Overview of Soil and Engineering Geologic Conditions in the Beaufort, Chukchi, and Bering Seas

by B. Mark Dobson, McClelland Engineers Inc, Ventura, CA, USA,
Jerry T. Wickham, McClelland Engineers Inc, Ventura, CA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Civil Engineering in the Arctic Offshore


General soil and engineering geologic conditions that are likely to affect exploratory drilling and development activities in six Alaska OCS lease sale areas are discussed. Important conditions in the Beaufort Shelf and Chukchi areas include weak soils, submarine permafrost, effects of ice gouging on seafloor topography and soil conditions, and the availability of granular borrow resources. Important conditions affecting Norton Basin include the abundance of silts and the potential for seafloor erosion and ice gouging. A primary consideration affecting development of the Navarin Basin area is the possible lack of competent soils. Seismicity is one of the most important conditions affecting the St. George and North Aleutian Basin areas. Both areas are bounded on the south by one of the most seismically active areas in the world.

Subject Headings: Soil properties | Offshore drilling | Geology | Ice | Basins | Silt | Seismic tests | Bering Sea | Alaska | United States

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