Innovative mooring anchors developed by Petrobras will soon be installed in a new region.
Hart's E&P, October 2009
Author: Bob Wilde, InterMoor
Petrobras Brasileiro SA has licensed Acteon company InterMoor Inc. to produce and install its patented torpedo pile anchoring system in the US. The first installation of the torpedo piles is expected to be in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM).
The torpedo pile dynamically penetrates the soil by the free-fall velocity attained by the effects of gravity. Stabilizing fins, a conical tip, ballast, and an omni-directional chain attachment on the pile top distinguish these piles, but once in place, they behave in the same manner as a conventionally installed crown loaded pile.
Since 1996, when Petrobras was awarded its Brazilian patent, the company has successfully installed more than 1,000 torpedo piles for anchoring deepwater flowlines and facilities offshore Brazil. InterMoor has been licensed to use the US Patent on the technology awarded to Petrobras in 2000 in applications outside Brazil.
Torpedo piles were first conceived as an inexpensive, easily installed anchor for riser flowline restraint. Restraint is needed as floating production facility movement caused by environmental loads produces cyclic loading in the risers followed by flowline displacement on the seabed. Another need for flowline restraint comes from the effects of thermal walking loads — the one-way displacement of flowlines across the seafloor resulting from repeated heating and cooling of the lines during sequential operational periods — and planned or unplanned shutdowns.
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