Arctic Offshore Site Investigations

by Kurt O. Stangl, McClelland-EBA Inc, Anchorage, AK, USA,
Arshud Mahmood, McClelland-EBA Inc, Anchorage, AK, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Civil Engineering in the Arctic Offshore


The continuing search for new petroleum sources has led to increased exploration activity in the arctic offshore regions of Alaska. The general approach to site investigations has been to assess seafloor conditions on a regional basis before initiating site specific work. Upon selection of the preferred location, site specific geotechnical investigations are performed. Geotechnical investigations coupled with shallow high resolution geophysical surveys must obtain high quality data for input into foundation design. The geophysical methods commonly used when working from the ice platform in winter and over water during summer are outlined. Execution of geotechnical investigations during winter and summer is discussed with respect to logistics, drilling equipment, sampling techniques, and in situ testing. Advantages and shortcomings of commonly used site investigation techniques are outlined. The adverse climatic conditions of the arctic require specialized equipment and extensive planning.

Subject Headings: Site investigation | Offshore structures | Offshore drilling | Geotechnical investigation | Winter | Shallow foundations | Petroleum | Arctic | Alaska | United States

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