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Summary Arctic Engineering 2012/2013

Arctic Engineering (Technische Universiteit Delft)

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Arctic Engineering Summary, V.H.R.I. Doede

OE4680 Arctic Engineering Summary

Author: V.H.R.I. Doede

AbstractThis short paper is a summary of the Arctic

Engineering lectures.


I. Introduction & Overview
II. Classification of Offshore Structures
Offshore structures can be classified as follows;

The best performing in Canada are the caisson retained

artificial islands. They could be built quickly and needed less
sand. They could also be more easily installed in (deeper)
waters plus they had better wave and ice protection. An
overview of the different structures can be seen below.

1) Artificial Islands
Artificial islands were first built in the Beaufort Sea in the
early 1970s, both in Canada and Alaska. Most often used in
shallow coastal zones. They have great resistance to ice loads,
but may need protection from wave and ice scour, and hence
require more maintenance.
A short ice-free season can be used to advantage since fill
can be transported over ice roads. Artificial islands can be
further categorized into:

Slopes of an artificial island vary from 1:5 1:20, and a

sacrificial beach is sometimes used to protect drilling

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Arctic Engineering Summary, V.H.R.I. Doede

structures. Typical water depths are 5-20m, with rock berms it

could be extended to 50-90m. These depths however have not
been reached.
2) Bottom-Mounted
There are numerous bottom-mounted structures in the
offshore industry, as can be seen below. Bottom-mounted
structures first came to the scene in Cook Inlet, Alaska, in the
1960s. Main types are gravity based structures (GBS), piledbased structures (PBS) and mixed base structures (MBS).
A GBS platform resists lateral load solely by large mass and
friction or shear at base. PBS platforms develop shear
resistance through use of piles, and assume monopod or jacket
forms. MBS are a combination of both.
Figure 1. The Hibernia.

Generally platforms are designed to minimize ice loads

through reducing diameter at waterline, and introducing sloped
surfaces which fail ice in bending (lower loads than vertical
faces which cause failure in crushing).
A nice example of a GBS is the Hibernia. The Hibernia GBS
(offshore Newfoundland, Canada) is 111 m high and has
storage capacity for 1.3 million barrels of crude oil in its 85 m
high caisson. It is still the world's largest oil platform in terms
of weight, at a total of 1.2 million tonnes. This consists of a
37,000 tonnes integrated topsides facility mounted on a
600,000 tonne gravity base structure along with 450,000 tonnes
of solid ballast. The GBS is specially designed to withstand the
impact of sea ice and icebergs to allow for year-round

3) Floating
Both steel and concrete floating structures have been
proposed steel structures, (barges, ships and semi-subs) have
actually been used. Ice platforms also fit this category. Moored
barges, drillships and semisubmersibles, have been used in the
Arctic to date. Moored caissons remain on the drawing boards.
Dynamically positioned vessels have been used where ice
forces are moderate, or where there may be a need to move off
quickly (for example in case of ice bergs). Ice platforms have
been used where there is a stable ice cover for much of the
year. Below is an overview of the different floating structures.

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Arctic Engineering Summary, V.H.R.I. Doede

Canadian (and US) Beaufort Sea. Further below are the

different ice regimes with some elaboration.

First Year & Multi Year Ice

a) Level Ice
Level ice is Sea ice of fairly uniform ice thickness, usually
land fast. Depending on location, level ice can grow up to 2.5m
or more.

Ice conditions and water depths are two major factors

affecting the choice of structural configuration. Operational
infrastructure are other important constraints.
III. Ice Features & Ice Regimes
` This section covers ice regimes, sea ice and iceberg ice, ice
conditions in various parts of the world, arctic locations and
bathymetry, general arctic features and operating limitations.
There are three general classifications for ice; First Year
Ice (FY), Multi Year Ice (MY) and Glacial Ice.

b) Ice Floes
Any relatively flat piece of sea ice 20 m or more across
(individual feature). Ice concentration is measured as the
relative amount of water with respect to sea ice, measured in
Floes are subdivided according to horizontal extent as

Giant: over 10 km across

Vast: 2-10 km across
Big: 500-2000 m across
Medium: 100-500 m
Small: 20-100 m

Ice types depend very much on region, distance from shore

and water depth. Below is the ice regime typical for the

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c) Rafted Ice
Deformed ice occurs when one piece of ice overrides

e) Rubble Pile
Floating or grounded accumulation of broken ice blocks of
first-year ice, generally caused by natural or man-made

d) Ice Ridges
Ice formation consisting of ice blocks formed as a result of
compression or shear of pack ice. First year ridges are not nice
and linear, but very irregular. There are five different types of

f) Rubble Fields
Accumulation of floating or grounded rubble that forms in
same way as an ice ridge, but covers large expanse of sea

New ridge: Ridge with sharp peaks and slopes of sides

usually about 40 to the horizontal.
Weathered ridge: Ridge with peaks slightly rounded and
slope of sides usually 30-40. Individual fragments not
Very weathered ridge: Ridge with peaks very rounded,
slope of sides usually 20-30.
Aged ridge: Ridge which has undergone considerable
Consolidated ridge: A ridge in which the upper parts of the
ridge has frozen together.
Glacial Ice
a) Ice Islands
Large tabular ice features also originating from glaciers,
these can be very large in size. From 1983 till 1989 there even
was a research centre on an ice island near Elliesmere Island in
b) Icebergs

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Floating remnants of glacial ice broken away from glaciers
and ice shelves. Icebergs can be classified by weight or by

Iceberg classification:
Growlers (sail < 1.5 m).
Bergy bits (sail 1.5 to 5 m, mass < 5400 t).
Small bergs (sail 5 to 15 m, mass 5400 to 180,000 t).
Medium bergs (sail 15-45 m, mass 180,000 to 2,000,000 t).
Large bergs (mass > 2,000,000 t).

Or by shape:

The ice conditions in the most interesting regions are

stated here below.

After calving usually on the west coast of Greenland,

icebergs drift to the coast of Newfoundland, which is about
1,800 nautical miles. The average iceberg drift speed is about
0.7 km/hr, but this is influenced by factors including iceberg
size, shape, currents,waves and wind. They travel in the Baffin
Current, then the Labrador Current and finally reach the Grand
Banks of Newfoundland. Once they reach the Grand Banks,
icebergs drift either eastward north of the Flemish Cap or
Southward between the Flemish Cap and the Grand Banks
also known as Iceberg Alley.
Arctic Bathymetry & Areas of Interest
The Arctic can be very deep in places and the bathymetry
greatly influences flows in and around the arctic. A figure of
the bathymetry is given below. Note locations of extreme
depths, and features such as the Lomonosov ridge running
diagonally across the North Pole.

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Note that in most of these regions there is an absence of

icebergs due to the lack of gletsjers. Also, due to the Atlantic
current, in the Barents sea there can be no ice at all during the
IV. Ice physics & Ice Mechanics
In this section, the aim is to obtain the necessary
understanding of ice and ice-structure interaction to be able to

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calculate loads due to ice molecular properties &
crystallography, ice growth & formation, mechanics and
mechanical properties and finally ice load reduction methods.
These different aspects are also elaborated in the sections
below. First the material, molecular and formation properties
of ice and water and water.
The density of water is about 1000 kg/m3, where the density
of pure ice is 916,7 kg/m3 (theoretically). The solid phase of
ice is less dense because of the hydrogen bonds forming in
ice. A hydrogen bond is a chemical bonding that occurs when
a hydrogen atom finds itself between 2 highly electronegative
atoms and is mainly an electrostatic bond. During the process
of freezing, the average distance between adjacent water
molecules grows as the crystallographic structure of ice is
formed. The density of pure ice as a function of temperature

(T ) = 916, 7 0,13T


size, NaCl- or salt-ions cannot be incorporated into the

hexagonal crystal lattice of the ice and neither do they fit into
the ice crystal as interstitial molecules. Therefore, the salt
crystals are rejected from the ice while the ice crystals are
forming. Consequently, the forming of ice on the water
surface is accompanied by an increase of salinity in the
surrounding water.
As the individual ice platelets join together some gas and
so-called brine becomes entrapped: Brine is water that is
supersaturated with salt. Salt is expelled from the first
platelets that form, increasing the salinity of the surrounding
water. As the ice platelets take in H2O-molecules from the
seawater on growth, the seawater salinity increases further.
Then, due to the growth process in the SK-layer, the salt in
sea ice accumulates and is included along the platelet
boundaries in the form of liquid or solid inclusions. The now
isolated brine inclusions are called brine pockets. The brine in
the brine pockets remains liquid because much lower
temperatures would be required to freeze the highly saline

With T the temperature in degrees Celsius. Average density

of sea ice is 910 kg/m3 (6) and of glacial ice 900 kg/m3. Sea
ice density is lighter due to salinity and porosity, and the
glacial ice is less dense than pure ice due to air enclosed in the
compacted snow. For icebergs, it is sometimes important to
calculate the freeboard; the height of the ice above the water.
This can be calculated with:
hFreeboard = hIceberg

Seawater Glacial Ice



On Earth, only crystalline ice can from. The crystalline

phase is the situation where the oxygen atoms are in a fixed
position relative to each other, while the hydrogen atoms may
or may not be proton-ordered but are always obeying the socalled ice rules.
Proton-ordered ice is ice with a regular arrangement and
placement of the hydrogen atoms; i.e. there is a sequence in
the placement of hydrogen atoms. In proton-disordered ice,
the hydrogen atoms are NOT arranged regularly. Their only
ordering is given by the satisfaction of the Bernal-Fowler
rules. Since the break-up of proton-ordering does not take lots
of energy, protonordered ice can only exist at temperatures < 80 C (193 K). Hexagonal ice is proton-disordered.
The freezing point of sea water is lower than the freezing
point of pure water (0 C), due to the presence of compounds
other than water; this is known as freezing-point depression.
As the air above an ocean starts cooling down the sea-surface
below its freezing point, the upper layer of the sea becomes
(slightly) supercooled and the first molecules in the sea water
start forming hexagonal crystals of ice. A supercooled liquid
is a liquid at a temperature below its freezing point without it
becoming a solid (yet). When sea water freezes, the salt is
expelled completely from the first flat ice platelets that form.
These platelets therefore exist of almost pure ice. Due to their

The structure of first-year level ice is depicted below.

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The number of freezing degree days is the number of C that

the mean air
temperature is below the freezing point of water.
V. Ice Loads, Ice Actions & Action Effects

VI. Scaled Ice Tank Model Tests & Scale Effect

VII. ISO19906


I. Introduction & Overview
II. Frequency Lock-in
As the ice sheet continues to grow and becomes colder, the
brine between the ice plates drains out leaving behind air
pockets, this is due to freezing of water in the brine, expulsion
and drainage processes aided by gravity. Brine expulsion and
drainage always occur along a flow route that resembles the
trunk and branches of a tree; respectively called the drainage
tube and drainage channels. As a result of this, the salinity of
sea ice decreases as it becomes older. In sea ice, the salinity
varies with depth; the salinity is lower in the middle, while the
salinity at the top and bottom is higher. The growth of ice
thickness is influenced by the air temperature and the height of
the snow on top of the ice sheet. An empirical equation for ice
thickness growth was found by Doronin & Kheisin in 1975 as:
h = m + ( m + h0 ) 2 405 Ta


With Ta the mean daily air temperature, m the empirical

coefficient depending on snow height, h0 the initial ice
thickness and h he resulting ice thickness. The sum is taken
over the number of days in the period. The maximum thickness
of undisturbed level ice grown in 1 winter can be found as:
h = aC FDD

III. Models for Ice Structure Interaction

4) Beam Theory
5) Plate Theory
IV. Industrial Experience; Shell
V. Numerical Modelling


I. Arctic Oceanography
II. Ship Design for Arctic Conditions
III. Assignment & Exam



With h ice thickness, a site specific constant, b the heat

conduction component (b=0.5 for linear heat conduction) and
CFDD the accumulated freezing degree days. The maximum
thermally grown level sea ice thicknesses are in the range of 2
meter for the Arctic region. The heat flux in water has a
significant influence on ice thickness growth; when the heat
flux through the sea is equal to the flux through the ice, the ice
thickness growth stops. Accumulated freezing degree days
(CFDD) for a winter is a means of
characterizing the general severity of ice and weather

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