The new DNV Recommended Practice on Buckling of Plated Structures (RP-C201) was issued in October 2002. It supersedes the plate part of the widely used DNV Classification Notes 30.1 on Buckling Strength Analysis. The RP covers unstiffened plate elements as well as orthogonal stiffened panels. The recommendations cover both in plane biaxial compression stresses and shear stresses as well as lateral pressure (hydrostatic pressure) even if acting simultaneously. The RP is part of the new series of DNV offshore standards and is intended for design of structures like semi-submersibles, topside structures, FPSOs jack-up rigs etc. The 2004 revision of the Norsok N-004 code will make reference to the RP-C201 with regard to buckling of stiffened plates. The RP is developed on the basis of continuous research activity at DNV within the field of buckling of plated structures for the last 30 years. Feed back from users of Classification Note 30.1 has also been an important element in the development. The result is a new set of design recommendations that leads to more cost effective structures and a more consistent level of structural reliability. This paper describes main features of the RP and the principles for the design checks. It presents the range of application and the background for the various recommendations. Also included are comparisons to other codes and laboratory test.

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