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State-of-the-Art Techniques for Seismic Soil-Structure Interaction Analysis of Steel Gravity Structures

[+] Author Affiliations
Frederick Tajirian

Chevron ETC, San Ramon, CA

Mansour Tabatabaie

MTR and Associates, Lafayette, CA

Basilio Sumodobila

SC Solutions, Walnut Creek, CA

Stephen Paulson

Chevron ETC, Danville, CA

Bill Davies

Chevron Australia Pty Ltd, Perth, Australia

Paper No. OMAE2014-24712, pp. V04BT02A061; 10 pages
  • ASME 2014 33rd International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering
  • Volume 4B: Structures, Safety and Reliability
  • San Francisco, California, USA, June 8–13, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4543-1
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME


The design of steel jacket fixed offshore structures in zones of moderate seismicity is typically governed by Metocean loads. In contrast the steel gravity structure (SGS) presented in this paper, is a heavy and stiff structure. The large mass results in foundation forces from seismic events that may exceed those created by extreme cyclonic storm events. When computing the earthquake response of such structures it is essential to account for soil-structure interaction (SSI) effects.

Seismic SSI analysis of the SGS platform was performed using state-of-the-art SSI software, which analyzed a detailed three-dimensional model of the SGS supported on layered soil system. The results of this analysis were then compared with those using industry standard impedance methods whereby the layered soil is replaced by equivalent foundation springs (K) and damping (C). Differences in calculated results resulting from the different ways by which K and C are implemented in different software are presented.

The base shear, overturning moment, critical member forces and maximum accelerations were compared for each of the analysis methods. SSI resulted in significant reduction in seismic demands. While it was possible to get reasonable alignment using the different standard industry analysis methods, this was only possible after calibrating the KC foundation model with software that rigorously implements SSI effects. Lessons learned and recommendations for the various methods of analysis are summarized in the paper.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME
Topics: Gravity (Force) , Steel , Soil



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