Offshore Platforms and Pipelines in Mississippi River Delta

by Robert G. Bea, (M.ASCE), Chf.; Ocean Engrg. Div., Woodward-Clyde Consultants, Houston, Tex.,
Jean M.E. Audibert, (A.M.ASCE), Sr. Project Engr.; Ocean Engrg. Div., Woodward-Clyde Consultants, Houston, Tex.,


Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 8, Pg. 853-869


Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: Platforms and pipelines installed in the soil movement prone areas of the Mississippi River Delta have developed an instructive history of survivals and failures. More often than not, attention has been given to the failures, rather than focusing on the paradoxes of the survivals. Notable survivals and failures associated with platforms and pipelines installed in the Delta and subjected to soil movements are examined. Geologic, geotechnical, and oceanographic explanations for observed performance are advanced to provide a basis for analyses of performance. History indicates that careful siting of platforms and pipelines in the Delta can go a long way in providing acceptable performance. Strategies for such siting are suggested. Analyses indicate that it is possible to explain the failures that have been experienced, given that the locations and characteristics of the soil movements are understood. Thus, it should be possible to develop engineering strategies to design structures that can resist such movements, given that one can determine the locations and characteristics of the soil movements that will confront the structure.

Subject Headings: Rivers and streams | Offshore platforms | Offshore pipelines | Failure analysis | History | Soil-pipe interaction | Soil analysis | Pipe failures | Geology | Mississippi River

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