The development of the tension leg platform (TLP) for the Hutton Field in the North Sea represents the first application of this deepwater concept. The use of vertical tension legs as the mooring system is the most novel part of the TLP design. One of the unique features of the tension legs is the use of 92.5-mm (3.64-in.) thick tubulars forged from 3 1/2 percent Ni-Cr-Mo-V high-strength steel (795 MPa (115.3 ksi) minimum yield strength) as mooring elements. Because of the importance of these elements to the survival of the TLP, the chemical composition and the steelmaking procedure were critically examined and optimized. In addition, extensive evaluation of the corrosion fatigue behavior of the steel was undertaken. This paper discusses the basis for the steel selection and specification, the results of the rigorous corrosion fatigue test program, and the assessment of the variation of properties along the length and through the thickness of full-size components. These results illustrate the suitability of the proposed high-strength steel for the mooring system application and establish confidence in both steelmaking and quality control procedures.

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