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A Reliability-Based Method for Determining Design Ice Loads on Offshore Structures

[+] Author Affiliations
X. Wu, C. E. Heuer, T. D. Ralston, G. F. Davenport

ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company, Houston, TX

A. T. Wang

Wang & Associates, Inc., Houston, TX

G. Toro

Risk Engineering, Inc., Houston, TX

Paper No. OMAE2002-28199, pp. 645-652; 8 pages
  • ASME 2002 21st International Conference on Offshore Mechanics and Arctic Engineering
  • 21st International Conference on Offshore Mechanics and Arctic Engineering, Volume 3
  • Oslo, Norway, June 23–28, 2002
  • Conference Sponsors: Ocean, Offshore, and Arctic Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3613-4 | eISBN: 0-7918-3599-5
  • Copyright © 2002 by ASME


This paper describes a reliability-based methodology that has been developed at ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company (URC) for determining rational design ice loads on offshore structures. The URC methodology provides a systematic framework to account for Type I (aleatory) and Type II (epistemic) uncertainties in assessing global probabilistic ice hazards. Specifically, a logic-tree based approach is developed to model Type II uncertainties in the assessment of ice hazards. Although the method has general applicability, the present work considers a wide, vertical-sided, gravity-based structure (GBS) in a dynamic, annual ice environment. Both FORM/SORM methods and Monte Carlo simulation are used in the analyses. Results obtained from this reliability-based approach indicate that the modeling of Type II uncertainties plays a significant role in quantifying the ice hazards for determining the design ice load. Further, this effort may potentially reduce over-conservatism in typical deterministic ice load calculations. The probabilistic methodology developed in this study has broad applicability and can provide a rational framework for calculating design ice loads on other types of structures for arctic offshore development.

Copyright © 2002 by ASME



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