A typical and may be the most prospective deep ocean mining system is an integration of a mining ship system, a hoist pipeline system and a self-propelled seafloor miner system. According to this representative system configuration, China has designed and developed a deep ocean mining pilot system. In order to evaluate and improve the design of the pilot system, and further to provide technical references for the practical system operation, dynamic simulation models of the subsystems and the total integrated system are developed. For the seafloor miner, a multi-body model with the scale of 1:1 to the actual size of the pilot miner is built, which can be used effectively to perform detailed design, analysis and optimization of the miner system. Meanwhile, to make the integration of the total mining system possible, a simplified 3D single-body model with 6 DOF of the miner is also developed, which is capable of real-time simulation and can be easily integrated with other subsystems. For the pipeline system including the rigid lifting pipe, submerged pump, buffer storage and flexible hose, finite element method (FEM) and discrete element method (DEM) are all proposed and developed. With the FEM model, the towing mining operation process, as well as the launching and retrieval process, can be analyzed. Whereas, the DEM model is preferred to perform the dynamic analysis of the total integrated mining system due to its relative high computation efficiency compared with that of the FEM model. To realize the dynamic analysis of the total integrated mining system with relative high efficiency and accuracy, the single body model of the miner and the DEM model of the pipeline are chosen to be integrated to form the total system and perform dynamic analysis, which in a way can provide specific guidance and suggestions for the practical deep ocean mining system analysis, operation and control. For further researches, more attention will be focused on the analysis of the launching and retrieval operation process of the total mining system, including the water entry of the miner, the launching process of the pipeline system and the final seafloor-touchdown of the miner.

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