Three-dimensional numerical analysis of centrifuge experiments on a model jack-up drilling rig on sand

Britta Bienen, Mark Cassidy

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    21 Citations (Scopus)


    Jack-up drilling rigs are usually founded on three shallow footings. Under wind, wave, and current loading offshore, the footings of these tall multi-footing systems transfer large moment loads in addition to self-weight, horizontal load, and even torsion to the underlying soil. To be able to deploy a jack-up safely at a particular offshore site, the unit’s capacity to withstand a 50 year return period storm is required to be checked in accordance with current guidelines (Site specific assessment of mobile jack-up units, The Society of Naval Architects & Marine Engineers). As the overall system behaviour is influenced significantly by the footing restraint, models that account for the complex nonlinear foundation–soil interaction behaviour are required to be integrated with the structural and loading models. Displacement-hardening plasticity theory has been suggested as an appropriate framework to formulate force-resultant models to predict shallow foundation behaviour. Recent research has extended such a model to account for six degree-of-freedom loading of circular footings on sand, allowing integrated structure–soil analysis in three dimensions. This paper discusses “class A” numerical predictions of experiments on a model jack-up in a geotechnical centrifuge, using the integrated modelling approach, and critically evaluates the predictive performance. The numerical simulations are shown to represent a significant improvement compared with the method outlined in the current guidelines.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)208-224
    JournalCanadian Geotechnical Journal
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

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