One of the main aspects of subsea pipeline design is ensuring pipeline stability on the seabed under the action of hydrodynamic loads. Hydrodynamic loads acting on Piggyback Pipeline Systems have traditionally been determined by pipeline engineers using an ‘equivalent pipeline diameter’ approach. The approach is simple and assumes that hydrodynamic loads on the Piggyback Pipeline System are equal to the loads on a single pipeline with diameter equal to the projected height of the piggyback bundle (the sum of the large diameter pipeline, small diameter pipeline and gap between the pipelines) [1]. Hydrodynamic coefficients for single pipelines are used in combination with the ‘equivalent diameter pipe’ to determine the hydrodynamic loads on the Piggyback Pipeline System. In order to assess more accurately the dynamic response of a Piggyback Pipeline System, an extensive set of physical model tests has been performed to measure hydrodynamic forces on a Piggyback Pipeline System in combined waves and currents conditions, and to determine in-line and lift force coefficients which can be used in a dynamic stability analysis to generate the hydrodynamic forces on the pipeline [2]. This paper describes the implementation of the model testing results in finite elements dynamic stability analysis and presents a case study where the dynamic response of a Piggyback Pipeline System was assessed using both the conventional ‘equivalent diameter approach’ and the hydrodynamic coefficients determined using model testing. The responses predicted using both approaches were compared and key findings presented in the paper, in terms of adequacy of the equivalent diameter approach, and effect of piggyback gap (separation between the main line and the secondary line) on the response.

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