The Complexities of Fatigue Analysis for Deepwater Risers

The Complexities of Fatigue Analysis for Deepwater Risers
March 1999
M. Campbell

Riser systems are dynamic, fatigue sensitive structures, that are usually regarded as the most challenging aspect of a deepwater development. There are many complex issues involved with the design and analysis of deepwater riser systems.

Riser long-term fatigue performance is an important design consideration. Overly conservative design approaches can be costly, whilst less sophisticated analysis methods may not be truly representative, with the possibility of non-conservatism and catastrophic failure.

The aim of the paper is to increase confidence in deepwater riser systems, concentrating on riser fatigue analysis, particularly of steel catenary risers. Current areas of uncertainty will be addressed, and the effect of different vessels, motion characteristics, geographical locations and analysis techniques will be discussed, with the aid of example cases.

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