This paper examines the vortex induced motions (VIM) of a spar type floating production platform in uniform and sheared currents. The large draft of modern production platforms means that in some of the extreme current events the flow past the platform is highly non-uniform along the hull. We discuss the simulation of these stratified flows associated with hurricane events and loop currents and the implications for experiments and numerical simulations. Model testing options are reviewed along with the potential effects of buoyancy due to temperature and salinity variations in the current. Comparisons are made between experimental test results and numerical simulations of VIM at small scale and projections are made to full scale behavior using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and detached eddy simulation (DES).

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