At the present time design values of ice loads on fixed offshore structures are rather conservative. Conservatism of design ice loads consists in assuming the most unfavorable ice action direction and the worst ice drift speed; the most unfavorable combination of the consolidated layer thickness, ridge keel depth and ice strength; as well as supposing the ice ultimate strength value constant along the whole ice–structure contact area perimeter.
With accumulation of the knowledge on ice formation failure under interaction with ice-resistant fixed platforms, the requirements contained in Rules of classification societies are reduced. For example, for the last forty years the lowering of requirements to design ice load values was equal to about four times .
For the last time specialists of Krylov State Research Centre have performed design and experimental studies where further tendency to decreasing design values of ice loads is traced. Ice monitoring is one of the main elements for justification of design ice load values’ decrease.
Modern monitoring systems permit to warn about occurrence of a state close to a limit one, as well as to record actual ice loads. Ice load monitoring is a necessary part of accident prevention during ice-resistant structures operation. Monitoring of ice loads is a necessary part for providing safe operation of ice-resistance structures, and systematic accumulation of monitoring data for several years gives a positive effect in the form of justified decrease of static and dynamic design ice loads.