Techno Press
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Steel and Composite Structures   Volume 3, Number 5, October 2003, pages 321-331
Comparative behaviour of stiffened and unstiffened welded tubular joints of offshore platforms
T. S. Thandavamoorthy

Abstract     [Full Text]
     The paper presents the results of an experimental investigation conducted on welded tubular joints, that are employed in offshore platforms, to study the behaviour and strength of these joints under axial brace compression loading. The geometrical configuration of the joints tested were T and Y. The nominal diameter of the chord and brace members of the joint were 324 and 219 mm respectively. The chord thickness was 12 mm and the brace 8 mm. The tested joints are approximately quarter size when compared to the largest joints in the platforms built in a shallow water depth of 80 m in the Bombay High field. Some of the joints were actually fabricated by a leading offshore agency which firm is directly involved in the fabrication of prototype structures. Strength of the internally ring-stiffened joints was found to be almost twice that of the unstiffened joints of the same configuration and dimensions. Bending of the chord as a whole was observed to be the predominant mode of deformation of the internally ring-stiffened joints in contrast to ovaling and punching shear of the unstiffened joints. It was observed in this investigation that unstiffened joint was stiffer in ovaling mode than in bending and that midspan deflection of unstiffened joint was insignificant when compared to that of the internally ring stiffened joint. The measured midspan deflection of the unstiffened joint in this investigation and its relation with the applied axial load compares very well with that predicted for the brace axial displacement by energy method published in the literature. A comparison of the measured deflection and ovaling of the unstiffened joint was made with that published by the author elsewhere in which numerical prediction of both quantities have been made using ANSYS software package. The agreement was found to be quite good.rn
Key Words
    offshore platforms; tubular joints; internally ring-stiffened; unstiffened; testing; behaviour; strength
Shock and Vibration Laboratory, Structural Engineering Research Centre,rnCSIR Campus, Tharamani, Chennai 600 113, Tamil Nadu, Indiarn

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