Oil prospects located offshore in the Arctic often require the design and construction of pipelines, which can be technically and financially prohibitive if covering a substantial distance. Ice scouring poses a significant threat to underwater pipelines for offshore oil production facilities in ice-infested waters. In many cases the only guard against this hazard for pipeline protection are trenching, burial, or creative alignment. The optimal burial depths along the length of a pipeline are usually chosen on the basis of a hazard model that describes the recurrence rate and severity of scouring along its length. Although sufficient data at a specific site are rarely available to accurately predict the hazard model, several thousand scours have been recorded over extended regions and can offer an estimate of scouring hazards at preliminary stages of design. Two features of the proposed model are a parametrization of the scouring hazard model as a function of water depth and exposure to the ice environment, and the propagation of uncertainties due to model incompleteness and sample size. As more site-specific data become available, the proposed model can be validated or readjusted. Application of the proposed model is demonstrated for determination of the optimal burial depth for a hypothetical pipeline route.


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  • Accession Number: 00714642
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 20 1995 12:00AM