Rational Design Concept for Breasting Dolphins

by Lymon C. Reese, (F.ASCE), Prof. and Chmn.; Dept. of Civ. Engrg., The Univ. of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX,
Michael W. O'Neill, Res. Engr.; Center for Highway Res., The Univ. of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX,
N. Radhakrishnan, (A.M.ASCE), Civ. Engr.; U.S. Army Waterways Exp. Station, Vicksburg, MI,

Serial Information: Journal of the Waterways, Harbors and Coastal Engineering Division, 1970, Vol. 96, Issue 2, Pg. 433-450

Document Type: Journal Paper


New deepwater ports are often designed with small operating platforms incapable of withstanding the impact of a berthing ship. These platforms are protected by breasting dolphins. Based on past studies, it is concluded that the designer may assume that one-half of the ship's kinetic energy, as calculated for a berthing velocity of 0.5 fps, will be the maximum energy to be absorbed by a single dolphin at facilities which service large vessels. It is proposed that freestanding tubular piles be used as breasting dolphins at such facilities. A scheme for accomplishing the analysis of such dolphins is presented which leads to an accurate assessment of the energy absorption characteristics of the dolphin. The paper concludes with a case study which demonstrates the analytical scheme, pointing out in particular that the computed response of a dolphin to impact is nonlinear.

Subject Headings: Conceptual design | Offshore structures | Case studies | Ports and harbors | Ship motion | Building design | Sustainable development | Kinetics

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