Jacket type structures in offshore structural industry consist of a large number of tubular members with various dimensions, which are joined to each other by welding that makes connections to be rigid. Diagonal members have relatively small dimensions, legs or chords have larger dimensions in general. Although the connections at joints are made rigidly, the actual joint behaviors under wave loadings are not fully rigid in the vicinity of connections due to local deformations of members having large diameters. In the short term, due to ultimate wave and earthquake loadings, some plastic deformations can also occur in members at some critical joints so that related members cannot be behave as rigidly connected and some releases of member forces occur. In the long term, fatigue damages can be observed at some joints that damaged members loose their functionality partly or fully as depending on damage rates. All these phenomena can be considered as member deterioration. A special treatment of deteriorated members can be used in the structural analysis by using a computation model that allows flexibility of damaged members at joints. The solution of this problem can be achieved by introducing a fictitious member concept, which can be derived as depending on actual member dimensions and joint configurations. The technique of using fictitious members introduces additional degrees of freedom that are not desirable in the analysis. A procedure which uses modified stiffness and mass matrices for flexibly connected members are more practical and attractive since a) no additional degrees of freedom are introduced, b) member-release and fixed-connection conditions can be directly obtained, c) a general member-end condition in any direction can be easily specified, d) a failure mechanism can be easily determined, e) in the fatigue damage calculation the load carrying capacity of the member can be used until the whole member cross-section is damaged and f) natural frequencies and mode shapes of damaged structural system can be estimated in terms of the natural frequencies and mode shapes of the undamaged structural system. The paper introduces a general formulation of a partly connected member to be used in structural analysis. For this purpose, a spring-beam element is defined using massless spring systems at member ends. An algorithmic procedure is presented to update member stiffness and mass matrices as well as member consistent load vector.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.