Xodus, a provider of engineering and advisory support for oil and gas industry, has teamed up with the University of Dundee to undertake a project in which it will develop analysis methods and design guidance for the removal of subsea structures used in the oil and gas industry.
The project will be carried out with support from the Oil & Gas Innovation Centre (OGIC), and it will examine the decommissioning of shallow foundations on clay seabeds.
Aberdeen-based Oil & Gas Innovation Centre OGIC has paired the company with the University of Dundee’s School of Science and Engineering, which will carry out a series of small-scale model tests of uplift operations in a controlled environment. According to the University of Dundee, these tests will investigate a range of variables including the effect of on-bottom time and skirt configuration on the required recovery loads for subsea structures.
Ian Phillips, chief executive officer of OGIC, said: “Decommissioning is a relatively new industry in the UKCS and offers significant opportunities for the supply chain to develop new processes and technology which will be needed globally. The University of Dundee and Xodus project has the potential to ensure that costly decommissioning projects are carried out efficiently.”
Andrew Brennan, senior lecturer in civil engineering at the University of Dundee, said: “Civil engineering activity within the offshore oil and gas sector has seen a growth in the emphasis placed on decommissioning in recent years, but extracting foundations from the seabed poses major engineering challenges due to the number of variables on which recovery loads depend.
“By performing a series of small-scale model tests, we can understand better how each of these variables controls the process and hence improve the efficiency of foundation extraction in the future.”
Andy Small, principal geotechnical engineer with Xodus said: “This research will produce invaluable knowledge and understanding of the recovery process and associated risks and will likely result in significant cost savings and operational efficiencies for future decommissioning projects.”