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Measurements of Wind Loads on Side-by-Side Semi-Submersibles in A Wind Tunnel

Abstract

The multi-body system has been a popular form for offshore operations in terms of high efficiency. The wind effects are crucial which directly affect the relative positions of floating bodies and operating security. In this study, the aerodynamic characteristics for two coupled semi-submersibles were analyzed in a wind tunnel to fill the gaps in literature related to the wind sheltering on offshore platforms. The influences of separation distance were also investigated. According to the results, substantial shielding effects were observed and wind forces on the shielded vessel decreased dramatically: a reduction in the transverse force could be up to 74%. Moreover, the longitudinal wind load was amplified by the platform abreast in a side-by-side configuration. As expected, the interference level became more pronounced with a decreasing separation distance. For cases in which wind interaction decayed rapidly with distance, logarithmic functions were preferable for describing the relationship between them. Whereas linear fitting was reasonable for the transverse wind force when there was still evident sheltering at a quite large distance. The length of shielding area was another important factor that there was approximately a linear relationship between it and the shielding level for two platforms in close proximity at various wind attack angles. Based on the two parameters, a preliminary wind loads estimation method considering shielding effects was proposed. This approach can aid the industry to have a qualitative assessment of wind sheltering especially at early stages.

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Correspondence to Jian-min Yang.

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Foundation item

This study was supported by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of China (Grant No. [2016] 546) and Shanghai Innovation Action Plan of Science and Technology (Grant No. 19DZ1207300).

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Dong, Q., Guo, Xx., Yang, Jm. et al. Measurements of Wind Loads on Side-by-Side Semi-Submersibles in A Wind Tunnel. China Ocean Eng 35, 531–543 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13344-021-0048-6

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Key words

  • wind loads
  • side-by-side
  • shielding effect
  • wind tunnel test