A steel catenary riser (SCR) attached to a floating platform at its upper end encounters oscillations in and near its touchdown zone (TDZ), which results in interaction with the seabed. Field observations and design analysis of SCRs show that the highest stress and greatest fatigue damage occurred near the touchdown point where the SCR first touches the seabed soil. The challenges regarding the fatigue damage assessment of an SCR in the TDZ are primarily because of the non-linear behaviour of SCR–seabed interaction and considerable uncertainty in seabed interaction modelling and geotechnical parameters. Analysis techniques have been developed in the two main areas: SCR–seabed interaction modelling and the influence of the uncertainty in the geotechnical parameters on the dynamic response and fatigue performance of SCRs in the TDZ. Initially, this study discusses the significance of SCR–seabed interaction on the response of an SCR for deepwater applications when subjected to random waves on soft clay using the commercial code OrcaFlex for non-linear time domain simulation. In the next step, this study investigates the sensitivity of fatigue performance to geotechnical parameters through a parametric study. It is proven that employing the improved lateral SCR-seabed interaction model with accurate prediction of soil stiffness and riser penetration with cyclic loading enables us to obtain dynamic global riser performance in the TDZ with better accuracy. The fatigue analyses results prove that the confounding results indicated by the previous research studies on the SCR in the TDZ are due to different geotechnical parameters imposed with the seabed interaction model. The main benefit of employing non-linear seabed approach is to capture the entity of realistic soil interaction behaviour in modelling and analysis and to predict the likelihood of the fatigue damage of the SCR with seabed interaction, thereby minimising the risk of the loss of the containment with the associated environmental impact.

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