The Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) system is a novel application for hydrocarbon production, which is usually designed to stay permanently moored in an offshore, open sea location. The traditional FPSO has been designed for quick intervention and for temporary applications in a well-defined environment in benign waters. The prevailing FPSO hulls are ship-shaped and their permanent applications are, in a way, a “back-to-the-past” scenario. The ship form often has inadequate station-keeping and seakeeping behavior. This led to the invention and development of alternative hull shapes, such as Semi-Submersibles, TLPs and recently, Spars. In fact, the list now includes FPSOs adapted from Very Large Crude Carriers’ (VLCC) hulls, which, due to their size (of more than 320 m), may be considered the forerunners of Very Large Floating Structures (VLFS). However, with these latter developments came several traditional pitfalls that were earlier considered solved.

The station-keeping of FPSOs with regard...

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