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Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263

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Design, implementation and analysis of full coupled monitoring

system of FPSO with soft yoke mooring system
Wenhua Wu a,n, Yanlin Wang b, Da Tang c, Qianjin Yue b, Yu Du a, Zheliang Fan b, Yang Lin d,
Yantao Zhang d
Faculty of Vehicle Engineering and Mechanics, State Key Laboratory of Structural Analysis of Industrial Equipment, Dalian University of Technology,
Dalian 116024, China
School of Ocean Science and Technology, Dalian University of Technology, Panjin 124000, China
Faculty of Electronic Information and Electrical Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China
CNOOC, Tianjin Branch, Tianjin 022000, China

art ic l e i nf o a b s t r a c t

Article history: Due to the complexity of the marine environment loading and motions of vessels, many uncertainties are
Received 11 July 2014 involved in the design of mooring systems. This paper designs a fully monitoring system, including
Accepted 17 December 2015 meteorological–environmental and mechanical aspects. The environmental monitoring system is composed
of current, wave and wind equipments. Fiber Bragg Gauges/FBG, incline sensors and GPS/INS form the
Keywords: mechanical monitoring system. On the basis of dynamic characteristic of the soft yoke system, a restore force
Monitoring measurement method has been proposed according to the response of the angular information of the soft
FPSO yoke. The monitoring system has been installed on one FPSO in Bohai Bay, and comprehensive monitoring
Soft yoke mooring system information has been obtained from 2011. The calculation of the restoration force of the mooring system by
Data processing
the present dynamic method shows high agreements with that of the FBG. The vessel motions in the fre-
quency domain calculated by the measured wave spectrum multiplied by the designed RAO (Response
Amplitude Operator) are compared with the in-site monitoring motions. The results of comparisons show
the feasibility of the present monitoring system in safety assessments of FPSO and SYMs.
& 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

1. Introduction In most cases, the conceptual design of SYMs in certain sea states
is performed with the aid of commercial software. The meteor-
In recent years, the safety and reliability of offshore structural ological–oceanographical environmental loading and hydrodynamic
systems subjected to hurricanes has increasingly attracted greater parameters of the FPSO are the most fundamental and important
attention. In deep waters, such as the Gulf of Mexico and South indexes. Static and dynamic analyses are conducted with concurrent
China Sea, many platforms have been damaged by hurricane and environmental forces applied in certain directions in which it has
uncorrected operations (Veritas, 2005); while in shallow waters, been decided the FPSO will restore force. The results of these ana-
such as the Bohai Bay, some FPSOs which were fixed by single lyses are then checked against API 2SK (American Petroleum Insti-
point mooring systems (SPMs) have also been damaged during in tute, 2005) or other similar guidelines. The final design was dictated
storm or even under ordinary operation (Liu and Yang, 2012). In by meeting all the mooring objectives and pertinent regulations in
view of these accidents, the lack of offshore standards in the API 2SK, as well as minimizing price. However, due to the non-
design phase and model testing are major factors in offshore linearity of the soft yoke system, thorough model testing with certain
engineering. Soft yoke mooring systems (SYMs) (Luo and Baudic, scale rate should be performed to investigate the hydrodynamic
2003; ABS, 1996), as one of the best types of single point mooring abilities. Typically, static testing is performed to verify the excursion
systems, are widely used in the Bohai Bay for connecting FPSOs characteristics and decay behavior of the FPSO with SYMs. Next, a
and fixed platforms. Typically, SYMs are composed of a counter series of dynamic tests is performed within the defined wind, current
weight, mooring legs, an “A”-frame structure, a yoke nose etc. (as and irregular wave state (Yang et al., 2008). Due to the complexity of
shown in Fig. 1.) oceanographical conditions and the limitation of reduced scaling
effect in laboratory conditions, in model testing it is difficult to obtain
Corresponding author. all of design parameters with a high degree of accuracy. Therefore,
E-mail address: (W. Wu). the traditional numerical analysis and model testing cannot meet all
0029-8018/& 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
256 W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263

Nomenclatures u1 ; u2 Generalized velocities in Kane dynamic method

φ1 ; φ2 Angles of yoke and mooring leg, as shown in Fig. 4
M; C; K Mass, damping and stiffness matrix uv ; uh Vertical and horizontal movement velocities
x Displacement vector Xv; Xh Vertical and horizontal displacement shown in Fig. 4
F Environmental force vector mi ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Mass of yoke counter weight and mooring leg
σ σ ðzÞ ¼ 0:15VðzÞðz=zs Þ  0:125 Li ; ði ¼ 1; 2; :::; 5Þ Characteristic lengths of mooring system
F F ¼ f =f p F 0h ; F 0v Nodal force of vertical and horizontal directions of
sAPI ðf Þ API wind spectral energy density at frequency f upper mooring leg
f Frequency (Hz) Fh; Fv Nodal force in vertical and horizontal directions of
z Height above waterline yoke nose
zs Thickness of the surface layer at 20 m v i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Centroid velocities of rigid bodies of SYMs
fp f p ¼ 0:025V ðzÞ=z ω i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Angular velocities of rigid bodies of SYMs
ð1Þ ð2Þ
F xc ; F yc ; M xyc Tangential, lateral current force and yawing , ,
v i ; v i ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Partial velocities
moment of current loading ð1Þ ð2Þ
, ,
ω i ;ω ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Partial angular velocities
ρc Density of sea water ,

C xc ; C yc ; C xyc Parameters with current force F i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Global forces of SYMs

φCR Mean drift parameter ,
M i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Global moments of SYMs
d Mean drift parameter
J i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ Moments of inertia of yoke, counter weight and
B Width of vessel
mooring leg
V CR Current velocity with specific profile
F~ 1 ; F~ 2 Generalized driving force
Sy Spectral density of vessel motions  
F~ 1 ; F~ 2 Generalized inertia force
Sξ Spectral density of wave
α; β Coefficients for mooring restoring force
F rest Global restoring force of SYMs
LPP Length parameter related to current force

requirements of the design of offshore structure. Furthermore, there including wave, wind and current gauges; motions of an FPSO mon-
are more than ten hinges in the soft yoke mooring system. The multi- itoring system mainly composed of GPS/INS; and a motions and restore
body dynamic system, composed of a multi-hinge-connection mode, force monitoring system composed of FBG and incline sensors. Cur-
causes difficulties when making the numerical simulation in the rently, the present monitoring system has been installed in one FPSO in
commercial hydrodynamic analysis, and the determination of the the Bohai Bay. Massive data have been gained and recorded in storage
failure mode of SYMs remains a challenge. Recently, some accidents for the deep analysis of the design verification and safety assessment.
involving SYMs have still occurred in the Bohai Bay. The motions of the vessel are illustrated by the measured wave
Monitoring technology, as an advantage tool, is widely used in spectrum multiplied by the designed RAO of FPSO in the frequency
civil engineering (Ko et al., 2009). Proto-type measurements based domain. The spectral analysis of the monitoring motion data of the
on monitoring systems for offshore structures may collect useful vessel are also performed and compared to those of the calculated
information through advanced monitoring technology. The data ones. Strong agreements can be observed to verify the correctness of
obtained by the in-site measurement strategy can then be used to the present floating motions monitoring system. Restorative forces
study mechanical properties and design indexes of offshore of SYMs have been compared between the present dynamic method
structures, and propose the improvement to the calculation of and direct measurement by FBG, and the consistency of the com-
hydrodynamic analysis and model testing. parison shows the feasibility and reliability of the present mon-
Different from proto-type monitoring of civil structure, there have itoring system for SYMs.
been few in-site monitoring projects developed with an international
scope. Masuda et al. (2002) performed the early-warning research of
vessel planar motions of single point mooring system. The hydro- 2. Soft yoke mooring system of FPSO
dynamic force subject to small angle current is estimated via from
the slender body theory. Simoes et al. (2002) discussed the dynamic The soft yoke mooring system is designed and constructed to
characteristic of internal turret single point system with tandem moor the FPSO to the jacket platform in shallow water. The
offloading operation by neural network algorithm. Sun and Sun
(2012) analyzed the safety behavior of FPSO by FTA (Fault Tree
Analysis) and FMEA (Failure Mode and Effect Analysis) during crude
transfer and fire events. Moan et al. (2002) reviewed the safety
design method of FPSO via limit state function. Failure mode of FPSO
are analyzed by risk assessment method and accident index. Lotsberg
and Kristian (2001) performed the monitoring JIP to address the X3
fatigue design standards on FPSO. van den Boom et al. (2005)
established another JIP with a 22-month period to obtain fatigue load
information through long period measurements. Hu et al. (2010) X4
measured the six degrees of freedom for “Fenjin” FPSO, to analyze
special motion behavior subject to wind and current.
In the present paper, a proto-type monitoring system is developed X2
and implemented for FPSO with SYMs in the Bohai Bay, based on the
analysis of mechanical properties and characteristic of structure of
SYMs. The full-scale monitoring system is composed of three sub-
systems, i.e. a meteorological–oceanographical monitoring system Fig. 1. Structural configuration of soft yoke mooring system.
W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263 257

Table 1 attitudes monitoring system of FPSO; and restoration force mon-

Joint connection modes in SYM system. itoring system of SYMs.
Joints Motion release states
3.1. Meteorological–oceanographical environmental loading mon-
X Y Z R1 R2 R3 itoring system

X1    √ √ √
Similar to most offshore structures, oceanographical environmental
X2    √ √ 
X3      √
loading which is caused by marine meteorology and hydrology con-
X4    √ √  sists of the main external loading conditions of FPSO and SYMs.
The guidance on actual values to be used in design refer to API
guidance (American Petroleum Institute, 2005) and meteorological
and oceanographic numerical models. In general the design response
should be based on the jointly distributed environmental phenomena.
Environmental data, such as wind, wave, current and tide have site-
specific relationships governing their interactions. So the hydrology
factor is composed of wind parameters (speed and direction), air
temperature, relative wet, gas pressure, current parameters, wave,
water temperature, salinity etc. Among these, the loading parameters
Fig. 2. Simplified mechanical model of soft yoke mooring system with FPSO. of wind, current and wave are the major factors influencing the design
and mechanical characteristics of the mooring system. Of particular
standard SYMs are traditionally composed of two mooring legs, importance are the wind speed/direction, wave height/period, and
two counterweight ballasts, an “A”-frame structure (YOKE), a fixed wave/current relationships and their relative directions. The present
jacket, and a frame connected with the FPSO, as shown in Fig. 1. oceanographical environmental monitoring system includes wind load
Two universal joints (respectively marked as X1 and X2) are factor, current load factor and wave load factor.
installed at the upper and lower ends of the mooring leg, to release
the relative roll and pitch motions. There are two thrust bearings 3.1.1. Wind monitoring
assembled at each of the mooring legs near the upper articulation As indicated in API 2SK (American Petroleum Institute, 2005),
to release the torsional degree of freedom. The “A”-frame structure, maximum operating condition is defined as the combination of
together with the counterweight ballasts, is suspended between the maximum wind,waves and current. Wind load is one of the most
mooring legs and fixed jacket. The antifreeze inside the large important load cases for the section above the waterline of a
counterweight ballast provides the restoring force to limit the FPSO platform structure. The wind loads for the design of the platform
to a certain position. There is a roller bearing (marked as X4) con- should be determined using one of the following procedures
necting the “A”-frame structure to the fixed jacket, which allows the (American Petroleum Institute, 2005; Oil Companies International
pitch and roll motions of the “A”-frame structure to the fixed jacket. Marines Forum, 1994).
Finally, a swivel stack (marked as X3) is arranged in the fixed jacket Method 1: Wind is treated as a constant in terms of direction
to achieve the weathervane ability of the FPSO. Table 1 presents the and speed, taken as the 1-min average.
motion-released states of all the joints marked from X1 to X4, Method 2: Fluctuating wind is modeled and considered by a
where X, Y and Z are the translational degrees of freedom, and R1, steady component based on the 1-h average velocity plus a time-
R2 and R3 are the rotational degrees of freedom. varying component calculated from a suitable empirical wind gust
The above joint-connection modes and restoring force mode by spectrum. The recommended wind gust spectrum Sðf Þ in offshore
counterweight ballasts exhibit the strong weathervane effect of the engineering is taken from the Appendix B in API 2SK (American
FPSO. The FPSO may be positioned in the direction of the composi- Petroleum Institute, 2005), and expressed as follows:
tion forces of wind, wave and current. Furthermore, SYMs provide σ 2 ðzÞ F
SAPI ðf Þ ¼  ð2Þ
their advantageous ability to be used and maintained in the sea ice f ð1 þ 1:5FÞ5=3
zone of the Bohai Bay. Typically, the FPSO with SYMs can be hypo-
in which F ¼ f =f p ,f p ¼ 0:025VðzÞ=z; σ ðzÞ ¼ 0:15VðzÞðz=zs Þ  0:125 , f
thesized as the spring–mass mechanical model shown in Fig. 2:
frequency of fluctuating wind, VðzÞ is the 1-h mean wind speed at
The governing equations for describing the kinematic mech-
elevation z m above the waterline, and zs is the thickness of the
anisms of FPSO and SYMs can be summarized as follows:
"surface layer" and is always equal to 20 m.
Mx€ þ Cx_ þ Kx ¼ F ð1Þ If the location of the wind gauge is chosen, then the wind speed
and wind direction are the main monitoring parameters for the
where M is the mass matrix (real mass and added mass) of FPSO, C
wind load monitoring. By analyzing the standard wind spectrum, a
the damping matrix, K the stiffness matrix, x is the displacement
sampling frequency of 1 Hz satisfied the requirement of the data
vector of FPSO, and F is the environmental forces caused by wind, processing. Considering the relationship of the motions of the
wave and current. The environmental loading and six degrees of FPSO and wind load, the relative wind direction to the FPSO bow
freedom of the FPSO serve the major roles in the design and should be decided and collected in the wind monitoring system.
operation of the single point mooring system.
3.1.2. Wave monitoring
Waves play important roles in the designs of moorings and
3. Proto-type monitoring system of SYMs vessels in offshore structures. In offshore engineering, the spec-
trum density analysis method of irregular waves is always utilized
On the basis of the design criteria of the mooring system in API and adopted. The standard spectrum density matrix shows the
2SK, combined with the hydrodynamic simulation and model energy distribution state of harmonic waves and expresses the
testing, the present proto-type monitoring system is consistent main affection of the essential wave frequency.
with the following three subsystems: meteorological–oceano- The proto-type wave spectrum from the wave load monitoring
graphical environmental loading monitoring system; motions and provides a direct method for the response calculation of the
258 W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263

ones (roll, pitch and yaw) are often treated as the main unknown
variations in hydrodynamic numerical simulations.
GPS, as the most common monitoring technique, is often uti-
lized to measure the variations of the positions. Traditional GPS
provides a low accuracy for measuring the positions and dis-
placements of ocean floaters. The real-time kinematic (RTK)
technique, that is, a base is located in a jacket and a move is built
Fig. 3. Definition of six degrees of freedom for FPSO hull.
in the FPSO, should be adopted to enhance the data precision. In
the RTK mode, measurements of the phase of the signal's carrier
platform system. Wave height, wave period and wave direction wave are used rather than the initial signal content, and it relies on
should be recorded and further summarized to the standard wave a single reference station to provide real-time corrections, pro-
spectrum (P-M or JONSWAP spectrum). In recent years, Acoustic viding accuracy up to cm level (Schmidt, 2011).
Doppler Current Profile (ADCP) (Kelly et al., 2003; Liagre et al., For the measurement of attitudes, the inclinometer, gyro-
2008), wave radar, and so on are often utilized in proto-type scopes, inertial navigation system (INS) etc. are used widely in
measurement. engineering aspects. Typically, the inclinometer shows strong
advantages in measuring static or quasi static inclination. The
3.1.3. Current monitoring rotational motions (roll, pitch and yaw) of the FPSO subject to
Current is the most essential factor in the design of underwater wave and wind loads show the dynamic characteristic. INS, which
structures, such as pontoons, risers and mooring systems. The includes three gyros and three accelerometers, proposes advan-
following equation (Oil Companies International Marines Forum, tageous abilities to continuously calculate via dead reckoning the
1994) can be used to determine the current force of the platform position, orientation, and velocity of FPSO, without the need for
under the water line: external references. A summarized table (Table 2) is present in the
8 following to show the vessel motions and related sensors used in
> F xc ¼ 12dC xc ðφcR Þρc V 2cR B motion monitoring system of FPSO vessel.
F yc ¼ 12dC yc ðφcR Þρc V 2cR Lpp ð3Þ
: M ¼ 1dC ðφ Þρ V 2 L2
xyc 2 xyc cR c cR pp 3.3. Restoration force monitoring system of SYMs

where ρc is the density of sea water kg=m ; F xc , F yc and M xyc are

The restoration force is the essential design index for a mooring
the tangential, lateral force and yawing moment, respectively; C xc
      system. For an in-site FPSO, it is difficult or forbidden to install the
φcR C xyc φcR and C yc φcR are the parameters respectively direct pressure/tensile sensors on the mooring structure. Tradi-
related to F xc , F yc and M xyc ; d is the mean drift; B is the width of
tionally, FBGs or strain gauges are always installed on industrial
the vessel; and V cR is the current velocity with the full profile of
equipment to measure the stress variations, but to the author's
the vessel, Lpp length parameter related to current force.
knowledge, the above sensor cannot provide long-term reliability
In Eq. (3), the current speed and current direction in the dif-
for marine structures, due to the harsh ocean environment.
ferent water layers are the key factors for the calculation of current
In the next section, a dynamic algorithm of the restoration
force. ADCP (American Petroleum Institute, 2005; Kelly et al.,
force of a mooring system is presented for SYMs, on the basis of
2003) provides high accuracy and resolution for the multi-profile
the Kane dynamic method (Kane and Levinson, 1985).
measurement of currents.
As shown in Fig. 4, two generalized velocities are defined as
u1 ¼ φ _ 1 and u2 ¼ φ
_ 2 , and the positive direction is defined as the
3.2. Motion monitoring system of FPSO vessel increase of the angles of φ1 and φ2 . uv ¼ X _ v is the vertical move-
ment velocity and positive is defined as the upward direction. uh
Under the oceanographical environmental force, the FPSO ¼X _ h is the horizontal movement velocity, and the positive direc-
exhibits complex motions. As shown in Fig. 3, three translational tion is pointed to the right. m1 ; m2 ; m3 are the weights of the yoke,
degrees of freedom (sway, surge and heave) and three rotational counter weight and mooring leg, respectively.
For the considered configuration of SYMs, we set the following
geometrical boundary conditions:
X h ¼ cos φ1 UL4 þ sin φ2 U L5
X v ¼ cos φ2 U L5  sin φ1 U L4

where L4 ; L5 are the respective lengths of the yoke and mooring leg.

Table 2
Motion characteristics of FPSO and monitoring sensors.

Degree of Motion characteristic Sensors


Surge Translation Low frequency Wave RTK GPS

Sway frequency
Heave Wave frequency INS
Roll Rotation Wave frequency INS incline meters
Yaw Current Excitation Wave INS Gyrocompass
Fig. 4. Definition of major parameters of SYM system.
W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263 259

The global equilibrium equations for entire SYM system are of the whole SYMs are written as
simply expressed in the horizontal and vertical directions. 8
, ,
> F 1 ¼  m1 gj
( 0 >
Fh ¼ Fh >
>, ,
ð5Þ >
> F 2 ¼  m2 gj
0 >
F v þ F v ¼ ðm1 þm2 þ m3 Þg >,
> , ,
< F 3 ¼ F i þ ðF v  m3 gÞj
According to the moment equilibrium theory, the moment >
> M1 ¼ 0
balance relations for point ‘O’ in Fig. 4 are established and >
> ,
> M2 ¼ 0
expressed as follows: >
>  ,
:M ,
( 0 0 3 ¼ L3 sin φ2 F v L3 cos φ2 F h k
m2 gðL4 L2 Þ cos φ1 þ m1 gðL4 L1 Þ cos φ1 þ F h L4 sin φ1 ¼ F v L4 cos φ1
m3 gðL5 L3 Þ sin φ2 þ F h L5 cos φ2 ¼ F v L5 sin φ2 The global inertial forces are written as
ð6Þ >
,  , 
F 1 ¼ m1 L1 u_ 1 sin φ1 þ u21 cos φ1 i þ u_ 1 cos φ1  u21 sin φ1 j,

> ,
>  ,  ,
where L1 is the distance from point ‘O’ to the gravity center of the >
> F 2 ¼ m2 L2 u_ 1 sin φ1 þ u21 cos φ1 i þ u_ 1 cos φ1  u21 sin φ1 j
yoke, L2 is the distance from point ‘O’ to the gravity center of the >
< ,  , ,
F 3 ¼  m3 u_ h þ m3 L3 u_ 2 cos φ2  m3 L3 u22 sin φ2 i  ðm3 u_ v þ m3 L3 u_ 2 sin φ2 þ m3 L3 u22 cos φ2 Þj
ballista, and L2 ¼ L5 =2. >
> ,
> ,
By applying the mathematical derivatives (time-domain dif- > M1 ¼ J 1 u_ 1 k
>M , ,
> 2 ¼ J2u_ 1k
ferentiation) to Eq. (4), we can obtain the velocity boundary con- >
> ,
> ,
: M3 ¼ J 3 u_ 2 k
ditions in the rate form:
( ð11Þ
L5 u2 cos φ2  L4 u1 sin φ1 ¼ uh
ð7Þ Combining Eqs. (8)–(10), we can obtain the global equation for
L5 u2 sin φ2 þ L4 u1 cos φ1 ¼ uv the whole dynamic system of SYMs, as follows:
8 , ð1 Þ , , ð1 Þ , ð1 Þ , ð1 Þ , ð1 Þ , ð1Þ
> , , ,
F~1 ¼ F 1 U v1 þF 2 U v2 þF 3 U v3 þ M 1 U ω1 þ M 2 U ω2 þM 3 U ω3
, ,
It may then be easily observed that φ1 and φ2 are independent >
>  ð1 Þ  ð1 Þ  ð1 Þ  ð1 Þ  ð1Þ  ð1 Þ
of each other. Therefore, u1 and u2 are treated as individual vari- < F~  ¼ F, U v, þ F, U v, þ F, U v, þM ,

, ,
þM U ω
, ,
þM Uω
1 1 1 2 2 3 3 1 1 2 2 3 3
ables, and uh and uv are expressed as the functions of u1 and u2 . >
> , ,
ð2 Þ
, , , ð2 Þ
, , ,
ð2 Þ ð2 Þ , ,
ð2 Þ , ,
, , , ,
> F~2 ¼ F 1 U v1 þF 2 U v2 þF 3 U v3 þ M 1 U ω1 ω
þ M 2 U 2 þM 3 U 3 ω
Next, the centroid velocity v1 ; v2 ; v3 and angular velocity ω1 ; >
:  ,  , ð2 Þ ,  , ð2 Þ ,  , ð2 Þ ,  , ð2 Þ ,

, ð2Þ ,

, ð2 Þ
, , F~2 ¼ F 1 U v1 þ F 2 U v2 þ F 3 U v3 þM 1 U ω 1 ω
þM 2 U 2 þ M 3 U 3 ω
ω2 ; ω3 can be written by using the generalized velocity (u1 ,u2 ), as
8   ( Substituting

Eq. (10) in to global balance relation
> , , , F~1 þ F~1 ¼ 0
> v1 ¼  L1 u1 sin φ1 i þ cos φ1 j  , the horizontal restoring force of mooring system F h
> F~2 þ F~2 ¼ 0
> , , , and restoring force in the vertical direction F v can be finally
> v ¼  L u sin φ i þ cos φ j
> 2 2 1 1 1 obtained in the following form
,  , α β  
v3 ¼ uh L3 u2 cos φ2 i þ uv þ L3 u2 sin φ2 j ð8Þ Fh ¼  = cot φ2 þ tan φ1 ð13Þ
> cos φ1 sin φ2
> , ,
> ω1 ¼  u 1 k
> F v ¼ α  sin φ1 UF h = cos φ1 ð14Þ
> , ,
> ω2 ¼  u 1 k
> Theqglobal restoring force of mooring system F rest is obtained as
:ω , , ffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffiffi
3 ¼  u2 k
F rest ¼ F h 2 þ F v 2 .
in which
Defining the conceptions of partial velocity and partial angular
, ð1Þ ,
, ð1Þ , α U L4 ¼ ðm1 L1 þ m2 L2 Þg cos φ1 þ m3 gL4 cos φ1 m1 L21 u_ 1 m2 L22 u_ 1
velocity relative to u1 as vi ∂v i
¼ ∂u ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ, ωi ¼ ∂∂uω1i ;
ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ, we then obtain  J 1 u_ 1  J 2 u_ 1 þ m3 u_ 2 L3 L4 sin φ2  φ1 þ m3 u22 L3 L4 cos φ2  φ1
8   þ m3 u_ h L4 sin φ1 þ m3 u_ v L4 cos φ1 ð15Þ
> , ð1Þ , ,
ν1 ¼  L1 sin φ1 i þ cos φ1 j

> ð1Þ
>   β ¼ m3 L3 u_ 2  u_ h cos φ2 þ u_ v sin φ2 þ m3 g sin φ2
> , , ,
> ν2 ¼  L2 sin φ1 i þ cos φ1 j U ðL5  L3 Þ=L5  J 3 u_ 2 =L5 ð16Þ
< , ð1Þ Observing Eqs. (13) and (14), the restoring force F h F v can be
, ,
ν3 ¼  L4 sin φ1 i L4 cos φ1 j ð9Þ gained as the function of φ1 , φ2 and u1 ; u2 ; u_ 1 ; u_ 2 . F h ¼ f
> , ð1Þ ,
φ1 ; φ2 ; u1 ; u2 ; u_ 1 ; u_ 2 and u1 ; u2 ; u_ 1 ; u_ 2 are the function of φ1 ,φ2 .
> ω ¼ k
> 1
> Therefore, the restoring force monitoring system for SYMs can
> , ð1Þ ,
> ω2 ¼  k
> be developed and composed by the angular and its velocity
> , ð1Þ information of the yoke and mooring leg.
: ω3 ¼ 0 The above Kane dynamic method exhibits the advantages in
the calculation of mooring restoring force. With difference to the
Similarly, we can also obtain the partial velocity vi ð2Þ ¼ ∂u
; classical Laplace dynamic method, there is no kinetic function in
ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ and partial angular velocity ωi ð2Þ ¼ ∂∂uω2i ; ði ¼ 1; 2; 3Þ rela- the present dynamic method and the complicated derivation
tive to u2 . process is avoided in the process of solving mooring force. The
Assuming J 1 ; J 2 ; J 3 are the moments of the inertia of yoke, final expressions of global horizontal and vertical restoring force
counter weight and mooring leg, respectively, the external forces (F h and F v ) are easy to be implement and displayed at the
260 W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263

integrated monitoring system. But it need to be noted that the that the monitoring data show good approximate results to those
present algorithm is a 2D rigid-body dynamic method. Mooring of the calculated ones in the frequency domain. It is observed that
legs, ballista, and yoke are assumed as rigid bodies without roll pitch motions of calculated is a little bit greater than that of
considering the elastic deformations. The 3D characteristics of measurement ones. That is because the wave direction is fixed
SYMs including the inconsistency of motions of two mooring with 45° in calculation cases. But the in-field actual wave direction
legs, the heave and pitch motions of yoke and the torsion degree
changes with time during the record periods. The measured heave
along the axial direction of mooring legs are neglected in the
data which is obtained by RTK GPS is related to the position of base
formula derivation of dynamic algorithm. The follow up research
and move. In actual, the move is not easy to be installed in the
should focus on the affections of above assumptions.
gravity center of vessel. So affections of roll and pitch bring the
error of heave motions and increase the heave amplitude in fre-
4. Integrated monitoring system and implementation on FPSO quency domain. On the other side, low-frequency motion, such as
in the Bohai Bay surge of FPSO, shows the relative difference in the amplitude
between measurement and calculated one. That proves the influ-
The monitoring activities were distributed in three monitoring ence of wind and current on the low frequency response of FPSO is
systems (as shown in Fig. 5), namely: significant.

1. Meteorological–oceanographic monitoring system

2. Position and motions monitoring system
3. Restoring force and position of SYMs monitoring system Table 3
Summary of parameters of monitoring system.
Full sensors are installed (as present in Table 3 and shown in
Objects Parameters Sensors Resolution/range/sampling
Fig. 6 ) in one FPSO in the Bohai Bay and monitored continuously. rate
The global measurement information is presented in numerals,
graphics and screens by an integrated monitoring system, as Wind Speed direction Wind gauge ( 7 0.3 m/s)/(0–100 m/s, 0–
shown in Fig. 7, which was developed in C þ þ. 360°)/1 Hz
Wave Height period ADCP wave radar ( 7 6 mm)/(wave height
range 0.2–50 m)/half an hour
per record
5. Monitoring data processing and discussions Current Speed direction ADCP ( 7 0.5 m/s)/(profiling range
40 m velocity range 7 10 m/
s)/0.0167 Hz
5.1. Motion verification of FPSO vessel
Floater Surge RTK GPS ( 7 0.5 m)/(–)/1 Hz
Sway accelerometer ( 7 0.005 g)/( 7 5 g)/5 Hz
RAO (response amplitude operator), as the basic concept in Heave
offshore engineering, describes the intrinsic dynamic character- Pitch INS inclinometers ( 7 0.1°)/(0–360°)/1 Hz
istics of floaters, and is used to evaluate the floaters’ response Roll ( 7 0.01°)/(0–360°)/5 Hz
subject to wave loads.
SYMs Restore force RTK GPS ( 7 0.5 m)/(–)/1 Hz( 70.01°)/
Typically, for the irregular disturbance of waves or wind, the Attitude inclinometers (0–360°)/5 Hz
spectral density Sy ðωÞ of motion is equal to the RAO multiplied
with the input spectral density of Sξ ðωÞ, i.e. Yang et al. (2008).
Sy ðωÞ ¼ Sξ ðωÞ  RAO ð17Þ

Therefore, we can make the comparison of the response of

FPSO motions between calculated results from Eq. (17) and data
monitored by INS and GPS. The monitoring data of FPSO is chosen
by the wave direction of 45° relative to the FPSO bow. The FPSO is
in its full load state at this time.
Fig. 8(a–c) respectively present the PSD (power spectrum
density) of the roll, pitch and heave of the FPSO obtained by INS
and GPS. Three curves calculated by Eq. (17) are also shown with
blue lines in these same figures. The PSD of low-frequency surge
motions of FPSO is present in Fig. (8d) measured by GPS and cal-
culated by Eq.(17).
The comparison shows that the above analysis method suc-
ceeded to simulate the wave-induced vessel motions. It is noted Fig. 6. Layout of global monitoring system for FPSO.

Fig. 5. Monitoring system block diagram.

W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263 261

Fig. 7. Integrated graphical interface for proto-type monitoring system of FPSO.

spectrum density of pitch (deg 2 /Hz)

spectrum density of roll (deg 2 /Hz)

0.08 0.015
calculation calculation
measured by INS measured by INS



0 0
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
frequency(Hz) frequency(Hz)
roll motion pitch motion
spectrum density of heave (cm /Hz)

spectrum density of surge (cm 2 /Hz)

0.06 0.2

0.05 measured by GPS
measured by GPS

0.03 0.1

0 0
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5
frequency(Hz) frequency(Hz)
heave motion surge motion
Fig. 8. PSD curve comparison between vessel motions obtained by INS/GPS and those calculated. (a) roll motion (b) pitch motion (c) heave motion (d) surge motion. (For
interpretation of the references to color in this figure legend, the reader is referred to the web version of this article.)

FBG sensors

FBG temperature sensors

Fig. 9. Layout of FBG on mooring legs.

262 W. Wu et al. / Ocean Engineering 113 (2016) 255–263

Table 4 the integrated monitoring system. The restoring force together

Typical parameters of monitoring data with two sea states. with the environmental parameters can be displayed to ensure the
safety of the operators.
Sea state Wind Significant Max Max Max Max Max
speed wave pitch roll sway angle angle of
(m/s) height (m) value value value of mooring
(deg) (deg) (m) yoke leg (deg) 6. Conclusions

1st 4.5 0.6 0.23 0.15 0.5 1.2 0.4

In this study, a global integrated monitoring system for soft
2nd 23.2 4.1 0.8 0.85 2.7 25.0 5.1 yoke mooring systems was developed and constructed on a FPSO
in the Bohai Bay.

1) The global monitoring system was composed by three parts: the

meteorological–oceanographical monitoring system, position
and motions monitoring system of FPSO, and restorative force
monitoring system for SYMs.
2) At present, more than two years of monitoring data have been
collected and recorded. Two types of analysis and verifications
have been performed: motions analysis of FPSO by RAO multi-
plied with wave spectrum, and restorative force verification
between the Kane dynamic method and FBG gauges.
3) The good consistency illustrated in data analysis of restore force
and vessel motions show the validation and feasibility of the
present monitoring system in the safety assessment of FPSO
with SYMs.

Fig. 10. Comparison between restore force of Kane method and FBG (in sea state 1).
7. Challenges and future prospects

Single mooring system is one of the major equipment of off-

shore engineering. The soft yoke mooring system play the
important role for the position-keeping of FPSO especially in cold
region. The present monitoring system is composed by three
monitoring subsystems. Several challenges and future prospects
also need to be improved and further investigated.
The multi-hinge connection mode signifies that SYMs is the
new concept floating position-keeping structure. It brings chal-
lenges and difficulties in the design process by classical hydro-
dynamic numerical modeling due to the of flexible-rigid multi-
body characteristic. The state-of-the-art monitoring techniques for
different kind of hinges of SYMs should be developed and imple-
ment to obtain the fatigue and wear behavior.
Secondly, the Independent Remote Monitoring System (IRMS)
Fig. 11. Comparison between restore force of Kane method and FBG (in sea state 2). should be pay enough attention to establish in the global inte-
gration system. The motions of FPSO together SYMs can be
5.2. Restore force verification of SYMs recorded during harsh weather. The monitoring information can
be observed, gained and recorded by remote technique.
The Kane dynamic algorithm described in this section is Finally, a data base should be established to record all the
derived on the basis of the 2D SYMs model. The frictions of the monitoring data and events in detailed in order for performing
hinges are neglected. risk assessments of FPSO and SYMs with long-term statistical
In order to verify the errors for the numerical algorithm of information.
restoring force from the above hypothesis, FBG gauges were
installed on two mooring legs for short term measurements. The
layout of the FBG gauges on the mooring legs is presented in Fig. 9.
Two typical sea states are selected to verify the feasibility of the
The authors are pleased to acknowledge the support of this
Kane method to the monitoring data of the FBG gauges. The
work by the National Science Foundation of China: 11572072,
characteristic parameters of the meteorological–environmental
National Key Basic Research and Development Program through
factors and extreme values of FPSO and SYMS are presented in
contract grant numbers: 2014CB046803, 2016ZX05028-002-004.
Table 4.
The National Science Group of China through contract grant
Figs. 10 and 11 present the results of the restorative force cal-
number, 51221961.
culated by the Kane dynamic method and that measured by FBG in
two cases. High consistency can be observed to be in present the
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