well with three of our group members giving a professional presentation. The main criticism this week was that not every member of our group spoke, something which will be easily rectified.

Friday proved a break from the daily grind with two interesting presentations on risk and sustainability followed by workshops to help us assess the risk and sustainability of our project. Apparently putting wind turbines on our platform isn't the right way to deal with sustainability!

Week 1

posted 20 May 2013, 07:52 by Group Design Projects Imperial

Straight after receiving the brief at the start of the week Group 4, a.k.a. North Tech, got working on our options for the offshore processing facility. After the helpful library session we dived straight into the books in order to do the desk study for our project. 

The project has a wide scope so the group was divided into sub-teams. Each group member was designated a certain area of responsibility ranging from fluid loading to constructability. Our desk study produced a good range of options and after sending off our hefty report we were ready for our first critical session.


The journey across London to the AMEC headquarters on Old Street proved worth it for the hungry students with a full spread of food awaiting us. Despite technical difficulties with the projector we gave our slick Prezi presentation. The following Q&A session proved useful, giving us good direction for the next week. After a short debrief from Dr. Spinneken the group found the closest public house in order to toast to a good week’s work.

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