Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence Geotechnical Science and Engineering

Dimitra Zografou

Thesis

Response of skirted foundations to cyclic loading

Summary

This research project will investigate the response of skirted foundations to combined cyclic loading relevant to mooring of deepwater floating oil and gas facilities.

Skirted foundations or ‘bucket’ foundations are attractive as a foundation and mooring solution. Negative pore pressures generated within the soil plug confined by the ‘bucket’ allow transient tensile forces to be resisted while requiring lower embedment than piles and suction caissons.

The project involves centrifuge model tests under various cyclic loading scenarios relevant to deepwater moorings and subsea infrastructure. Complementary cyclic simple shear tests will be carried out to compare cyclic soil response at an element level with the system response investigated in the centrifuge. Soft normally consolidated seabed clay conditions are being considered, relevant to deep water offshore regions.

Why my research is important

The aim of this research is to develop a theoretical framework based on experimental data that can be used for design. Skirted foundations are a potentially attractive alternative to current foundation solutions for mooring floating facilities that could reduce costs and alleviate logistical challenges.

Funding

Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems

Supervisors

Professor Susan Gourvenec

Associate Professor Conleth O’Loughlin