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UrcaFlex Manual

Version 9.4a






Orcina Ltd.
Daltongate
Ulverston
Cumbria
LA12 7AJ
UK
Telephone: +44 (0) 1229 584742
Fax: +44 (0) 1229 587191
E-mail: orcina@orcina.com
Web Site: www.orcina.com
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Contents
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CUNTENTS
1 INTRUDUCTIUN 11
1.1 Installing OrcaFlex 11
1.2 Running OrcaFlex 13
1.3 Parallel Processing 14
1.4 Distributed OrcaFlex 15
1.5 Orcina Licence Monitor 15
1.6 Demonstration Version 15
1.7 OrcaFlex Examples 15
1.8 Validation and QA 16
1.9 Orcina 16
1.10 References and Links 16
2 TUTURIAL 21
2.1 Getting Started 21
2.2 Building a Simple System 21
2.3 Adding a Line 21
2.4 Adjusting the View 22
2.5 Static Analysis 22
2.6 Dynamic Analysis 23
2.7 Multiple Views 23
2.8 Looking at Results 24
2.9 Getting Output 24
2.10 Input Data 24
3 USER INTERFACE 25
3.1 Introduction 25
3.1.1 Program Windows 25
3.1.2 The Model 25
3.1.3 Model States 26
3.1.4 Toolbar 27
3.1.5 Status Bar 28
3.1.6 Mouse and Keyboard Actions 28
3.2 OrcaFlex Model Files 31
3.2.1 Data Files 31
3.2.2 Text Data Files 32
3.2.3 Simulation Files 36
3.3 Model Browser 37
3.3.1 Model Browser Views 39
3.3.2 Move Selected Objects Wizard 39
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3.4 Libraries 40
3.4.1 Using Libraries 40
3.4.2 Building a Library 43
3.5 Menus 44
3.5.1 File Menu 44
3.5.2 Edit Menu 45
3.5.3 Model Menu 46
3.5.4 Calculation Menu 47
3.5.5 View Menu 48
3.5.6 Replay Menu 49
3.5.7 Graph Menu 49
3.5.8 Results Menu 50
3.5.9 Tools Menu 50
3.5.10 Workspace Menu 50
3.5.11 Window Menu 51
3.5.12 Help Menu 51
3.6 3D Views 52
3.6.1 View Parameters 53
3.6.2 View Control 53
3.6.3 Navigating in 3D Views 54
3.6.4 Shaded Graphics 55
3.6.5 How Objects are Drawn 56
3.6.6 Selecting Objects 58
3.6.7 Creating and Destroying Objects 58
3.6.8 Dragging Objects 58
3.6.9 Connecting Objects 58
3.6.10 Printing, Copying and Exporting Views 59
3.7 Replays 59
3.7.1 Replay Parameters 60
3.7.2 Replay Control 60
3.7.3 Custom Replays 61
3.7.4 Custom Replay Wizard 61
3.7.5 Superimpose Times 63
3.8 Data Forms 63
3.8.1 Data Fields 64
3.8.2 Data Form Editing 64
3.9 Results 65
3.9.1 Producing Results 65
3.9.2 Selecting Variables 67
3.9.3 Summary and Full Results 67
3.9.4 Statistics 68
3.9.5 Linked Statistics 68
3.9.6 Offset Tables 69
3.9.7 Line Clashing Report 69
3.9.8 Time History and XY Graphs 70
3.9.9 Range Graphs 71
3.9.10 Offset Graphs 72
3.9.11 Spectral Response Graphs 72
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3.9.12 Extreme Statistics Results 72
3.9.13 Presenting OrcaFlex Results 75
3.10 Graphs 76
3.10.1 Modifying Graphs 77
3.11 Spreadsheets 78
3.12 Text Windows 78
3.13 Workspaces 78
3.14 Comparing Data 79
3.15 Preferences 80
3.16 Printing and Exporting 82
4 AUTUMATIUN 83
4.1 Introduction 83
4.2 Batch Processing 83
4.2.1 Introduction 83
4.2.2 Script Files 85
4.2.3 Script Syntax 85
4.2.4 Script Commands 85
4.2.5 Examples of setting data 88
4.2.6 Handling Script Errors 93
4.2.7 Obtaining Variable Names 93
4.2.8 Automating Script Generation 93
4.2.9 Automating Text Data File Generation 96
4.3 Post-processing 97
4.3.1 Introduction 97
4.3.2 OrcaFlex Spreadsheet 98
4.3.3 Instruction Format 100
4.3.4 Pre-defined commands 101
4.3.5 Basic commands 102
4.3.6 Time History and related commands 103
4.3.7 Range Graph commands 103
4.3.8 Data commands 104
4.3.9 Instructions Wizard 105
4.3.10 Duplicate Instructions 107
5 THEURY 111
5.1 Coordinate Systems 111
5.2 Direction Conventions 112
5.3 Object Connections 113
5.4 Interpolation Methods 113
5.5 Static Analysis 115
5.5.1 Line Statics 115
5.5.2 Buoy and Vessel Statics 119
5.5.3 Vessel Multiple Statics 119
5.6 Dynamic Analysis 120
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5.6.1 Calculation Method 121
5.6.2 Ramping 123
5.7 Friction Theory 123
5.8 Spectral Response Analysis 126
5.9 Extreme Statistics Theory 127
5.10 Environment Theory 129
5.10.1 Buoyancy Variation with Depth 129
5.10.2 Current Theory 129
5.10.3 Seabed Theory 130
5.10.4 Seabed Non-Linear Soil Model Theory 131
5.10.5 Morison's Equation 137
5.10.6 Waves 138
5.11 Vessel Theory 145
5.11.1 Vessel Rotations 145
5.11.2 RAOs and Phases 146
5.11.3 RAO Quality Checks 147
5.11.4 Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping 149
5.11.5 Stiffness, Added Mass and Damping 151
5.11.6 Impulse Response and Convolution 152
5.11.7 Wave Drift Loads 153
5.12 Line Theory 155
5.12.1 Overview 155
5.12.2 Structural Model Details 156
5.12.3 Calculation Stages 157
5.12.4 Calculation Stage 1 Tension Forces 158
5.12.5 Calculation Stage 2 Bend Moments 159
5.12.6 Calculation Stage 3 Shear Forces 161
5.12.7 Calculation Stage 4 Torsion Moments 161
5.12.8 Calculation Stage 5 Total Load 162
5.12.9 Line End Orientation 162
5.12.10 Line Local Orientation 163
5.12.11 Treatment of Compression 164
5.12.12 Contents Flow Effects 164
5.12.13 Line Pressure Effects 166
5.12.14 Pipe Stress Calculation 167
5.12.15 Pipe Stress Matrix 168
5.12.16 Hydrodynamic and Aerodynamic Loads 169
5.12.17 Drag Chains 172
5.12.18 Line End Conditions 173
5.12.19 Interaction with the Sea Surface 173
5.12.20 Interaction with Seabed and Shapes 174
5.12.21 Clashing 175
5.13 6D Buoy Theory 177
5.13.1 Overview 177
5.13.2 Lumped Buoy Added Mass, Damping and Drag 179
5.13.3 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Added Mass and Damping 180
5.13.4 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drag 182
5.13.5 Contact Forces 184
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5.14 3D Buoy Theory 185
5.15 Winch Theory 186
5.16 Shape Theory 187
ó SYSTEM MUDELLINC: DATA AND RESULTS 189
6.1 Modelling Introduction 189
6.2 Data in Time History Files 190
6.3 Variable Data 192
6.3.1 External Functions 193
6.4 General Data 194
6.4.1 Statics 195
6.4.2 Dynamics 197
6.4.3 Integration & Time Steps 197
6.4.4 Explicit Integration 198
6.4.5 Implicit Integration 199
6.4.6 Numerical Damping 200
6.4.7 Response Calculation 201
6.4.8 Properties Report 201
6.4.9 Drawing 201
6.4.10 Results 202
6.5 Environment 202
6.5.1 Sea Data 202
6.5.2 Sea Density Data 203
6.5.3 Seabed Data 204
6.5.4 Wave Data 207
6.5.5 Data for Regular Waves 209
6.5.6 Data for Random Waves 209
6.5.7 Data for JONSWAP and ISSC Spectra 210
6.5.8 Data for Ochi-Hubble Spectrum 211
6.5.9 Data for Torsethaugen Spectrum 212
6.5.10 Data for Gaussian Swell Spectrum 212
6.5.11 Data for User Defined Spectrum 212
6.5.12 Data for Time History Waves 213
6.5.13 Data for User Specified Components 214
6.5.14 Data for Response Calculation 214
6.5.15 Waves Preview 214
6.5.16 Modelling Design Waves 215
6.5.17 Setting up a Random Sea 217
6.5.18 Current Data 219
6.5.19 Wind Data 221
6.5.20 Drawing Data 222
6.5.21 External Functions 223
6.5.22 Results 223
6.5.23 Wave Scatter Conversion 224
6.6 Solid Friction Coefficients Data 228
6.7 Vessels 229
6.7.1 Vessel Data 230
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6.7.2 Vessel Types 239
6.7.3 Modelling Vessel Slow Drift 263
6.7.4 Vessel Response Reports 265
6.7.5 Vessel Results 267
6.8 Lines 269
6.8.1 Line Data 271
6.8.2 Line Types 286
6.8.3 Attachments 296
6.8.4 Rayleigh Damping 300
6.8.5 Line Results 303
6.8.6 Drag Chain Results 314
6.8.7 Flex Joint Results 315
6.8.8 Line Setup Wizard 315
6.8.9 Line Type Wizard 316
6.8.10 Chain 317
6.8.11 Rope/Wire 322
6.8.12 Line with Floats 325
6.8.13 Homogeneous Pipe 329
6.8.14 Hoses and Umbilicals 331
6.8.15 Modelling Stress Joints 333
6.8.16 Modelling Bend Restrictors 335
6.8.17 Modelling non-linear homogeneous pipes 337
6.8.18 Line Ends 339
6.8.19 Modelling Compression in Flexibles 342
6.9 6D Buoys 343
6.9.1 Wings 344
6.9.2 Common Data 345
6.9.3 Applied Loads 347
6.9.4 Wing Data 347
6.9.5 Wing Type Data 348
6.9.6 Lumped Buoy Properties 350
6.9.7 Lumped Buoy Drawing Data 351
6.9.8 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Properties 352
6.9.9 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Added Mass and Damping 354
6.9.10 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drag 355
6.9.11 Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drawing 356
6.9.12 Shaded Drawing 356
6.9.13 Other uses 358
6.9.14 External Functions 358
6.9.15 Properties Report 358
6.9.16 Results 359
6.9.17 Buoy Hydrodynamics 361
6.9.18 Hydrodynamic Properties of a Rectangular Box 362
6.9.19 Modelling a Surface-Piercing Buoy 364
6.10 3D Buoys 367
6.10.1 Data 368
6.10.2 Properties Report 369
6.10.3 Results 369
6.11 Winches 370
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6.11.1 Data 371
6.11.2 Wire Properties 371
6.11.3 Control 372
6.11.4 Control by Stage 372
6.11.5 Control by Whole Simulation 373
6.11.6 Drive Unit 373
6.11.7 External Functions 374
6.11.8 Results 374
6.12 Links 375
6.12.1 Data 375
6.12.2 Results 377
6.13 Shapes 377
6.13.1 Data 378
6.13.2 Blocks 379
6.13.3 Cylinders 380
6.13.4 Curved Plates 381
6.13.5 Planes 382
6.13.6 Drawing 382
6.13.7 Results 383
6.14 All Objects Data Form 383
7 MUDAL ANALYSIS 387
7.1 Modal Analysis Theory 388
8 FATICUE ANALYSIS 391
8.1 Commands 392
8.2 Data 393
8.3 Load Cases Data for Regular Analysis 394
8.4 Load Cases Data for Rainflow Analysis 394
8.5 Load Cases Data for Spectral Analysis 395
8.6 Load Cases Data for SHEAR7 397
8.7 Components Data 397
8.8 Analysis Data 398
8.9 S-N and T-N Curves 399
8.10 Integration Parameters 400
8.11 Results 400
8.12 Fatigue Points 401
8.13 How Damage is Calculated 401
9 VIV TUULBUX 405
9.1 Frequency Domain Models 405
9.1.1 VIVA 405
9.1.2 SHEAR7 410
9.2 Time Domain Models 417
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9.2.1 Wake Oscillator Models 420
9.2.2 Vortex Tracking Models 423
9.2.3 VIV Drawing 429

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Introduction, Installing OrcaFlex
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1 INTRUDUCTIUN
Welcome to OrcaFlex (version 9.4a), a marine dynamics program developed by Orcina for static and dynamic
analysis of a wide range of offshore systems, including all types of marine risers (rigid and flexible), global analysis,
moorings, installation and towed systems.
OrcaFlex provides fast and accurate analysis of catenary systems such as flexible risers and umbilical cables under
wave and current loads and externally imposed motions. OrcaFlex makes extensive use of graphics to assist
understanding. The program can be operated in batch mode for routine analysis work and there are also special
facilities for post-processing your results including fully integrated fatigue analysis capabilities.
OrcaFlex is a fully 3D non-linear time domain finite element program capable of dealing with arbitrarily large
deflections of the flexible from the initial configuration. A lumped mass element is used which greatly simplifies the
mathematical formulation and allows quick and efficient development of the program to include additional force
terms and constraints on the system in response to new engineering requirements.
In addition to the time domain features, modal analysis can be performed for individual lines and RAOs can be
calculated for any results variable using the Spectral Response Analysis feature.
OrcaFlex is also used for applications in the Defence, Oceanography and Renewable energy sectors. OrcaFlex is fully
3D and can handle multi-line systems, floating lines, line dynamics after release, etc. Inputs include ship motions,
regular and random waves. Results output includes animated replay plus full graphical and numerical presentation.
If you are new to OrcaFlex then please see the tutorial and examples.
For further details of OrcaFlex and our other software, please contact Orcina or your Orcina agent.
Copyrigbt notice
Copyright Orcina Ltd. 1987-2010. All rights reserved.
1.1 INSTALLINC URCAFLEX
Hardware Requirements
OrcaFlex can be installed and run on any computer that has:
- Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7. Both 32 bit and 64 bit versions of Windows are supported.
- If you are using small fonts (96dpi) the screen resolution must be at least 1024×768. If you are using large fonts
(120dpi) the screen resolution must be at least 1280×1024.
However, OrcaFlex is a powerful package and to get the best results we would recommend:
- A powerful processor with fast floating point and memory performance. This is the most important factor since
OrcaFlex is a computation-intensive program and simulation run times can be long for complex models.
- At least 2GB of memory. This is less important than processor performance but some aspects of OrcaFlex do
perform better when more memory is available, especially on multi-core systems. If you have a multi-core
system with a 64 bit version of Windows then you may benefit from fitting even more memory.
- A multi-core system to take advantage of OrcaFlex's multi-threading capabilities.
- As much disk space as you require to store simulation files. Simulation files vary in size, but can be 100's of
megabytes each for complex models.
- A screen resolution of 1280×1024 or greater with 32 bit colour.
- A DirectX 9 compatible graphics card with at least 256MB memory for the most effective use of the shaded
graphics facility.
- Microsoft Excel (Excel 2000, or later) in order to use the OrcaFlex automation facilities. This requires the 32 bit
version of Excel.
Note: Although OrcaFlex is a 32 bit program, the 64 bit versions of Windows run 32 bit programs very
efficiently and have certain advantages over 32 bit versions of Windows. Most notably the 64 bit
versions of Windows are able to make use of larger amounts of memory. This can benefit OrcaFlex,
and indeed other programs. In addition we have found the 64 bit versions of Windows to be more
effective at multi-threaded calculations. For these reasons we currently recommend 64 bit Vista/7
as the best platforms for running OrcaFlex.
Introduction, Installing OrcaFlex
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Installation
To install OrcaFlex:
- You will need to install from an account with administrator privileges.
- If installing from CD, insert the OrcaFlex CD and run the Autorun.exe program on the CD (on many machines
this program will run automatically when you insert the CD). Then click on 'Install OrcaFlex'.
- If you have received OrcaFlex by e-mail or from the web you will have a zip file, and possibly a number of
licence files (.lic). Extract the files from the zip file to some temporary location, and save the licence files to the
same folder. Then run the extracted file Setup.exe.
- You will also need to install the OrcaFlex dongle supplied by Orcina. See below for details.
For further details, including information on network and silent installation, click on Read Me on the Autorun menu
or open the file Installation Guide.pdf on the CD. If you have any difficulty installing OrcaFlex please contact Orcina
or your Orcina agent.
Urcina Sbell Extension
When you install OrcaFlex the Orcina Shell Extension is also installed. This integrates with Windows Explorer, and
associates the data and simulation file types (.dat and .sim) with OrcaFlex. You can then open an OrcaFlex file by
simply double-clicking the filename in Explorer. The shell extension also provides file properties information, such
as which version of OrcaFlex wrote the file and the Comments text for the model in the file. For details see the file
CD:\OrcShlEx\ReadMe.htm on the OrcaFlex CD.
Installing tbe Dongle
OrcaFlex is supplied with a dongle, a small hardware device that must be attached to the machine or to the network
to which the machine is attached.
Note: The dongle is effectively your licence to run one copy (or more, if the dongle is enabled for more
copies) of OrcaFlex. It is, in essence, what you have purchased or leased, and it should be treated
with appropriate care and security. If you lose your dongle you cannot run OrcaFlex.
Warning: Orcina can normally resupply disks or manuals (a charge being made to cover costs) if they are lost
or damaged. But we can only supply a new dongle in the case where the old dongle is returned to
us.
Dongles labelled 'Hxxx' (where xxx is the dongle number) must be plugged into the machine on which OrcaFlex is
run. Dongles labelled 'Nxxx' can be used in the same way as 'Hxxx' dongles, but they can also be used over a
network, allowing the program to be shared by multiple users. In the latter case the dongle should be installed by
your network administrator; instructions can be found in the Dongle directory on the OrcaFlex CD.
Types of Dongle
Dongles are available for either parallel or USB ports, and these are functionally equivalent so far as OrcaFlex is
concerned. In general, USB dongles are preferred, since they seem to be more reliable. In any case, parallel ports are
becoming less common on new machines. By default, 'N' dongles can hold up to 10 OrcaFlex licences for use over a
network. We can supply dongles with larger capacities on request.
Dongle Troublesbooting
We supply, with OrcaFlex, a dongle utility program called OrcaDongle. If OrcaFlex cannot find the dongle then this
program may be used to check that the dongle is working correctly and has the expected number of licences. For
details see the OrcaDongle help file.
The OrcaDongle program is included on the OrcaFlex CD, and you may choose to install it from the Autorun menu in
the same way as OrcaFlex. It is also available for download from www.orcina.com/Support/Dongle.
Also on our website, users of network dongles may find the Orcina Licence Monitor to be useful. This application
keeps track of the number of OrcaFlex licences claimed on a network at any time.
Diagnostics
If OrcaFlex fails to start, with the error that it can't obtain a licence, then please check the following.
- If you are using a network dongle, are all the licences in use? The Orcina Licence Monitor may be of use in
determining this. If they are, you will need to wait until a licence becomes free before you can run OrcaFlex.
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Introduction, Running OrcaFlex
13
- If you are using a local dongle, is it plugged into your machine? If so, is the dongle device driver installed? You
can check this by running OrcaDongle. If the driver is not present, it may have been uninstalled by another
program: if so, you can fix this by Repairing the OrcaFlex installation (from the Windows Control Panel, select
'Add or Remove Programs' (XP) or Programs / Programs and Features (Vista), select the OrcaFlex entry, select
Change then Repair). If this still fails, you can install the driver by downloading from our website, and running,
the file Hasp-Setup.msi.
- Does the dongle you are using have an OrcaFlex licence on it? Again, you can check this with OrcaDongle.
- Do you have a licence file for the dongle you wish to access? This file will be named Nxxx.lic or Hxxx.lic (where
xxx is the dongle number) and will be in the OrcaFlex installation folder. If not, then you should be able to copy
the required file(s) from the root level of the OrcaFlex CD into the installation folder.
If none of these help, then please contact us at Orcina with a description of the problem. Ideally, please also email to
us the diagnostics file named OrcLog.txt which OrcaFlex will have written on failing to find a licence. This file can be
found in the folder "%appdata%/Orcina/OrcaFlex": to open this folder, select Start menu | Run... and enter the text
between the quotes (including the '%' characters).
1.2 RUNNINC URCAFLEX
A shortcut to run OrcaFlex is set up on the Start menu when you install OrcaFlex (see Start\Programs\Orcina
Software\).
This shortcut passes no parameters to OrcaFlex so it gives the default start-up behaviour; see below. If this is not
suitable you can configure the start-up behaviour using command-line parameters, for example by setting up your
own shortcuts with particular parameter settings.
Default Start-up
OrcaFlex has two basic modules: full OrcaFlex and statics-only OrcaFlex. A full OrcaFlex licence is needed for
dynamic analysis.
When you run OrcaFlex it looks for an Orcina dongle from which it can claim an OrcaFlex licence (either a full
licence or a statics-only licence). By default, it first looks for a licence on a local dongle (i.e. one in local mode and
connected to the local machine) and if none is found then it looks for a licence on a network dongle (i.e. one in
network mode and accessed via a licence manager over the network). This default behaviour can be changed by
command-line parameters.
If OrcaFlex finds a network dongle and there is a choice of which licences to claim from it, then OrcaFlex displays a
Cboose Modules dialog to ask you which modules you want to claim. This helps you share the licences with other
users of that network dongle. For example if the network dongle contains both a full licence and a statics-only
licence then you can choose to use the statics-only licence, if that is all you need, so that the full licence is left free for
others to use when you do not need it yourself. The Choose Modules dialog can be suppressed using command-line
parameters.
Command Line Parameters
OrcaFlex can accept various parameters on the command line to modify the way it starts up. The syntax is:
OrcaFlex.exe Filename Option1 Option2 ... etc.
Filename is optional. If present it should be the name of an OrcaFlex data file (.dat or .yml) or simulation file (.sim)
and after starting up OrcaFlex will automatically open that file.
Option1, Option2 etc. are optional parameters that allow you configure the start-up behaviour. They can be any of
the following switches. For the first character of an option switch, the hyphen character '-' can be used as an
alternative to the '/' character.
Dongle Searcb switcbes
By default the program searches first for a licence on a local dongle and then for a licence on a network dongle. The
following switches allow you to modify this default behaviour.
- /LocalDongle Only search for licences on a local dongle. No search will be made for network dongles.
- /NetworkDongle Only search for licences on a network dongle. Any local dongle will be ignored. This can be
useful if you have a local dongle but want to use a network dongle that has licences for more modules.
Introduction, Parallel Processing
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Module Cboice switcb
This switch is only relevant if the dongle found is a network dongle and there is a choice of licences to claim from
that dongle. You can specify your choice using the following command line switch:
- /DisableDynamics Choose the statics-only basic licence. This is sometimes useful when using a network dongle
since it allows you to leave full licences free for other users when you only need a statics-only licence.
If you do not specify all the choices then the program displays the Choose Modules dialog to ask for your remaining
choices. You can suppress this dialog using the following switch.
- /DisableInteractiveStartup Do not display the Choose Modules dialog. The program behaves the same as if the
user clicks OK on that dialog without changing any module choices.
Batcb Calculation switcbes
These switches allow you to instruct OrcaFlex to start a batch calculation as soon as the program has loaded. The
following switches are available:
- /Batch Start a batch calculation as soon as the program has loaded. The batch calculation will contain all the
files specified on the command line (you can have more than one) in the order in which they are specified. You
can use relative paths which will be relative to the working directory.
- /CloseAfterBatch Instructs the program to close once the batch is complete.
- /BatchAnalysisStatics, /BatchAnalysisDynamics specify what type of analysis to perform to the specified files. If
these parameters are missing then the program defaults to dynamic analysis.
Process Priority switcbes
These switches determine the processing priority of OrcaFlex. The available switches are /RealtimePriority,
/HighPriority, /AboveNormalPriority, /NormalPriority, /BelowNormalPriority, /LowPriority.
TbickLines switcb
The /ThickLines switch allows you to specify a minimum thickness for lines drawn on OrcaFlex 3D View windows.
For example using the switch /ThickLines=5 forces OrcaFlex to draw all lines at a thickness of at least 5. If no value
is specified (i.e. the switch is /ThickLines) then the minimum thickness is taken to be 2.
This switch has been added to make OrcaFlex 3D Views clearer when projected onto a large screen.
TbreadCount switcb
The /ThreadCount switch allows you to set the number of execution threads used by OrcaFlex for parallel
processing. For example /ThreadCount=1 forces OrcaFlex to use a single execution thread which has the effect of
disabling parallel processing.
1.3 PARALLEL PRUCESSINC
Machines with multiple processors or processors with multiple cores are becoming increasingly common. OrcaFlex
can make good use of the additional processing capacity afforded by such machines. For up to date information on
hardware choice for OrcaFlex please refer to www.orcina.com/Support/Benchmark.
OrcaFlex performs the calculations of the model's Line objects in parallel. This means that, interactively at least,
performance is only improved for models with more than one Line object. However, for models with more than one
Line performance is significantly improved.
Both batch processing and fatigue calculations process their jobs and load cases concurrently, using all available
processor cores.
Note, however, that the OrcaFlex spreadsheet is currently only able to make use of a single processor core. We plan
to address this limitation in a future release.
Tbread count
OrcaFlex manages a number of execution threads to perform the parallel calculations. The number of these threads
(the thread count) defaults to the number of physical processor cores available on your machine as reported by the
operating system. This default will work well for most cases. Should you wish to change it you can use the Tools | Set
Thread Count menu item. The thread count can also be controlled by a command line switch.
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Introduction, Distributed OrcaFlex
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Hypertbreading
Some Intel processors offer a technology called hyperthreading. Such processors can process multiple execution
threads in parallel by making use of under-used resources on the processor. Hyperthreaded processors appear to
the operating system as 2 distinct, logical processors.
Sadly, the real world performance of such chips does not live up to the marketing hype. At best this technology can
give improvements of around 10-20%. However, the performance of hyperthreading under OrcaFlex varies
considerably with the OrcaFlex model being analysed. In the worst cases using hyperthreading results in
performance twice as slow as without!
For this reason we recommend that you don't attempt to use hyperthreading when running OrcaFlex. By default
OrcaFlex will use as many threads as there are true physical cores available to your system.
To help understand this consider a dual processor, dual core machine with hyperthreading support. The operating
system will recognise 8 processors. Of these processors, 4 are true physical processor cores and the other 4 are
virtual hyperthreaded processors. Accordingly OrcaFlex will default to using 4 calculation threads.
1.4 DISTRIBUTED URCAFLEX
Distributed OrcaFlex is a suite of programs that enables a collection of networked, OrcaFlex licensed computers to
run OrcaFlex jobs, transparently, using spare processor time. For more information about Distributed OrcaFlex
please refer to www.orcina.com/Support/DistributedOrcaFlex. Distributed OrcaFlex can be downloaded from this
address.
OrcaFlex can also make use of machines with multiple processors using parallel processing technology.
1.5 URCINA LICENCE MUNITUR
The Orcina Licence Monitor (OLM) is a service that monitors the current number of OrcaFlex licences claimed on a
network in real time. Other programs that use the OrcaFlex programming interface (OrcFxAPI) such as Distributed
OrcaFlex and the OrcaFlex spreadsheet are also monitored. You can obtain information on each licence claimed that
includes:
- Network information: the computer name, network address and the user name.
- Licence information: the dongle name, the dongle type (network or local) and the time the licence was claimed.
- Program information: which modules are being used, the version, and the location of the program which has
claimed the licence (usually this is OrcaFlex.exe but it can be Excel.exe for the OrcaFlex spreadsheet for
example).
OLM can be downloaded from www.orcina.com/Support/OrcinaLicenceMonitor.
1.ó DEMUNSTRATIUN VERSIUN
For an overview of OrcaFlex, see the Introduction topic and the tutorial.
The demonstration version of OrcaFlex has some facilities disabled – you cannot calculate statics or run simulation,
and you cannot save files, print, export or copy to the clipboard. Otherwise the demonstration version is just like the
full version, so it allows you to see exactly how the program works.
In particular the demonstration version allows you to open any prepared OrcaFlex data or simulation file. If you
open a simulation file then you can then examine the results, see replays of the motion etc. There are numerous
example files provided on the demonstration DVD. These example files are also available from
www.orcina.com/SoftwareProducts/OrcaFlex/Examples.
If you have the full version of OrcaFlex then you can use the demonstration version to show your customers your
OrcaFlex models and results for their system. To do this, give them the demonstration version and copies of your
OrcaFlex simulation files. The demonstration version can be downloaded from
www.orcina.com/SoftwareProducts/OrcaFlex/Demo.
1.7 URCAFLEX EXAMPLES
OrcaFlex is supplied with a DVD containing a comprehensive collection of example files. These examples can also be
found at www.orcina.com/SoftwareProducts/OrcaFlex/Examples.
Introduction, Validation and QA
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1.8 VALIDATIUN AND QA
The OrcaFlex validation documents are available from www.orcina.com/SoftwareProducts/OrcaFlex/Validation.
1.9 URCINA
Orcina is a creative engineering software and consultancy company staffed by mechanical engineers, naval
architects, mathematicians and software engineers with long experience in such demanding environments as the
offshore, marine and nuclear industries. As well as developing engineering software, we offer a wide range of
analysis and design services with particular strength in dynamics, hydrodynamics, fluid mechanics and
mathematical modelling.
Contact Details
Orcina Ltd.
Daltongate
Ulverston
Cumbria
LA12 7AJ
UK
Telephone: +44 (0) 1229 584742
Fax: +44 (0) 1229 587191
E-mail: orcina@orcina.com
Web Site: www.orcina.com
Urcina Agents
We have agents in many parts of the world. For details please refer to www.orcina.com/ContactOrcina.
1.10 REFERENCES AND LINKS
References
API, 1993. API RP 2A-WSD, Recommended Practice for Planning, Designing and Constructing Fixed Offshore
Platforms — Working Stress Design. American Petroleum Institute.
API, 1998. API RP 2RD, Design of Risers for Floating Production Systems and Tension-Leg Platforms. American
Petroleum Institute.
API, 2005. API RP 2SK, Design and Analysis of Stationkeeping Systems for Floating Structures. American Petroleum
Institute.
API. Comparison of Analyses of Marine Drilling Risers. API Bulletin. 2).
Aubeny C, Biscontin G and Zhang J, 2006. Seafloor interaction with steel catenary risers. Offshore Technology
Research Center (Texas A&M University) Final Project Report (http://www.mms.gov/tarprojects/510.htm).
Aubeny C, Gaudin C and Randolph M, 2008. Cyclic Tests of Model Pipe in Kaolin. OTC 19494, 2008.
Barltrop N D P and Adams A J, 1991. Dynamics of fixed marine structures. Butterworth Heinemann for MTD. 3rd
Edition.
Batchelor G K, 1967. An introduction to fluid dynamics. Cambridge University Press.
Blevins R D, 2005. Forces on and Stability of a Cylinder in a Wake. J. OMAE, 127, 39-45.
Bridge C, Laver K, Clukey E, Evans T, 2004. Steel Catenary Riser Touchdown Point Vertical Interaction Models. OTC
16628, 2004.
Carter D J T, 1982. Prediction of Wave height and Period for a Constant Wind Velocity Using the JONSWAP Results,
Ocean Engineering, 9, no. 1, 17-33.
Casarella M J and Parsons M, 1970. Cable Systems Under Hydrodynamic Loading. Marine Technology Society Journal
4, No. 4, 27-44.
Chapman D A, 1984. Towed Cable Behaviour During Ship Turning Manoeuvres. Ocean Engineering. 11, No. 4.
Chung J and Hulbert G M, 1993. A time integration algorithm for structural dynamics with improved numerical
dissipation: The generalized-α method. ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics. ó0, 371-375.
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Introduction, References and Links
17
CMPT, 1998. Floating structures: A guide for design and analysis. Edited by Barltrop N D P. Centre for Marine and
Petroleum Technology publication 101/98, Oilfield Publications Limited.
Coles S, 2001. An Introduction to Statistical Modelling of Extreme Values. Springer.
Cummins W E, 1962. The impulse response function and ship motions. Schiffstechnik, 9, 101-109.
Dean R G, 1965. Stream function representation of non-linear ocean waves. J. Geophys. Res., 70, 4561-4572.
Dirlik T, 1985. Application of computers in Fatigue Analysis. PhD Thesis University of Warwick.
DNV-OS-F201, Dynamic Risers.
DNV-RP-C205, Environmental Conditions and Environmental Loads.
ESDU 71016. Fluid forces, pressures and moments on rectangular blocks. ESDU 71016 ESDU International, London.
ESDU 80025. Mean forces, pressures and flow field velocities for circular cylindrical structures: Single cylinder with
two-dimensional flow. ESDU 80025 ESDU International, London.
Falco M, Fossati F and Resta F, 1999. On the vortex induced vibration of submarine cables: Design optimization of
wrapped cables for controlling vibrations. 3
rd
International Symposium on Cable Dynamics, Trondheim, Norway.
Faltinsen O M, 1990. Sea loads on ships and offshore structures. Cambridge University Press.
Fenton J D, 1979. A high-order cnoidal wave theory. J. Fluid Mech. 94, 129-161.
Fenton J D, 1985. A fifth-order Stokes theory for steady waves. J. Waterway, Port, Coastal & Ocean Eng. ASCE. 111,
216-234.
Fenton J D, 1990. Non-linear wave theories. Chapter in "The Sea – Volume 9: Ocean Engineering Science", edited by
B. Le MeHaute and D. M. Hanes. Wiley: New York. 3-25.
Fenton J D, 1995. Personal communication – pre-print of chapter in forthcoming book on cnoidal wave theory.
Gregory R W and Paidoussis M P, 1996. Unstable oscillation of tubular cantilevers conveying fluid: Part 1:Theory.
Proc. R. Soc.293 Series A, 512-527.
Hartnup G C, Airey R G and Fraser J M, 1987. Model Basin Testing of Flexible Marine Risers. OMAE Houston.
Hoerner S F 1965. Fluid Dynamic Drag, Published by the author at Hoerner Fluid Dynamics, NJ 08723, USA.
Huse E, 1993. Interaction in Deep-Sea Riser Arrays. OTC 7237, 1993.
Isherwood R M, 1987. A Revised Parameterisation of the JONSWAP Spectrum. Applied Ocean Research, 9, No. 1
(January), 47-50.
Iwan W D, 1981. The vortex-induced oscillation of non-uniform structural systems. Journal of Sound and Vibration,
79, 291-301.
Iwan W D and Blevins R D, 1974. A Model for Vortex Induced Oscillation of Structures. Journal of Applied Mechanics,
September 1974, 581-586.
Kotik J and Mangulis V, 1962. On the Kramers-Kronig relations for ship motions. Int. Shipbuilding Progress, 9, No. 97,
361-368.
Larsen C M, 1991. Flexible Riser Analysis – Comparison of Results from Computer Programs. Marine Structures,
Elsevier Applied Science.
Longuet-Higgins M S, 1983. On the joint distribution of wave periods and amplitudes in a random wave field.
Proceedings Royal Society London, Series A, Mathematical and Physical Sciences.389, 241-258.
Maddox S J, 1998. Fatigue strength of welded structures. Woodhead Publishing Ltd, ISBN 1 85573 013 8.
Morison J R, O'Brien M D, Johnson J W, and Schaaf S A, 1950. The force exerted by surface waves on piles. Petrol
Trans AIME. 189.
Mueller H F, 1968. Hydrodynamic forces and moments of streamlined bodies of revolution at large incidence.
Schiffstechnik. 15, 99-104.
Newman J N. 1974. Second-order, slowly-varying forces on vessels in irregular waves. Proc Int Symp Dynamics of
Marine Vehicles and Structures in Waves, Ed. Bishop RED and Price WG, Mech Eng Publications Ltd, London.
Newman J N, 1977. Marine Hydrodynamics, MIT Press.
Introduction, References and Links
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18
NDP, 1995. Regulations relating to loadbearing structures in the petroleum activities. Norwegian Petroleum
Directorate.
Ochi M K and Hubble E N, 1976. Six-parameter wave spectra, Proc 15th Coastal Engineering Conference, 301-328.
Ochi M K, 1973. On Prediction of Extreme Values, J. Ship Research, 17, No. 1, 29-37.
Ochi M K, 1998. Ocean Waves: The Stochastic Approach, Cambridge University Press.
Oil Companies International Marine Forum, 1994. Prediction of Wind and Current Loads on VLCCs, 2nd edition,
Witherby & Co., London.
Paidoussis M P, 1970. Dynamics of tubular cantilevers conveying fluid. J. Mechanical Engineering Science, 12, No 2,
85-103.
Paidoussis M P and Deksnis E B, 1970. Articulated models of cantilevers conveying fluid: The study of a paradox. J.
Mechanical Engineering Science, 12, No 4, 288-300.
Paidoussis M P and Lathier B E, 1976. Dynamics of Timoshenko beams conveying fluid. J. Mechanical Engineering
Science, 18, No 4, 210-220.
Palmer A C and Baldry J A S, 1974. Lateral buckling of axially constrained pipes. J. Petroleum Technology, Nov 1974,
1283-1284.
Pode L, 1951. Tables for Computing the Equilibrium Configuration of a Flexible Cable in a Uniform Stream. DTMB
Report. ó87.
Principles of Naval Architecture. Revised edition, edited by J P Comstock, 1967. Society of Naval Architects and
Marine Engineers, New York.
Puech A, 1984. The Use of Anchors in Offshore Petroleum Operations. Editions Technique.
Randolph M and Quiggin P, 2009. Non-linear hysteretic seabed model for catenary pipeline contact. OMAE paper
79259, 2009 (www.orcina.com/Resources/Papers/OMAE2009-79259.pdf).
Rawson and Tupper, 1984. Basic Ship Theory 3rd ed, 2: Ship Dynamics and Design, 482. Longman Scientific &
Technical (Harlow).
Rienecker M M and Fenton J D, 1981. A Fourier approximation method for steady water waves. J. Fluid Mech.104,
119-137.
Roark R J, 1965. Formulas for Stress and Strain. 4th edition McGraw-Hill.
Sarpkaya T, Shoaff R L, 1979. Inviscid Model of Two-Dimensional Vortex Shedding by a Circular Cylinder. Article No.
79-0281R, AIAA Journal,17, no. 11, 1193-1200.
Sarpkaya T, Shoaff R L, 1979. A discrete-vortex analysis of flow about stationary and transversely oscillating circular
cylinders. Report no. NPS-69SL79011, Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California.
Rychlik I, 1987. A new definition of the rainflow cycle counting method. Int. J. Fatigue 9, No 2, 119-121.
Skjelbreia L, Hendrickson J, 1961. Fifth order gravity wave theory. Proc. 7th Conf. Coastal Eng. 184-196.
Sobey R J, Goodwin P, Thieke R J and Westberg R J, 1987. Wave theories. J. Waterway, Port, Coastal & Ocean Eng.
ASCE 113, 565-587.
Sparks C, 1980. Le comportement mecanique des risers influence des principaux parametres. Revue de l'Institut
Francais du Petrol, 35, no. 5, 811.
Sparks C, 1983. Comportement mecanique des tuyaux influence de la traction, de la pression et du poids lineique :
Application aux risers. Revue de l'Institut Francais du Petrol 38, no. 4, 481.
Standing RG, Brendling WJ, Wilson D, 1987. Recent Developments in the Analysis of Wave Drift Forces, Low-
Frequency Damping and Response. OTC paper 5456, 1987.
Tan Z, Quiggin P, Sheldrake T, 2007. Time domain simulation of the 3D bending hysteresis behaviour of an
unbonded flexible riser. OMAE paper 29315, 2007 (www.orcina.com/Resources/Papers/OMAE2007-29315.pdf).
Taylor R and Valent P, 1984. Design Guide for Drag Embedment Anchors, Naval Civil Engineering Laboratory (USA),
TN No N-1688.
Torsethaugen K and Haver S, 2004. Simplified double peak spectral model for ocean waves, Paper No. 2004-JSC-193,
ISOPE 2004 Touson, France.
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Introduction, References and Links
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Thwaites, 1960. Incompressible Aerodynamics, Oxford, 399-401.
Timoshenko S,1955. Vibration Problems in Engineering, van Nostrand.
Triantafyllou M S, Yue D K P and Tein D Y S, 1994. Damping of moored floating structures. OTC 7489, Houston, 215-
224.
Tucker et al, 1984. Applied Ocean Research, ó, No 2.
Tucker M J, 1991. Waves in Ocean Engineering. Ellis Horwood Ltd. (Chichester).
Wichers J E W, 1979. Slowly oscillating mooring forces in single point mooring systems. BOSS79 (Second
International Conference on Behaviour of Offshore Structures).
Wichers J E W, 1988. A Simulation Model for a Single Point Moored Tanker. Delft University Thesis.
Wu M, Saint-Marcoux J-F, Blevins R D, Quiggin P P, 2008. Paper No. ISOPE-2008-MWU10. ISOPE Conference 2008,
Vancouver, Canada. (www.orcina.com/Resources/Papers/ISOPE2008-MWU-10.pdf)
Young A D, 1989. Boundary Layers. BSP Professional Books, 87-91.
Suppliers of frequency domain VIV software
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Tutorial, Getting Started
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2 TUTURIAL
2.1 CETTINC STARTED
This short tutorial gives you a very quick run through the model building and results presentation features of
OrcaFlex.
On completion of the tutorial we suggest that you also look through the pre-run examples – see Example Files.
On starting up OrcaFlex, you are presented with a 3D view showing just a blue line representing the sea surface and
a brown line representing the seabed. At the top of the screen are menus, a tool bar and a status bar arranged in the
manner common to most Windows software. As usual in Windows software, nearly all actions can be done in
several ways: here, to avoid confusion, we will usually only refer to one way of doing the action we want, generally
using the mouse.

Figure: Tbe UrcaFlex main window
2.2 BUILDINC A SIMPLE SYSTEM
To start with, we will build a simple system consisting of one line and one vessel only.
Using the mouse, click on the new vessel button on the toolbar. The cursor changes from the usual pointer to a
crosshair cursor to show that you have now selected a new object and OrcaFlex is waiting for you to decide where to
place it. Place the cursor anywhere on the screen and click the mouse button. A "ship" shape appears on screen,
positioned at the sea surface, and the cursor reverts to the pointer shape. To select the vessel, move the cursor close
to the vessel and click the mouse button – the message box (near the top of the 3D view) will confirm when the
vessel has been selected. Now press and hold down the mouse button and move the mouse around. The vessel
follows the mouse horizontally, but remains at the sea surface. (To alter vessel vertical position, or other details,
select the vessel with the mouse, then double click to open the Vessel data window.)
2.3 ADDINC A LINE
Now add a line. Using the mouse, click on the new line button . The crosshair cursor reappears – move the
mouse to a point just to the right of the vessel and click. The line appears as a catenary loop at the mouse position.
Move the mouse to a point close to the left hand end of the line, press and hold down the mouse button and move
the mouse around. The end of the line moves around following the mouse, and the line is redrawn at each position.
Release the mouse button, move to the right hand end, click and drag. This time the right hand end of the line is
dragged around. In this way, you can put the ends of the lines roughly where you want them. (Final positioning to
exact locations has to be done by typing in the appropriate numbers – select the line with the mouse and double
click to bring up the line data form.)
Move the line ends until the left hand end of the line is close to the bow of the ship, the right hand end lies above the
water and the line hangs down into the water.
Tutorial, Adjusting the View
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At this point, the line has a default set of properties and both ends are at fixed positions relative to the Global origin.
For the moment we will leave the line properties (length, mass, etc.) at their default values, but we will connect the
left hand end to the ship. Do this as follows:
1. Click on the line near the left hand end, to select that end of the line; make sure you have selected the line, not
the vessel or the sea. The message box at the left hand end of the status bar tells you what is currently selected.
If you have selected the wrong thing, try again. (Note that you don't have to click at the end of the line in order
to select it – anywhere in the left hand half of the line will select the left hand end. As a rule, it is better to choose
a point well away from any other object when selecting something with the mouse.)
2. Release the mouse and move it to the vessel, hold down the CTRL key and click. The message box will confirm
the connection and, to indicate the connection, the triangle at the end of the line will now be the same colour as
the vessel.
Now select the vessel again and drag it around with the mouse. The left hand end of the line now moves with the
vessel. Leave the vessel positioned roughly as before with the line in a slack catenary.
2.4 AD)USTINC THE VIEW
The default view of the system is an elevation of the global X-Z plane – you are looking horizontally along the
positive Y axis. The view direction (the direction you are looking) is shown in the Window Title bar in
azimuth/elevation form (azimuth=270; elevation=0). You can move your view point up, down, right or left, and you
can zoom in or out, using the view control buttons near the top left corner of the window. Click on each
of the top 3 buttons in turn: then click again with the SHIFT key held down. The SHIFT key reverses the action of the
button. If you want to move the view centre without rotating, use the scroll bars at the bottom and right edges of the
window. By judicious use of the buttons and scroll bars you should be able to find any view you like.
Alternatively, you can alter the view with the mouse. Hold down the ALT key and left mouse button and drag. A
rectangle on screen shows the area which will be zoomed to fill the window when the mouse button is released.
SHIFT+ALT+left mouse button zooms out – the existing view shrinks to fit in the rectangle.
Warning: OrcaFlex will allow you to look up at the model from underneath, effectively from under the
seabed! Because the view is isometric and all lines are visible, it is not always apparent that this
has occurred. When this has happened, the elevation angle is shown as negative in the title bar.
There are three shortcut keys which are particularly useful for controlling the view. For example CTRL+P gives a plan
view from above; CTRL+E gives an elevation; CTRL+Q rotates the view through 90° about the vertical axis. (CTRL+P
and CTRL+E leave the view azimuth unchanged.)
Now click the button on the 3D View to bring up the Edit View Parameters form. This gives a more precise way
of controlling the view and is particularly useful if you want to arrange exactly the same view of 2 different models –
say 2 alternative configurations for a particular riser system. Edit the view parameters if you wish by positioning the
cursor in the appropriate box and editing as required.
If you should accidentally lose the model completely from view (perhaps by zooming in too close, or moving the
view centre too far) there are a number of ways of retrieving it:
- Press CTRL+T or right click in the view window and select Reset to Default View.
- Press the Reset button on the Edit View Parameters form. This also resets back to the default view.
- Zoom out repeatedly until the model reappears.
- Close the 3D View and add a new one (use the Window|Add 3D View menu item). The new window will have
the default view centre and view size.
2.5 STATIC ANALYSIS
Note: If you are running the demonstration version of OrcaFlex then this facility is not available.
To run a static analysis of the system, click on the calculate statics button . The message box reports which line is
being analysed and how many iterations have occurred. When the analysis is finished (almost instantly for this
simple system) the Program State message in the centre of the Status Bar changes to read "Statics Complete", and
the Static Analysis button changes to light grey to indicate that this command is no longer available. The appearance
of the line will have changed a little. When editing the model, OrcaFlex uses a quick approximation to a catenary
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Tutorial, Dynamic Analysis
23
shape for general guidance only, and this shape is replaced with the true catenary shape when static analysis has
been carried out. (See Static Analysis for more details).
We can now examine the results of the static analysis by clicking on the Results button . This opens a Results
Selection window.
You are offered the following choices:
- Results in numerical and graphical form, with various further choices which determine what the table or graph
will contain.
- Results for all objects or one selected object.
Ignore the graph options for the moment, select Summary Results and All Objects, then click Table. A summary of
the static analysis results is then displayed in spreadsheet form. Results for different objects are presented in
different sheets. To view more static analysis results repeat this process: click on the Results button and select as
before.
2.ó DYNAMIC ANALYSIS
We are now ready to run the simulation. If you are running the demonstration version of OrcaFlex then you cannot
do this, but instead you can load up the results of a pre-run simulation – see Examples.
Click the Run Dynamic Simulation button . As the simulation progresses, the status bar reports current
simulation time and expected (real) time to finish the analysis, and the 3D view shows the motions of the system as
the wave passes through.
Click the Start Replay button . An animated replay of the simulation is shown in the 3D view window. Use the
view control keys and mouse as before to change the view. The default Replay Period is Whole Simulation. This
means that you see the simulation start from still water, the wave building and with it the motions of the system.
Simulation time is shown in the Status bar, top left. Negative time means the wave is still building up from still water
to full amplitude. At the end of the simulation the replay begins again.
The replay consists of a series of "frames" at equal intervals of time. Just as you can "zoom" in and out in space for a
closer view, so OrcaFlex lets you "zoom" in and out in time. Click on the Replay Parameters button , edit Interval
to 0.5s and click OK. The animated replay is now much jerkier than before because fewer frames are being shown.
Now click again on Replay Parameters, set Replay Period to Latest Wave and click on the Continuous box to deselect.
The replay period shown is at the end of the simulation and has duration of a single wave period. At the end of the
wave period the replay pauses, then begins again.
Now click on the Replay Step button to pause the replay. Clicking repeatedly on this button steps through the
replay one frame at a time – a very useful facility for examining a particular part of the motion in detail. Click with
the SHIFT key held down to step backwards.
You can then restart the animation by clicking on 'Start Replay' as before. To slow down or speed up the replay, click
on Replay Parameters and adjust the speed. Alternatively use the shortcuts CTRL+F and SHIFT+CTRL+F to make the
replay faster or slower respectively.
To exit from replay mode click on the Stop Replay button .
2.7 MULTIPLE VIEWS
You can add another view of the system if you wish by clicking on the View button . Click again to add a third
view, etc. Each view can be manipulated independently to give, say, simultaneous plan and elevation views. To make
all views replay together, click on Replay Control and check the All Views box. To remove an unwanted view simply
close its view window. To rearrange the screen and make best use of the space, click Window and choose Tile
Vertical (F4) or Tile Horizontal (SHIFT+F4). Alternatively, you can minimise windows so that they appear as small
icons on the background, or you can re-size them or move them around manually with the mouse. These are
standard Windows operations which may be useful if you want to tidy up the screen without having to close a
window down completely.
Tutorial, Looking at Results
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2.8 LUUKINC AT RESULTS
Now click on the Results button . This opens a Results Selection window.
You are offered the following choices:
- Results as Tables or Graphs, with various further choices which determine what the table or graph will contain.
- Results for all objects or one selected object.
Select Time History for any line, then select Effective Tension at End A and click the Graph button. The graph
appears in a new window. You can call up time histories of a wide range of parameters for most objects. For lines,
you can also call up Range Graphs of effective tension, curvature, bend moment and many other variables. These
show maximum, mean and minimum values of the variable plotted against position along the line. Detailed
numerical results are available by selecting Summary Results, Full Results, Statistics and Linked Statistics.
Time history and range graph results are also available in numerical form – select the variable you want and press
the Values button. The results can be exported as Excel compatible spreadsheets for further processing as required.
Further numerical results are available in tabular form by selecting Summary Results, Full Results, Statistics and
Linked Statistics.
Results Post-Processing
Extra post-processing facilities are available through Excel spreadsheets.
2.9 CETTINC UUTPUT
You can get printed copies of data, results tables, system views and results graphs by means of the File | Print
menu, or by clicking Print on the pop-up menu. Output can also be transferred into a word processor or other
application, either using copy+paste via the clipboard or else export/import via a file.
Note: Printing and export facilities are not available in the demonstration version of OrcaFlex.
2.10 INPUT DATA
Take a look through the input data forms. Start by resetting the program: click on the Reset button . This returns
OrcaFlex to the reset state, in which you can edit the data freely. (While a simulation is active you can only edit
certain non-critical items, such as the colours used for drawing.)
Now click on the Model Browser button . This displays the data structure in tree form in the Model Browser.
Select an item and double click with the mouse to bring up the data form. Many of the data items are self
explanatory. For details of a data item, select the item with the mouse and press the F1 key. Alternatively use the
question mark Help icon in the top right corner of the form. Have a look around all the object data forms available to
get an idea of the capabilities of OrcaFlex.
End of Tutorial
We hope you have found this tutorial useful. To familiarise yourself with OrcaFlex, try building and running models
of a number of different systems. The manual also includes a range of examples which expand on particular points of
interest or difficulty.
Finally, please remember that we at Orcina are on call to handle your questions if you are stuck.
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User Interface, Introduction
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3 USER INTERFACE
3.1 INTRUDUCTIUN
3.1.1 Program Windows
OrcaFlex is based upon a main window that contains the Menus, a Tool Bar, a Status Bar and usually at least one 3D
view. The window caption shows the program version and the file name for the current model.

Figure: Tbe UrcaFlex main window
Within this main window, any number of child windows can be placed which may be:
3D View Windows showing 3D pictorial views of the model
Graph Windows showing results in graphical form
Spreadsheet Windows showing results in numerical form
Text Windows reporting status
Additional temporary windows are popped up, such as Data Forms for each object in the model (allowing data to be
viewed and modified) and dialogue windows (used to specify details for program actions such as loading and saving
files). While one of these temporary windows is present you can only work inside that window – you must dismiss
the temporary window before you can use other windows, the menus or toolbar.
The actions that you can perform at any time depend on the current Model State.
Arranging Windows
3D View, Graph, Spreadsheet and Text Windows may be tiled so that they sit side-by-side, but they must remain
within the bounds of the main window. The program rearranges the windows every time a new window is created.
3.1.2 Tbe Model
OrcaFlex works by building a mathematical computer model of your system. This model consists of a number of
objects that represent the parts of the system – e.g. vessels, buoys, lines etc.
Each object has a name, which can be any length. Object names are not case-sensitive, so Riser, riser and RISER
would all refer to the same object. This behaviour is the same as for Windows file names.
The model always has two standard objects:
- Ceneral contains general data, such as title, units etc.
- Environment represents the sea, seabed, waves, current etc.
You can then use the Model Browser or the toolbar to add other objects to represent the parts of your system. There
is no limit, other than the capacity of your computer, to the number of objects you can add to the model. At any time,
you can save your model to a data file.
User Interface, Introduction
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3.1.3 Model States
OrcaFlex builds and analyses a mathematical model of the system being analysed, the model being built up from a
series of interconnected objects, such as Lines, Vessels and Buoys. For more details see Modelling and Analysis.
OrcaFlex works on the model by moving through a sequence of states, the current state being shown on the status
bar. The following diagram shows the sequence of states used and the actions, results etc. available in each state.
RESET
Calculating
Statics
Simulating
STATICS COMPLETE
SIMULATION
COMPLETE
Calculate
Static
Position
Reset
Reset
Edit or
Reset
Run
Pause
Run
SIMULATION
PAUSED
Reset
Extend
Simulation
SIMULATION
UNSTABLE
Reset

Figure: Model States
The states used are as follows:
Reset
The state in which OrcaFlex starts. In Reset state you can freely change the model and edit the data. No results are
available.
Calculating Statics
OrcaFlex is calculating the statics position of the model. You can abort the calculation by CLICKING the Reset button.
Statics Complete
The statics calculation is complete and the static position results are available. You are allowed to make changes to
the model when in this state but if you make any changes (except for very minor changes like colours used) then the
model will be automatically reset and the statics results will be lost.
Simulating
The dynamic simulation is running. The results of the simulation so far are available and you can examine the model
data, but only make minor changes (e.g. colours used). You cannot store the simulation to a file while simulating –
you must pause the simulation first.
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Simulation Paused
There is a simulation active, but it is paused. The results so far are available and you can examine the model data.
You can also store the part-run simulation to a file.
Simulation Complete
The simulation is complete. The simulation results are available and you can store the results to a simulation file for
later examination. You must reset the model, by CLICKING on the Reset button, before significant changes to the
model can be made.
You can use the Extend Dynamic Simulation facility if you wish to simulate for a further period of time.
Simulation Unstable
The simulation has become unstable. The simulation results are available and you can store the results to a
simulation file for later examination. This allows you to try and understand why the simulation has become
unstable. You may also want to examine the results up until the point at which the simulation became unstable.
However, please treat these results with caution – because the simulation eventually went unstable this indicates
that the dynamic simulation may not have converged at earlier simulation times.
You must reset the model, by CLICKING on the Reset button, before significant changes to the model can be made.
Typical model state flow
To illustrate how model states work, here is an example of a typical working pattern:
1. In Reset state, open a new model from a data file or use the current model as the starting point for a new model.
2. In Reset state, add or remove objects and edit the model data as required for the new model. It is generally best
to use a very simple model in the early stages of design and only add more features when the simple model is
satisfactory.
3. Run a static analysis (to get to Statics Complete state) and examine the static position results. Make any
corrections to the model that are needed – this will automatically reset the model. Steps (2) and (3) are
repeated as required.
4. Run a simulation and monitor the results during the simulation (in Simulating state).
5. If further changes to the model are needed then Reset the model and edit the model accordingly. Steps (2) to
(5) are repeated as required.
6. Finalise the model, perhaps improving the discretisation (for example by reducing the time step sizes or
increasing the number of segments used for Lines). Run a final complete simulation (to reach
Simulation Complete state) and generate reports using the results.
3.1.4 Toolbar
The toolbar holds a variety of buttons that provide quick access to the most frequently used menu items. The
selection of buttons available varies with the current Program State.
Button Action Equivalent Menu Item

Open File | Open

Save File | Save

Model Browser Model | Model Browser

New Vessel Model | New Vessel

New Line Model | New Line

New 6D Buoy Model | New 6D Buoy

New 3D Buoy Model | New 3D Buoy

New Winch Model | New Winch

New Link Model | New Link
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Button Action Equivalent Menu Item

New Shape Model | New Shape

Calculate Statics Calculation | Single Statics

Run Simulation Calculation | Run Dynamic Simulation

Pause Simulation Calculation | Pause Dynamic Simulation

Reset Calculation | Reset

Start Replay Replay | Start Replay

Stop Replay Replay | Stop Replay

Step Replay Forwards Replay | Step Replay Forwards

Edit Replay Parameters Replay | Edit Replay Parameters

Add New 3D View Window | Add 3D View

Examine Results Results | Select Results

Help Contents and Index Help | OrcaFlex Help
3.1.5 Status Bar
The Status Bar is divided into three fields:
Tbe Message Box
This is at the left hand end. It shows information about the progress of the current action, such as the name of the
currently selected object, or the current iteration number or simulation time. Error messages are also shown here.
When a statics calculation is done messages showing the progress of the calculation are shown in the message box.
To see all the messages from the statics calculation CLICK on the message box – the Statics Progress Window will
then be opened.
Tbe Program State Indicator
In the centre and shows which state the program is in (see Model States).
Tbe Information Box
This is on the right. It shows additional information, including:
- The global coordinates of the position of the cursor, in the current view plane.
- Distances when using the measuring tape tool.
3.1.ó Mouse and Keyboard Actions
As well as the standard Windows mouse operations such as selection and dragging OrcaFlex uses some specialised
actions. Clicking the right mouse button over a 3D View, Graph or Text Window displays a pop-up menu of
frequently used actions, such as Copy, Paste, Export etc. For wire frame 3D Views and Graph Windows the mouse
can be used for zooming. Simply hold the ALT key down and using the left mouse button, drag a box over the region
you want to view.
All of the menu items can be selected from the keyboard by pressing ALT followed by the underlined letters.
Example: To exit from the program (menu: File | Exit) press ALT+F then X, or ALT then F then X
A number of frequently used menu items may also be accessed by shortcut keys, such as CTRL+R to start a replay.
See the tables below. The shortcut keys are also displayed on the OrcaFlex menus. We suggest that as you become
more familiar with the operation of OrcaFlex that you memorise some of the shortcut keys for actions that you use
frequently.
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Keys on Main Window
New model
CTRL+N
Open file
CTRL+O
Save file
CTRL+S
Open data
SHIFT+CTRL+O
Save data
SHIFT+CTRL+S
Help
F1
Print
F7
Show / hide Model Browser
F6
Switch between Model Browser and Main Window
SHIFT+F6
Calculate static position
F9
Run dynamic simulation
F10
Pause dynamic simulation
F11
Reset
F12
Open results selection form
F5
Go to next window
CTRL+F6
Go to previous window
SHIFT+CTRL+F6
Tile windows vertically
F4
Tile windows horizontally
SHIFT+F4
Close selected window
CTRL+F4
Close program
ALT+F4
Keys on Model Browser
Edit data
Enter
Rename object
F2
Switch to Main Window
SHIFT+F6
Locate
F3
Move selected objects
CTRL+M
Hide
CTRL+H
Show
CTRL+S
Hide all objects
SHIFT+CTRL+H
Show all objects
SHIFT+CTRL+S
View by Groups
SHIFT+CTRL+G
View by Types
SHIFT+CTRL+T
Lock / Unlock objects
CTRL+L
Cut
CTRL+X
Copy
CTRL+C
Paste
CTRL+V
Delete
DELETE
Close browser
ESC
Keys on Data Forms
Help
F1
Go to next data form
F6
Go to previous data form
SHIFT+F6
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Display batch script names for currently selected
data item or table.
F7
Display Properties Report
ALT+ENTER
Show connections report
F8
Copy form
F9
Export form
F10
Print form
CTRL+P
Open calculator
F12
Data Selection Keys
Go to next data item or table
TAB
Go to previous data item or table
SHIFT+TAB
Go to data item or table labelled with underlined letter
ALT+LETTER
Move around within a table ← → ↑ ↓
Select multiple cells in table SHIFT + ← → ↑ ↓
SHIFT+HOME
SHIFT+END
Go to first or last column in table
HOME END
Go up or down table several rows at a time
PGUP PGDN
Data Editing Keys
Enter new value for selected cell Type new value
Edit current value of selected cell
F2
Open drop-down list ALT + ↑ ↓
Move around within new data value being entered ← → HOME END
Accept edit
RETURN
Accept edit and go to adjacent cell in table ↑ ↓
Cancel edit
ESC
Cut selected cell(s) to clipboard
CTRL+X
Copy selected cell(s) to clipboard
CTRL+C
Paste from clipboard
CTRL+V
Fill selection from top (copy top cell down)
CTRL+D
Fill selection from left (copy leftmost cell to right)
CTRL+R
Fill selection from bottom (copy bottom cell up)
CTRL+U
SHIFT+CTRL+D
Fill selection from right (copy rightmost cell to left)
CTRL+L
SHIFT+CTRL+R
Insert new rows in table
INSERT
Delete selected rows from table
DELETE
3D View Control Keys
Elevation view
CTRL+E
Plan view
CTRL+P
Rotate viewpoint up (increment view elevation angle) CTRL+ALT+↑
Rotate viewpoint down (decrement view elevation angle) CTRL+ALT+↓
Rotate viewpoint right (increment view azimuth angle) CTRL+ALT+→
Rotate viewpoint left (decrement view azimuth angle) CTRL+ALT+←
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Rotate viewpoint +90°
CTRL+Q
Rotate viewpoint -90°
SHIFT+CTRL+Q
Zoom In
CTRL+I
Zoom Out
SHIFT+CTRL+I
Move view centre – fine adjustment ← → ↑ ↓
Move view centre – coarse adjustment CTRL + ← → ↑ ↓
Edit view parameters for current 3D view
CTRL+W
Reset to default view
CTRL+T
Set as default view
SHIFT+CTRL+T
Show entire model
CTRL+ALT+T
3D View Control Keys {for wire frame grapbics only]
Show / Hide local axes
CTRL+Y
Show / Hide node axes
CTRL+ALT+Y
Undo most recent drag
CTRL+Z
Lock/Unlock selected object
CTRL+L
Place new object SPACE or RETURN
Edit selected object
CTRL+F2
Cut selected object to clipboard
CTRL+X
Copy selected object, or view if none selected,
to clipboard
CTRL+C
Paste object from clipboard (followed by mouse click
or RETURN to position the new object)
CTRL+V
Delete selected object
DELETE
Measuring tape tool SHIFT+CTRL+drag
Replay Control Keys
Start / Stop replay
CTRL+R
Replay faster
CTRL+F
Replay slower
SHIFT+CTRL+F
Step forwards one frame in the replay and pause
CTRL+A
Step backwards one frame in the replay and pause
CTRL+B
Edit replay parameters
CTRL+D
3.2 URCAFLEX MUDEL FILES
3.2.1 Data Files
OrcaFlex models are saved to either binary data files (.dat) or text data files (.yml).
All versions of OrcaFlex can read binary data files. Text data files were only introduced in version 9.3a and so cannot
be read by older versions of the program.
Binary data files have strong version compatibility features. For example, when OrcaFlex attempts to open a binary
data file written by a later version of the program it is able to report informative compatibility warnings. The
program is not able to be as helpful and informative when working with text data files across program versions.
Whilst we strive to achieve as much compatibility as possible for text data files across program versions, we cannot
achieve the same level of compatibility as that for binary data files.
Text data files, as written by OrcaFlex, contain only data that is active in the model. For example, if implicit time
integration is selected in the model then all data relating to explicit time integration is excluded from the text data
file. On the other hand, binary data files contain all data whether or not it is active. The fact that the binary data file
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contains inactive data can be very useful and so, in general, we would recommend that model building and
development is performed using the binary data file.
Text data files can be created without the use of OrcaFlex simply by entering text into a text editor. In general we
would not advocate this approach to model building. For very simple systems it may be a practical approach but
more complex models are usually much easier to build and inspect using the full capabilities and visualisation
strengths of OrcaFlex. On the other hand, text data files can be very effective when making minor changes to existing
models. Using text data files for such minor variations of existing models makes it much easier to monitor just what
has been changed, for example by using standard text differencing programs.
Text data files are highly readable and self-documenting which makes them ideal for QA and archival purposes.
Another application well suited to the use of text data files is automation.
3.2.2 Text Data Files
Text data files are used to define and represent OrcaFlex models in a human readable and easily editable format.
Text data files can be opened and saved by OrcaFlex. A very simple example is shown below:
General:
StageDuration:
- 10.0
- 50.0
Lines:
- Name: Line1
Length, TargetSegmentLength:
- [60.0, 5.0]
- [40.0, 2.0]
- [120.0, 10.0]
This example first defines a 10s build-up stage followed by stage 1 with 50s duration. Then a Line is created and
named "Line1". Finally the section data is specified: three sections are created with varying section lengths and
segment lengths. Default values are used for all data which are not specified.
Note: The formatting (colour, bold, italic etc.) in the examples here has been added to aid readability,
and is not a feature or requirement of text data files themselves.
YAML file format
Text data files use a standard file format called YAML and should be saved with the .yml file extension. The YAML file
format was chosen because it is extremely easy to read and write.
YAML files are plain text files and so can be edited in any text editor. We have found Notepad++ to be a very effective
editor for YAML files. Notepad++ has a tabbed interface for easy editing of multiple files and has code folding and
syntax highlighting facilities that work well with YAML files.
Note: YAML files must be saved with the UTF-8 character encoding.
More details on the YAML format and Notepad++ can be obtained from the following web sites:
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/YAML – YAML page on Wikipedia.
- http://www.yaml.org/ – Official YAML homepage.
- http://www.yaml.org/spec/ – Complete technical specification of YAML.
- http://notepad-plus.sourceforge.net/ – Notepad++.
Elements of a text data file
The most basic element of a text data file is the nameJvalue pair:
UnitsSystem: SI
The name (UnitsSystem) is written first, followed by a colon (:), then a SPACE, and then the value (SI). The names
used in text data files are the same as used to identify data items in batch script files.
Names and values in YAML files can contain spaces and other punctuation:
General:
StaticsMethod: Whole System statics
Lines:
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- Name: 12" Riser
- Name: Umbilical, upper
- Name: £"!$%^&*(){}[]=+-_#~'@:;/?.>,<\|
This example also contains a list. New items in a list are introduced by a dash (-) followed by a SPACE. Items in a list
can span more than a single line:
Lines:
- Name: Riser
TopEnd: End B
ContentsDensity: 0.8
- Name: Umbilical
TopEnd: End A
ContentsDensity: 0.0
Outline indentation is used to delimit blocks in a YAML file. This concept, known as significant indentation, is
perhaps a little unusual as most data formats and programming languages use symbols to indicate the beginnings
and ends of blocks. To understand this better consider the following example:
General:
UnitsSystem: SI
StaticsMethod: Whole System statics
Environment:
WaterDepth: 80
The two lines immediately following General: which are indented by two spaces, form a single block. This block is
ended by Environment: because it is not indented. A second block follows Environment: containing a single
name/value pair which defines the water depth.
Indentation must be made with SPACE characters rather than TAB characters. It does not matter how many spaces
are used so long as the indentation is consistent within each block. However, it is good practice to use the same
indentation throughout a file. OrcaFlex itself uses indentation of two spaces when it writes YAML files.
Lists are commonly used to represent tables of data:
Lines:
- Name: Line1
LineType, Length, TargetSegmentLength:
- [Line Type1, 60, 5]
- [Line Type1, 40, 2]
- [Line Type2, 120, 10]
The name LineType, Length, TargetSegmentLength indicates three columns of data, LineType, Length
and TargetSegmentLength which are interpreted in that order. The comma (,) character is used as a separator.
Note that you do not have to present the data in the same order as it appears in OrcaFlex. The following example is
equivalent to the previous example:
Lines:
- Name: Line1
Length, TargetSegmentLength, LineType:
- [60, 5, Line Type1]
- [40, 2, Line Type1]
- [120, 10, Line Type2]
You can, if you wish, omit columns, in which case default values will be used:
Lines:
- Name: Line1
LineType, Length:
- [Line Type1, 60]
- [Line Type1, 40]
- [Line Type2, 120]
Some data are closely related to each other and can naturally be grouped in a text data file:
3DBuoys:
- Name: 3D Buoy1
InitialPosition: [0, 0, 10]
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DragArea: [100, 100, 30]
Pen: [4, Solid, Yellow]
Without grouping the file would be significantly longer:
3DBuoys:
- Name: 3D Buoy1
InitialX: 0
InitialY: 0
InitialZ: 10
DragAreaX: 100
DragAreaY: 100
DragAreaZ: 30
PenWidth: 4
PenStyle: Solid
PenColour: Yellow
The majority of grouped data are X,Y,Z components and we adopt the convention that these components appear in
that order when grouped.
YAML files may contain comments which are introduced by a hash (#) character followed by a SPACE. All
subsequent text on the same line is comment and is ignored when OrcaFlex reads a text data file. Comments are not
preserved by OrcaFlex and any user comments in a manually edited YAML file opened with OrcaFlex will be lost if
the file is saved. Comments are formatted in green in the following example:
General:
# Statics
StaticsMethod: Whole System statics
BuoysIncludedInStatics: Individually Specified
# Dynamics
StageDuration:
- 8
- 16
TargetLogSampleInterval: 0.1
# Integration
SimulationIntegrationMethod: Implicit
ImplicitConstantTimeStep: 0.1
A text data file can be rather large, particularly if it contains vessel hydrodynamic data. Code folding editors can help
somewhat, but even so such files can be awkward to work with. The IncludeFile identifier allows you to move
data into a separate file which is then included in the main file:
# File: C:\Desktop\main.yml
VesselTypes:
- Name: FPSO
IncludeFile: FPSO.yml
Vessels:
- Name: Vessel1
VesselType: FPSO
The included file contains just the data for the vessel type:
# File: C:\Desktop\FPSO.yml
Length: 240
RAOResponseUnits: degrees
RAOWaveUnit: amplitude
WavesReferredToBy: period (s)
# ... remainder of large file omitted ...
As well as making the main file shorter and more readable, using this approach can offer significant QA benefits.
In this example we have used a relative path and so the program will look for FPSO.yml in the same directory as the
main text data file.
A text data file saved by OrcaFlex contains some extra information:
%YAML 1.1
# Program: OrcaFlex 9.3a
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# File: C:\Desktop\untitled.yml
# Created: 12:35 on 21/07/2009
# User: jamie
# Machine: holly
---
General:
# Statics
StaticsMethod: Whole System statics
BuoysIncludedInStatics: Individually Specified
# Dynamics
StageDuration:
- 8
- 16
TargetLogSampleInterval: 0.1
# Integration
SimulationIntegrationMethod: Implicit
ImplicitConstantTimeStep: 0.1
Environment:
# Seabed
SeabedType: Flat
WaterDepth: 100
SeabedModel: Linear
SeabedNormalStiffness: 100
# Current
RefCurrentSpeed: 0.4
RefCurrentDirection: 180
...
The section between the --- and ... lines is the main body of the file and is known in YAML terminology as a
document. Everything else is in fact optional and can be omitted. A YAML file can contain multiple documents,
separated by --- lines but OrcaFlex has no special treatment for such multi-document files and all data is read into
a single OrcaFlex model.
The first line (%YAML 1.1) is known as the YAML directive and specifies which version of YAML the file adheres to.
The YAML directive can be omitted. The rest of the header contains a number of comments detailing the version of
OrcaFlex which created the file, the file name etc. Again, these comments can be omitted.
Urdering issues
The order in which the data appear in a text data file is very important. OrcaFlex processes the file line by line in the
order in which it appears in the file.
Any references (e.g. Lines referring to Line Types) must be ordered so that the referenced object appears before
any references to it. So Line Types appear before Lines in the file. Similarly Vessels and 3D/6D Buoys appear before
Lines, Links, Winches and Shapes so that any connection references (e.g. a Line connected to a Vessel) can be
ordered correctly.
The other ordering issue relates to inactive data. Data which are not currently available are known as inactive data.
For example, data relating to the explicit solver are inactive when the implicit solver is selected. Inactive data cannot
be specified in a text data file.
This rule has implications for the order in which data are presented in the text data file. Consider the following
example:
General:
InnerTimeStep: 0.01
SimulationIntegrationMethod: Explicit
Since the default integration method is the implicit solver the attempt to set the explicit time step
(InnerTimeStep) will fail because it is inactive data. The solution is to set the integration method before setting
the time step:
General:
SimulationIntegrationMethod: Explicit
InnerTimeStep: 0.01
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This principle applies in general – you should set as soon as possible all data which influences whether other data
are active.
Automation
Text data files can easily be modified and/or generated by computer programs/scripts. This means that the text
data file format, combined with a text processing script language (e.g. Python, Perl, Ruby etc.), can form a very
effective automation tool. The OrcaFlex Spreadsheet provides a simple, yet effective, facility for automating the
production of text data files.
Some specialist features have been included in the text data file to aid with automation tasks, as illustrated in the
following example:
BaseFile: base.dat
Riser:
ContentsDensity: 0.8
Length[1]: 180
When this text data file is loaded in OrcaFlex the program does the following:
1. Opens the OrcaFlex binary data file named base.dat, located in the same directory as the text data file.
2. Sets the contents density for the OrcaFlex Line called "Riser" to 0.8.
3. Sets the length of the first section of "Riser" to 180.
The BaseFile identifier differs from IncludeFile in that it is able to load either binary or text data files
(IncludeFile only works with text data files). In addition BaseFile clears all existing data in the model before
loading the contents of the specified file. On the other hand, IncludeFile acts incrementally, starting from
whatever state the model is in when the IncludeFile identifier is encountered.
Standard text data files typically specify the entire model. The common automation task of making systematic
variations to a base case requires the ability to specify an existing object for which data modifications are to be
made. This is done using the object's name – in the example above the Riser: line performs this step.
In a similar vein it is a common requirement to modify data for certain items in a list or table without specifying the
entire table. The indexing syntax (Length[1] in the example) performs this task. Note that as for batch script files the
indices are always 1-based.
Manually edited text data files
Saving a text data file, then editing it is a good way to create a base file for automation, or to discover data names
and data structure for an object. However, please be aware that this is a one way process. OrcaFlex reads and
interprets a text data file line by line to build the model incrementally, discarding the lines once processed. When
saving a file OrcaFlex exports each object, including any default values. Consequently the save process is not the
inverse of the load process and any manual modifications to the input file will be overwritten when the file is saved
by OrcaFlex.
In the short automation example above, if the model created when this file is loaded is saved, the text data file would
contain data for all the objects imported by the BaseFile command, the full data for the line Riser and other
default data not specified in the input file.
3.2.3 Simulation Files
Results from OrcaFlex calculations (statics or dynamics) are saved to simulation files (.sim). These are binary files
containing the following sections:
- The model data. This section is essentially a binary data file.
- The latest calculated state (positions, loads etc.) of the model. This section allows static state results to be
retrieved and also enables partially-run dynamic simulations to be continued.
- The log file which contains results for a dynamic simulation. This section is not present for static state
simulation files.
Simulation files can be generated in a number of different ways:
- Interactively from the main OrcaFlex window. After a calculation (statics or dynamics) has performed then a
simulation can be saved using the File | Save or File | Save As menu items.
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- From the batch processing form.
- From Distributed OrcaFlex.
- From the OrcaFlex programming interface (OrcFxAPI).
Similarly, results can be post-processed from simulation files in a number of different ways:
- Interactively from the results form.
- From the OrcaFlex spreadsheet.
- From the OrcaFlex programming interface.
3.3 MUDEL BRUWSER
At any time you can use the Model Browser to see what objects you have in your model. To display the model
browser, use the model browser button or the Model | Model Browser menu item or use the keyboard shortcuts
(F6 to open the model browser).

Figure: Model Browser
The Model Browser consists of a list of all the objects in the model, arranged into categories according to object type.
Several symbols are used in the list of objects:

Categories can be opened, to show their contents, or closed, to simplify viewing a complex model.

Ub|ects. Use double click to view or edit the object's data.

Locked. These objects cannot be dragged by the mouse in the 3D View.
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You can navigate the list and select the object required by clicking with the mouse, or using the arrow keys and
return. If the list is longer than the window then you can either enlarge the window or use the scroll bar.
Note: More than one object can be selected in the model browser. This allows you to perform the same
action (e.g. delete, copy, hide, show, locate) on many objects at once. To select more than one object
you use the standard Windows key presses CTRL+CLICK to add to a selection and SHIFT+CLICK to
extend a selection.
Hint: If you have all objects in the model browser selected then it can be difficult to de-select them. The
simplest way is to use CTRL+CLICK to de-select one item and then to CLICK that item again to select
it alone.
Model Browser Facilities
The model browser menus, and its pop-up menu, provide the following model management facilities. For details of
keyboard shortcuts see Keys on Model Browser.
Add
Add a new object to the model.
Delete
Delete the selected object from the model.
CutJCopy
Cut or Copy the selected object to the clipboard.
Paste
Paste an object from the clipboard into the model. If the object is the Variable Data then all the variable data tables
are pasted in, with tables being renamed if necessary to avoid clashing with existing variable data names.
Note: You can use Cut/Copy and Paste to transfer objects between two copies of OrcaFlex running on the
same machine. You can also use it to transfer objects between two OrcaFlex data files (open the
source file and copy the object to the clipboard, then open the destination file and paste the object
back from the clipboard), but the Library facility (see below) provides an easier way of achieving
the same thing.
Move Selected Ub|ects
Opens the Move Selected Objects Wizard.
Locate
Finds and highlights the object in any open 3D view windows. This is useful in complex models where many objects
are on the 3D view. The highlighting method is determined by the Locate Object Method preference.
Edit
Open the object's data form. This action can also be invoked by double-clicking an item, or by selecting it and
pressing RETURN.
Rename
Rename the selected object. You can also rename by single-clicking the selected object.
LockJUnlock
Lock or unlock the selected object.
HideJHide AllJSbowJSbow All
Control whether the objects are drawn on 3D views.
Reorder
You can use drag+drop with the mouse to reorder objects in the model. This is useful if you are working on the static
position of one particular line – you can drag it up to the top of the list of lines, so that it will be tackled first when
OrcaFlex does the static analysis.
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Library
The Library menu facilities allow you to open a second data file. You can then Import objects from that second file
into the current model. You can also import using drag+drop with the mouse. For details see Libraries.
Notes: The second data file is referred to as the library model, but in fact it can be any OrcaFlex data file.
The library facilities therefore provide an easy way to move objects between different OrcaFlex
data files.
If the object being imported is the variable data then all the variable data tables are transferred,
with tables being renamed if necessary to avoid clashing with existing variable data names.
Switcb to Main Window
The browser's Window menu enables you to switch focus to the main form without closing the browser window. A
corresponding command on the main form's Window menu switches focus back.
3.3.1 Model Browser Views
There are 2 ways of viewing objects in the model browser: by Types or by Croups. You can switch between views
by clicking on the model browser View | View by CroupsJTypes menu items, or though the popup menu.
Types View
This is the traditional model browser view. The browser has a number of folders containing objects of the same
type. For example all the lines are contained in a folder called "Lines". Objects can be reordered within a folder but
they cannot be moved to a different folder.
To select this view you should click the View | View by Types menu item.
Croups View
This view allows you to customise how the objects are arranged in the model browser. You can add any number of
browser groups to the browser. These groups are simply folders in the browser tree. Groups can contain any
number of objects or other groups. In this way a hierarchical structure for the model can be created.
To select this view you should click the View | View by Croups menu item.
To add groups you select the Edit | Add Croup menu item or use the popup menu. Groups can be renamed in the
same way as other objects. Objects can be added to a group by dragging the objects onto the group. Any number of
objects can be added to a group in one operation by first selecting the objects and then dragging them. This multiple
selection is performed using the standard Windows key presses CTRL+CLICK to add to a selection and SHIFT+CLICK to
extend a selection. Groups can be dragged into other groups and so a hierarchical structure for the model can be
created.
As well as allowing you the freedom to structure your model however you like, the Groups View allows you to
perform the same action (e.g. delete, copy, hide, show, locate) on all objects in a group. The grouping structure is
also used when cycling through data forms- clicking the Next button takes you to the next object in the groups view.
3.3.2 Move Selected Ub|ects Wizard
This wizard allows you to move and rotate a number of objects en masse. The wizard is most useful when you select
multiple objects, a group or a number of groups or even the entire model.
To use the wizard you must first open the Model Browser and select the objects which you wish to move. Then click
Move Selected Objects on the browser's edit menu (also available from the popup menu).
Selecting ob|ects
Before using the wizard you must select (in the model browser) the objects which you wish to move. There are a
variety of ways in which you can do this. We list a few of the more useful methods below:
- Select a single object.
- Select multiple objects. You can do this in the model browser using CTRL+CLICK to add to a selection and
SHIFT+CLICK to extend a selection.
- Select an object type folder. This works when the model browser is in Types View mode. For example select the
Lines folder if you wish to move all the lines in a model.
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- Select a group. This works when the model browser is in Groups View mode. This allows you to move all objects
in that group.
- Select the entire model. This is easiest to do when the model browser is in Groups View mode. The first item in
the model browser is titled "Model". Select this item if you wish to move all objects in the model.
There is no limitation to the type of selections you can make. If you wish to move 2 groups then select both of them
(using CTRL+CLICK) and open the wizard.
Note: If your selection includes an item which contains other objects (e.g. a group or an object type
folder) then all objects contained by that item will be moved by the wizard.
Points
The wizard shows a list of the points associated with each selected object. For objects like buoys, vessels and shapes
a single point is shown. For objects like lines, links and winches with multiple connection points the list shows each
connection point for that object. The list also shows the global coordinates of each point.
For each point you have the option of including or excluding it in the move operation. This might be useful if you
wanted to move only the End A line connection points and leave the End B connection points unchanged, for
example.
Move specified by
There are 4 methods of specifying how the objects are moved.
Displacement
For this method you specify a position change (i.e. a displacement) which will be applied to all the points included in
the move operation.
Polar Displacement
This method is similar to the Displacement method. Here you specify a direction and distance which determine a
position change. This is applied to all the points included in the move operation.
New Position
Here you give a reference point and its new position. The same displacement is applied to all other points included
in the move.
Rotation
This method rotates the included points in the horizontal plane. You specify an angle of rotation and a central point
about which the rotation is performed. Note that the environment data (e.g. wave and current directions, seabed
direction etc.) is not included in the rotation.
Moving tbe ob|ects
Once you have decided which objects to include in the move and how the move is specified you are ready to actually
move the objects. This is done by clicking the Move button. If you change your mind and decide not to move the
objects then simply click the Close button.
3.4 LIBRARIES
An OrcaFlex Library is a collection of OrcaFlex objects (line types, lines, buoys etc.) stored in an ordinary OrcaFlex
data file. For example, a library may contain all the standard Line Types that you use regularly. Once such a library
file has been built you can quickly build new models using the library – this gives faster model building and can
make QA procedures safer.
To open a library file, use the File | Libraries menu or the Library menu on the Model Browser. Note that any
OrcaFlex data file can be opened as a library file, and this makes it easy to use the model browser to copy objects
from one model to another.
3.4.1 Using Libraries
Libraries allow you to easily import objects from one OrcaFlex model to another. To do this run OrcaFlex and open
the model browser by clicking the model browser button or the Model | Model Browser menu item, or pressing
F2. The model browser should look like:
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Now you open your file as a library. To do this click the open button on the model browser and select your data
file. Now the model browser will look like:

We are now going to copy some objects from the right hand pane to the left hand pane. To do so select the required
line types and click the import button . As an alternative to the import button the objects can be dragged from
the right hand pane to the left hand pane or the Library | Import menu item can be used.
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Note that you can select a number of objects and import them all in one go. You do this by using the standard
Windows key presses CTRL+CLICK to add to a selection and SHIFT+CLICK to extend a selection. If you do this the
library will look like:

Once you have imported the required objects you can close the library by selecting the Library | Close menu item
on the model browser. Now the model browser looks like:
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Here are some other points about using library files:
- Because library files are simply ordinary OrcaFlex data files, you can temporarily treat any OrcaFlex data file as
a library. This allows you to import objects from one OrcaFlex data file to another.
- You can re-size the model browser by dragging its border. You can also control the relative sizes of its two
panes, by dragging the right border of the left pane.
- You can view, but not edit, the data for a library model object, by double clicking it in the Model Browser or by
selecting it and using the pop-up menu.
- When an object is imported from a library, the current model may already have an object of that name. In this
case OrcaFlex automatically gives the object a new name based on the old name.
3.4.2 Building a Library
A library file is simply an OrcaFlex data file – you can use any OrcaFlex data file as a library. In practice it is most
convenient to put your commonly used OrcaFlex objects into files designated as OrcaFlex library files.
You build a library file in the same way as you build a standard OrcaFlex data file. Starting with a blank model you
can add objects in the usual way and set their data. Typically, however, you would want to reuse objects that had
previously been created and used for a project.
To do this you would open the model browser and load your project data file as a library using the open button
on the model browser. Then you import the required objects as described in Using Libraries. This procedure can be
repeated with a number of different data files until you have all the objects you wish to keep in the library. Then you
should close the model browser and save the data file by clicking the button on the main OrcaFlex form. This
data file can now be used as a library.
Notes: Because they are OrcaFlex models, libraries contain General and Environment data, but these
would not usually be used, except perhaps for the General data Comment field, which can act as a
title for the library.
Because the library file is just an ordinary OrcaFlex data file, it can also be opened using File |
Open. This allows you to edit the data of the objects in the library.
You can set up as many library files as you wish. For example you might have separate libraries for Line Types,
Attachment Types, Vessel Types, Variable Data Sources etc., or you may choose to use just one library for
everything. The model browser's Library menu contains a list of the most recently used libraries.
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3.5 MENUS
OrcaFlex has the following menus:
- The File menu has the file opening and saving commands, plus commands for printing or exporting data or
results and managing libraries.
- The Edit menu has data and object editing facilities.
- The Model menu gives access to the model building facilities.
- The Calculation menu provides commands for starting and stopping analyses, including batch processing.
- The View menu provides view control.
- The Replay menu provides replay control.
- The Graph menu gives you access to facilities related to the currently active graph window.
- The Results menu leads to the results facilities.
- The Tools menu allows you adjust preferences and to lock or unlock objects.
- The Workspace menu allows you to save and restore collections of view, graph and spreadsheet windows.
- The Window menu gives access to the various windows that are available, and allows you to adjust the layout of
your windows.
- The Help menu leads to the various help documentation that is available.
3.5.1 File Menu
New
Deletes all objects from the model and resets data to default values.
Upen
Open an OrcaFlex file – either a data file (.dat or .yml) or a simulation file (.sim).
You can also open an OrcaFlex file by dragging and dropping it onto the OrcaFlex window. For example if you have
Windows Explorer running in one window and OrcaFlex running in another then you can ask OrcaFlex to open a file
by simply dragging it from Explorer and dropping it over the OrcaFlex window.
If you open a data file then OrcaFlex reads in the data, whereas if you select a simulation file then OrcaFlex reads in
both the data and the simulation results. To read just the data from a simulation file, you can use the Open Data
menu item.
Save
Save an OrcaFlex file – either a data file (.dat or .yml) or a simulation file (.sim) – to the currently selected file name.
If a file of that name already exists then it is overwritten.
If calculation results (either statics or dynamics) are available then a simulation file will be saved. Otherwise a data
file will be saved.
Note: You cannot save a dynamic simulation while it is running – you must pause the simulation first.
Save As
This is the same as Save but allows you to specify the file name to save to. If a file of that name already exists then
you are asked whether to overwrite the file.
When saving data you can choose either the binary file format (.dat) or the text file format (.yml) from the Save as
type drop down list.
Upen Data
Read the data from an existing data file or simulation file, replacing the existing model. If a simulation file is
specified then OrcaFlex reads just the data from it, ignoring the simulation results in the file.
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Save Data
Save the data to the currently selected file name, using extension .dat or .yml. If a file of that name already exists
then it is overwritten.
Save Data As
This is the same as Save Data but allows you to specify the file name to save to. If a file of that name already exists
then you are asked whether to overwrite the file.
You can choose either the binary file format (.dat) or the text file format (.yml) from the Save as type drop down list.
Compare Data
Compares the data of two OrcaFlex models. See Comparing Data for details.
Properties
Displays the system file properties dialog for the current file. This is mainly intended to make it easier to find the full
path for files with long names.
Submit to Distributed UrcaFlex
Submit the current file for processing by Distributed OrcaFlex. For this option to be available, either the Distributed
OrcaFlex Viewer or Client must also be installed on the machine.
Libraries
You can create new libraries of OrcaFlex objects, or open existing libraries. You can then import objects from the
library into your existing model, or export objects from your existing model to the library.
Export
Display the Export form, allowing you to export Data, 3D Views, Graphs, Spreadsheets or Text Windows. See also
Copy.
Selected Printer
Allows you to change the selected printer.
Printer Setup
Calls up the Printer Setup dialogue window. This standard Windows dialogue is used to select which printer to use,
and allows you to control the way that it is used – the details vary from printer to printer, and depend on the printer
manufacturer's device driver currently installed. Please refer to the manuals for your printer as well as the
Microsoft documentation.
Print
Display the Print form, allowing you to print Data, 3D Views, Graphs, Spreadsheets or Text Windows. See Printing.
Most Recent Files
List of the most recently used files. Selecting an item on the list causes the file to be opened.
Exit
Close OrcaFlex.
3.5.2 Edit Menu
Undo Drag
Undo the most recent drag. This is useful if you accidentally drag an object.
Cut
Copies the current selection to the clipboard and then deletes it.
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Copy
If there is a currently selected object (see Selecting Objects), then that object is copied to the clipboard. You can then
use Edit | Paste to create duplicate copies of the object. The data for the object is copied to the clipboard in text form,
from where it can be pasted into a word processor document.
Note: After pasting into a word processor, you will probably need to put the text into a fixed space font
since much of the data is in tables.
If there is no currently selected object then the currently selected 3D view, text window, graph or spreadsheet is
copied to the clipboard.
Paste
Insert object from clipboard. This can be used to duplicate an object several times within the model. After selecting
Paste, the object is inserted at the next mouse CLICK position in a 3D view.
If the current window is a Spreadsheet then the contents of the clipboard are pasted into the spreadsheet.
Delete
If the active window is a 3D View then the currently selected object is deleted. Before the object is deleted, any
connected objects are disconnected, and any graphs associated with the object are closed.
If the active window is a Spreadsheet then the selected cells are cleared.
Select All
Selects all the cells in a Spreadsheet.
Copy All Data
Copy the whole model to the clipboard. The model data is copied to the clipboard in text form, from where it can be
pasted into a word processor document.
3.5.3 Model Menu
Model Browser
Toggles the visibility of the Model Browser.
New Vessel
New Line
New óD Buoy
New 3D Buoy
New Wincb
New Link
New Sbape
Create new objects. The mouse cursor changes to the New Object symbol . The object is placed at the position of
the next mouse CLICK within a 3D View. A three dimensional position is generated by finding the point where the
mouse CLICK position falls on a plane normal to the view direction and passing through the View Centre. Vessels are
always placed initially at the sea surface.
Sbow Connections Report
Displays a spreadsheet containing information about all object connections in the model.
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Truncate Ub|ect Names
Old versions of OrcaFlex (before 7.4b) cannot read files that contain long object names, i.e. longer than 10
characters. This menu item truncates any long object names in the model. You should do this if you wish to send a
file to another user whose version of OrcaFlex is older than 7.4b.
Delete Unused Types
Deletes any types (e.g. Line Types, Clump Types etc.) that are not in use. This is sometimes useful to simplify a data
file, or to find out which types are in use.
Delete Unused Variable Data Sources
Deletes any variable data sources that are not in use. This is sometimes useful to simplify a data file, or to find out
which variable data sources are in use.
Use Calculated Positions
This menu item is available after a successful static iteration or when the simulation is finished or paused.
If the model is in the statics complete state then clicking the menu item sets the initial positions of buoys, vessels
and free line ends to be the calculated static positions. This can be desirable when setting up a model, since the
positions found are likely to be good estimates for the next statics calculation.
If the model is in the simulation paused or stopped state, then clicking the menu item sets the initial positions of
buoys and free line ends to be the latest positions in the simulation. This is useful when OrcaFlex statics fails to find
an equilibrium configuration. In such cases you can use dynamics with no wave motion to find the static equilibrium
position and then click Use Calculated Positions.
If a replay is active then clicking the menu item sets the initial positions of buoys and free line ends to be the
positions at the latest replay time.
Use Specified Starting Sbape for Lines
This menu item is an extension of Use Calculated Positions. As well as setting the initial positions of buoys, vessels
and free line ends it modifies data for all Lines in the following way:
1. The Step 1 Statics Method is set to User Specified.
2. The User Specified Starting Shape data are set to the calculated node positions. As described above these
positions are either the results of a static calculation or the results of a dynamic simulation.
Use Static Line End Urientations
This menu item is only available after a successful static analysis. Clicking the menu item sets the line end
orientation data, for all line ends in the model that have zero connection stiffness, to the orientations found in the
static analysis. This is done as follows.
- For any line end with zero bend connection stiffness, the end azimuth and end declination will be set to the
azimuth and declination of the end node, as found by the static analysis.
- If the line includes torsion and the line end connection twist stiffness is zero, then the end gamma will be set to
the gamma of the end node, as found by the static analysis.
This action can be useful if you want to set the line end orientation to that which gives zero end moments when the
line is in its static position. To do this first set the end connection stiffness values to zero, then run the static analysis
and then click the Use Static Line End Urientations menu item. You can then set the end connection stiffness to
their actual values.
3.5.4 Calculation Menu
Single Statics
Start the single statics calculation (see Static Analysis). Progress and any error messages that occur are reported in
the Statics Progress Window, which is shown as a minimised window icon. The statics calculation can be
interrupted by CLICKING the Reset button.
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Multiple Statics
Starts the multiple offset statics calculation (see Multiple Statics). Progress and any error messages that occur are
reported in the Statics Progress Window, which is shown as a minimised window icon. The statics calculation can be
interrupted by CLICKING the Reset button.
Run Dynamic Simulation
Start a dynamic simulation (see Dynamic Analysis). If necessary, OrcaFlex will automatically do a statics calculation
first. During the simulation, the Status Bar shows the current simulation time and an estimate of the time that the
simulation will take, and all 3D View windows and Graphs are updated at regular intervals.
Pause Dynamic Simulation
Pause the simulation. To save the results of a part-run simulation you need to pause it first. The simulation can be
restarted by CLICKING the Run button.
Extend Dynamic Simulation
This facility is only available when the current simulation is either paused or completed. It adds another stage to the
current simulation, without having to reset. You are asked to specify the length of the new stage. You can then
continue the simulation, without having to restart it from scratch. This is particularly useful if you have a simulation
that has not been run for long enough.
Note that data for the new stage, e.g. for winch control and vessel prescribed motion, are initially set to be the same
as for the previous stage. However, the data for the new stage can be edited because the new stage has not yet
started.
Reset
Reset the model, discarding any existing results. The model can then be edited or a new model loaded.
View Warnings
Displays a window allowing you to review all warnings displayed by OrcaFlex during a calculation (statics or
dynamics).
This feature is particularly useful for simulations run in batch mode or by Distributed OrcaFlex. In these
circumstances warnings are not displayed since to do so would require user intervention.
Line Setup Wizard
Opens the Line Setup Wizard. The wizard is only available when the current simulation is in Reset state.
Wave Scatter Conversion
Opens the Wave Scatter Conversion form. This facility converts a scatter table of sea states to a scatter table of
regular (i.e. individual) waves.
Batcb Processing
Run a batch of analyses automatically while the program is unattended. See Batch Processing for details.
3.5.5 View Menu
Cbange Crapbics Mode
Toggles the graphics mode between wire frame and shaded.
Edit View Parameters
Adjust the View Parameters for the active 3D View.
Rotate Up J Down J Left J Rigbt
Change the view direction, for the active 3D View, by the view rotation increment.
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Plan
Set the active 3D View to a plan view (Elevation = 90°).
Elevation
Set the active 3D view to an elevation view (Elevation = 0°).
Rotate 90 J Rotate -90
Increase (or decrease) the view azimuth by 90°, for the active 3D view.
Zoom In J Zoom Uut
Click the zoom button to zoom in (decrease view size) or SHIFT+CLICK it to zoom out (increase view size).
Reset to Default View
Set the view parameters for the active 3D View to be the default view of the model.
Set as Default View
Set the default view of the model to be the view parameters of the active 3D View.
Sbow Entire Model
Set the view parameters for the active 3D View so that the entire model will be displayed.
Axes
This submenu gives you control of the 3D View Axes Preferences.
Superimpose Times
Allows model configurations for different times of the simulation to be superimposed in 3D Views. See Superimpose
Times.
Current Position
Draws the model at the latest time – this action is used to cancel the Superimpose Times view.
3.5.ó Replay Menu
Edit Replay Parameters
Adjust the Replay Parameters, such as the period of simulation to replay, the time interval between frames, the
replay speed etc. For more information see Replays.
Start J Stop Replay
Starts or stops the replay.
Step Replay Forwards, Step Replay Backwards
Step the replay forwards or backwards one frame at a time. Click the button to step forwards; CLICK with SHIFT held
down to step backwards.
Replay Faster J Slower
Increase or decrease the replay frame rate (replay speed).
Export Video
Exports the replay as a video clip in AVI file format. See Replays for more details.
3.5.7 Crapb Menu
Use Default Ranges
Sets the graph axes to their original ranges
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Values
Displays a spreadsheet containing the numerical values on which the graph is based.
Spectral Density {only available for time bistory grapbs]
Opens a new spectral density graph.
Empirical Cumulative Distribution {only available for time bistory grapbs]
Opens a new empirical cumulative distribution graph.
Rainflow balf-cycle Empirical Cumulative Distribution {only available for time bistory grapbs]
Opens a new rainflow half-cycle empirical cumulative distribution graph.
Properties
Opens the graph properties form (which can also be opened by double clicking the graph).
3.5.8 Results Menu
Select Results
Display the results form which allows you to choose from the currently available selection of graphs and results
tables. Graphs such as Time Histories, XY Graphs and Range Graphs may be created before a simulation has been
run, thus allowing you to watch the variables during a simulation.
Fatigue Analysis
Opens the Fatigue Analysis form.
Modal Analysis
Opens the Modal Analysis form.
Report Vessel Response
Opens the Vessel Response form.
3.5.9 Tools Menu
Lock J Unlock Selected Ub|ect
Locking an object prevents it from being accidentally dragged or connected using the mouse on 3D views, for
example if you nudge the mouse slightly while trying to DOUBLE CLICK. Lock / Unlock Selected Object toggles the lock
on the currently selected object. If the lock is on, it will be switched off. If the lock is off, then it will be switched on.
Locked Objects may still have their positions edited in the data Edit Forms. The status of the object locks is shown
by symbols in the Model Browser.
Lock J Unlock All Ub|ects
Locks or unlocks all objects in the model.
Set Tbread Count
Allows you to change the number of execution threads used by OrcaFlex for parallel processing.
Preferences
Allows you to control various program settings so that you can customise the program to the way you prefer to
work. See Preferences.
3.5.10 Workspace Menu
Upen Workspace
Opens a previously saved workspace file and restores the window layout described in that workspace file.
Save Workspace
Save the current window layout to a workspace file.
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Make default for tbis file, Make default for tbis folder
Makes the current window layout the default workspace for the current simulation file or for the current folder,
respectively. The default workspace for a simulation file will be restored whenever you open that file. The default
workspace for a folder will be restored whenever you open any simulation file in that folder.
If a default workspace exists for a both a file and the folder containing the file, then the default for the file is used.
Use file default, Use folder default
Applies the default workspace to the current model. This is useful if you have changed the window layout and wish
to restore the default workspace layout without re-loading the model.
Remove file default, Remove folder default
Deletes the default workspace.
Most Recent Files
List of the most recently saved workspaces in the directory which contains the current model. Selecting an item on
the list causes the workspace to be loaded.
3.5.11 Window Menu
Add 3D View
Add another 3D View Window. Having multiple views on screen allows you to watch different parts of the system
simultaneously, or to see different views at the same time (for example a plan and an elevation).
Tile Vertical, Tile Horizontal
Arranges all the windows (3D View, graph or spreadsheet) so that they fill the main window area and fit side by side
without overlapping. The program automatically tiles windows every time a new window is created or deleted.
Switcb to Model Browser
This command, and the corresponding command on the model browser's Window menu, enable you to switch focus
between the main form and the model browser window.
Statics Progress
Displays the Statics Progress Window.
Window List
This is a list of all currently open windows. If a window is hidden under others it can be selected easily from this list.
3.5.12 Help Menu
UrcaFlex Help
Opens the OrcaFlex on-line help system.
Wbat's New
Gives a list of recent improvements and alterations to OrcaFlex.
Tutorial
Opens the help file at the start of the OrcaFlex tutorial.
Examples
Opens the help file at the introduction to the OrcaFlex Examples topics.
Keyboard Sbortcuts
Lists the keyboard shortcuts used by OrcaFlex.
Urcina Home Page
Opens the Orcina homepage (www.orcina.com).
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About
Displays a window giving the program version, details about Orcina Ltd and various other miscellaneous
information.
3.ó 3D VIEWS
3D Views are windows showing a spatial representation of the model. Two distinct types of 3D View are available:
wire frame shows an isometric projection of the model; sbaded draws the model as solid objects with lighting,
shading, perspective and hidden line removal.

Figure: A wire frame 3D View {left] alongside a sbaded 3D View {rigbt]
3D View windows may be rotated, zoomed and panned to allow any aspect of the system to be viewed. The view is
controlled by a number of View parameters – see View Parameters – and the caption of a 3D View window shows
the current View Azimuth and View Elevation values, while a scale bar in the view indicates the current View Size.
Multiple view windows may be placed side-by-side so that you can view different parts of the system
simultaneously or view from different angles (for example a plan and elevation view). This allows you to build non-
in-plane models on screen with the mouse. Further 3D View windows are added by using the Window | Add 3D
View menu item or by CLICKING on the Add 3D View button on the tool bar. Windows may be arranged by dragging
their borders or using the Window | Tile Vertical/Horizontal menu items. 3D Views may be closed by CLICKING the
cross at the top right-hand corner.
The objects in a 3D view are "live" in the sense that you can use the mouse pointer to select objects, drag them
around in the view and make connections between objects. See Selecting Objects, Creating and Destroying Objects,
Dragging Objects, Object Connections, for details. If you DOUBLE CLICK on an object then the data form for that object
appears, so that you can examine or edit its data.
Note: When using the shaded view objects cannot be selected, dragged etc. For this reason, the wire
frame view is most useful when building your model.
After running a simulation, or loading a simulation file, a dynamic replay (animation) can be shown in one or more
3D View windows. A replay shows a sequence of snapshots of the model taken at specified intervals throughout part
or all of the simulation. Replays may be played in just one 3D View window, or in all of them simultaneously – see
Preferences.
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Finally, 3D Views may be printed by selecting the view desired and using the print menu. Also, the picture may be
exported to a file or the windows clipboard.
Measuring Tape Tool {only available in wire frame mode]
You can measure distance on a 3D view using the measuring tape tool. Hold down the SHIFT and CTRL keys and then
drag a line between any two points – the distance between them is displayed on the status bar. Note that this is the
distance in the plane of the 3D view.
3.ó.1 View Parameters
The view shown in a 3D view window is determined by the following parameters, which can be adjusted using the
view control buttons or the Edit View Parameters item on the View menu.
View Centre
Defines the 3D global coordinates of the point that is shown at the centre of the window.
View Size
The diameter of the view area. It equals the distance represented by the smaller of the 2 sides of the view window.
This parameter must be greater than zero.
Example: If the window on screen is wider than it is high, and View Size = 100.0 then an object 100 units
high would just fill the height of the window.
View Azimutb and View Elevation
These determine the direction (from the view centre) from which the model is being viewed. The azimuth angle is
measured from the global X direction towards the global Y direction. The elevation angle is then measured upwards
(downwards for negative elevation angles) from there. The view shown is that seen when looking from this
direction – i.e. by a viewer who is in that direction from the view centre.
Example: View Elevation +90° means looking in plan view from above, and View Elevation = 0°, View
Azimuth = 270° (or -90°) means a standard elevation view, looking along the Y axis.
Window Size
You can adjust the size of a 3D view window either by dragging the window border, or by setting its window size on
the view parameters form. The latter is sometimes useful when exporting a view or exporting a replay video, since it
makes it easier to export multiple files and produce videos with identical dimensions.
Crapbics Mode
Can be either of the following options:
- Wire frame: the model is represented using a wire frame, isometric projection.
- Sbaded: the model is represented as solid objects with lighting, shading, perspective and hidden line removal.
Default View
Each model has its own default view parameters that are saved with the model data. Whenever a new 3D view is
created, it starts with this default view. You can set an existing 3D view to the default view by using the Reset to
Default View command (on the view menu or pop-up menu).
To set the default view parameters, first set up a 3D View to the default view that you want and then use the Set as
Default View command (on the view menu or pop-up menu). As an alternative you can use the calculated based on
the model extent option which results in a default view that is sized so that the entire model will be displayed.
3.ó.2 View Control
You can adjust the view in a 3D view window using the view control buttons:
Button Menu Item Sbortcut Action

View | Rotate Up CTRL+↑ Increase view elevation
+ SHIFT
View | Rotate Down CTRL+↓ Decrease view elevation

View | Rotate Right CTRL+→ Increase view azimuth
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Button Menu Item Sbortcut Action
+ SHIFT
View | Rotate Left CTRL+← Decrease view azimuth

View | Zoom In
CTRL+I
Zoom in
+ SHIFT
View | Zoom Out
SHIFT+CTRL+I
Zoom out

View | Change Graphics Mode
CTRL+G
Changes graphics mode

View | Edit View Parameters
CTRL+W
Edit View Parameters
You can also use the mouse wheel button to change view. Turn the wheel to scroll the 3D view up and down. Turn it
with the CTRL key held down to zoom in or out on the location at which the mouse is currently pointing.
For more precise control you can set the view parameters explicitly using the View Parameters form.
Finally, 3D views can also be controlled using the View menu and various shortcut keys – see Mouse and Keyboard
Actions and Navigating in 3D Views.
3.ó.3 Navigating in 3D Views
Moving
Moving in 3D Views can be achieved by a variety of means:
- Drag the 3D View with the SHIFT key held down. We call this direct manipulation of the view centre panning.
- Use the scroll bars on the 3D View.
- Use the cursor keys ↑ ↓ ← →. Use these cursor keys with the CTRL key held down to effect larger shifts.
- Move up and down with the PGUP and PGDN keys.
- Edit the View Centre in the View Parameters form.
Rotating
Rotating in 3D Views can be achieved by a variety of means:
- Drag the 3D View with the CTRL key held down. For shaded views only you can rotate about the viewer position
(as opposed to rotating about the view centre) by holding down the ALT key (as well as the CTRL key) whilst
dragging.
- Use the rotate buttons . Pressing these with the SHIFT key held reverses the rotation.
- Use the Rotate Up, Rotate Down, Rotate Left or Rotate Right menu items or their shortcut keys CTRL+ALT+ ↑ ↓ ←
→. For shaded views only you can rotate about the viewer position by holding the ALT key down whilst
selecting these menu items or shortcuts.
- Use the Plan, Elevation, Rotate 90 or Rotate -90 menu items or their shortcut keys CTRL+P, CTRL+E, CTRL+Q and
SHIFT+CTRL+Q.
- Edit the View Azimuth and View Elevation in the view parameters form.
Zooming
You can zoom into and out of 3D Views by using the zoom button , the zoom menu items and the shortcut keys
CTRL+I and SHIFT+CTRL+I. In addition, you can zoom in or out using the mouse wheel button with the CTRL key held
down.
The following methods of zooming are only available in wire frame 3D Views.
Also you can zoom in on a particular region of interest in a 3D view by defining a rectangle around it on screen using
the mouse. To do this, hold the ALT key down, place the mouse in one corner of the desired rectangle and press
down the left mouse button while dragging the mouse to the opposite corner. When you release, the region selected
will be expanded to fill the window.
To zoom out, repeat the operation holding down the SHIFT and ALT keys – the region shown in the window will
shrink to fit into the rectangle drawn.
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You can also zoom in and out by a fixed amount, keeping the same view centre, by using ALT+CLICK and
ALT+SHIFT+CLICK.
3.ó.4 Sbaded Crapbics
The shaded graphics mode renders the model as solid objects with lighting, shading, perspective and hidden line
removal.

Figure: Sbaded grapbics
Using tbe Sbaded Crapbics mode
To a large extent there is no extra work required to build a model for the shaded graphics mode. You are able to
build a model or take an existing model designed using the wire frame mode and simply change to the shaded
graphics mode to see a high quality shaded rendering of your model. There are a number of things you can do to
improve your experience with the shaded graphics mode as described below.
Translucency
The Sea Surface and Seabed are drawn as textured surfaces. If there are objects on the other side of these surfaces
then they can be obscured. These surfaces are drawn with a user-specified amount of translucency which allows you
to compensate for this.
Importing 3D models
Objects like Lines are straightforward to draw. OrcaFlex uses the Line Type contact diameter to determine the
thickness of each segment of the Line.
Objects like Vessels present more difficulties. OrcaFlex by default will draw a solid, filled-in shape based on the wire
frame data you have specified. While this can be sufficient you may prefer something less simplistic. Alternatively
you may import a more detailed 3D model, e.g. the turret moored FPSO above. You can import 3D models for 6D
Buoys, Wings and Shapes as well as for Vessels.
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We have provided a very basic selection of generic models which you are free to use. There are models of an FPSO, a
turret moored FPSO, an installation vessel, a semisub and a subsea template. For information on generating and
importing 3D models specific to your project please refer to www.orcina.com/Support/ShadedGraphics.
Viewer Position
Because the shaded graphics mode uses perspective it requires the concept of the viewer position as well as the
viewer centre. The isometric wire frame view has no such requirement. OrcaFlex defines the viewer position to be in
a line in the view direction (defined by the view azimuth and view elevation) at a distance of view size * 1.5 from the
view centre. It is possible to rotate the view around both the view centre and around the viewer position.
Video export
Just as for wire frame views OrcaFlex can export video files of a replays in shaded views. When producing videos it
is very important to use compression, otherwise the video file size becomes unreasonably large. The software that
performs this compression is called a codec.
For wire frame replays OrcaFlex uses a built-in codec called run-length encoding. This codec is not suitable for
shaded replays and in fact there is no suitable built-in codec in Windows. We would recommend using an MPEG-4
codec of which many are available. In our experience the freely available XVID codec performs very well. The XVID
codec can be downloaded from www.orcina.com/Support/ShadedGraphics.
Should you wish to use a different codec you can select this from the Preferences form.
Hardware Requirements
The shaded graphics mode does require the presence of a DirectX 9 compatible graphics card. In our experience the
most important factor to consider when choosing a card to work with shaded graphics is the amount of memory. We
would recommend using a card with 256MB or more.
It is also important to make sure that your computer's graphics settings specify a colour mode of 16 bits (65536
colours) or better.
Notes: If your machine's graphics capabilities are insufficient then the shaded graphics mode may fail to
function properly or indeed fail to function at all. For example, low quality, blocky images usually
indicate a graphics card with insufficient memory. This problem can also manifest itself by failure
to draw the sky which appears plain white.
For best results you should centre your model close to the global origin. The Move Selected Objects
facility can help you do this.
3.ó.5 How Ub|ects are Drawn
Each object in the model is drawn as a series of lines using the Pen Colour, Line Width and Style (solid, dashed etc.)
defined in the drawing data for that object. You can change the pen colours etc. used at any time by editing the
drawing data for that object. To change the pen colour, select and CLICK the colour button on the data form and then
CLICK on the new colour wanted.
You can also exclude (or include) individual objects from the 3D view, by opening the model browser, selecting the
object and then using the Hide (or Show) command on the browser's Edit or pop-up menu.
Notes: In Windows, a line width of zero does not mean "don't draw" – it means draw with the minimum
line width. To suppress drawing either set the line style to null (the blank style at the bottom of the
drop down list) or else hide the object.
On some machines the display driver cannot draw the dashed or dotted pen styles and instead
draws nothing. So on such machines only the solid and blank pen styles work.
Wire Frame Drawing
For wire frame views the various objects are drawn as follows:
- The various coordinate systems can be drawn as small triplets of lines showing their origin and the orientation
of their axes. The wave, current and wind directions can be drawn as arrows in the top right hand corner of 3D
views. You can control both what is drawn (see 3D View Drawing Preferences) and the drawing data used.
- The Seabed is drawn as a grid using the seabed pen.
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- The Sea Surface is drawn as a grid or as a single line. This is controlled by the user's choice of Surface Type as
specified on the drawing page on the Environment data form. If the Surface Type is set to Single Line then one
line is drawn, aligned in the wave direction. If the Surface Type is set to Grid then a grid of lines is drawn. This
line or grid is drawn using the sea surface pen.
- Shapes are drawn either as wire frames (Blocks, Cylinders and Curved Plates) or as a grid (Planes). As well as
controlling the pen colour, width and style, for shapes you can also control the number of lines used to draw the
shape.
- Vessels are drawn as a wire frame of edges and vertices defined by the user on the Vessel and Vessel Types data
forms.
- 3D Buoys are drawn as a single vertical line of length equal to the height of the buoy.
- 6D Buoys are drawn as a wire frame of edges and vertices. For Lumped Buoys, the vertices and edges are
defined by the user on the buoy data form. For Spar Buoys and Towed Fish the vertices and edges are
automatically generated by OrcaFlex to represent the stack of cylinders that make up the buoy. As an option
Spar Buoys and Towed Fish can be drawn as a stack of circular cylinders – this is the default setting.
- Wings are drawn as rectangles in either the 6D Buoy pen or the Wing Type pen as determined in the Wing Type
data.
- Lines are drawn as a series of straight lines, one for each segment, joining points drawn at each node. Separate
pens are used for the segments and nodes, so you can, for example, increase the pen width used for the nodes to
make them more visible. There is also, on the Line Data form, a choice of which pen to use to draw the segments.
- Clumps are drawn as a thin vertical bar.
- Drag Chains are drawn using the colour and line style specified on the attachment types form. The hanging part
of the chain is drawn as a line, of length equal to the hanging length and at the angle calculated using the above
theory. The supported part of the chain (if any is supported) is separately drawn as a blob at the seabed, directly
beneath the node. The drag chain drawing therefore directly reflects the way in which the chain is modelled.
- Flex Joints are drawn as a circular blob using the colour and line style specified on the attachment types form.
- Links and Winches are drawn as a straight line segments joining the connection points.
Lines, Links and Winches and Shapes are special slave objects that can be connected to other master objects – see
Connecting Objects. To allow these connections to be made, each slave object has a joint at each end that you can
connect to a master object or else leave Free. When the program is in Reset or Statics Complete state these joints are
drawn as follows:
The joint at End A of a line or end 1 of a Link or Winch is drawn as a small triangle. The other joints are drawn as
small squares. This distinguishes which end of a Line, Link or Winch is which.
If the joint is connected to a master object, then it is drawn in the colour of the master object to which it is
connected. If the joint is Free, then it is drawn in the colour of the Line, Link or Winch to which it belongs.
Sbaded Drawing
For shaded views the various objects are drawn as follows:
- View axes and global axes are drawn as small triplets of lines showing their origin and the orientation of their
axes. The wave, current and wind directions can be drawn as arrows in the top right hand corner of 3D views.
You can control both what is drawn (see 3D View Drawing Preferences) and the drawing data used.
- The Sea Surface and Seabed are drawn as textured surfaces using their respective pen colours. Both surfaces
can be drawn with user-specified levels of translucency.
- Shapes are drawn as solid objects and Planes allow for user-specified levels of translucency. Alternatively
Shapes can be represented by an imported 3D model.
- Vessels are drawn as a solid, filled-in shape based on the wire frame data. Alternatively Vessels can be
represented by an imported 3D model.
- 3D Buoys and Clumps are drawn as an ellipsoid with the specified volume and height.
- Lumped 6D Buoys are drawn as a solid, filled-in shape based on the wire frame data. Spar Buoys and Towed
Fish are drawn as solid objects using the specified cylinder geometry. Alternatively 6D Buoys can be
represented by an imported 3D model.
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- Wings are drawn as plates using their specified span and chord. Alternatively they can be represented by an
imported 3D model.
- Lines are drawn as a series of cylinders, one for each segment using the contact diameter as specified on the
Line Type form. There is also, on the Line Data form, a choice of which pen to use to draw the segments.
- Drag Chains are drawn as a chain with bar diameter derived from the drag chain's effective diameter.
- Flex Joints are drawn as cylinders with radius 2R and length 4R where R is the radius of the node to which the
flex joint is attached.
- Links and Winches are drawn as a series of cylinders joining the connection points. The diameter of the
cylinders can be specified on the object's data form.
3.ó.ó Selecting Ub|ects
A single CLICK on or near an object in a 3D View selects it ready for further operations. The currently selected object
is indicated in the Status bar. All objects have a hot zone around them. If several objects have overlapping hot zones
at the mouse position, they will be selected in turn at subsequent CLICKS.
To deselect the object (without selecting another object) CLICK on the 3D view away from all objects. CLICK on an
object to open its data form.
3.ó.7 Creating and Destroying Ub|ects
When the model is in Reset or Statics Complete state then you can create and destroy objects using the mouse.
To create a new object, CLICK on the appropriate new object button on the tool bar or select the Model | New Object
menu item. The mouse cursor changes to show this. A new object of that type is created at the position of the next
CLICK on a 3D View.
You can also create a new object by copying an existing one. To do this select the object and press CTRL+C to take a
copy of it. You can now press CTRL+V (more than once if you want more than one copy) – again the mouse cursor
changes and the copy object is pasted at the position of the next mouse CLICK in a 3D view. This method of creating a
new object is particularly useful if you want an almost identical object – you can create a copy of it and then just
change the data that you want to differ.
To destroy an object, simply select it and then press the DELETE key. You will be asked to confirm the action.
3.ó.8 Dragging Ub|ects
An unlocked object may be dragged to relocate it by pressing the mouse button down and holding it down while
moving the mouse. When the mouse button is released, then the object will be positioned at the new location. The
current coordinates of the object are shown in the Status Bar during the drag operation.
Note: Objects must be dragged a certain minimum distance (as specified in the Preferences form) before
the drag operation is started. This prevents accidental movement of objects when DOUBLE CLICKING
etc.
Objects may be locked to prevent unintended drag operations moving them (see Locking an object). Their
coordinates may still be edited on their data form.
Note: Slave objects that are connected are moved relative to their master's local origin. Other objects are
moved in the global coordinate frame.
Dragging is only available in Reset or Statics Complete states, and when the object is not locked.
3.ó.9 Connecting Ub|ects
Unlocked slave objects (e.g. Lines, Links, etc.) can be connected to master objects using the mouse in a 3D View (see
Object Connections). First select the end of the slave that you want to connect by CLICKING on or near its end joint.
Then hold down the CTRL key while CLICKING on the master object – the two will then be connected together. This
operation is only permitted for master-slave object pairs, for example connecting a line to a vessel. The connection is
indicated in the Status Bar and the joint connected is drawn in the colour of the master object to show the
connection.
To Free a joint – i.e. to disconnect it – select it and then CTRL+CLICK on the sea surface.
To connect a joint to a Fixed Point, select it and then CTRL+CLICK on the global axes.
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To connect an object to an Anchor (a fixed point with a coordinate relative to the seabed), select it and then
CTRL+CLICK on the seabed grid. If the object is close to the seabed then the program snaps it onto the seabed. This
allows an object to be placed exactly on the seabed. If you require an anchor coordinate close to, but not on the
seabed, connect it to the seabed at a distance and then drag it nearer or edit the coordinate in the Data Form.
3.ó.10 Printing, Copying and Exporting Views
3D Views may be printed, copied to the windows clipboard, or exported to a windows graphics metafile, so that the
pictures may be used in other applications such as word processors and graphics packages.
First select the view and adjust the viewpoint as desired. Then to copy to the clipboard press CTRL+C, or select Copy
from the pop-up menu. The pop-up menu also has commands to print or export the 3D view. If needed, you can first
adjust the printer setup using the Printer Setup command on the pop-up menu or on the File menu.
If you are printing the view on a black and white printer (or are transferring the view into a document which you
intend to print on a black and white printer) then it is often best to first set OrcaFlex to output in monochrome (use
the Tools|Preferences|Output menu item). This avoids light colours appearing as faint shades of grey.
After a 3D view has been transferred to another application you should be careful not to change its aspect ratio,
since this will produce unequal scaling in the vertical and horizontal directions and invalidate the scale bar. In Word
you can maintain aspect ratio by dragging the corners of the picture, whereas if you drag the centres of the sides
then the aspect ratio is changed.
3.7 REPLAYS
A Replay is a sequence of 3D views shown one after another to give an animation. A replay is therefore like a short
length of film, with each frame of the film being a snapshot of a model as it was at a given time.
There are various controls and parameters that allow you to control a replay. You can also view a series of
snapshots all superimposed onto a single view – see Superimpose Times.
There are two types of replay:
- Active Simulation Replays show the model as it was at regularly spaced times during the currently active
simulation. This type of replay is therefore only available when a simulation is active and can only cover the
period that has already been simulated. If you have a time history graph window open when the replay is run,
then the replay time is indicated on the graph.
- Custom Replays are replays where you have complete control over frames which make up the replay. This
means that, for example, you are not restricted to regularly spaced times; you can have frames from different
simulation files in the same replay; you can include frames showing the static configuration of a model; you are
able to vary the view size, view angles and view centre to achieve panning, rotating and zooming effects. Custom
replays were originally introduced to help visualise series of static snapshots, for example during a lowering
operation. However, the facility is very powerful and you are certainly not restricted to this application. See
Custom Replays for details.
Export Video
Replays can be exported as a video clip in AVI file format, using the Export Video button on the replay parameters
form. An AVI file is generated containing the replay using the most recently selected 3D view window and using the
same period, frame interval and speed as the replay.
When you export a video clip you will be asked to select a file name for the video using the standard Save File
window. At the bottom of this window is a checkbox titled Include frame details in video. If this is selected then
each frame in the video has details of that frame (e.g. simulation time) written in the top left hand corner of the
frame. There is also a button which provides a link to the Video preferences.
AVI is a standard video format, so the file can then be imported into other applications, for example to be shown in a
presentation. The compression method (the codec) used for the generating the video file can be set on the
Preferences form.
Note: AVI files can be very large if the window size is large or there are a lot of frames in the replay. Also,
resizing video clips (after pasting into your presentation) will introduce aliasing (digitisation
errors), so it is often best to set the 3D View window size to the required size before you export the
video.
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3.7.1 Replay Parameters
The replay can be controlled by the following parameters that can be set in the Replay Parameters form,
accessed using the Replay Parameters button.
Replay Period
The part of the simulation that the replay covers. You can select to replay the whole simulation, just one simulation
stage (an asterisk * denotes an incomplete stage), the latest wave period or else a user specified period. If you select
User Specified then you can enter your own Start and End Times for the replay period. These can be set to '~'
which is interpreted as simulation start time and simulation finish time respectively.
Interval
The simulation time step size between frames of the replay. The value '~' is interpreted as the actual sample
interval, i.e. the smallest possible interval.
Using shorter intervals means that you see a smoother animation (though the extra drawing required may slow the
animation).
Example: For a simulation with stages of 8 seconds each, selecting stage 2 and a replay time step of 0.5 seconds
causes the replay to show 16 frames, corresponding to t=8.0, 8.5, 9.0 ... 15.5.
Target Speed
Determines how fast the replay is played. It is specified as a percentage of real time, so 100% means at real time,
200% means twice as fast etc. As a special case, the fastest allowable target speed (10000% at the moment) is taken
to mean "as fast as possible".
Note: The specified target speed is not always achievable because the computer may not be able to draw
each frame quickly enough. When this happens, the replay will be played as fast as possible.
Replays may be slow if you specify thick lines (line width>1) for objects in the model, since this can
increase the drawing time.
Continuous
Continuous means replaying like an endless film loop, automatically cycling back to the first frame after the last
frame has been shown; this is suitable for replays of whole cycles of regular cyclic motion. Non-continuous means
that there will be a pause at the end of the replay, before it starts again at the beginning; this is more suitable for
non-cyclic motion.
All Views
If this is selected, then the replay is shown in all 3D Views simultaneously, allowing motion to be viewed from
several different viewpoints. Otherwise the replay is played in the currently selected view window only.
Sbow Trails
If this is selected, then when each frame of the replay is drawn the previous frame is first overdrawn in grey – this
results in grey 'trails' showing the path of each object.
3.7.2 Replay Control
The replay can be controlled from the Replay menu, by using toolbar buttons or with shortcut keys. In addition,
some replay settings can only be modified on the Replay Parameters form.
The toolbar has a section dedicated to replay control:

Figure: Replay toolbar controls
The replay control buttons, menu items are listed in the table below:
Button Menu Item Sbortcut Action

Replay | Start Replay
CTRL+R
Start replay

Replay | Stop Replay
CTRL+R
Stop replay
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Button Menu Item Sbortcut Action

Replay | Step Replay Forwards
CTRL+A
Step to next frame and pause
+ SHIFT
Replay | Step Replay Backwards
CTRL+B
Step to previous frame and pause
Replay | Replay Faster
CTRL+F
Speed up replay
Replay | Replay Slower
SHIFT+CTRL+F
Slow down replay

Replay | Replay Parameters
CTRL+D
Edit replay parameters
Replay Slider Control
The final part of the replay toolbar is the replay slider. This allows direct control of the replay
time. Drag the slider to the left to move to an earlier part of the replay and to the right to move to a later part. For
fine grained adjustment of replay time you can use the Replay | Step Replay Forwards and Replay | Step Replay
Backwards actions or alternatively their shortcuts, CTRL+A and CTRL+B. The replay time is displayed on and can be
controlled from Time History graphs.
3.7.3 Custom Replays
Custom replays allow you to piece together arbitrary frames from different OrcaFlex files. Each frame of the replay
can be either the static configuration, or a snapshot of a specified time in a dynamic simulation file.
Using frames of static configurations you can string together a series of static snapshots giving, for example, an
animation of an installation procedure. Using frames from dynamic simulation files allows you to create replays
where the frames are from one or more simulations, and, if you wish, vary the time intervals between frames.
Frames of both static and dynamic configurations can be included in the same custom replay. In addition you are
able to vary the view size, view angles and view centre to achieve panning, rotating and zooming effects.
To use the custom replay feature you must first set the Replay Type data item on the Replay Parameters form to
Custom Replay. Next you must build the custom replay which is most easily done using the Custom Replay Wizard,
which can be opened by clicking the Custom Replay Wizard button.
Replay Specification
This is the file containing the custom replay specification – that is the file that is saved by the Custom Replay Wizard.
Custom Replay Parameters
Custom replays also make use of some of the parameters needed for standard simulation replays. These parameters
are Target Speed, Continuous, All Views and Show Trails.
3.7.4 Custom Replay Wizard
The Custom Replay Wizard allows you to define a series of replay sections. Each replay section can show either:
1. A series of regularly spaced snapshots from a simulation file.
2. The static configuration of a model specified by either a data file or a simulation file.
Different files can be used for different replay sections.
Custom Replay Files
When you have built your custom replay you must save it using the File menu or save button on the toolbar. Custom
replay files can be opened in a similar way.
We recommend that you save your custom replay file before you start setting up the replay sections. This is because
once you have saved the custom replay file you will be able to use relative paths for the OrcaFlex file names.
Custom Replay Data
Custom replay specifies view parameters {size, position, angles and grapbics mode]
If this data item is not cbecked then the replay will use the view parameters of whichever 3D View window it
appears in. In this mode of operation you will be able manually to pan, rotate and zoom the 3D View using the
normal buttons and shortcuts.
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If this data item is cbecked then you will be required to specify the view parameters (view size, view centre, view
azimuth, view elevation and graphics mode) for each replay section. This allows you to include panning, rotating
and zooming effects in your replay.
While learning how custom replays work we recommend that you do not check this data item.
Use smootbed panning, rotating and zooming effects
This item is only available if the "Custom replay specifies view parameters" option is enabled. If you are panning,
rotating and zooming during replay sections then the transition from one section to another sometimes appears to
be disjointed. If this option is checked then the transition between sections is smoothed.
Frame interval in real time
OrcaFlex needs to know how fast to play the replay. This data item specifies the interval, in real time, between each
replay frame, assuming a target replay speed of 100%. If the target replay speed is, say 200%, then the interval
between frames will be half this value, and so on.
Replay Sections
You can specify any number of replay sections. For each replay section you must also specify the following:
Replay Section Name
This is a descriptive name for the replay section. When the replay is running OrcaFlex displays a description of the
current frame in the message box on the status bar – this includes the replay section name. This description can also
be included in exported videos.
UrcaFlex File Name
The model to be used for this section – either a data file (.dat or .yml) or a simulation file (.sim).
Dynamics
This setting determines whether the replay section defines snapshots from a dynamic simulation or a static
configuration. If the file is a data file then the replay section will show the static configuration and so this data item
cannot be edited.
The custom replay displays static configurations for a data file by loading the file and then performing the static
calculation. This can be time consuming – static state simulation files can be used instead to avoid the overhead of
performing statics each time the replay is shown.
Simulation Time From, Simulation Time To
This specifies the period of the dynamic simulation covered by the replay section. These are OrcaFlex simulation
times for the specified simulation file of this replay section.
If the replay section is a static snapshot then these data items are not editable.
Number of Frames
This is the total number of frames in the replay section. If your custom replay is a series of static snapshots then you
would usually set this value to 1.
Included in Replay
This allows you to exclude certain sections from the replay. This may be useful while developing the custom replay
because it allows you to concentrate on particular replay sections.
PowerPoint slide number
Custom replays can be used to control PowerPoint slideshows. To make use of this you need to be showing a
PowerPoint slideshow while the custom replay is running. At the start of each replay section OrcaFlex will change
the PowerPoint slide to the slide number specified here.
If you do not wish to use this feature you should leave this data item at its default value of '~'.
View Parameter data
The following data items are only available when the specifies view parameters option is checked.
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From View Parameters, To View Parameters
The view size, view centre, view azimuth and view elevation for the first and last frames of the replay section. These
view parameters are varied between these values for the other frames in the replay section.
Hint: These values can be copied from OrcaFlex's View Parameters form using the clipboard.
Crapbics Mode
Specifies either the Wire frame or Shaded graphics mode for the replay section.
3.7.5 Superimpose Times
Allows model configurations for different times of the simulation to be superimposed in 3D Views. Use
View | Current Position to return to the normal view.
The data items are:
List of Times
The simulation times which will be superimposed.
All Views
If this box is checked then the superimposed view is drawn in all 3D View windows. If not then it is drawn in the
selected 3D View.
3.8 DATA FURMS
Each object in the model has data items that define its properties. The data are examined and edited in the object's
Data Form, which can be accessed by various methods:
- use the Model Browser
- DOUBLE CLICK the object in a 3D view
- RIGHT CLICK the object in a 3D view and use the pop-up menu.
If a simulation is active then most data items cannot be changed since they affect the calculation, but you can change
things like the object's colour.
Control Buttons
Uk
Accepts the data changes made and then closes the form.
Cancel
Cancels the data changes made and then closes the form.
Next
Accepts the data changes made and then displays the next form in sequence. Holding the SHIFT key down while
CLICKING the Next button accepts the changes and then displays the previous data form in sequence. You can also
use the keyboard shortcuts ]]F6 for next and SHIFT+F6 for previous.
Pop-up Menu
The pop-up menu on a data form provides various facilities, including:
- The data form can be printed, copied to the clipboard or exported to a file. The data for the whole model may be
printed using the File | Print menu item.
- Access to the next and previous data form and to the Variable Data form.
- The batch script names for the currently-selected block of data items.
- Data forms for 3D Buoys, 6D Buoys, Vessels and Lines provide a Connections Report. This is a spreadsheet
listing information about other objects connected to it. Note that the same information, but for all objects in the
model, can be displayed using the Model | Show Connections Report menu item.
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- On data forms of some model objects, a report of the properties of that object. The report displays properties
like weight in air, displacement, weight in water etc. These reports are currently available for General Data, 3D
Buoys, 6D Buoys, Vessels, Lines, Line Types and Clump Types.
Calculator
A simple calculator is available from any OrcaFlex data form. It can be opened from the popup menu or alternatively
by pressing F12. Numbers can be transferred to and from it with standard Windows copy (CTRL+C) and paste
(CTRL+V). The calculator can also be closed by pressing F12 – if you do this then the value in the calculator is
transferred to the active edit cell.
3.8.1 Data Fields
Data items on each Data Form are displayed in Fields, generally with related fields organised into Groups or Tables.
You can select a field with the mouse, or use the keyboard to navigate around the form. TAB moves from group to
group, and the arrow keys move across the fields in a group.
The following types of fields are used:
Text
A general string of text, used for example for titles and comments.
Name
Each object is given a name, which you can edit. Object names must be unique – you cannot have two objects with
the same name. Certain names are reserved for special purposes: Fixed, Ancbored and Free (see Connecting
Objects).
Numeric
Numbers can be entered in a number of formats such as 3, 3.0, 0.3, .3 or 3.0e6 or 3.0E6. It is possible to enter more
digits than those shown in the field, but beware that it will not be possible to see them again without editing again
and using the arrow keys to examine the rest of field.
For some numeric data items the value '~' is permitted. For example this is sometimes used to mean 'default value'.
Details are given in the descriptions of the relevant data items.
Spin Buttons
These are small buttons with up and down arrows, used for incrementing and decrementing the associated field
(such as the number of entries in a table). Using the mouse, CLICK on the upper or lower parts of the button to
increment or decrement the associated counter.
Multi-cboice Buttons
These are used when a number of options are available. Activate the button to step on to the next available option.
Cbeck Boxes
These show a tick, meaning selected, or are blank, meaning not selected. CLICK or press RETURN to change.
Colour Selection
These show as a block of colour. DOUBLE CLICK or press RETURN to open the Colour Selection dialogue window. The
desired colour may now be selected.
List Boxes
These show the current selection, such as the name of another object that this object is connected to. DOUBLE CLICK
or press RETURN to show a List Box, and then select another item and RETURN to accept the new choice.
3.8.2 Data Form Editing
The TAB, SHIFT+TAB, HOME, END and ARROW keys and the mouse can be used to navigate around the Edit Form.
Editing mode is entered by DOUBLE CLICKING a cell with the mouse, or by starting to type alphanumeric characters,
which are entered into the field as they are typed. The characters that have been typed can be edited by using the
arrow keys to move around (now within the field) and the BACKSPACE and DELETE keys.
Editing mode is ended, and the new value takes effect, when you press RETURN or select another field or button on
the form. To end editing mode but reject the edit (and so keep the old value) press ESC.
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Many numeric fields have limits on the range of values that can be entered, for example an object's mass must
always be greater than zero. Warnings are given if invalid values are typed.
Input can also be from the Windows clipboard. CTRL+C copies the selected field or block of fields to the clipboard
whilst CTRL+V pastes from the clipboard into the selected field. In this way data can be easily transferred to and
from Spreadsheets, Word Processors, etc.
Mouse Actions
CLICK
Select Field
CLICK+DRAG,
SHIFT+CLICK
Select a block of fields
DOUBLE CLICK
Start Edit Mode in this field (please also see Data Fields)
SECONDARY
BUTTON CLICK
Context sensitive pop-up menu for copying, exporting and printing the form and, for some
model objects, viewing additional properties
Croup Movement
TAB
Next Group
SHIFT+TAB
Previous Group
ALT+...
Move to the group with this letter underlined in its heading
Field Movement
← ↑ ↓ → Go to adjacent row or column
HOME
Go to leftmost column
END
Go to rightmost column
PAGE UP
Go to top row
PAGE DOWN
Go to bottom row
Table Editing
INSERT, DELETE Insert or delete rows
Start Editing
0..9, A..Z
Edit (replace)
During Editing
← →, HOME, END Move within field
End Editing
ESC
Cancel edit
↑ ↓ Accept edit and move to previous/next row
RETURN
Accept edit
Copy J Paste
CTRL+C
Copy selected field/block to clipboard
CTRL+V
Paste from clipboard into selected field
CTRL+D
Fill selection from top (copy top cell down)
CTRL+R
Fill selection from left (copy leftmost cell to right)
CTRL+U
SHIFT+CTRL+D
Fill selection from bottom (copy bottom cell up)
CTRL+L
SHIFT+CTRL+R
Fill selection from right (copy rightmost cell to left)
3.9 RESULTS
3.9.1 Producing Results
You can access results by either CLICKING on the Results button on the toolbar or by using the Select Results
menu item; the Select Results form then appears.
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There is a Keep Upen switch on the form's context menu, which allows you to choose whether the form
automatically closes when you select a result, or alternatively stays open (and on top) until you explicitly close it.
Graphs and Tables can be sent straight to the printer by CLICKING the Print button. If the values of a graph are
required in text form then CLICK the Values button – this give the values in a Spreadsheet window, which can handle
multiple variables if desired.
The Select Results form allows you to select the results you want by specifying:
Result Type
This option allows you to select which of the various types of results output you require. Results are available as text
tables (summary results, full results, offset tables, statistics, linked statistics, extreme statistics or line clashing
reports) or as graphs (time histories, range graphs, XY graphs, offset graphs or spectral response graphs). The types
of results available depend on the current model state.
Ub|ect
The object for which you want results (selected in the same way as in the Model Browser) and for some objects
which point in the object.
- For the Environment you must specify the global X,Y,Z coordinates of the point for which you want results.
- For 6D Buoys that have wings attached, results for the buoy and for each wing are available separately.
- For 6D Buoys and Vessels the position, velocity and acceleration results are reported at a user specified point on
the object. This point is specified in object local coordinates.
- For lines you must specify the arc length along the line – see Line Results.
Period
For time histories, XY graphs and range graphs you must specify the period of the simulation to be included. This
can be one of the stages of the simulation, the Wbole Simulation, Specified Period or Latest Wave (only available
if the wave is regular). The Specified Period values can be set to '~' which is interpreted as simulation start time and
simulation finish time respectively.
For Range Graphs the period can also be Static State or Instantaneous Value. The Static State period is only
available after a statics calculation and the graph shows a curve of the values in the static configuration. The
Instantaneous Value period is available when a simulation has been run. It shows a curve of the values at the
instantaneous simulation time. This is normally the latest simulated time. However, if a replay is active then the
graph shows a curve of values at the active replay time. This allows you to see, for an entire line, how a results
variable evolves over a simulation.
Variable
The desired variable(s).
Definitions of the results variables can be obtained by selecting them in the Variable list box and then pressing F1.
Logging for results
The summary and full results are taken directly from the current state of the model. All the other results are derived
from the simulation log file which OrcaFlex creates automatically when a simulation is run. As the simulation
progresses, OrcaFlex samples the variables for each object at regular intervals and stores the sampled values in the
log file. All time histories, statistics and range graphs are derived from the simulation log file.
You can control the time resolution of the results by setting the Target Sample Interval data item on the general data
form. This must be done before the simulation is started. Decreasing the sample interval will improve the time
resolution of the results (and increase the number of samples taken). However, because more samples are taken this
will also increase the size of the simulation file that is created.
Spike Logging
A special algorithm is used for logging results that tend to vary rapidly to ensure that any spikes that may occur
between samples are recorded. We refer to this algorithm as spike logging.
Line Results
OrcaFlex spike logs Effective Tension, Torque, Clash Force, Clash Energy, Solid Contact Force, End Force results and
Vortex Force results. In addition other results which are derived from these quantities are effectively spike logged
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by association. Such variables include Wall Tension, Normalised Tension, Direct Tensile Strain, ZZ Strain, Worst ZZ
Strain, Direct Tensile Stress, von Mises Stress, Max von Mises Stress and ZZ Stress.
Link and Wincb Results
OrcaFlex spike logs Tension and Velocity.
Solid Results
OrcaFlex spike logs contact force magnitude.
Ceneral Results
OrcaFlex spike logs Implicit solver iteration count and Implicit solver time step.
Inadequate segmentation warning
If any lines have, during the simulation, gone into greater compression than their segment Euler load then a warning
note is added to the Results form. Such lines are marked with the symbol § in the Model Browser. Usually this
means that finer segmentation is needed in some sections of these lines in order to model compression adequately.
Uffset warning
If any of the multiple statics calculations have failed then a warning note is added to the Results form.
3.9.2 Selecting Variables
Each object has associated with it:
- A currently selected variable that will be used for graphs.
- A set of statistics variables that will be included in statistics reports.
For the currently selected object, the currently selected variables are shown in a list on the results selection form.
If Statistics results are selected, then the list shows the set of variables that will be included in the statistics report
and you can add or remove variables by CLICKING on them in the list.
If a Time History is selected, the list shows the (single) currently selected variable and you can select a different
variable by CLICKING on it in the list.
You can also multi-select variables, using:
CLICK
select one variable
DRAG
select a range of variables
SHIFT+CLICK
select a range of variables
CTRL+CLICK
add / remove one variable
CTRL+DRAG
add / remove range of variables
If more than one variable is selected, then the Values button will give a single Spreadsheet Window with a time
history column for each selected variable, and the Crapb button will give a separate Graph Window for each
variable.
New columns can be appended to existing time history spreadsheet windows, as follows:
- Select the spreadsheet window to which you want to append, by clicking on it.
- Then open the Select Results form and select the variables that you want to append.
- Then hold the CTRL button down and click the Values button.
- Provided that the selected spreadsheet window is a time history values table and that the time periods for both
sets of histories match, then the new time histories will be appended to the active window. This allows you to
have a single window containing results from different objects.
3.9.3 Summary and Full Results
These spreadsheet windows give the current state of an object or of the whole model. For example, in
Statics Complete state the full results tables show the positions of objects in their static position. If a simulation is
active, then they show the positions of objects at the latest time calculated.
To obtain one of these results tables:
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- Select Summary Results or Full Results on the Results form.
- Select the object required.
- Click the Table button.
The summary results are simply an abbreviated form of the full results, in which the results for lines only include
the end nodes, not all of the intermediate nodes.
When the model is in Statics Complete state the summary and full results include estimates of the shortest natural
periods of objects or of the whole model. These can be used to determine suitable simulation time steps. The
simulation inner time step should normally be no more than 1/10th of the shortest natural period of the model –
this is given at the top of the summary results or full results report for All Ub|ects. In addition the full results table
for a line contains detailed reports of the shortest natural periods.
3.9.4 Statistics
The Statistics report provides, for each statistics variable:
- The minimum and maximum values and the simulation times when they occurred.
- The mean and standard deviation (i.e. the root mean square about the mean).
These statistics are reported for each of a number of periods of the simulation. If Statistics by Wave Period is
selected then these periods are successive wave periods; otherwise they are the stages of the simulation.
To obtain a Statistics report:
- Select Statistics.
- Select the object and the variables of interest (see Selecting Variables).
- CLICK the Table button.
The report is presented in a spreadsheet.
Note: Be careful when interpreting statistics of Line Clearance and Seabed Clearance, since these results
are already minima – the shortest distance to any other line and to any point on the seabed. For
example, the maximum of Line Contact Clearance will be the maximum value that the smallest
clearance took during the period.
3.9.5 Linked Statistics
The Linked Statistics table relates a group of variables for a given object. For a specified group of variables and a
specified period of simulation, OrcaFlex finds the minimum and maximum of each variable and reports these
extreme values, the times they occurred and the values that all the other variables took at those times.
The report also includes:
μ mean,
ς standard deviation,
Tz mean up-crossing period, estimated as the average time between successive up-crossings of the mean value μ,
Tc mean crest period, estimated as the average time between successive local maxima,
m0 zeroth spectral moment, estimated as ς
2
,
m2 second spectral moment, estimated as m0/Tz
2
,
m4 fourth spectral moment estimated as m2/Tc
2
,
ε spectral bandwidth parameter, estimated as (1-Tc
2
/Tz
2
)
½
,
To obtain a Linked Statistics report:
- Select Linked Statistics.
- Select the required object and period.
- Select the variables of interest (see Selecting Variables).
- CLICK the UK button.
The report is presented in a spreadsheet.
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Note: Be careful when interpreting statistics of Line Clearance and Seabed Clearance, since these results
are already minima – the shortest distance to any other line and to any point on the seabed. For
example, the maximum of Line Contact Clearance will be the maximum value that the smallest
clearance took during the period.
3.9.ó Uffset Tables
These Text Windows are available only after multiple statics calculations and only for vessels. For a given offset
direction they report the total load on the vessel and show how it varies with offset distance. The worst tension in
any segment of any line connected to the vessel is also reported for each offset.
To obtain an Uffset Table:
- Select Uffset Table on the Results form.
- Select the offset vessel.
- Select the offset direction required.
- CLICK the Table button.
The report is presented in a spreadsheet.
3.9.7 Line Clasbing Report
The Line Clashing Report produces a detailed tabular report about the line clashing events during a simulation.
To obtain a Line Clasbing Report:
- Select Line Clasbing Report on the Results form.
- Select a line.
- Select the period required.
- CLICK the Table button.
The report is presented in a spreadsheet.
Contents of tbe Line Clasbing Report
The report lists a summary table followed by a detailed table as described below.
Summary table
The summary table lists all clash events for segments on the selected line. A clasb event is deemed to start when a
segment from the selected line first comes into contact with another line segment. We shall refer to the selected line
as L1 and to the particular segment on this line as S1. The clash event ends when S1 is no longer in contact with any
other line segments.
Note: During the course of a clash event the segment S1 may be in contact with a number of different line
segments from other lines, e.g. if the clash is a sliding contact. This is counted as a single clash
event from the perspective of S1.
For each clash event the following results are reported:
Event number
A number of clash events may occur during the simulation. Each event is given a number to identify it. This is useful
when relating the summary results of a clash event to the detailed results.
Segment number and segment arc lengtb
This identifies the segment S1 on the selected line.
Start Time, End Time and Duration
The simulation time of the start and end of the clash event together with its duration.
Total Impulse
The total impulse of the clash event.
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Peak Clasb Force
A scalar value reporting the greatest value of clash force achieved during the clash event. The clash force vector is
monitored during each clash event and the greatest magnitude of this vector is reported.
Peak Clasb Energy
A scalar value reporting the greatest value of clash energy achieved during the clash event.
Max Penetration
At each time step we calculate the depth of penetration between the outer surfaces of segment S1 and all other
segments. Let S2 be a segment on another line.
Let the radii of the two segments be r1 and r2 (as defined by the line type contact diameter). OrcaFlex calculates the
shortest separation distance, d, between the centrelines of the two segments. The penetration of these two segments
is defined to be (r1 + r2) – d. The value reported as Max Penetration is the maximum value of penetration between
segment S1 and any other segment over the duration of the clash event.
Detailed table
The detailed table reports information about each individual contact between segment S1 and another segment. If
during the course of a clash event segment S1 is in contact with a number of segments on other lines then the start
time, end time and duration of each of those individual contacts is reported.
Contact velocity
The detailed table also includes the contact velocity for each individual contact. This is defined to be the normal
relative velocity of the two contact points at the instant in time when the clash event started.
3.9.8 Time History and XY Crapbs
Time History graphs are of a single variable against time. XY graphs are of one time dependent variable against
another.
The period of simulation covered by the graph is chosen from a list.
To obtain a Time History or XY Crapb:
1. Select Time History or XY Crapb on the Results form.
2. Select the object required.
3. Select the variable required (see Selecting Variables). More than one variable can be selected for time histories.
For XY graphs the steps 2 and 3 need to be done for both axes. Do this by CLICKING on one of the options labelled X-
axis or Y-axis, which are located at the bottom of the results form, and then repeating steps 2 and 3.
- Select the period required.
- CLICK the Crapb button.
Time history and XY graphs are displayed in Graph Windows and they are "live" – i.e. they are regularly updated
during the simulation. You can therefore set up one or more graph windows at the start of a simulation and watch
the graphs develop as the simulation progresses. If you reset the simulation then the curves will be removed but the
graphs will remain, so you can adjust the model and re-run the simulation and the graphs will then be redrawn.
Graphs are automatically deleted if the object that they refer to is removed, for example by loading a new model.
Range )ump Suppression
For time histories of angles OrcaFlex chooses the angle's range so that the time history is continuous.
For example consider vessel heading, which is normally reported in the range -180° to +180°. If the vessel's heading
passes through 180° then without range jump suppression the time history would be:
.., 179°, 180°, -179°, ..
i.e. with a 360° jump. To avoid this jump OrcaFlex adds or subtracts multiples of 360° to give the best continuation
of the previous value. So in this example it adds 360° to the -179° value and hence reports:
.., 179°, 180°, 181°, ..
This addition is valid since 181° and -179° are of course identical headings.
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Note that this means that angle time history results can go outside the range -360° to +360°.
Spectral Density
From any time history graph you can use the pop-up menu to obtain the spectral density graph for that time history.
The curve shown on the graph is the one-sided power spectral density (PSD) per unit time of the sampled time
history, obtained using the Fourier Transform.
Notes: Using the Fourier Transform to estimate the PSD inevitably introduces 'noise' or 'leakage' to the
spectrum. To reduce the leakage the time history is partitioned into a number of overlapping
periods. The PSDs are calculated for each period and then averaged to give the reported PSD which
has the effect of smoothing the resulting PSD.
This smoothing technique is only applied if there is more than 200s of data in the time history.
Empirical Cumulative Distribution
From any time history graph you can use the pop-up menu to obtain the empirical cumulative distribution graph for
that time history. This graph shows what proportion of the samples in the time history are less than or equal to a
given value.
These graphs are sometimes referred to as Exceedence Plots since they can sometimes be used to estimate the
probability that the variable will exceed a given value.
Warning: The samples in a time history are not independent. They have what is called 'serial correlation',
which often affects the accuracy of statistical results based on them.
Rainflow balf-cycle Empirical Cumulative Distribution
From any time history graph you can use the pop-up menu to obtain the rainflow half-cycle empirical cumulative
distribution graph for that time history. The curve on this graph is produced in the following way:
1. The time history is analysed using the rainflow cycle-counting algorithm. For details of this algorithm see the
paper by Rychlik.
2. The rainflow algorithm produces a list of half-cycles associated with the time history. The empirical cumulative
distribution of these half-cycles is then plotted.
3.9.9 Range Crapbs
Range graphs are only available for a selection of variables and they are only available for Lines. They show the
values the variable took, during a specified part of the simulation, as a function of arc length along the Line. In
particular:
- Range graphs show the minimum, mean and maximum values that the variable took during the specified part of
the simulation with the exception that the Line Clearance range graphs only show the minimum value.
- Effective tension range graphs have extra curves showing the segment Euler load and the Allowable Tension
value (as specified on the Line Types data form).
- Bend Moment range graphs have an extra curve showing the maximum permitted bend moment
(EI / Minimum Bend Radius specified on the Line Types data form).
- Curvature range graphs have an extra curve showing the maximum permitted curvature (the reciprocal of the
Minimum Bend Radius specified on the Line Types data form).
- Stress range graphs show the Allowable Stress (as specified on the Line Types data form).
- A Standard Deviation curve can also be added to a range graph – to do this edit the graph's properties (by
double clicking on the graph) and set the Standard Deviation curve's visible property (by default the curves are
not visible). Two curves are then drawn, at Mean ± xς, where x is a user chosen value and ς is the standard
deviation. The standard deviation is calculated from all the samples that lie in the simulation period chosen for
the graph.
Warning: Be careful not to assume that 95% of the data lie in the interval Mean ± 2ς. This common guideline
is based on the assumption that the data are sampled from a Normal (i.e. Gaussian) distribution.
To obtain a Range Crapb:
- Select Range Crapb on the Results form.
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- Select the object required.
- Select the arc lengths required. This can be the entire line, a selected arc length range, or a selected line section.
- Select the variable required (see Selecting Variables).
- Select the period required.
- CLICK the Crapb button.
Range graphs are displayed in Graph Windows and they are "live" – i.e. they are regularly updated during the
simulation. You can therefore set up one or more graph windows at the start of a simulation and watch the graphs
develop as the simulation progresses. If you reset the simulation then the curves will be removed but the graphs will
remain, so you can adjust the model and re-run the simulation and the graphs will then be redrawn. Graphs are
automatically deleted if the object that they refer to is removed, for example by loading a new model.
Range )ump Suppression
Just as it does for Time History and XY Graphs, OrcaFlex applies range jump suppression for range graphs of angles.
3.9.10 Uffset Crapbs
These graphs are available only after a multiple statics calculation has been done and only for the offset vessel. The
following variables are plotted against offset distance:
Restoring Force
The magnitude of the horizontal component of the total force applied to the vessel by the attached Lines or other
objects. Note that this force is not necessarily in the offset direction.
Vertical Force
The vertically downwards component of the total force applied to the vessel by the attached Lines or other objects.
Yaw Moment
The moment, about the vertical, applied to the vessel by the attached Lines or other objects.
Worst Tension
The largest tension in any segment of any Line connected to the vessel.
To obtain an Uffset Crapb:
- Select Uffset Crapb on the Results form.
- Select the offset vessel.
- Select the offset direction required.
- Select the variable required.
- CLICK the Crapb button.
3.9.11 Spectral Response Crapbs
These graphs are available only if you have run a response calculation wave. The graph is only available once the
simulation has been completed.
The graph plots the calculated RAO for the selected variable on the Y axis and wave frequency on the X axis.
To obtain a Spectral Response Crapb:
- Select Spectral Response Crapb on the Results form.
- Select the object required.
- Select the variable required (see Selecting Variables). More than one variable can be selected.
- CLICK the Crapb button.
3.9.12 Extreme Statistics Results
There is often a requirement to predict the extreme responses of a system, for example to determine the likelihood
of a load exceeding a critical value that may lead to failure. Such values are needed when using standards such as
DNV-OS-F201 and API RP 2SK.
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OrcaFlex can estimate extreme values for any given result variable by analysing the simulated time history of the
variable using extreme value statistical methods. You may, for instance, perform a mooring analysis in an irregular
sea-state and then estimate the maximum mooring line tension for a 3-hour storm.
The statistical theory for this estimation is well-established and is described in the theory section. The procedure is
essentially this:
- You select the statistical distribution to be used to model the distribution of extremes. See Data below.
- OrcaFlex estimates the distribution model parameters that best fit the simulation time history of the variable.
- OrcaFlex uses the fitted distribution to estimate and report the required extreme statistic (e.g. return level), for
a specified period of exposure. See Results below.
- OrcaFlex provides diagnostic graphs that you should use to judge the reliability of the results.
The Extreme Statistics Results form is designed to lead you through this process.
When you open the Extreme Statistics Results form, for a selected results variable, you will come first to the Data
page, where you will select the distribution. Moving then to either of the other pages (Results or Diagnostic Graphs)
will cause OrcaFlex to carry out the estimation part of the procedure. The Diagnostic Graphs assist in testing the
model. The Results page reports the estimated statistics, e.g. the return value for the specified period, the estimation
uncertainty inherent in that value etc.
Data
For convenience, the time history result graph is reproduced on the Data page. The data required for the fitting of
the model are entered on this page, and are as follows.
Distributions
These fall into two groups, according to the statistical method with which they are applied. For details see the
Extreme Statistics Theory section.
- Rayleigb distribution. This method assumes that the variable is a stationary Gaussian process. This is perhaps a
reasonable assumption for waves, particularly in deep water, and for responses which are approximately linear
with respect to wave height. However, for many other variables of interest, the Gaussian assumption is invalid
and leads to poor estimates of extreme values.
- Weibull and Ceneralised Pareto {CPD] distributions. These distributions are both fitted using the maximum
likelihood method. Historically, the Weibull distribution has often been used for marine systems, but the
Generalised Pareto is preferred by the extreme statistics community because of its sound mathematical
foundations.
Extremes to analyse
Specifies whether maxima (upper tail) or minima (lower tail) are to be analysed.
Tbresbold and Decluster Period
These data are only required when using the Weibull and GPD distributions, which are fitted to extremes of the time
history and those extremes are selected using the peaks-over-threshold method with (optional) declustering.
The tbresbold controls the peaks-over-threshold method. This allows you to control the extent to which the
analysis is based on only the extreme values in the data (the tail of the distribution).
The decluster period controls the declustering. This helps avoid or reduce any statistical dependence between the
extreme data values used in the analysis. It can be set to one of the following:
- Zero, in which case no declustering will be done, and all values above the specified threshold will be included.
This is generally not recommended since the values are unlikely to be independent.
- A positive value. In this case OrcaFlex will break the sequence of time history values into clusters of successive
values that stay above the threshold. It will then decluster by merging successive clusters that are separated by
periods (during which the variable is less than the threshold) that last no longer than the specified decluster
period. The most extreme value of each of the resulting merged clusters will then be included in the analysis.
- '~'. This special value may be used to tell OrcaFlex to take the clusters to be the groups of values between
successive up-crossings of the mean value (or down-crossings if analysing lower tail). The most extreme value
of each such cluster will then be included in the analysis, but ignoring any that do not exceed the threshold.
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The threshold is drawn on the time history graph, to help visualise its value relative to the extremes of the data. The
number of data points that will be included in the analysis (after the threshold and declustering have been done) is
also displayed. This helps with setting the threshold and decluster period.
The best value for the threshold is one that strikes a balance between a not-extreme-enough value (which will
increase the number of data points fitted but may give biased fitting by allowing less extreme values to influence the
fitting too much), and a too-extreme value (which will fit to only the more relevant extreme data points, but may
give very wide confidence intervals if there are too few such extremes in the data).
Results
The following data items, found on the Results page, do not affect the fitting of the statistical model. Rather, they are
applied to the fitted model to obtain the reported results.
Rayleigb
Storm duration is the return period for which the return level is reported. The length of the simulation, relative to
this duration, will determine the accuracy of the estimate for the return level.
Risk factor is the probability of exceeding (or falling below, for lower tail) the estimated extreme value. For
example, you may ask for the 3-hour extreme value that is exceeded with a probability of 0.01 (i.e. a risk factor of
1%).
Weibull and CPD
Storm duration is defined as for the Rayleigh distribution.
The maximum likelihood fitting procedure used for these distributions allows the estimation of a confidence
interval for the return level, for a specified confidence level. OrcaFlex reports this estimated confidence interval in
addition to the estimated return level.
The reported return level is defined to be the level whose expected number of exceedences in the specified storm
duration is one. The fitted values of the model parameters and corresponding standard errors are also reported.
Note: For some values of storm duration (usually small values) it might not be possible to calculate the
return level. This is indicated by the value 'N/A' (meaning 'not available'). Similarly, for some
combinations of storm duration and confidence level, the calculation may fail to determine the
confidence limits, and again these are then denoted by 'N/A'.
Diagnostic Crapbs
The diagnostic graphs will help you to assess the goodness-of-fit of the model, and how appropriate or not the fitted
distribution is. They should be interpreted together, not in isolation, as follows.
- The Quantile Plot displays quantiles of the empirical data plotted against model quantiles. If the model is a
good fit, then the points should lie close to the superimposed 45° diagonal line, and any significant departure
from this (especially a systematic one, for example an obvious trend away from the diagonal) indicates poor
model fit. The vertical lines, drawn through each point, are pointwise 95% tolerance intervals and may be
used as a guide to deciding whether any departure from the diagonal is significant. If all the vertical lines
intersect the diagonal line, then the modelled values are probably sufficiently close to the empirical value not to
be of concern. If, however, a number of the vertical lines fail to reach the diagonal, then that may raise concerns
about the validity of the fitted model.
- The Return Level Plot shows return level against return period (i.e. storm duration), with the latter on a
logarithmic scale to highlight the effect of extrapolation. The central line on the graph is the return level for the
fitted model, and the pair of outer lines the corresponding pointwise 95% confidence limits. The points are the
empirical return levels, based upon the data, and should lie between the confidence limits if the model fits the
data well. As with the quantile plot, a significant number of points contravening these limits indicates poor
model fit. Again, OrcaFlex may sometimes be unable to determine the confidence limits for some return periods
– this may result in gaps in the confidence limit lines, or even in their not appearing at all.
An example of diagnostics graphs indicating a good model fit is shown below:
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Figure: Diagnostics grapbs for a good model fit
If either of these graphs indicates a poor model fit, then you should reconsider the entries on the data page:
- Distribution. The distribution may be inappropriate – the data may simply not conform to the selected
distribution.
- Threshold. The threshold may be too low, hence including too many points which are not in the tail of the
distribution; or too high, resulting in too few data points for the analysis and consequent large variation in the
results.
- Decluster period. This may be too long (so too few data points), or too short (so successive data points might
not be independent).
3.9.13 Presenting UrcaFlex Results
OrcaFlex users often wish to show their OrcaFlex results in a slide presentation prepared using a presentation
program such as Microsoft PowerPoint. Here are some tips on how this can be done.
Crapbs
Graphs can be transferred from OrcaFlex to presentation programs by simple copy + paste.
Note: In PowerPoint, instead of using Paste, it is better to use Paste Special (from the Edit menu) and
then select the Enhanced Metafile. This gives better resolution.
Replays
Replays can be transferred by exporting to an AVI file and then importing that video clip file into the presentation
program.
An XVID encoded AVI file (and possibly other codecs) added to Microsoft PowerPoint slides as a Movie Object may
not play correctly (displaying a blank screen on replay, or the video only appearing in full screen mode). To avoid
these problems, an XVID AVI file needs to be inserted as a Video Clip Object. This can be done in two ways:
1. Drag and Drop the AVI file onto the PowerPoint slide, or
2. From the PowerPoint menu, choose Insert | Object. Select 'Create from file' and Browse to your file (do not
select the 'Link' option).
To set options such as auto repeat, right-click on the image in the slide, then select Video Clip Object | Open, this
displays the video player window and menus.
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The Video Clip Object links to the AVI file (it is not embedded within PowerPoint) so the file location needs to be
accessible when running the presentation. The computer running the presentation must also have the XVID codec
installed.
Note: Resizing video clips (after pasting into your presentation) will introduce aliasing (re-digitisation
errors) so it is best to set the OrcaFlex 3D View window to the required size before you export the
video.
Video Clips of UrcaFlex in Use
Your presentation can even show video clips of OrcaFlex in use, illustrating how the program is used. However, it is
rather harder to generate the required video files. We recommend using software called Camtasia
(www.techsmith.com) to record video clips showing OrcaFlex in use.
3.10 CRAPHS
When you request results in graphical form, they are presented in Graph Windows. You can open several
simultaneous graph windows, showing different results, and tile them on the screen together with 3D Views and
text results windows. To adjust a graph's properties (range of axes, colours, etc.) see Modifying Graphs.
Graphs have a pop-up menu that provides the following facilities.
- Use Default Ranges.
- Copy copies the graph to the clipboard, from where you can paste it into other applications.
- Values.
- Spectral Density.
- Empirical Cumulative Distribution.
- Rainflow balf-cycle Empirical Cumulative Distribution.
- Export enables you to export the graph to a metafile or bitmap file.
- Print facilities and the Monochrome Output preference.
- Properties.
Graphs of simulation results are updated automatically as the simulation progresses. Also, they are kept even if you
reset the simulation, so once you have set up a set of interesting graphs you can edit the model and re-run the
simulation to see the effect of changing the model.
You can also set up results graphs when in reset state, prior to running a simulation – the graph will be empty
initially and will grow as the simulation progresses. Note that we do not recommend this for graphs of line
clearance, however, since updating them can significantly slow down the simulation.
The workspace feature provides a very powerful way of managing collections of related graphs.
When a replay is in progress the replay time is indicated on both Time History and XY graphs.
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Figure: Replay time indicator on a Time History Crapb {vertical line at Time=1ós] and on an XY
Crapb {grey cross in bottom rigbt of tbe grapb].
The replay time indicator on a Time History graph can be directly manipulated using the mouse. With the CTRL key
pressed you simply click on a Time History graph and the indicator moves to where you have clicked. Any open 3D
Views are updated to show the new replay time. Similarly, with the CTRL key pressed you can click and then drag the
indicator. This direct manipulation of the replay time indicator is designed to help understand and visualise how
your model is behaving at key moments of the simulation.
Printing Crapbs
To print a graph, use the File | Print menu item. When printing to a monochrome printer you will get the best results
by setting the Monochrome Output preference – this is set by default when the program is first installed.
Copy and Paste witb grapbs
You can also copy a graph to the clipboard – simply select the graph window by CLICKING on it and then using the
Edit | Copy menu item. From the clipboard you can then paste it into another application, for instance into a word
processor document. Graphs can also be exported as Windows metafiles, use the File | Export menu item. Metafiles
can be imported into many Windows programs, such as word processors, spreadsheets, graphics packages etc.
Note: When copying a graph to the clipboard, the size of the graph window you copy from has an effect
on how the text label fonts appear when the graph is pasted into another application. For example,
if you are copying a graph to a Word Processor and want the graph to be full page size, then the
graph window should be made large on screen (e.g. maximised). If you want a number of graphs on
one page of a document then the graph should be smaller on screen – try tiling or cascading the
windows (see the Window menu). By experimenting with various differently sized graphs it should
be possible to arrange for the fonts to appear as you wish.
3.10.1 Modifying Crapbs
You can zoom into a graph by holding down the ALT key and dragging a box around the area that you want the graph
to display. When you release the mouse button the region selected will be expanded to fill the graph. If you want to
reverse this process then right click the mouse and choose Use Default Ranges from the pop-up menu.
You can also change the appearance of a graph by double clicking on the graph or by selecting Properties from the
graph's pop-up menu. A form is then shown which allows you to change various aspects of the graph, as follows:
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Axes
You can set the range, the tick spacing and the number of small ticks. The Use Default Tick Spacing button sets the
tick spacing and the number of small ticks to sensible default values based on the range. This is useful if you want to
set the range to a specific value and want the tick spacing to be set automatically.
Labels
You can alter the text and fonts of the axis and tick labels.
Curves
You can control the line properties and visibility for each curve on the graph.
Legend
The legend is a key showing which curve is which. It only appears on graphs that have multiple curves, e.g. range
graphs. You can control whether the legend is shown and if so where and using what font. Note that the legend
includes all the curves, even if some of them may not be visible at the time.
Intercepts
Intercepts are lines, like the axes, that go right across the graph. In fact the X and Y axes themselves are considered
to be intercepts. You can add more intercepts, for example to mark things like stage start times, and you can control
their position and style.
Save As Default
Changes to a graph's properties normally only apply to that graph. But for general settings (fonts etc.) you can also
click the Save As Default button. OrcaFlex then remembers the current settings for use with future graphs.
3.11 SPREADSHEETS
Some numerical results (e.g. obtained with the Values button on the Results form) appear in an Excel compatible
spreadsheet. The spreadsheet is read-only. If you wish to modify or extend it you must first save it as described
below.
Printing, Copying and Exporting Spreadsbeets
To print the spreadsheet right click and select Print, but remember that OrcaFlex time histories are normally quite
long and will therefore produce many pages. If necessary, you can first adjust the printer setup using File | Printer
Setup.
You can also easily transfer the results to other applications by either:
- Copy and paste via the Windows clipboard. Select the block to be transferred and press CTRL+C.
- Saving to file. Choose Export from the popup menu to save as Excel format (.xls), comma separated values (.csv)
or as tab delimited text (.txt).
3.12 TEXT WINDUWS
Simple text windows are used for some reports – see below. To print a text window, use the File | Print menu. You
can also copy text to the clipboard – simply select a region of text and then use the Edit | Copy menu item (or press
CTRL+C). From the clipboard you can then paste it into another application, for instance into a word processor
document. Alternatively, you can export the text to a file by using the File | Export menu item. The resulting text file
can then be imported into your word processor.
Statics Progress Window
During a Statics Calculation, the progress of the calculation is shown in the message box on the status bar. However
the messages are also sent to a text window that is normally minimised. This window may be viewed by clicking on
the message box during statics, or by selecting the Window | Statics Progress menu item if you wish to watch the
process more closely. Like other text windows it may be printed, copied or exported, as described above.
3.13 WURKSPACES
It is common to have many windows (3D View, graph or spreadsheet) open within OrcaFlex. The workspace facility
is designed to help manage these windows.
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Workspace files
A collection of view, graph or spreadsheet windows can be saved using the Workspace | Save Workspace menu item.
This creates a text file with the .wrk file extension containing a specification of the current window layout. The
workspace can be restored at any time with the Workspace | Open Workspace menu item. This can give significant
time savings if you wish to look at a number of different results windows for a large number of OrcaFlex models.
Note that the contents of the windows are not saved to the workspace file, just a logical description of the window.
For example, suppose you saved a workspace containing a graph of Effective Tension of a Line called Riser. If you
then loaded a different simulation file and open that workspace then you would see the Effective Tension of the Line
called Riser in the new simulation file and not the simulation filed open when the workspace was saved. This means
that you can look at the same collection of results for any number of simulation files.
Workspace files are not limited to simulation files – static results and multiple statics results can also be saved.
Default workspaces
As an alternative to loading a workspace by using the Workspace menu items you can associate default workspaces
with either individual simulation files or with entire directories.
- If you define a default workspace for a simulation file then the workspace is restored whenever you open that
same simulation file.
- If you define a default workspace for a directory then the workspace is restored whenever you open any
simulation file in that directory.
Cetting tbe most out of workspaces
We recommend that you save your workspace files in the same directory as the OrcaFlex files. If you do so then the
workspace file will appear in the Most Recent Files list on the Workspace menu.
Workspace files can be very useful if you are sending simulation files to another person. By including a workspace
file with the results of interest you can be sure that they will view the correct information. This can be particularly
valuable when sending files to someone who is not an experienced OrcaFlex user. This can even be useful when
sending files to Orcina for software support because they contain a precise specification of the results you are
interested in.
3.14 CUMPARINC DATA
The Compare Data menu item opens the Compare Data form, which allows you to find differences between the data
in two OrcaFlex files.
The comparison is done using a user-provided compare program, so when you first use this facility you need to
configure OrcaFlex to tell it which compare program that you want to use; see Configuration below.
You can then compare files as follows:
- On the Files page, specify the two files that you wish to compare. These can be data or simulation files.
- Click the Compare button.
- OrcaFlex then saves the data from the two files to temporary text files and then runs the user-specified compare
program to compare those text files.
As an alternative to comparing two data files on disk you can optionally choose to compare the currently loaded
model with a single file on disk.
Configuration
On the Configuration page you need to tell OrcaFlex the text file compare program that you want to use, and how to
use it. The compare program must be a program that can compare text files passed to it through the command line.
Various such programs are available on the web; examples are WinDiff, Compare It! and Araxis Merge.
Compare Program
This is the compare program's executable file name. You can specify either the full path, or just the file name if the
executable file resides in a directory which is on your system path.
A basic compare program called WinDiff is freely available (you can find it by searching the Internet) and is quite
sufficient for this purpose.
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Command Line Parameters
This defines the command line parameters that are passed to the compare program. OrcaFlex replaces the special
strings %1 and %2 with the file names of the temporary text files. For most compare programs the default setting of
"%1 %2" will be sufficient. Otherwise you will need to consult the documentation of your compare program.
3.15 PREFERENCES
OrcaFlex has a number of settings that can be customised to suit the way that you work. The majority of settings can
be adjusted in the Preferences form, which is accessed by using the Tools | Preferences menu item.
3D View Preferences
Minimum Drag Distance
Object positions are not updated until the mouse has been dragged at least this distance (in pixels). This prevents
accidental changes to object positions. To make a small movement, drag away and then back again, or edit the
coordinate directly in the object's Edit Form.
View Rotation Increment
Each CLICK on a Rotate View button increments or decrements View Azimutb or Elevation by this amount.
Refresb Rate
During a simulation calculation all 3D View and Graph windows are updated at this rate. Selecting a faster rate
allows you to see the behaviour of the simulation more clearly at the expense of performance. Set a slow Refresh
Rate to give the numerical calculation more processor time.
Background Colour
This sets the background colour of all 3D View windows.
Locate Ub|ect Metbod
Can be either Flasb ob|ect or Hide otber ob|ects. It determines what method the Locate action in the model
browser uses.
- When the Flasb ob|ect preference is set then the Locate action repeatedly draws and hides the object on the 3D
View, like a blinking cursor.
- When the Hide otber ob|ects preference is set then the Locate action temporarily hides all other objects.
Normally the default setting of Flasb ob|ect is sufficient to locate objects. However, if the model you are searching
for is obscured by other objects then this method may not help you to locate the object. In this case you should use
the Hide otber ob|ects preference.
3D View Axes Preferences
View Axes
The view axes show the same directions as the global axes, but are drawn in the top right hand corner of 3D views,
rather than at the global origin. Can also be set from the View menu.
Scale Bar
Determines whether a scale bar is drawn in 3D views. Can also be set from the View menu.
Note: The Scale Bar is not drawn for shaded graphics views because it would be meaningless due to
perspective.
Clobal Axes
Determines whether the global axes are drawn, at the model's global origin (0,0,0). Can also be set from the View
menu.
Environment Axes
Determines whether the wave, current and wind directions are drawn in the 3D view. When multiple wave trains
are present the first wave train is taken to be the dominant one and is drawn using sea surface pen, whereas the
other wave trains' directions are drawn in the secondary wave direction pen. Can also be set from the View menu.
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Local Axes
Determines whether the local axes for vessels, buoys and line ends are shown. Drawing the local axes on the 3D
view helps you check the orientations of these objects. This preference can also be set from the View menu.
Note: Local Axes are not drawn for shaded graphics views.
Node Axes
Determines whether axes for line nodes are shown. This preference can also be set from the View menu.
Uut of Balance Forces
If selected, then in the static analysis (not during the simulation) there are extra lines drawn on the 3D view,
representing the out of balance force acting on each vessel and buoy. This preference is sometimes useful for static
analysis, since it enables you to see how far a buoy or vessel is from being in equilibrium. This preference can also
be set from the View menu.
The force is drawn as a line, starting at the force's effective point of application, and whose length represents the
size of the force. The scaling is piecewise linear and based on the View Size of the 3D view. Lines up to ViewSize/2
long mean forces up to 10 force units and lines from ViewSize/2 to ViewSize mean forces from 10 to 1000 force
units.
Note: Out of Balance Forces are not drawn for shaded graphics views.
Video Preferences
The video preferences allow you to control the compression algorithm used for exported video. The software which
performs this compression is called a codec. Because the different graphics modes produce very different images
they require different types of codec.
Sbaded Crapbics Codec
The run-length encoding which works well for wire frame graphics is not suitable for shaded replays and in fact
there is no suitable built-in codec in Windows. We would recommend using an MPEG-4 codec of which many are
available. In our experience the freely available (licensed under the GPL) XVID codec performs very well. The
Shaded Graphics topic has more information about the XVID codec.
Another reasonable choice is the Windows Media Video 9 codec, which is identified by the code WMV3. This codec
produces lower quality videos than XVID for the same video file size, but does have the advantage that the videos
should work on almost all Windows machines without the need for codec installation. Details on how to download
this codec can be found at: www.orcina.com/Support/ShadedGraphics.
You can choose to use other codecs that are installed on your machine. Should you do so then you must also specify
the following information:
- Codec 4 cbaracter code: Codecs are identified by unique codes, 4 characters long. Good alternatives to XVID
and WMV3 include DIVX, the 3ivx codec (character code 3IV2).
- Padding: MPEG-4 codecs commonly require round number frame sizes (width and height in pixels). For
example XVID requires frame sizes to be multiples of 8. When OrcaFlex exports the video it ensures that the
frame sizes are a multiple of this number. If you are unsure of what number to use for your codec then we
recommend trying 8 which usually works.
- Colour deptb: Some MPEG-4 codecs require a specific colour depth. Again, if you are unsure of what value to
use then we recommend trying 32 bit or 16 bit colour depth.
Wire Frame Crapbics Codec
Run-lengtb encoding is the default setting and is usually the best choice. This codec offers good compression rates
for OrcaFlex wire frame video. The AVI files produced using this codec can be played on most Windows PCs.
If you choose Uncompressed then each frame of the video is stored as an uncompressed bitmap. This means that
the AVI file produced can be extremely large.
Uutput Preferences
Printer Margins
These set the Left and Top margins used on printouts.
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Monocbrome Uutput
If this is checked then external output (copying to the clipboard, exporting metafiles and printing) is in black and
white. This is useful with black and white printers, since otherwise pale colours may be drawn in very light grey and
may be hard to see.
Miscellaneous Preferences
Sbow Splasb Screen
Determines whether OrcaFlex displays its splash screen when the program starts.
Batcb Auto Save
If this is enabled then simulations run in batch mode are automatically stored to simulation files at the specified
regular Auto Save Interval. This is useful if your computer is prone to failure (for example because of overnight
power failures) since the part-run simulation file can be loaded and continued, rather than having to re-run the
whole simulation from scratch. The Auto Save Interval should be neither too short, since then the program will then
waste a lot of time repeatedly storing away the results, nor too long, since then a lot of simulation work will be lost if
a failure occurs.
3.1ó PRINTINC AND EXPURTINC
The Print J Export form is accessed using either the File | Print or the File | Export menu item and allows you to
choose one or more of the following items to be printed or saved to file:
- The model data. Vessel Types often have very large amounts of data, much of which may not apply to the
current model, so OrcaFlex offers you the option of printing all the vessel type data or only the data that is in
use.
- Any 3D Views, Graphs, Spreadsheets and Text Windows currently on display.
Note: Graphs are printed as large as possible whilst maintaining aspect ratio.
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4 AUTUMATIUN
4.1 INTRUDUCTIUN
OrcaFlex provides several important facilities for automating and post-processing work:
- OrcaFlex is supplied with a special Excel spreadsheet which enables you to automate the extraction of
simulation results into your own spreadsheet. You can then use the normal Excel calculation facilities to do your
own customised post-processing and graphing.
- The Batch Processing facility enables you to run a set of simulations in unattended mode, for example as an
overnight job. The simulations can either be of pre-prepared data files, or else can be specified by a batch script
file that specifies the simulation as variations on a base data file. The OrcaFlex Spreadsheet mentioned above
also has facilities for automating the production of batch script files and text data files.
- OrcaFlex includes a well-documented programming interface called OrcFxAPI (short for OrcaFlex Application
Program Interface). See the OrxFxAPI help file for details. OrcFxAPI is a Windows dynamic link library (DLL)
that is installed when you install OrcaFlex, and which provides facilities for setting data, calculating static
positions and extracting results from those calculations or from pre-run simulation files. For example you can
write programs to automate post-processing or that use OrcaFlex as a 'statics calculation engine'. One important
example application of this is for real-time monitoring of pipes, moorings etc. For further information or to
discuss possible applications of OrcFxAPI, please contact Orcina.
4.2 BATCH PRUCESSINC
4.2.1 Introduction
Simulations, script files, post processing spreadsheets and fatigue analyses can all be run in unattended mode, by
using the Calculation | Batch Processing menu item. This command opens a form that allows you to set up a list of
jobs that are to be run. The list can include any number and mixture of the following types of job:
1. Static analysis of pre-prepared OrcaFlex data files (.dat or .yml). OrcaFlex opens the data file, performs the static
analysis and then saves the results in a simulation file with the same name as the data file, but with a .sim
extension.
2. Dynamic analysis of pre-prepared OrcaFlex data files (.dat or .yml). OrcaFlex opens the data file, performs the
static analysis, runs the dynamic simulation and then saves the results in a simulation file with the same name
as the data file, but with a .sim extension.
3. Partially-run OrcaFlex simulation files (.sim). OrcaFlex opens the simulation file, finishes the dynamic
simulation and then saves the completed simulation, overwriting the original file.
4. A batch script file (.txt). This is a text file which contains OrcaFlex script commands. OrcaFlex opens the script
file and obeys the commands in turn. The most common use of script files is to perform a series of systematic
variations on a base data file.
5. A fatigue analysis file (.ftg). OrcaFlex performs the fatigue analysis and saves the results to an Excel compatible
spreadsheet of the same name but extension .xls.
6. An OrcaFlex Spreadsheet (.xls or .xlsx). OrcaFlex will process all Instructions sheets in the Excel workbook. Note
that if the spreadsheet's "Contains Dependencies" options is checked (or the spreadsheet is pre OrcaFlex v9.4)
then the workbook will be processes as a single job using a single thread. If it isn’t checked, then each
instructions sheet will be broken down into multiple load cases which are individually added to the batch and
may be processed simultaneously.
Note: If you wish to use Excel for any reason while OrcaFlex is processing spreadsheets within a batch it
is important that you open Excel first, then open the file you wish to work on. The reason for this is
that when you double click an Excel file, Windows will try to use the copy of Excel OrcaFlex has
claimed, resulting in unpredictable failures.
When adding data files (.dat or .yml) you need to specify whether static or dynamic analysis is to be performed.
This choice is made from the Add Files file dialogue window, or from the popup menu.
OrcaFlex can auto-save partial completed dynamic simulations to file at regular intervals during the batch job. This
is useful if your computer is prone to failure (for example because of overnight power failures) since the part-run
simulation file can be loaded and continued, rather than having to re-run the whole simulation from scratch.
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Multi-tbreading
The batch processing functionality can make use of multiple processor cores. So, for example, if you have a quad-
core machine then 4 simulation files can be run concurrently.
Since some batch tasks can depend on the output of other tasks OrcaFlex processes tasks in a very particular order,
as follows:
- The batch script files are all processed first. Because it is common to write scripts that output data files it is
important to complete all batch scripts before processing the data files.
- Any data or simulation files are processed next.
- Fatigue files are processed next. These use simulation files as input and so should not be started until all data or
simulation files have been processed.
- Finally any OrcaFlex spreadsheet files or load cases are processed. These also cannot be started until all data or
simulation files have been processed.
The commands in batch script files are processed sequentially. Consequently any simulations that are processed
with Run commands cannot be performed in parallel. Because of this it is advisable to use the SaveData command
rather than the Run command when creating batch scripts. Such a script would create a number of OrcaFlex data
files which you could then process in the batch form using all available processor cores.
Batcb Form User Interface
Close
Dismisses the batch form.
Add Files
Adds jobs to the list. The standard file dialogue window is displayed, where you select one or more files to be added
to the list.
Files can also be added by drag and drop. That is if you are browsing your file system then you can highlight files
and drag them onto the jobs list.
Remove Files
Removes any files highlighted in the jobs list.
Cbeck Files
OrcaFlex opens each file in the jobs list, checks that they contain valid OrcaFlex data or script commands and reports
any errors. When checking OrcaFlex spreadsheet or fatigue files it simply confirms the file exists.
Run Batcb
Processes the list of jobs. If a job fails then it is abandoned but other jobs are still attempted. Any errors are reported
once all jobs have been processed.
Pause Batcb
Pauses the currently running batch jobs. This can be useful if you temporarily want another process on your
machine to have the processor resource that OrcaFlex is using.
Stop Batcb
Terminate processing of batch jobs.
Warnings
Displays a window allowing you to review all warnings generated by OrcaFlex during a calculation. These warnings
are suppressed when you are operating in batch mode and this button allows you to review them once the
simulation has completed.
Close program wben Batcb completes
If checked then OrcaFlex will close once the processing of jobs completes. This feature is intended principally for
users with networked licences. It allows you to release your claim on an OrcaFlex licence as soon as the batch of jobs
is complete.
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4.2.2 Script Files
OrcaFlex provides special facilities for running a series of variations on a base data file, using a script file. This
contains a sequence of commands to read a data file, make modifications to it, and run the modified file, storing the
results for later processing. The file can also include comments. The syntax for the instructions is described in the
next topic.
Script files can be written using any text editor. Alternatively, there are facilities in the OrcaFlex spreadsheet for
automatically generating script files for regular sets of cases.
4.2.3 Script Syntax
An OrcaFlex batch script is made up of commands, which are obeyed sequentially, and comments, which are
ignored. A comment is a line that is either blank or on which the first non-blank characters are "//". A command can
be:
1. A directive followed by one or more arguments, optionally separated by white space (one or more spaces or
tabs). For example: load c:\temp\test.dat where load is the directive and c:\temp\test.dat is the
argument.
2. An assignment of the form VariableName=value, again with optional white space separators. For example:
Length = 55.0.
Note that:
- Directives, variable names, and model object names are all case independent.
- If your script includes a relative file name then it is taken to be relative to the directory from which the script
was loaded.
- File names, arguments, variables or values containing spaces or non-alphanumeric characters must be enclosed
in single or double quotes and they must not contain the same quote character as is used to enclose them. For
example '6" pipe' and "200' riser" are valid, but the following are not valid:
6 inch pipe – contains spaces, so needs to be enclosed in quotes;
6"pipe – contains a double quote, so needs to be enclosed in single quotes;
'6' pipe' – contains a single quote, so needs to be enclosed in double quotes instead of single.
4.2.4 Script Commands
The following batch script commands are currently available. You need to put quotes round file names or other
parameters that include spaces or non-alphanumeric characters.
Load <FileName>
Opens the OrcaFlex file named <FileName>. The file can be either a data file or a simulation file.
LoadData <FileName>
Opens the data from the OrcaFlex data file named <FileName>.
RunStatics <FileName>
Perform statics for the current model and save the resulting simulation to <FileName>. After the file is saved the
model is reset.
RunDynamics <FileName>
Run dynamics for the current model and save the resulting simulation to <FileName>. After the file is saved the
model is reset.
Run <FileName>
Identical to RunDynamics.
Save <FileName>
Save the current model to <FileName>.
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If calculation results (either statics or dynamics) are available then a simulation file will be saved. Otherwise a data
file will be saved. When saving data, if the file extension is .yml then a text data file will be saved; otherwise a binary
data file will be saved.
SaveData <FileName>
Save the data from the current model to <FileName>.
If the file extension is .yml then a text data file will be saved; otherwise a binary data file will be saved.
Note: In the Load/LoadData, Save/SaveData and RunStatics/RunDynamics/Run commands, if
<FileName> is a relative path then it is taken to be relative to the directory from which the script
file was loaded.
ExtendSimulation <StageDuration>
Adds a new stage of length <StageDuration>. This command is equivalent to the Calculation | Extend Dynamic
Simulation menu item. You would normally follow this command with a Run command.
Reset
Resets the current model. This command is equivalent to the Calculation | Reset menu item.
NewModel
Deletes all objects from the current model and resets data to default values. This command is equivalent to the File |
New menu item.
Create <Ub|ectType> [<Ub|ectName>]
Creates a new object of type <ObjectType>. The new object is automatically selected which means that subsequent
assignment commands apply to this new object.
The <ObjectType> parameter can be "Line Type", "Vessel Type", "Line", "Winch" etc. Select Edit | Add from the
Model Browser menu to see a list of possible values for this parameter.
Alternatively variable data sources can be created by setting the <ObjectType> parameter to "Bending Stiffness",
"Drag Coefficient" etc. This list of possible variable data source object types can be found in the Data Source Type
tree on the variable data form.
If the optional <ObjectName> parameter is included then the new object will be given that name.
Delete <Ub|ectName>
Deletes the object called <ObjectName>.
Select [<Ub|ect Type>] <Ub|ectName>
Specify the model object to which subsequent assignment commands will apply.
The <ObjectType> parameter is optional, and by default is 'object', meaning select the named model object.
<ObjectName> must then be either the name of an object that exists in the current model or one of the reserved
names 'General' (for the General data form) or 'Environment' (for the Environment data form).
Some examples of the select and assignment commands are given in Examples of setting data.
Other <ObjectType> values only need to be specified in the following special cases.
If the Environment has been selected and there is more than one wave train, then before you can specify any wave
train data you must give another select command to select the wave train. This second select command has the
form:
Select WaveTrain <WaveTrainName>
So, for example:
Select Environment
Select WaveTrain Primary
WaveDirection = 30.0
Similarly, if the Environment has been selected and there is more than one current data set, then you must select
one of them before specifying any current data. For example:
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Select Environment
Select Current Current2
RefCurrentDirection = 270.0
Note that this is not the same as setting the Active Current. In fact, you should avoid setting up multiple current data
in batch scripts if possible: this is best done interactively on the Environment form.
If a vessel type has been selected and it has more than one draugbt, then before specifying any draught-dependent
data you must give another select command that selects the draught. This second select command has the form:
Select Draught <DraughtName>
Before specifying data for RAOs you need to specify the type of RAOs – this can be either Displacement, WaveLoad
or QTF. This is done with a command of the form:
Select RAOs <RAO type>
Similarly, before specifying vessel type data for a given wave direction you must give another select command to
select that direction. This takes the form:
Select Direction <Direction>
So, for example:
Select "Vessel Type1"
Select Draught Transit
Select RAOs Displacement
RAOOriginX = 10
RAOOriginY = 0
RAOOriginZ = 2
Select Direction 45
RAOSurgeAmplitude[2] = 0.1
Select Direction 90
RAOSurgeAmplitude[2] = 0.16
Note: Indentation with spaces or tabs is optional, but makes scripts more readable.
Assignment
Assignment commands take the form
VariableName = Value
The VariableName on the left hand side must be one of the recognised variable names and the named variable must
exist in the currently selected model object. The Value on the right hand side must be in the appropriate form for
that variable (i.e. numeric or text) and it must be given in the same units as used in the current model.
For example:
Select Vessel1
Length = 110
Draught = "Operating draught"
If VariableName is the name of a variable that appears in a check box in OrcaFlex then the Value should be True or
False. For example:
Select Environment
CurrentRamp = True
If VariableName is the name of a variable that appears in a table in OrcaFlex, then its row number must be given.
The row number is given as an index enclosed by either square or round brackets (don't mix them on the same line),
and is always 1-based, i.e. [1] is the first row of the table. Note that this sometimes requires care, since in OrcaFlex
the table might not be 1-based. For example, when setting the prescribed motion for a vessel, the command
PrescribedMotionVelocity[2] = 4.8
sets the velocity in the 2nd row of the table, but in this case the first row of the table is stage 0 (the build-up stage)
so this command (slightly confusingly) sets the velocity for stage 1.
More examples of the select and assignment commands are given in Examples of setting data.
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InvokeWizard
Sets the data for the selected object using either the Line Type Wizard or the Plasticity Wizard. The selected object
must be either a line type or a bend stiffness variable data source. The input data for the Wizard should first be set
using data assignment commands.
An example of how to use this command is given in Examples of setting data.
WaveSearcb <FileName>
Exports the wave search spreadsheet to the specified file. The file can be an Excel spreadsheet (.xls), a tab delimited
file (.txt) or a comma separated file (.csv). The decision is taken based on the file extension that you specify. The
input data for the wave search should first be set using data assignment commands.
DisplacementRAUsReport <FileName> [<VesselName>]
SpectralResponseReport <FileName> [<VesselName>]
Exports the vessel response report spreadsheets to the specified file for the specified vessel. The file can be an Excel
spreadsheet (.xls), a tab delimited file (.txt) or a comma separated file (.csv). The decision is taken based on the file
extension that you specify. If no vessel is specified, and there is only one vessel in the model, then that vessel will be
used. The input data for the response reports should first be set using data assignment commands.
SHEAR7DataFile <LineName> <FileName>
Exports to <FileName> a SHEAR7 data file for the line named <LineName>.
SHEAR7MdsFile <LineName> <FileName> [<FirstMode> <LastMode>]
Exports to <FileName> a SHEAR7 Mds file for the line named <LineName>.
The <FirstMode> and <LastMode> parameters are optional. If they are specified then mode numbers in the range
<FirstMode> to <LastMode> inclusive are exported. If these parameters are omitted then all modes are exported.
Only the Transverse and Mostly Transverse modes are included in the exported file. If you have specified first and
last modes to export then these mode numbers refer to the transverse and mostly transverse modes. The program
takes the following steps:
1. Calculate all modes.
2. Sort the modes into order of decreasing period / increasing frequency.
3. Remove all modes which are not Transverse or Mostly Transverse.
4. Export the modes in the range <FirstMode> to <LastMode> inclusive.
SHEAR7UutFile <LineName> <FileName>
Exports to <FileName> the SHEAR7 .out file for the line named <LineName>. This command is only available if the
direct SHEAR7 interface is in use.
SHEAR7PltFile <LineName> <FileName>
Exports to <FileName> the SHEAR7 .plt file for the line named <LineName>. This command is only available if the
direct SHEAR7 interface is in use.
4.2.5 Examples of setting data
The Select command is probably the most difficult script command to use. To help understand how it works we
present some examples of its use below:
Simple examples
For many objects the script commands for setting data take the form:
1. Select the object using the command Select <Ub|ectName>.
2. Set the data using one or more commands of the form VariableName = Value.
The object name is most easily found on the Model Browser. The variable name is found by opening the relevant
data form, selecting the required data item and pressing F7.
Some examples of this procedure follow:
Select Link1
UnstretchedLength = 50
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Select "3D Buoy1"
Mass = 4
Volume = 8
Height = 7.5

Select Line1
IncludeTorsion = Yes
Note: The name "3D Buoy" needs to be enclosed in quotes because it contains a space. If the name
contains a double quote and spaces then it should be enclosed with single quotes.
Data in tables and indices
Some data in OrcaFlex appears in tables. For example consider the Structure page of the Line Data form which
specifies how a Line is made up of a number of sections. Each section is specified by its Line Type, length etc. The
following example sets the number of sections of the line to be 2 and then sets data for both sections in turn.
Select Line1
NumberOfSections = 2

LineType[1] = Riser
Length[1] = 75
TargetSegmentLength[1] = 4

LineType[2] = Rope
Length[2] = 200
TargetSegmentLength[2] = 20
Note that we use blank lines to lay out the script. This is not essential but makes reading the script easier.
Data which appears in tables is always set using the indexed notation used above. Having stated this rule, we
immediately break it in the section below!
Line Type, Clump Type and Flex )oint Type data
These data are set by first selecting the type by name and then assigning the data as illustrated below:
Select "Line Type1"
OuterDiameter = 0.28
InnerDiameter = 0.21
On the Line Types Data form there is an option to view the data for all Line Types at once or to view it by individual
Line Type. When the data is being viewed for all Line Types at once the data appears in tables with one row per Line
Type. However, the data must be set by first selecting the type by name and then assigning the data. You cannot set
Line Type using index notation.
Similar rules apply to Clump Type data and to Flex Joint Type data.
Drag Cbain Type and Wing Type data
These data are also set by first selecting the type by name and then assigning the data. For example:
Select "Drag Chain Type1"
Length = 12

Select "Wing Type1"
NumberOfAngles = 12
Angle[2] = -80
Lift[2] = 0.2
Drag[2] = 0.15
Moment[2] = 0.5
Data found on tbe Ceneral Data form
Data found on the General Data form can be set as follows:
Select General
InnerTimeStep = 0.01
OuterTimeStep = 0.1
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Data found on tbe Environment Data form
Data found on the Environment Data form can be set as follows:
Select Environment
SeaBedStiffness = 3000
SeaBedDamping = 80
For data specific to a particular wave train you must first select the Environment and then select the particular wave
train. This makes use of the alternative syntax for Select which is Select <Ub|ect Type> <Ub|ectName>. For a wave
train you replace <Ub|ectType> with WaveTrain and replace <Ub|ectName> with the name of the wave train as
defined on the Environment Data form. For example:
Select Environment
Select WaveTrain "Swell from SW"
WaveTrainDirection = 135
WaveTrainType = "Dean Stream"
WaveTrainHeight = 2.5
WaveTrainPeriod = 18
Select WaveTrain "Local Wind Sea""
WaveTrainDirection = 40
WaveTrainType = JONSWAP
WaveTrainHs = 5.7
WaveTrainPeriod = 9
Data for Current data sets
Multiple Current data sets can be defined. Again this requires the alternative syntax for Select as shown below:
Select Environment
MultipleCurrentDataCanBeDefined = Yes
NumberOfCurrentDataSets = 2
CurrentName[1] = "120deg"
CurrentName[2] = "150deg"
Select Current "120deg"
RefCurrentDirection = 120
Select Current "150deg"
RefCurrentDirection = 150
ActiveCurrent = "150deg"
Vessel Type Data
Some Vessel Type data is set in a straightforward manner as follows:
Select "Vessel Type1"
Length = 120
PenWidth = 3
Symmetry = "XZ plane"
Note: Because the symmetry value (XZ plane) contains a space it must be enclosed in quotes.
However, the majority of Vessel Type data requires that you also specify which draught the data applies to. For
example:
Select "Vessel Type1"
Select Draught "Transit Draught"
CurrentCoeffSurgeArea = 1200
CurrentCoeffSwayArea = 1100
CurrentCoeffYawAreaMoment = 120E3
To set data for displacement RAOs, wave load RAOs and wave drift QTFs you must also specify which type of RAO
the data applies to. For example:
Select "Vessel Type1"
Select Draught "Survival Draught"

Select RAOs Displacement
RAOOriginX = 10
RAOOriginY = 0
RAOOriginZ = 2

Select RAOs WaveLoad
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RAOOriginX = 0
RAOOriginY = 0
RAOOriginZ = 0

Select RAOs QTF
RAOOriginX = -3
RAOOriginY = 0
RAOOriginZ = 4
Note that the variable names are the same but different data is set depending on which type of RAOs has been
selected.
In addition, when setting RAO table data (for displacement RAOs, wave load RAOs and wave drift QTFs) you must
specify which direction the data applies to. For example:
Select "Vessel Type1"
Select Draught "Survival Draught"
Select RAOs Displacement
Select Direction 22.5
RAOYawAmplitude[2] = 0.13
Select Direction 45
RAOYawAmplitude[2] = 0.18
However, it is worth pointing out that situations where you would wish to specify RAO table data in a batch script
are rare. It is much more likely that you would import this data into OrcaFlex from some external source and then
save it as part of the base case data file.
Variable Data sources
Data for Variable Data sources can be set from the batch script, although once again we feel it is unlikely that you
would need to do this often. The procedure for setting variable data sources is illustrated below:
Select Stiffness1
NumberOfRows = 3

IndependentValue[1] = 0
DependentValue[1] = 0

IndependentValue[2] = 0.2
DependentValue[2] = 1000

IndependentValue[3] = 0.4
DependentValue[3] = 5000
Note that IndependentValue and DependentValue are the variable names for the X and Y columns of the variable
data source. That is if you are setting data for a bending stiffness data source then IndependentValue denotes
curvature and DependentValue denotes bend moment.
Line Type Wizard
The Line Type Wizard can be used from batch script. First of all you must select the Line Type and set its Wizard
data. Once this is complete the Wizard is invoked using the InvokeWizard command as illustrated below:
Select "Line Type1"
WizardCalculation = "Homogeneous Pipe"
PipeMaterial = Steel
PipeOuterDiameter = 0.082
PipeWallThickness = 0.005
InvokeWizard

Select "Line Type2"
WizardCalculation = "Line with Floats"
FloatBaseLineType = "Line Type3"
FloatDiameter = 0.80
FloatLength = 1.2
FloatPitch = 5.5
InvokeWizard
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Plasticity Wizard
The Plasticity Wizard can be used from batch script. First of all you must select the Bend Stiffness variable data
source and set its Wizard data. Once this is complete the Wizard is invoked using the InvokeWizard command as
illustrated below:
Select Stiffness1
StressOD = 0.30
StressID = 0.27
Type = "Ramberg-Osgood curve"
E = 230.0e6
RefStress = 385.0e3
InvokeWizard
Polar Coordinates data on tbe All Ub|ects form
The All Objects data form allows end connection data to be specified as polar coordinates and this polar coordinates
data is only accessible from this form.
The data appears in a table containing all Line, Winch and Link connections. However, the data still belongs to each
individual object and the appearance of a table of data is purely presentational. This means that to set the data you
must first select the individual Line, Link or Winch and then set the data, as illustrated below:
Select Line1
PolarR[1] = 20.0
PolarTheta[1] = 45.0
PolarR[2] = 340.0
PolarTheta[2] = 45.0
Select Line2
PolarR[1] = 20.0
PolarTheta[1] = 90.0
PolarR[2] = 340.0
PolarTheta[2] = 90.0

Select Winch1
PolarR[3] = 0.0
PolarTheta[3] = 90.0
PolarR[4] = 10.0
PolarTheta[4] = 90.0
For lines and links an index of 1 means End A and an index of 2 means End B. For winches the index identifies the
winch connection point.
Colour data
Drawing colour data items can be set through batch script in a variety of ways. The simplest is to use the pre-defined
colours as follows:
Select "Line Type1"
PenColour = Red
Select "Line Type2"
PenColour = Green
The full list of pre-defined colours is: Black, Maroon, Green, Olive, Navy, Purple, Teal, Gray, Silver, Red, Lime, Yellow,
Blue, Fuchsia, Aqua, MoneyGreen, SkyBlue, Cream, MedGray and White.
If you want more control over the colour then you can specify an RGB value as an integer. The following example has
the same effect as the previous one:
Select "Line Type1"
PenColour = 255
Select "Line Type2"
PenColour = 65280
Using decimal values for RGB value is impractical. Instead a neat trick is to specify the colour as a hexadecimal value
by prefixing it with a $ sign as follows:
Select "Line Type1"
PenColour = $0000FF
Select "Line Type2"
PenColour = $00FF00
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Select "Line Type3"
PenColour = $FF0000
This sets the colours to red, green and blue respectively. Each pair of hex digits controls the amount of red, green
and blue. So white is $FFFFFF and black is $000000. A value of $C0C0C0 gives a light grey and $808080 produces a
darker grey.
4.2.ó Handling Script Errors
As with other computer programs, OrcaFlex batch script files can easily contain errors. It is therefore wise to check
your script file for errors before running it as a batch job. To check for errors in your scripts, use the "Check Files"
button on the OrcaFlex batch form. This will read and obey all the commands in the script files except those that
perform calculations or write files. It will then report any errors it finds, including the line number on which the
error occurs. You can then correct the problem before running the script. Example3.txt is an example containing
various errors, so to see how errors are reported use the "Check Files" button with this example.
Warning: If you misspell a variable name in an assignment statement then "Check Files" will report an error.
But if you incorrectly specify a variable name which is nevertheless valid then OrcaFlex cannot
detect the error. So you need to be very careful that you use the correct variable names for the data
items that you want to change.
4.2.7 Ubtaining Variable Names
Each OrcaFlex data item has its own name that is used to specify it in a script file. The names of the data items are
based on the corresponding labels used on the data form. To find out the name of a data item, open the appropriate
data form, select the data item, and then open (e.g. by right click) the pop-up menu and select the Batch Script
Names command (or press F7). This displays the variable name of the selected data item and you can select and
copy+paste the name directly into your batch script.
If the data item is in a table (or group) of data items then the Batch Script Names form displays the names of all the
data items in the table. The different columns in the table each have their own names; you then need to add an index
to specify which row you want. The exceptions to this are the 'Connections' data controls for Lines and Links, which
consist of two rows, one for End A and one for End B. For these, the Batch Script Names form lists the names for End
A only: those for End B may be obtained by simply replacing 'EndA' with 'EndB' in the name.
Finally, note that Batch Script Names are not available for an empty table – e.g. if you want the names for the
attachments table on the line data form, but there are currently no attachments. In this case you must add a row to
the table before you can use the Batch Script Names form.
4.2.8 Automating Script Ceneration
The OrcaFlex Spreadsheet has facilities for automating the generation of a script file for a regular set of cases. To use
this facility select the Pre-processing worksheet, then select the Script Table cell and then click the Create Batcb
Scripts command which can be found on the OrcaFlex menu in Excel.
The batch script filename is specified in the cell next to the Script Table cell. It is relative to the directory containing
this spreadsheet, so if you don't specify the folder name then it will be created in the folder containing this
spreadsheet.
Below the Script Table cell is a table defining the script, consisting of 3 sections:
- First is one or more title rows (shown with a green background in the example below). Only the first table
column is used in these rows, and the contents of those cells are simply copied to the script. The other columns
are ignored. The title rows can therefore contain any comments or other script commands that you want to
appear at the start of the script. The title rows end at the first row with a blank cell in the table's first column.
- Next is a series of header rows for the cases (shown with a blue background in the example below). The last
header row is deemed to be the next row with a comment command (i.e. starting with "//") in the first column.
- Finally there are a series of rows, one row for each case. The cells in this section are processed from left to right
on each row, and then down to the next row, and each cell generates script commands as follows. If the cell is
empty then no script commands are generated. But if the cell is not empty then all the (non-empty) script
commands in the header rows in that column are written to the script, with the cell's value appended to the last
header row command. This allows different columns to set data values for the various cases, and a blank value
leaves the data item as it was in the previous case. The cases (and the whole table) end at the next row that has
a blank cell in the table's first column.
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- Note that you can add extra columns to the table or indeed remove columns from the table.
- The table can be arrange with rows and columns transposed. To do this you must use the keyword Script Table
Row. An example of this alternative approach can be found in the default OrcaFlex spreadsheet template.
An example is shown below:

Figure: Example table for automatic batcb script generation
The script generated by this table loads a base case from a file called "Base Case.dat". Because no path is specified
then this file is located in the same directory as the spreadsheet. Four cases are produced based on this data file with
current values of 0.5 and 0.8 and line lengths of 100 and 120.
Note: The cell containing the base case data file name has the file name surrounded by quotes. This is
because the file name contains a space. However, the quotes are not needed for the file names in
the last column because they do not contain spaces.
The script is generated as follows. First select the cell containing the text Script Table. Then drop down the
OrcaFlex menu contained in the main Excel menu and click Create Batcb Scripts. When you do this you are
presented with the following window:
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Figure: Automatically generated batcb script
The script file has not been saved yet. You should check that the automatically generated script is as intended.
Should you wish to, you can modify the script file name at this point.
If there is a problem with the script you can click the Close button and correct the script table.
Save button
Saves the script file.
Save and Run button
Saves the script file and then processes it.
If the script has any Run commands then OrcaFlex is loaded and the script is processed by the standard OrcaFlex
batch form. Otherwise the script is processed from within Excel – progress is reported on the Excel status bar.
Save, Run and Submit button
Saves the script file and then processes it within Excel. Each data file saved by the script is then submitted to
Distributed OrcaFlex which runs and saves the simulation file.
Note: The Save, Run and Submit button is only available if Distributed OrcaFlex is installed on your
machine. In addition, it cannot be used if the script contains any Run commands.
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Multiple tables
You can have multiple script tables within a workbook. To create all the batch scripts in one operation select all the
script tables and then click Create Batcb Scripts in the OrcaFlex menu.
4.2.9 Automating Text Data File Ceneration
The OrcaFlex Spreadsheet has facilities for automating the generation of text data files for a regular set of cases. To
use this facility select the Pre-processing worksheet, then select the Text Data Files cell and then click the Create
Text Data Files command which can be found on the OrcaFlex menu in Excel.
The basic idea is very similar to the facility for automating generation of batch script files. An example table is
shown below:

Figure: Example table for automatic text data file generation
The cell containing "Text Data Files", highlighted in yellow, is known as the ancbor cell. The text data files are
generated based on the template file specified the in cell immediately to the right of the anchor cell. In this example
the template file might look like this:
BaseFile: Base Case.dat
Environment:
WaveDirection: %direction
WaveHeight: %height
Line1:
Length[1]: %length
The row immediately below the anchor cell, highlighted in blue, contains variable names. You are free to choose
these names as you please. We have adopted a convention that the variable names begin with a percentage sign (%).
Although you do not need to follow this convention, doing so will have the benefit of making the variable names
stand out.
The rows beneath the variable names row are known as the value rows. Each row defines a single text data file. The
text data file is generated by starting from the template file and then replacing each variable name, in turn, by the
value specified in the table. The %filename variable name is compulsory, that is it must be included as one of the
variable names. It specifies the name of the generated text data file. Relative paths can be used for the template file
name and the output file names.
The extent of the table is determined by the presence of empty cells. So the variable names row ends at the first
empty cell. Likewise the value rows end at the first empty cell in the column beneath the anchor cell.
The example above produces 8 text data files as its output, named Case01.yml, Case02.yml, etc. This first of these
looks like this:
BaseFile: Base Case.dat
Environment:
WaveDirection: 0
WaveHeight: 8
Line1:
Length[1]: 100
Cboosing variable names
It is clearly important that you choose unique variable names. However, there is a further subtlety which can arise
when one variable name is a sub-string of another. For example, consider the variable names %x1 and %x10. When
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occurrences of %x1 in the template file are replaced by their actual values, the first 3 characters of any occurrences
of %x10 will also be detected.
Such ambiguities seldom arise, but if you are affected then you can extend the naming convention to include a
trailing % sign. In the example given above, the variable names become %x1% and %x10% and clearly the problem
does not arise.
Multiple tables
You can have multiple tables within a workbook. To process all the tables in one operation, select all the tables and
then click the Create Text Data Files command.
Benefits over script tables
The text data file approach to load case file generation described above is very similar to the approach using batch
script files. The choice of which to use is largely one of personal preference. If you are already familiar with batch
script and not yet familiar with text data files then it may prove easier to continue using batch script.
There is one significant advantage of using text data files which is that it avoids duplication of the OrcaFlex model
data. Consider the following typical sequence of actions when using batch script where we assume that the basic
model and scripts are already in place:
1. Modify the single base model, represented by an OrcaFlex data file.
2. Run the batch script (or scripts) that generate all the load case data files.
3. Run the simulations for all load case data files.
If text data files are used, as described above, then step 2 is not required. This is because the load case text data files
contain a reference to the base model rather than containing a copy as is the case when using batch script.
This is a relatively minor advantage but it does reduce the likelihood of mistakenly forgetting to carry out step 2
when using batch script files. In addition, more complex analyses can lead to your load cases being defined by
multiple script files which have to be executed in a particular order. Using the text data file approach means that this
complexity is dealt with just once when setting up the text data files, as opposed to every time a modification to the
base model is made.
4.3 PUST-PRUCESSINC
4.3.1 Introduction
OrcaFlex users often use spreadsheets to post-process their OrcaFlex results. This can be done manually by
transferring the results from OrcaFlex into the spreadsheet using copy + paste. However, this is laborious and error
prone if a lot of results need transferring, so we have developed special facilities to automate the process.
This automation is done using an Excel spreadsheet that has facilities for automatic extraction of specified results
from one or more OrcaFlex files into nominated cells in the spreadsheet. You can then use the normal spreadsheet
facilities to calculate other post-processed results from those OrcaFlex results.
Note: The OrcaFlex spreadsheet works with Excel 2000 or later and requires OrcaFlex to be installed on
the machine.
Creating UrcaFlex Spreadsbeets
You can create OrcaFlex spreadsheets from Excel templates that are supplied with OrcaFlex. You should base your
own OrcaFlex spreadsheets on this template, which is installed in the OrcaFlex installation directory when you
install OrcaFlex on your machine. To create your own OrcaFlex spreadsheet, open the Windows Start menu, select
Programs | Urcina Software and then select New UrcaFlex Spreadsbeet. This shortcut creates a new spreadsheet
based on the template.
Note: Different versions of Excel require different versions of the OrcaFlex Spreadsheet. When installing
OrcaFlex you are asked which version of Excel you are using. Both spreadsheet templates are
installed and a single Start Menu shortcut to the appropriate one is created.
Before you try to use the new spreadsheet you need to save it to a file; it can be given any valid file name. It is
usually most convenient to save it to the directory containing the OrcaFlex files from which you want to extract
results. You can then specify the names of those files in the spreadsheet using relative paths. Using relative paths
makes it easier to rename the directory or move the spreadsheet and OrcaFlex files to some other directory.
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vertex 3
vertex 5
edge joining
3 to 5
pitch
z (heave)
y (sway)
x (surge)
V
yaw
roll

Figure: Vessel Model
Each vessel has a Vessel Type that determines its RAO and drawing data. To illustrate this, consider a model of a
pipe being towed by two identical tugs. This is modelled by creating a vessel type called 'Tug' and then creating two
vessels, each of type 'Tug'. The drawing data (defining the tug outline) are data of the Tug vessel type, since they
apply to both tugs. Similarly, the RAOs are data of the vessel type, since again they are the same for both tugs. On the
other hand the two tugs differ in their positions and prescribed motion, so these are properties of the individual
vessel objects.
Note: The vessel also has extra drawing data – this is to allow you to set up vessel-specific drawing. For
example the lead tug may have a special tow-point fitting that you want to draw. When the vessel
is drawn, OrcaFlex first draws the vessel type wire frame and then draws the vessel wire frame.
These two wire frames can have different colours, so you can highlight application-specific
drawing.
The vessel is defined relative to a right-handed system of local vessel axes Vxyz, where:
- V is the vessel origin for this vessel type. This is chosen by the user when the vessel type is set up. However note
that if you specify that the vessel type has symmetry then the vessel origin must be placed on the plane of
symmetry or at the centre of circular symmetry; see Vessel Types: Conventions for details.
- Vx, Vy and Vz must be the directions of surge, sway and heave, respectively, for this vessel type. Note that these
directions must therefore be the directions to which the RAOs apply.
Points on the vessel, for example where cables or risers are connected, are then defined relative to these vessel axes.
These points then move with those axes as the vessel moves and rotates relative to the global axes, and OrcaFlex
calculates these motions automatically.
The vessel is drawn, in 3D views of the model, as a "wire frame" of user-specified vertices and edges. This allows a
simple visual check that amplitudes, phases etc. are consistent with the applied wave. The vessel wire frame can also
be used to do a visual check for interference between lines and vessel structure. As with all points on the vessel, the
vertices are defined relative to the vessel axes Vxyz.
ó.7.1 Vessel Data
Name
Used to refer to the Vessel.
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Type
Specifies the Vessel Type. The Vessel Types button allows you to view and edit the Vessel Type Data.
Draugbt
Specifies which set of RAOs to use from the specified vessel type. See Draughts.
Lengtb
Specifies the length of this vessel. The default value '~' means that this vessel is the same length as the vessel type. If
you specify a length that differs from the vessel type length, then OrcaFlex will scale all the vessel type's data to
allow for the scaling factor VesselLength/VesselTypeLength. This is useful if you have data for a 70m ship, for
example, but want to use a 50m ship that is otherwise very similar.
The scaling is done using Froude scaling (see Rawson and Tupper). Froude scaling scales all items of data by a factor
that depends on the units of that data. If R = ratio of vessel length to vessel type length, then the scaling factor
applied is as follows:
- All lengths are scaled by R.
- All masses (and added masses) are scaled by R
3
.
- All times are scaled by R
0.5
.
Data items with other units are scaled by writing the units in terms of the fundamental units of mass, length and
time, and then applying the above factors. For example force data has units equivalent to Mass*Length/Time
2
, so
force data is scaled by (R
3
).(R) / ((R
0.5
)
2
) = R
3
. Dimensionless items such as translational RAOs (surge, sway, heave),
QTFs and phase angles are unchanged by the scaling process, but note that Froude scaling does apply to the periods
(or frequencies) specified for RAO and QTF data. Note also that rotational RAOs (roll, pitch, yaw) are often given in
dimensional terms (degrees per metre) and these also scale.
These scaling rules are the same as those used in deriving full scale ship performance from physical model tests, and
are correct if the vessel is a perfect scaled replica of the vessel type in all respects.
Warnings: If the vessel does not scale uniformly in all dimensions, then this type of scaling introduces errors
and should not normally be used. Instead, accurate data specific to this vessel should be obtained.
However, for ships in head and stern seas the RAO scaling errors may be acceptable, since the RAOs
for these wave directions depend mainly on vessel length. For other cases the RAO scaling is likely
to be poor, so OrcaFlex issues a warning if scaling is used and the wave direction is not close to a
head or stern sea.
Initial Position and Urientation
These specify the vessel's static position relative to the global axes. The Initial Position defines the position of the
vessel origin V. The Initial Urientation defines the orientation of the vessel axes Vxyz as three rotations, Heading,
Trim and Heel. The static orientation of Vxyz is that which results from starting with Vxyz aligned with the global
axes and applying the Heading rotation about Vz, then the Trim rotation about Vy and finally the Heel rotation about
Vx.
If the vessel is not included in the static analysis then this Initial Position is taken to be the static position of the
vessel. If the vessel is included in the static analysis, then this Initial Position is used as an initial estimate of the
vessel position and the statics calculation will move the vessel from this position iteratively until an equilibrium
position is found.
Note: The vessel Z coordinate can only be changed by editing on the vessel data form. Dragging in the Z
direction with the mouse is prevented.
Warning: If you have included any harmonic motion on the vessel (see Harmonic Motion) then the phases of
the harmonic motions will normally depend on the vessel Initial Position, so if you change the
Initial Position you may need to change the harmonic motion phases accordingly.
Calculation Data
The following settings (on the Calculation page on the vessel data form) control how the vessel's static position and
dynamic motion are determined.
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Included in Static Analysis
You can control whether the OrcaFlex static analysis calculates the static equilibrium position of the vessel, or
simply places the vessel in the user-specified initial position.
OrcaFlex first places the vessel at the initial position and orientation specified by the user. If Included in Static
Analysis is set to None then OrcaFlex leaves the vessel in this user-specified position. This is not necessarily an
equilibrium position.
If Included in Static Analysis is set to 3 DUF then OrcaFlex starts from the user-specified position and adjusts the
vessel's X, Y and Heading until an equilibrium position is reached. Note that only these 3 free degrees of freedom of
the vessel (X, Y and Heading) are included in the calculation. The other three degrees of freedom (Z, Heel and Trim)
are assumed to be constrained and so are left at the values specified by the user. This means that the Z component of
resultant force may be non-zero in the equilibrium position. Likewise the resultant Heel and Trim moments may be
non-zero in the equilibrium position.
If Included in Static Analysis is set to ó DUF then OrcaFlex starts from the user-specified position and adjusts all
six degrees of freedom until an equilibrium position is reached. In this case, all of the X, Y, Z forces and Heel, Trim,
Heading moments will be zero at the equilibrium position.
The loads on the vessel to be taken into account in calculating the equilibrium position are determined by the
Included Effects, with the provisos that, in statics, first order wave load RAOs will have no effect and second order
wave drift load will only have an effect through the mean wave drift component.
Note: If multiple statics are being performed on the vessel then no equilibrium calculation is performed
on the vessel and its placement is determined by the multiple statics data. Other vessels in the
model are included in the static analysis as specified by their own data.
Dynamic Analysis
The motion of a vessel during the dynamic analysis can be specified in a variety of ways. OrcaFlex allows the vessel
motion to be made up of two parts, called the Primary motion and the Superimposed motion. Broadly, the Primary
motion is aimed at modelling the steady or low frequency motion of the vessel, whereas the Superimposed motion is
aimed at modelling the higher frequency motion, such as that generated by waves.
As an example, consider a ship being driven under power along a specified course. In the absence of waves it moves
steadily along its course and this would be modelled by the Primary motion. But when waves are present the
primary motion is augmented by wave-generated motion that would often be modelled in OrcaFlex as
Superimposed motion specified by RAOs. OrcaFlex superimposes this latter motion on the primary motion to give
the total combined motion of the vessel.
You can specify the Primary and Superimposed motions in a number of ways, as follows. See examples below of how
these options can be used.
Primary Motion
The Primary motion determines what OrcaFlex refers to as the primary position of the vessel. It can be one of the
following options.
- None. In this option there is no primary motion and the primary position of the vessel remains fixed at the
position determined by the static analysis.
- Prescribed. This option allows you to drive the vessel around the sea surface, for example to model the vessel
moving station during the simulation. The vessel's speed and course is specified using the data on the
Prescribed Motion page on the vessel data form.
- Calculated {3 DUF]. In this option OrcaFlex calculates the vessel primary motion in only 3 degrees of freedom
(surge, sway, yaw) based on the included loads plus loads from any lines or other objects that are attached to
the vessel. There is no primary motion in the other 3 degrees of freedom (heave, roll, pitch). The added mass
and damping matrices of the vessel type must be specified, plus the data for all the included loads.
- Calculated {ó DUF]. In this option OrcaFlex calculates the vessel motion in all 6 degrees of freedom, based on
the included loads, plus loads from any lines or other objects that are attached to the vessel. The added mass,
damping, stiffness and equilibrium position of the vessel type must be specified, plus the data for all the
included loads.
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- Time History. In this option the user specifies the primary motion in a time history file that defines, as a
function of time, the vessel Primary X, Primary Y, Primary Z, Primary Rotation 1, Primary Rotation 2 and
Primary Rotation 3. See the vessel's Time History data.
Superimposed Motion
The Superimposed motion is applied as an offset from the position given by the primary motion. It can be one of the
following options.
- None. In this option there is no offset and the vessel position is equal to the primary position at all times.
- Displacement RAUs + Harmonic. In this option the vessel's position oscillates harmonically about the primary
position. The harmonically varying offset comes from two sources. Firstly, if waves are present and you specify
non-zero displacement RAOs for the vessel type, then the offset will include the wave-generated harmonic
motions specified by those RAOs. Secondly, the vessel's superimposed offset also includes any harmonic
motions that you specify on the Harmonic Motions page on the vessel data form.
- Time History. In this option the user specifies the offset in a time history file that defines the vessel Surge,
Sway, Heave, Roll, Pitch and Yaw as a function of time. See the vessel's Time History data.
Typical Examples of Primary and Superimposed Motion
Here are some typical examples of how primary and superimposed motion can be combined to achieve various
things.
- Primary motion set to None and superimposed motion set to RAUs + Harmonic can be used to model a simple
steady (e.g. moored) vessel whose motion is due to the 1st order wave effects only.
- Prescribed or Time History primary motion can be used to model a vessel being driven over a predetermined
course, and the superimposed motion set to RAUs + Harmonic to model the 1st order wave induced motion.
- Calculated {3 DUF] primary motion can be used to model the low frequency slow drift of a vessel in the
horizontal plane (due to 2nd order wave loads, wind and current drag, etc.), with the superimposed motion set
to RAUs + Harmonic to model the superimposed 1st order wave induced motion.
- Calculated {ó DUF] primary motion can be used to model the whole motion of a vessel, optionally including 1st
and 2nd order wave loads, current and wind drag loads, applied loads, and always including loads from any
attached lines or other objects. In this case the superimposed motion would normally be None, since all motion
has already been accounted for in the primary motion, and the displacement RAO data would therefore not be
used.
- Time History primary motion (or Time History superimposed motion but not usually both) can be used to
completely specify the motion of a vessel.
Included Effects
You can choose which vessel loads are included and which are ignored by ticking the corresponding checkboxes. If a
box is checked then that load will be calculated and applied to the vessel, and its value will be available as a result. If
a box is not checked, then that load will not be calculated and it will be taken as zero.
Note: Loads which are included will only affect the vessel static equilibrium position if Included in Static
Analysis is set to other than None, and will only affect the vessel motion if the primary motion is set
to one of the Calculated options.
Prescribed Motion
The prescribed motion data only applies if the vessel's Primary Motion is set to Prescribed. It enables you to drive
the vessel around the sea surface along a predetermined path, by specifying how the vessel's primary position and
heading change during the simulation.
The vessel is driven by specifying, for each stage of the simulation, the velocity (speed and direction) of the primary
position and the rate of change of the heading.
Warning: The Prescribed Motion facility can cause discontinuities of velocity at stage boundaries and these
may cause transients in the system. OrcaFlex issues warnings at the start of the simulation if the
data specifies a discontinuous velocity.
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Speed of Motion
For each simulation stage the speed of the motion can be specified as either a Constant Speed or a Speed Cbange.
If Constant Speed is selected then that speed applies throughout the stage.
If Speed Cbange is selected then the speed is incremented linearly by the specified amount during the stage. For
example, an increment of 1m/s during a stage of length 10 seconds causes an acceleration of 0.1m/s
2
to be applied
throughout the stage, so that if the vessel starts at rest then at the start of the next stage the vessel is travelling at
1m/s.
Note: Negative speeds can be specified.
Direction of Motion
For each simulation stage the direction of the motion can be specified as either relative to the Clobal X direction or
relative to the Vessel beading.
The direction value is interpreted as an azimuth. So, a value of 90° relative to the Global X direction would result in
the motion being in the global Y direction. Likewise, if the vessel's heading was 130° and the direction of motion was
50° relative to the Vessel heading then the motion would be an azimuth of 130° + 50° = 180° relative to global, that
is in the global -X direction.
Note: The direction of motion is not restricted to be in the same direction as the vessel heading.
Rate of Turn
In addition to varying the velocity of the mean position, you can specify a Rate of Turn for each stage. This is the
angle change per second to be applied to the vessel's heading throughout the stage.
If the Direction of Motion is specified relative to the Vessel heading and the Rate of Turn is non-zero, then the vessel
velocity direction varies during the stage. In addition, if the direction is 0° relative to Vessel heading then the vessel
velocity, whilst varying, is always in the Vessel heading direction.
If the direction is specified relative to the Global X direction then the vessel velocity direction is not affected by the
Rate of Turn.
Harmonic Motion
The Harmonic Motion page (on the vessel data form) only applies if the vessel's superimposed motion is set to RAUs
+ Harmonic. It allows you to specify a number of harmonic motions of the vessel.
The harmonic motions are in addition to any wave-generated motion specified by the RAO data, so if you only want
the wave-generated motion then you should set the number of harmonic motions to zero.
Each harmonic motion is a single-period sinusoidal motion of the vessel, specified by giving:
- the Period of the harmonic motion; this applies to all 6 degrees of freedom,
- the Amplitude and Pbase of the motion for each of the 6 degrees of freedom of the vessel. If you are modelling
slow drift, then note that slow drift normally only applies to surge, sway and yaw, in which case the amplitudes
for heave, roll and pitch should be set to zero.
Note: The harmonic motion amplitudes (unlike the RAO responses of the vessel) are not specified relative
to a wave amplitude – they are specified directly in length units (for surge, sway and heave) or
degrees (for roll, pitch and yaw).
Similarly, the phases are not specified relative to the phase of a wave – they are the phase lags from the global time
origin T=0 until the maximum harmonic motion occurs. More precisely, the phase that should be specified for the
harmonic motion is given by
360 × ((Tmax / P) mod 1)
where P is the period of the harmonic motion and Tmax is the global time at which you want the maximum of the
motion to occur.
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Warning: Harmonic motions can be used to model pre-calculated vessel slow drift. If you do this, then if you
move the vessel's Initial Position in the wave direction, or if you change the data for the waves
(other than changing the simulation time origin), then you will normally also then have to adjust
the phases of the slow drift. This is because such changes affect the global time at which a
particular part of the wave train will reach the vessel and hence will also affect the global time at
which maximum slow drift motion is achieved.
Time History
The Time History pages (on the vessel data form) only apply if the vessel's primary or superimposed motion, or
both, are set to Time History. It allows you to specify the motion by giving a time history file. To do this:
- On the Calculation page set the primary motion or superimposed motion data item (or both) to Time History.
- Create a tab-delimited text file containing the time history motion you want, as described below.
- On the appropriate Time History page, setup the time history data as described in Data in Time History Files.
Contents of Time History File
The time history file must contain a time column and columns for all 6 degrees of freedom of the vessel. For primary
time history motion these are Primary X, Primary Y, Primary Z, Primary Rotation 1, Primary Rotation 2 and Primary
Rotation 3, measured relative to the global axes.
For superimposed time history motion the degrees of freedom that must be specified are Surge, Sway, Heave, Roll,
Pitch and Yaw. They are measured relative to the primary position of the vessel, as specified by the vessel's primary
motion.
For details of how rotations are applied, see order of application of rotations.
The time values in a vessel time history file need not be equally spaced. The units used for all the columns must be
the same as those used in the OrcaFlex model, so the time values must be in seconds and angles in degrees.
For further details of the file format see Time History Files.
Notes: If there is any wave-generated motion present in a vessel's time history motion then the OrcaFlex
wave data needs to match the wave that generated that motion. If you have suitable data for the
wave elevation then you can use that to specify the wave by time history. This can be done either in
a separate time history file for the wave or else in an extra column in the vessel's time history file.
The position and velocity specified by a time history file for the start of the simulation (i.e. for
SimulationTime = -BuildUpDuration) will not, in general, match the static state from which
OrcaFlex starts the simulation. To handle this OrcaFlex uses ramping during the build-up stage to
smooth the transition from the static state to the position and motion specified in the time history
file.
Applied Loads
You can optionally include applied loads on a vessel.
You can apply to the vessel external Global Loads that do not rotate if the vessel rotates. These are specified by
giving the components of Applied Force and Applied Moment relative to global axes. These components can be
constant, vary with simulation time or be given by an external function. If the vessel rotates then the loads do not
rotate with it.
In addition, you can specify external Local Loads that do rotate with the vessel. These are specified by giving the
components of Applied Force and Applied Moment relative to vessel axes. Again these components can be constant,
vary with simulation time or be given by an external function. If the vessel rotates then the loads do rotate with it.
These are suitable for modelling thrusters, for example.
In both cases the Point of Application of the load is specified by giving its x,y,z coordinates relative to vessel axes.
Note: Applied loads will only affect vessel static position if the corresponding degree of freedom is
included in the static analysis, and will only affect the motion if the Primary Motion is set to one of
the calculated options which includes the degree of freedom.
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Multiple Statics
The offsets for multiple statics calculations are specified here. Offsets are from the vessel's initial position and are
specified by giving a range of azimuth and offset values. For example:

The Azimuths table determines which directions are to be analysed. The Offsets table specifies how far in the given
direction the vessel is to be placed. With the above data, the offsets analysed by the multiple statics calculation are
as illustrated by the dots in the diagram below:
0m 20m 40m 60m 80m 100m
180 deg
135 deg
90 deg
45 deg
0 deg
Vessel Initial
Position
X
Y

Figure: Example Uffsets
A diagram showing the selected offsets is drawn on the Vessel Offsets data form, to help visualise which offsets will
be analysed.
Drawing
Vessels are drawn as wire frames defined in the data as a set of Vertices and Edges. The Vertices are defined by
giving their coordinates relative to the vessel axes Vxyz. The Edges are lines drawn between two vertices.
For shaded graphics views, by default, the vessel is drawn using a solid, filled-in shape based on the vertices and
edges. As an alternative you can use the vertices and edges to define a frame like structure. If the edge diameter is
'~' then that edge will be used to build a filled in shape, otherwise that edge is drawn as a cylinder with the specified
diameter. Note that you can use a mixture of edge diameters (some defined, some set to '~') to combine both filled
in and framework shapes.
You can define wire frame drawing data in two places – for the vessel and also for its vessel type. The vessel is
drawn by first drawing a wire frame based on the vertices, edges and pen specified for its vessel type (see the vessel
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types data form). Then a further vessel-specific wire frame may be drawn, using any vertices, edges and pen that
you specify on the vessel's data form.
This allows you to specify a wire frame drawing of the basic vessel type, and then optionally add to it (possibly in a
different colour) a wire frame drawing of some equipment that is specific to that vessel. If the vessel length differs
from the vessel type length, then the vessel type wire frame is scaled accordingly. Note that either, or both, of these
wire frames can be empty (i.e. no edges) if desired.
The drawing data do not affect the mathematical model in any way – they are purely for drawing 3D views. The
vertices and edges follow the motions of the vessel, and thus may be used to improve understanding of the motion
of the model. They can also be used to represent a spar or other equipment attached to the vessel, so that you can
then look for clashing with other parts of the system. For example during a simulation replay you can adjust the
viewpoint to look exactly along the edge of interest, and check visually if other parts of the model pass through it.
Sbaded Drawing
By default, for shaded 3D Views, vessels are drawn using the wire frame data.
The wire frame drawing data comprises vertices and edges, but OrcaFlex needs a solid surface for the shaded
graphics representation. OrcaFlex uses the following procedure to generate this surface from the wire frame
vertices and edges.
First any edges with specified diameters (i.e. diameters not equal to '~') are drawn as cylinders. This allows you to
use such edges to visualise parts of the structure that are not solid, e.g. crane boom latticework. These edges are
now handled and are excluded from the remainder of the procedure.
The remaining edges are used to partition the vertices into sets of connected vertices. Two vertices are deemed to
be connected if there exists a path of edges between the two vertices.
Finally, for each set of connected vertices, the smallest convex hull enclosing the set is drawn.
This algorithm does not always generate the shaded drawings that you might expect. Consider the following two
wire frame vessels. When drawn in wire frame mode they look the same, but in shaded mode they differ.
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Figure: Wire Frame and Sbaded Drawing
For the green vessel the superstructure and the hull share vertices and so all vertices are connected. This results in a
single convex hull for all vertices being drawn. In the red vessel, the superstructure and hull do not share vertices
and so there are two distinct sets of connected vertices. This results in two separate convex hulls and a better
representation.
Alternatively the object can be represented by an imported 3D model by specifying the Sbaded Drawing File. This
must be a Direct X format file, usually with the .x file extension. If you use a relative path then the path will be taken
as relative to the folder containing the OrcaFlex file.
The Browse button allows you to specify the Shaded Drawing File quickly and also provides quick access to the
Orcina sample drawings via the Navigate to Urcina sample drawings button.
The Use Culling option is normally selected since it can provide a useful performance benefit. However, in order to
work it requires that the triangles defined in the .x file have their outward facing directions defined correctly. In the
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unusual situation where the outward facing directions are not defined correctly then the .x file will not display
correctly. If this happens then typically sections of the model will be missing when drawn by OrcaFlex. Disabling the
Use Culling option resolves this problem.
Draw Size is provided to allow you to scale the drawing. All directions are scaled equally to arrange that the longest
side in the drawing is drawn to the specified Draw Size. This longest side is calculated by first fitting the smallest
possible cuboid around the vertices of the shaded drawing (these are defined in the .x file). This cuboid is aligned
with the shaded drawing's local axes. Then the length of the longest side of this cuboid is found.
Specify a value of '~' to display the drawing using the absolute coordinates as specified in the .x file.
Note: If you use a value of '~' for Draw Size then OrcaFlex uses the coordinates in the .x file directly. If
these coordinates use a different length units system from your OrcaFlex model then you should
specify the units used in the .x file by including an auxiliary file called AdditionalInformation.txt.
Examples of this can be found in the sample shaded drawings provided by Orcina.
Sbaded Drawing Urigin is provided because the shaded drawing and the vessel may have different origins. The
Shaded Drawing Origin defines the origin of the shaded drawing with respect to the vessel's local axis system.
Similarly Sbaded Drawing Urientation allows you to reorient the shaded drawing to match the vessel's axis
system.
External Functions
Parameters
This data item specifies the External Function Parameters, a free form multi-line text field which is passed to any
external function used by the Environment.
Properties Report
The Vessel properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Lengtb
The length of the vessel.
Wave direction relative to vessel
The relative wave direction. If there is more than one wave train then the direction of the first wave train is used.
Statics force accuracy, Statics moment accuracy
These are only reported if the vessel is included in statics.
The static analysis searches for an equilibrium position for the vessel – that is a position for which the resultant
force and moment on the vessel is zero. We refer to the resultant force and moment as the out of balance load.
Because computers have limited numerical precision the static analysis cannot always find a configuration where
the out of balance load is exactly zero. OrcaFlex accepts a position as a static equilibrium position if the largest out of
balance load component is less than the statics accuracy.
The Statics force accuracy equals Tolerance * vessel typical force and the Statics moment accuracy equals Tolerance
* vessel typical moment. The vessel typical force and moment are based on the forces and moments applied by
connected objects.
Reducing the Tolerance value will give a more accurate static equilibrium position, but will take more iterations.
OrcaFlex may not be able to achieve the Tolerance specified if it is too small, since the computer has limited
numerical precision.
Note: The statics accuracies change during the static analysis because the forces and moments applied
by connected objects vary with the position of the vessel. The statics accuracies reported in Reset
state may be quite different from those used for the final equilibrium position and should be
treated as rough approximations to the true statics accuracies.
ó.7.2 Vessel Types
Each vessel has a vessel type that determines a lot of its data and which is defined on the vessel types form. You can
define a number of different vessel types and each type is given a name, which is then used on the vessel data form
to specify the type of that particular vessel.
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Two different vessels can have the same type. To illustrate this, consider a model of a pipe being towed by two
identical tugs. This is modelled by creating a vessel type called 'Tug' and then creating two vessels, each of type
'Tug'. The RAOs, for example, are data of the 'Tug' vessel type, since they apply to both tugs. On the other hand the
two tugs differ in their positions and any prescribed motion, so these are properties of the individual vessel objects.
You don't have to use all, or even any, of the vessel types you define. For example you can set up a data file that
defines a number of vessel types but has no vessels. Such a file can then act as a library of vessel types that can be
imported into other OrcaFlex data files.
Vessel Type Data
For each Vessel Type you can enter data for several different draughts, each draught having a user-specified Name.
Each vessel in the model must specify (on its vessel data form) which draught to use. It is not possible to use
different draughts at different times during the same simulation.
Some of the vessel type data apply to all draughts, but a lot of the data is draught-dependent and so separate data is
defined for each defined draught. The principal categories of vessel type data are:
- Geometry and drawing data which apply to all draughts.
- Conventions define the meaning of any RAO and wave drift QTF data. The conventions apply to all draughts.
- RAO data. Separate RAOs are specified for each different draught. There is a Check RAOs facility that provides
RAO graphs that help detect errors.
- Wave Drift data. Separate values are specified for each different draught.
- Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping data. Separate values are specified for each different draught.
- Inertia and Damping data. Separate values are specified for each different draught.
Default Vessel Type Data
When you create a new vessel type, it is given initial default data that corresponds to a tanker. You should replace
this with accurate data for the vessel you are modelling.
If your vessel is similar to the default data tanker then you might find the default data useful if you have no better
data available. However note that the default vessel tanker has a significant heave resonance in beam seas at 7s
period.
The default data was obtained as follows.
- The default structure data, displacement RAOs, wave load RAOs, wave drift QTFs, stiffness, added mass and
damping data all come from an NMIWave diffraction analysis of a 103m long tanker in 400m water depth. The
tanker used in this analysis had the following properties: Breadth 15.95m, Draught 6.66m, Transverse GM
1.84m, Longitudinal GM = 114m, Block Coefficient 0.804. The diffraction analysis used 8% extra damping in roll
about CG.
- The default hydrodynamic and wind drag coefficients are based on graphs given in the standard OCIMF book.
Note that the OCIMF book gives different coefficients for different vessel types and draughts. The default vessel
type data are approximate averaged deepwater coefficients, and they have been rounded to only 1 or 2
significant figures.
- The hydrodynamic and wind drag areas and area moments are set for the above 103m tanker. The wind drag
areas are based on an assumed average upperworks height of 12m for surge and 9m for sway.
- The origin for these default data is on the centreline at midships and at the mean water level.
OrcaFlex automatically Froude scales vessel type data to the vessel length you specify. So this default data might
sometimes still be useful if your vessel is a different length to the tanker described above, but is otherwise similar.
Structure
Vessel Type Lengtb
The length to which the vessel type RAO and drawing data apply. This may be left unspecified ('~'). If a value is
specified, then it may be used to scale the vessel type data to the length of the vessel. See Vessel Length for details.
The remaining data on the Structure page (on the vessel type form) are only used if the vessel Primary Motion is set
to Calculated {3 DUF] or Calculated {ó DUF]. Note that these data are draught-specific.
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Mass and Moments of Inertia
The vessel type's mass and its moments of inertia about axes through the CG in the vessel x, y and z directions. This
should include the structural and contents mass and inertia, but not the added mass.
Centre of gravity {CC]
The coordinates of the vessel type's centre of mass, relative to vessel axes.
Conventions
The conventions page (on the vessel types data form) contains settings that define the meaning of the RAO, QTF, and
(in the case of the direction conventions) stiffness, added mass and damping data. This enables you to enter these
data directly from many other programs without having to convert the values between different sets of conventions.
Instead you can tell OrcaFlex the conventions that apply to those data and OrcaFlex will then automatically allow for
those conventions when it uses the data.
Warning: In general, the conventions apply to all RAO and QTF data. You cannot mix data with differing
conventions in the same model (but see rotational RAOs below).
Although RAOs are simple enough in principle, a number of complications make them notoriously error-prone and
difficult to check in practice. The main issues are:
- Different coordinate systems.
- Different definitions of phase angle and rotational RAOs.
- Use of vessel symmetry, e.g. to obtain motions in seas from the port side given data for seas from the starboard
side.
OrcaFlex provides easy ways of handling these problem areas.
The use of differing coordinate systems and conventions by different suppliers of data is the main source of
confusion. It is vital that you know the conventions that apply to the RAO tables that you are using. Unfortunately,
not all RAO tables fully document the conventions used: see RAO data checklist for help finding out what
conventions apply to your data and see Checking RAOs to check that the conventions are set correctly.
Translational RAU Conventions
Translational displacement RAOs are always non-dimensional (e.g. metres/metre or feet/foot).
Translational load RAOs are always given as force per unit wave amplitude (e.g. kN/m).
Rotational RAU Conventions
Roll, pitch and yaw displacement RAOs may be specified using one of the following three possible conventions:
- As rotation angles per unit wave amplitude. The values are dimensional, e.g. in degrees/metre, radians/foot
etc.
- As rotation angles per unit maximum wave slope. Maximum wave slope is the true maximum slope of the
wave surface, which is πH/L radians (= 180H/L degrees) for wave height H and wave length L. The values are
non-dimensional, which can be thought of as either degrees/degree or radians/radian which, of course, are
equivalent.
- As rotation angles per unit wave steepness. Wave steepness is a commonly used angular measure of a wave,
defined by steepness = H/L radians (= (180/π)H/L degrees). The values are again non-dimensional, i.e. either
degrees/degree or (equivalently) radians/radian, but of course the RAOs are numerically larger (by a factor of
π) than those using the maximum wave slope convention.
In each case, the angles of rotation may be given in either degrees or radians; the convention on the data form
should be specified accordingly. For the two non-dimensional cases, the units (degrees or radians) of the max wave
slope or wave steepness must be the same as those for the angles of rotation. Note that, so long as the units are
consistent in this way, the actual numerical values for these non-dimensional RAOs are the same regardless of
whether the unit selected is degrees or radians.
Rotational load RAOs must be given as moment per unit wave amplitude (e.g. kNm/m), and rotational QTFs (i.e. the
yaw QTF) are non-dimensional. Therefore, the degrees/radians switch and the unit amplitude / steepness /
maximum slope switch do not apply to load RAOs. This is the exception to the above rule that the conventions apply
to all RAOs and QTFs.
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Warning: If rotational displacement RAOs are given relative to wave slope or steepness, then OrcaFlex
(internally) converts them to be relative to wave amplitude using the deep water wavelength, not
the wavelength for the water depth specified in the model.
Waves are referred to by
The RAO and QTF data can be specified by period in seconds, by angular frequency in radians/second or by
frequency in Hertz.
RAU Pbases
The RAO Phase convention is specified by 3 data items:
1. Phases are either leads or lags.
2. Phases are specified either in degrees or radians.
3. The phase defines the time at which the maximum positive value of the motion occurs. This is relative to the
time at which the wave crest, trougb, zero up-crossing or zero down-crossing passes the phase origin. Wave
Drift QTFs are not affected by this convention, since they are entered without any phase information.
Directions
You must specify the directions that correspond to positive motion or load in the RAO and QTF data, and in the
stiffness, damping and added mass matrices. The most common convention is as given by the default OrcaFlex
vessel type: a right-handed system with Z upwards and clockwise rotations being positive.
Symmetry
You can specify symmetry of the vessel type. OrcaFlex will then use the user-specified RAO/QTF tables for wave
directions on one side of the symmetry plane to derive tables for the reflected directions on the other side of the
plane.
The Symmetry can be set to:
- None: The vessel type has no symmetry. The directions specified must cover all the wave directions used in the
simulation.
- XZ plane (or YZ plane): This specifies that the XZ (or YZ) plane through the RAO origin is a plane of symmetry.
For each direction given OrcaFlex uses symmetry to derive tables for the reflected direction on the other side of
the plane.
- XZ & YZ planes: This specifies that botb the XZ and YZ planes through the RAO origin are planes of symmetry.
For each direction given OrcaFlex uses symmetry to derive tables for the reflected directions in the other 3
quadrants.
- Circular: This specifies that the vessel has circular symmetry about the RAO origin. RAO/QTF tables can only be
given for one wave direction, and OrcaFlex uses symmetry to derive tables for all other directions.
Warning: If you specify some planes of symmetry then the RAO origin must be on all the planes of symmetry.
Or if you specify circular symmetry then the RAO origin must be at the centre of symmetry.
RAUs
OrcaFlex uses two different types of RAO (response amplitude operator): Displacement RAUs and Wave Load
RAUs.
Displacement RAOs are specified on the RAUs page on the vessel type data form. They define the 1st order motion
of the vessel in response to waves of given period and amplitude. They are only used if the vessel superimposed
motion is set to RAOs+Harmonic. In the dynamic analysis the vessel moves harmonically, in all 6 degrees of freedom,
about its primary position. These harmonic motions are specified by giving the RAO amplitudes and phases, for all
six degrees of freedom, usually for a range of wave periods and directions. For further information see RAOs and
Phases.
Wave load RAOs are specified on the Load RAUs page on the vessel type data form. They define the 1st order wave
force and moment on the vessel due to waves of given period and amplitude. They are only used if the 1st order
wave loads are included for the vessel and they only affect the motion if the vessel primary motion is set to one of
the calculated options.
The 2 types of RAOs are specified in very similar ways, using the following data.
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RAU Urigin
The RAO origin is the point on the vessel whose motion is defined by the RAOs. The RAO origin is specified by giving
its coordinates with respect to the OrcaFlex vessel axes (not the directions specified on the Conventions page). It is
commonly, but does not need to be, at the centre of gravity. Different draughts can use different RAO origins.
RAU Pbase Urigin
The RAO phase origin is the point on the vessel that the RAO phase values are relative to. It is specified by giving its
x and y-coordinates with respect to the OrcaFlex vessel axes (not the directions specified on the Conventions page).
The phase values given in the RAOs must be relative to the time that the wave crest or trough (depending on the
RAO phase conventions specified) passes the specified RAO phase origin.
Often the phase origin is the same as the RAO origin, i.e. the phases are relative to the time the crest or trough passes
the point whose motion the RAOs define. In this case the phase origin can be set to '~', meaning 'same as RAO
origin'. But note that some programs (one example being Moses) generate RAOs where the phase origin is not
necessarily the same as the RAO origin.
RAU Data
RAO data can be specified for a number of different wave directions relative to the vessel, using the OrcaFlex
direction convention. This relative wave direction is the direction in which the wave is progressing, measured
positive from the vessel x-direction towards the vessel y-direction, and on the RAOs page of the vessel type data
form each RAO table is labelled with its associated direction.
To change the value of the wave direction for one of the RAO tables, select the tab for that table and edit the Selected
Direction. To insert a new wave direction after an existing direction, select the existing direction's page and click the
Insert Direction button. Similarly, the Delete Direction button deletes the currently selected direction.
For each direction, the RAO table covers a range of wave periods or frequencies, as specified in the conventions data.
The periods/frequencies need not be entered in order – they will be sorted before use.
In the case of a circular symmetric vessel, RAOs are specified for only one wave direction – OrcaFlex will derive
RAOs for all other directions.
RAU InterpolationJExtrapolation
Un direction
You must provide RAO tables that include or span the wave direction(s) involved in the simulation. If RAOs are
required for a wave direction for which an RAO table has not been supplied, then OrcaFlex will use linear
interpolation to obtain an RAO table for that direction.
Warning: Interpolation is likely to be poor if the interval involved is large. We therefore recommend that the
RAO directions defined cover all the wave directions that will be used and in steps of 30° or less.
Un period
For regular wave analysis, RAO data is only needed for the appropriate wave period, or for wave periods either side
of that period. For random sea simulations, RAO data should be specified for a wide enough range of wave periods to
cover the spectrum. The View Wave Components button (on the Waves page of the environment data form) reports
the wave frequencies that OrcaFlex will use to represent the spectrum.
Note: If the vessel length differs from the vessel type length then the RAO periods specified on the vessel
type form are Froude scaled, and it is these Froude scaled periods that must cover the actual wave
period(s).
Linear interpolation is used if RAOs are required for a period that is between the periods given in the table. We
strongly recommend that your RAO tables provide data for periods that include or span all the wave periods that
will be involved in the simulation.
For periods shorter than the smallest value in the table, OrcaFlex will assume a zero amplitude response at zero
period and apply linear interpolation between that and the shortest period value. If you specify an RAO for zero
period which has non-zero response, OrcaFlex will over-ride this with a zero response, since a non-zero response at
zero period is physically implausible. In both of these cases, OrcaFlex will issue a warning. To avoid this warning,
simply specify a zero-amplitude response at zero period in your RAO tables.
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For periods longer than the largest value in the table, OrcaFlex will use linear extrapolation, based on the two
longest periods in the RAO table. This may give unexpected results, especially if the extrapolation required is over a
large period range, so again OrcaFlex will issue a warning. To avoid this warning, you may specify the limiting
infinite period RAO, which for a free-floating vessel can be derived from the knowledge that the vessel must follow
the surface in a sufficiently long wave. See RAO Quality Checks for details.
Complex-valued Interpolation and Extrapolation
Note that RAO interpolation and extrapolation is done using the complex value representation of the RAOs, in which
the RAO with amplitude A and phase lag P is represented by the complex number:
C(A,P) = A[cos(P) + i sin(P)].
For example, given RAOs (A1,P1) for direction D1 and (A2,P2) for direction D2, the interpolated RAO for the
intermediate direction D=(D1+D2)/2 is (A,P), where:
C(A,P) = [C(A1,P1) + C(A2,P2)]/2
This gives better results than interpolating the amplitude and phase separately.
OrcaFlex first interpolates on direction, to obtain an RAO table appropriate to the wave direction. It then
interpolates (or extrapolates) that table to obtain the RAO for the appropriate wave period. Both of these stages are
done using complex valued interpolation or extrapolation.
Ubtaining tbe data
All of the above data can generally be obtained from the results of a diffraction program. OrcaFlex can import these
data from the output files of some specific programs (AQWA and WAMIT) and from generic text files with OrcaFlex-
specific markers added. There are two different ways to do this import.
The easiest and most reliable way is to import all the hydrodynamic data using the Import Hydrodynamic Data
button on the Vessel Types data form. Alternatively, you may use the Import RAUs button to import only the RAO
data.
Wave Drift Loads
The Wave Drift page on the vessel type form contains the Quadratic Transfer Functions (QTFs) that OrcaFlex uses to
calculate a wave drift load (sometimes called the slow drift load).
Note: The wave drift load is only calculated for a vessel if the Wave Drift Load (2nd Order) option is
checked in the list of vessel Included Effects, and will only affect the vessel motion if the vessel
primary motion is set to one of the Calculated options. See Modelling Vessel Slow Drift for details.
See Wave Drift Load Theory for details of how OrcaFlex calculates the wave drift loads.
QTF Urigin
The QTF origin is the point on the vessel to which the QTFs apply. The wave drift loads are calculated based on the
wave conditions at this point and they are applied at this point. The QTF origin is specified relative to the OrcaFlex
vessel axes (not the directions specified on the Conventions page); different draughts can use different origins. The
z-coordinate of this origin is not specified, since the loads are calculated and applied only for the 'horizontal' (surge,
sway and yaw) degrees of freedom.
Wave Drift QTFs
QTFs, like wave load RAOs, are specified in dimensional form and with respect to waves of unit amplitude.
Translational QTFs have units of force per unit length squared, and rotational QTFs moment per unit length
squared.
No phases are required because only the diagonal terms of the full QTF matrix are entered in OrcaFlex, and these
diagonal terms necessarily have zero phase. OrcaFlex uses Newman's approximation to obtain the off-diagonal QTFs
from the diagonal QTFs specified. See Wave Drift Load Theory for details.
The way QTF data are entered in OrcaFlex is much the same as that for RAO data. In particular:
- For each draught, QTF tables are specified for each of a number of wave directions, specified using the Orcina
direction convention. To insert a new table use the Insert Direction button and to delete a table select that
table's page and then click the Delete Direction button. To change the direction associated with a table, select
that table's page and then edit the Selected Direction value.
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- The direction conventions apply to the QTFs.
- If the vessel type has some symmetry (see the conventions page) then OrcaFlex automatically generates QTF
tables for all the reflected directions implied by that symmetry. You must provide QTF tables for enough
directions for OrcaFlex to have data (either user-specified or generated based on symmetry) for directions that
cover the wave directions the vessel will experience.
- Each QTF table consists of data for a range of wave periods or frequencies (depending on the convention
specified). You should provide data for periods that (after allowing for Froude scaling if the vessel length differs
from the vessel type length) cover the wave periods the vessel will experience.
Warning: The settings on the conventions page apply to all draughts and they apply to both the vessel type's
RAOs and to its wave drift QTFs. If your RAO and QTF data use different conventions you will
therefore need to take account of this, for example by specifying the different convention systems
for each in the files from which they are imported.
Ubtaining tbe data
All of the above data can generally be obtained from the results of a diffraction program. OrcaFlex can import these
data directly from the output files of some specific programs (AQWA and WAMIT) and from many other formats
with OrcaFlex-specific markers added. There are two different ways to do this import.
The easiest and most reliable way is to import all the hydrodynamic data using the Import Hydrodynamic Data
button on the Vessel Types data form. Alternatively, you may use the Import QTFs button to import only the QTF
data.
Stiffness, Added Mass and Damping
Reference Urigin
The origin to which the stiffness, added mass and damping matrices all refer, specified as coordinates with respect
to the OrcaFlex vessel axes.
Equilibrium Position
The Z above mean water level and the heel and trim (relative to global axes) of the reference origin when the vessel
is in hydrostatic equilibrium for this draught. Note that Z above mean water level (rather than Z relative to global
axes) is specified, so that the vessel type data is independent of mean water level or choice of position of global
origin.
Added Mass, Damping and Hydrostatic Stiffness
All these matrices must be specified with respect to axes through the given Reference Origin in the conventions
directions, i.e. with respect to the directions specified on the conventions page of the vessel types form.
For details of the units, and the theory used, see Vessel Theory: Stiffness, Added Mass and Damping.
Hydrostatic Stiffness
The hydrostatic stiffness matrix is only specified for heave, roll and pitch directions. It is applied in Statics only if the
vessel's Static Analysis includes 6 DOF, and in dynamics only if the vessel's Primary Motion is set to "Calculated (6
DOF)".
Added Mass and Damping
The added mass and damping matrices are specified in all 6 degrees of freedom. They are always applied to the
vessel, but will only influence the motion of the vessel if the Primary Motion is set to one of the calculated modes.
Added Mass and Damping Metbod
If you choose Constant for the Added Mass and Damping method, then single-valued added mass and damping
matrices will be used.
If you choose Frequency Dependent, then you may specify a number of added mass and damping matrices, each
pair corresponding to a particular given frequency or period. Whether you specify period or frequency values is
determined by the Waves are referred to by setting on the Vessel Type Conventions page.
If you use the Constant (i.e. frequency independent) method, then you should specify values that are appropriate to
the frequency of vessel motion you expect. To calculate slow drift motion of the vessel it is normally appropriate to
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enter low frequency values. Otherwise values corresponding to the dominant wave frequency are perhaps more
appropriate. Clearly, if the vessel experiences a wide range of frequencies, the frequency-dependent method is more
appropriate and would be expected to give better results.
If you use the Frequency Dependent method then you need to specify botb the added mass and damping matrices,
and for a range of frequencies. Also. the added mass and damping data should be consistent in the sense that they
obey the Kramers-Kronig relations – see Consistent Added Mass and Damping for details.
Cutoff Time
When you use frequency-dependent added mass and damping, OrcaFlex applies the frequency-dependent data in
the time domain by calculating and applying the vessel's Impulse Response Functions (IRF). See Vessel Theory:
Impulse Response and Convolution for details.
Realistic IRFs decay to zero with increasing time lag. So to improve the calculation speed OrcaFlex truncates the
Impulse Response Function at the time lag specified by the Cutoff Time. The IRF is assumed to be zero for time lags
greater than the Cutoff Time.
Larger Cutoff Time values might give more accurate results but require more calculation. In order to choose the
Cutoff Time, you may find it useful to use the Report Vessel Response window to view the graphs of the components
of the IRF. From the graphs you could decide the time lag at which the function has decayed sufficiently close to zero
as to have little or no effect on the calculation.
Note 1: Frequency-dependent added mass and damping can be quite time-consuming to compute. For this
reason, it is not calculated for vessels which do not have calculated primary motion: in this case,
the added mass and damping load is simply set uniformly to zero.
Note 2: The damping matrix given by a diffraction program models wave radiation damping. However
there is another, often more important, source of damping, namely wave drift damping. See
Damping Effects on Vessel Slow Drift. Wave drift damping can be modelled in OrcaFlex by
adjusting the diagonal entries in the damping matrix.
Ubtaining tbe data
All of the above data can generally be obtained from the results of a diffraction program. OrcaFlex can import these
data from the output files of some specific programs (AQWA and WAMIT) and from generic text files with OrcaFlex-
specific markers added. There are two different ways to do this import.
The easiest and most reliable way is to import all the hydrodynamic data using the Import Hydrodynamic Data
button on the Vessel Types data form. Alternatively, you may use the Import Matrices button to import the
frequency-dependent added mass and damping matrices.
Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping
Hydrodynamic and wind damping loads on a vessel are loads due to the relative velocity of the fluid past the vessel.
They can be modelled using the data on the Hydrodynamic Damping and Wind Damping pages on the vessel type
data form. If the length of the vessel differs from that of the vessel type then the vessel type data will be scaled
accordingly.
These loads are an important source of damping when modelling vessel slow drift. For a discussion of the various
damping sources see Damping Effects on Vessel Slow Drift.
The velocity used to calculate the drag loads is the relative velocity of the fluid past the vessel. This includes any
current or wind velocity and the vessel velocity due to any primary motion. The drag forces and moments due to
translational motion are modelled using the standard OCIMF method. The drag forces and moments due to any
vessel rate of yaw are modelled using yaw rate drag load factors. For details of how the loads are calculated, see
Vessel Theory: Drag Loads.
Warning: The current and wind loads are based on theory for surface vessels and are not suitable for
submerged vessels.
Load Urigin
The coordinates (relative to vessel axes) of the point on the vessel at which the hydrodynamic or wind drag loads
are calculated and at which they will be applied. This need not be at the vessel origin. It is normally best to place the
load origin at the centre of the vessel.
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The velocity used in the hydrodynamic drag load calculation is the current velocity at the load origin, minus any
velocity of the load origin due to primary motion of the vessel. Note that if the load origin is above the water surface
then the current velocity used is that at the water surface.
The velocity used in the wind load calculation is the wind velocity (as specified on the Wind page on the
environment data form), minus any velocity of the wind load origin due to primary motion of the vessel. Note that
the wind velocity specified should be that at 10m above mean water level, since that is the height used by the OCIMF
vessel wind load model (see Wind Speed for more details).
Load Symmetry
Specifies what symmetry the vessel type has below (for hydrodynamic damping) or above (for wind damping) the
water line, about the load origin. For XZ and YZ symmetry, OrcaFlex will use the symmetry to derive load
coefficients for extra directions generated by reflection in the specified vessel axes planes. For circular symmetry,
you must specify coefficients for one direction only and OrcaFlex will use symmetry to derive coefficients for all
other directions.
Note: The symmetry for hydrodynamic drag, wind drag and RAOs (see RAO Symmetry) need not be the
same, though of course the symmetry for hydrodynamic drag would normally be the same as that
for RAOs.
Areas and Area Moment
The surge and sway areas and yaw area moment that will be used to calculate the current or wind loads. For details
see Vessel Theory: Drag Loads.
Coefficients
Load coefficients are specified for the vessel surge, sway and yaw directions. They depend on the direction of the
current or wind, relative to the vessel (direction 0 meaning from astern, 90 meaning from starboard, etc.).
OrcaFlex uses any symmetry specified to derive coefficients for other directions and then uses linear interpolation
to derive coefficients for intermediate directions.
Note: When the symmetry is XZ and YZ the yaw moments must be zero, so OrcaFlex forces zero yaw
coefficients in this case.
The View Coefficients button allows you to view the coefficients that will be used – the blobs on the graph show the
coefficients you have specified plus any that OrcaFlex has derived using reflection, and the curve shows the
interpolated coefficients that will be used for intermediate directions. You should specify sufficient directions to
define the shape of the curve and to cover the range of directions that the vessel will experience.
Yaw Rate Drag Factors {bydrodynamic damping only]
The yaw rate drag factors determine the yaw drag moment, and any surge and sway drag forces, that result if the
vessel has a non-zero rate of yaw.
For a slender ship, and if the load origin has been placed at the centre of the vessel, then the surge and sway drag
factors can usually be taken to be zero, and then yaw drag factor can be estimated based on the vessel length and
draught. See Drag Loads due to Yaw Rate for details.
Roll Damping {bydrodynamic damping only]
These coefficients allow you to include a roll damping moment that is proportional to the roll component of angular
velocity. Both linear and quadratic terms can be modelled. See Roll Damping for details.
Drawing
Drawing Data
Each vessel of this type is drawn as a wire frame, based on vertices and representing the vessel type, plus a wire
frame representing vessel-specific features. See Drawing.
Edge diameter {used only for sbaded drawing]
For shaded graphics views, by default, the vessel is drawn using a solid, filled-in shape based on the vertices and
edges.
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As an alternative you can use the vertices and edges to define a frame like structure. If the edge diameter is '~' then
that edge will be used to build a filled in shape, otherwise that edge is drawn as a cylinder with the specified
diameter. Note that you can use a mixture of edge diameters (some defined, some set to '~') to combine both filled
in and framework shapes.

Figure: Wire frames witb different edge diameter. A value of '~' is used for tbe wire frame on tbe left
and a value of 1m is used for tbe wire frame on tbe rigbt.
Sbaded Drawing
By default, for shaded 3D Views, vessels are drawn using the wire frame data.
The wire frame drawing data comprises vertices and edges, but OrcaFlex needs a solid surface for the shaded
graphics representation. OrcaFlex uses the following procedure to generate this surface from the wire frame
vertices and edges.
First any edges with specified diameters (i.e. diameters not equal to '~') are drawn as cylinders. This allows you to
use such edges to visualise parts of the structure that are not solid, e.g. crane boom latticework. These edges are
now handled and are excluded from the remainder of the procedure.
The remaining edges are used to partition the vertices into sets of connected vertices. Two vertices are deemed to
be connected if there exists a path of edges between the two vertices.
Finally, for each set of connected vertices, the smallest convex hull enclosing the set is drawn.
This algorithm does not always generate the shaded drawings that you might expect. Consider the following two
wire frame vessels. When drawn in wire frame mode they look the same, but in shaded mode they differ.
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Figure: Wire Frame and Sbaded Drawing
For the green vessel the superstructure and the hull share vertices and so all vertices are connected. This results in a
single convex hull for all vertices being drawn. In the red vessel, the superstructure and hull do not share vertices
and so there are two distinct sets of connected vertices. This results in two separate convex hulls and a better
representation.
Alternatively the object can be represented by an imported 3D model by specifying the Sbaded Drawing File. This
must be a Direct X format file, usually with the .x file extension. If you use a relative path then the path will be taken
as relative to the folder containing the OrcaFlex file.
The Browse button allows you to specify the Shaded Drawing File quickly and also provides quick access to the
Orcina sample drawings via the Navigate to Urcina sample drawings button.
The Use Culling option is normally selected since it can provide a useful performance benefit. However, in order to
work it requires that the triangles defined in the .x file have their outward facing directions defined correctly. In the
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unusual situation where the outward facing directions are not defined correctly then the .x file will not display
correctly. If this happens then typically sections of the model will be missing when drawn by OrcaFlex. Disabling the
Use Culling option resolves this problem.
Draw Size is provided to allow you to scale the drawing. All directions are scaled equally to arrange that the longest
side in the drawing is drawn to the specified Draw Size. This longest side is calculated by first fitting the smallest
possible cuboid around the vertices of the shaded drawing (these are defined in the .x file). This cuboid is aligned
with the shaded drawing's local axes. Then the length of the longest side of this cuboid is found.
Specify a value of '~' to display the drawing using the absolute coordinates as specified in the .x file.
Note: If you use a value of '~' for Draw Size then OrcaFlex uses the coordinates in the .x file directly. If
these coordinates use a different length units system from your OrcaFlex model then you should
specify the units used in the .x file by including an auxiliary file called AdditionalInformation.txt.
Examples of this can be found in the sample shaded drawings provided by Orcina.
Sbaded Drawing Urigin is provided because the shaded drawing and the vessel type may have different origins.
The Shaded Drawing Origin defines the origin of the shaded drawing with respect to the vessel type's local axis
system. Similarly Sbaded Drawing Urientation allows you to reorient the shaded drawing to match the vessel
type's axis system.
Vessel lengtb scaling
If the vessel length and the vessel type length are different then the shaded drawing is scaled accordingly. This
scaling is applied in addition to the scaling of the shaded drawing specified by the Draw Size.
Importing Hydrodynamic Data
The Import Hydrodynamic Data button on the vessel types form enables the import of data, in the form of results
from common ship response calculation packages, into OrcaFlex. Presently, OrcaFlex can import data which has
been output by AQWA and WAMIT. OrcaFlex can also import data from Moses, Hydrostar/ARIANE and Wadam
output files, after the addition of some markup text. The form of this markup also allows for import from any generic
text file.
Importing data from AQWA and WAMIT
OrcaFlex attempts to import as much data as possible from the file to the appropriate data items of the vessel type.
These data are: displacement RAOs, load RAOs, QTFs, added mass and damping, and hydrostatic stiffness. The
imported data is converted to match the vessel type conventions and scaled to match the units of the OrcaFlex
model.
Mass, inertia and hydrostatic equilibrium position are not always output by these packages, but will be imported by
OrcaFlex if they are available. The remaining vessel type data are not typically calculated by such programs, so will
need to be obtained from another source. Any OrcaFlex data for which there are not any corresponding data in the
imported file will not be changed.
If the import fails for any reason, OrcaFlex will report an error and reinstate the vessel type data to that which was
present before the import began. If the data in the file are ambiguous, OrcaFlex will prompt you for clarification. At
the end of the import process, OrcaFlex will warn you of anything noteworthy – for example, if no QTFs were
present in the file, or if a damping matrix was non-symmetric.
Importing data from AQWA
AQWA results are output in a text file with a .lis extension. The data are in dimensional form. OrcaFlex reads data
into the presently selected draught.
Units
OrcaFlex first attempts to determine the units in use in the file, from the values of g (acceleration due to gravity) and
ρ (water density), and the knowledge that the unit of time is the second. If this is successful, then OrcaFlex will scale
the data (if necessary) from the units in use in the file to the units of the OrcaFlex model. If the units cannot be
determined, or if they are a mixture of SI and US, OrcaFlex will be unable to convert the data in this way: in this case,
the raw data will be imported from the file unscaled and a warning will be issued.
Reference origins
All of the AQWA data have their reference origin at the vessel centre of gravity. So OrcaFlex sets the RAO origins,
QTF origin, and reference origin for stiffness, added mass & damping to the value of the centre of gravity given on
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the vessel types Structure page. You will need to ensure that this value is appropriate before importing the AQWA
data. RAO phase origins, likewise, are at the vessel centre of gravity, so are set appropriately by OrcaFlex.
Added mass and damping
AQWA outputs the whole 6x6 matrices for added mass and damping, but OrcaFlex uses only the upper right triangle
of each. You will receive a warning if any of these matrices, in the imported file, are significantly non-symmetric,
since OrcaFlex is unable to handle this.
Note: Frequency-independent added mass and damping are not imported. If you have such data, you
may wish to pre-process your AQWA file to add them to each frequency-dependent item before
importing into OrcaFlex.
RAUs
Displacement RAOs are imported in a straightforward way. Load RAOs are imported including the Froude-Krylov
contribution. Since AQWA and OrcaFlex use the same conventions for vessel headings, RAO directions are read in
directly and require no adjustment.
QTFs
Wave drift QTFs in all six degrees of freedom are imported. As with RAOs, no adjustment is necessary for directions.
Stiffness and equilibrium position
The heave, roll and pitch components of the hydrostatic stiffness matrix are imported. Again, only the upper right
triangle is used, and a warning is issued if the AQWA data are non-symmetric. The Z-component of the equilibrium
position is imported. Since AQWA does not give the heel and trim values at the equilibrium position, these values are
set to zero: if necessary, you should edit these values yourself.
Note: AQWA may output the stiffness matrix twice, under the hydrostatic and hydrodynamic headings. If
so, and if the two matrices are not the same, a warning will be given and the 'hydrostatic' form will
be imported.
Mass and inertia
Mass and moments of inertia are imported, the latter from the diagonal elements of the inertia matrix output by
AQWA.
Importing data from WAMIT
WAMIT results are output in a text file with an .out extension. The data are almost all non-dimensional, the main
exceptions to this being g, acceleration due to gravity, and L, WAMIT's length scale which is used to non-
dimensionalise the data. OrcaFlex reads data into the presently selected draught.
Please note that OrcaFlex is unable to import WAMIT data representing multi-body problems.
Units
The length unit in use in the file will be determined, if possible, from the value of g and the knowledge that the unit
of time is the second. If this is successful, then OrcaFlex will convert the data from non-dimensional to the units of
the OrcaFlex model, using WAMIT's length scale (converted to the length unit of the OrcaFlex model) and the
current OrcaFlex values of g (acceleration due to gravity) and ρ (nominal water density), using the scaling factors
defined in the WAMIT user manual. If the length unit cannot be determined then the raw data will be imported from
the file unscaled and a warning will be issued.
Reference origins
All of the WAMIT data have their reference origin at WAMIT's vessel origin. OrcaFlex determines the position of this
origin, with respect to OrcaFlex's vessel origin, from the difference in the centre of gravity as given in the two
coordinate systems, and sets the RAO origins, QTF origin, and added mass & damping origin to have this value. (If
you choose the OrcaFlex vessel origin to be the same as the WAMIT vessel origin, then the coordinates of the centre
of gravity will coincide and the reference origins will all be zero).
In WAMIT, the phase origin is at the global origin, so the OrcaFlex RAO phase origins are represented by the
coordinates of the WAMIT global origin relative to the OrcaFlex vessel origin. We determine this by (i) expressing
the WAMIT global origin relative to the WAMIT vessel origin (i.e. in "body-fixed axes"), using the values of XBODY,
YBODY, ZBODY and PHIBODY in the WAMIT output file, and (ii) translating this value to be relative to the OrcaFlex
vessel origin, using the difference between the centres of gravity in the two systems.
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You will therefore need to ensure that the centre of gravity is set appropriately in OrcaFlex before importing the
WAMIT data.
Note: In some cases, WAMIT does not output the horizontal position of the centre of gravity. If so, then
OrcaFlex will warn you of this, and you will need to set these reference origins yourself.
Added mass and damping
WAMIT outputs added mass and damping as a list of (i,j) components. OrcaFlex imports these values, but uses only
the upper right triangle of each matrix. You will receive a warning if any of these matrices, in the imported file, are
significantly non-symmetric, since OrcaFlex is unable to handle this. Components for which an (i,j) value is not given
are assumed to be zero. The non-dimensional WAMIT values for added mass (a) and damping (b) are scaled to
dimensional (A,B respectively) values according to the formulae
Aij = ρL
k
aij
Bij = ρL
k
ωbij
where
k = 3 for i,j=1,2,3;
k = 4 for i=1,2,3, j=4,5,6 or i=4,5,6, j=1,2,3;
k = 5 for i,j=4,5,6 and
ω is the frequency in rad/s.
RAUs
Displacement RAOs are imported in a straightforward way. They are re-dimensionalised by multiplying by the
factor L
k
, k = 0 for i = 1,2,3; k = 1 for i = 4,5,6. WAMIT may calculate load RAOs in one of two ways, and either or both
methods (labelled "Haskind" and "Diffraction") may be present in the file. If both are given, OrcaFlex will prompt
you to choose one method and will import the data for that method only. The re-dimensionalising factor for load
RAOs is ρ g L
k
, k = 2 for i=1,2,3; k = 3 for i=4,5,6. The RAO directions in OrcaFlex are relative to the vessel, and are
determined by subtracting the value of PHIBODY in the WAMIT input file (the vessel heading at rest) from each of
the values of wave heading, which are given in WAMIT with respect to global axes.
QTFs
Wave drift QTFs are re-dimensionalised with the factor ρ g L
k
, k = 1 for i=1,2,3; k = 2 for i=4,5,6. Directions are
adjusted in the same way as for RAOs.
WAMIT may calculate QTFs in a number of different ways: Momentum Conservation, Pressure Integration, and
Control Surface. OrcaFlex is presently unable to import data resulting from the Momentum Conservation calculation,
so this method is disregarded. As with load RAOs, if data from more than one of the remaining methods is present,
then you will be prompted to choose just one of them.
Notes: WAMIT outputs QTFs for pairs of wave headings. OrcaFlex allows only unidirectional QTFs, so
imports only the data for which the two headings coincide.
Stiffness and equilibrium position
The heave, roll and pitch components of the hydrostatic stiffness matrix are imported. The equilibrium position is
not specified by WAMIT, so you should edit this value yourself.
Mass and inertia
Mass and moments of inertia are not imported from WAMIT files. You should enter these data yourself.
Importing data from generic text files
The Import Hydrodynamic Data button can also be to import data from a generic text file containing special
markup to identify and describe the data. The following data are imported:
- Displacement RAOs.
- Load RAOs.
- Wave Drift QTFs.
- Frequency dependent added mass and damping matrices.
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This mode of import is equivalent to importing each of the above categories of data individually by using the import
buttons as follows:
- Import RAOs on the Displacement RAOs page.
- Import RAOs on the Load RAOs page.
- Import QTFs on the Wave Drift page.
- Import Matrices on the Stiffness, Added Mass, Damping page.
If the import fails for any reason, OrcaFlex will report an error and reinstate the vessel type data to that which was
present before the import began. At the end of the import process, OrcaFlex will warn you of anything noteworthy –
for example, if no QTFs were present in the file, or if a damping matrix was non-symmetric.
Importing RAUs
RAOs may be imported using the Import RAUs button on the vessel types form. Data may be imported from AQWA
or WAMIT output files and, with the addition of some markup text, from Moses, Hydrostar/ARIANE and Wadam
output files. The form of this markup also allows for import from other text files.
Import RAUs from specific program output
OrcaFlex can import RAOs directly from AQWA and WAMIT output files, as described under Importing
Hydrodynamic Data. All existing RAO data for the selected draught will be overwritten.
Import RAUs from marked-up text files
You can use generic text files to import RAO data from, for example, a ship response calculation program or model
test results.
When you import RAOs from a text file, any RAO data previously present in OrcaFlex for the draughts given in the
text file will be deleted. Other data for these draughts, e.g. wind and hydrodynamic damping data, will not be
affected. So for each draught you import, all the RAOs for that draught must be in a single file. You can therefore
either put all the RAOs in a single file, or else have separate files for separate draughts.
RAO data in a text file can be imported providing that the data appears in tabular form and markers are first
inserted into the file to identify the data to OrcaFlex.
A text RAO file must contain the RAO data in the following form. It is usually easy to create a suitable file by adding a
few lines to your original response data file – see the examples below for specific program output.
- The RAO data must appear in the file in one or more tables, each table being for one draught and direction. To
enable OrcaFlex to find the tables, each table must be preceded by a line containing the string OrcaFlex
Displacement RAO Start. The table must be immediately followed by a line containing the string OrcaFlex
Displacement RAO End. There must not be any blank lines between these two marker lines. For load RAOs these
strings should be OrcaFlex Load RAO Start and OrcaFlex Load RAO End.
Note: OrcaFlex does not distinguish between text files containing displacement RAOs and those
containing wave load RAOs. You must take care to import them into the correct location.
- Immediately following the line containing the OrcaFlex RAO Start string there must be two lines (in either
order) specifying the draught and direction that applies to that table. The line specifying the draught must be of
the form Draught DraughtName, where DraughtName is the name of the draught. If the name contains spaces,
then DraughtName must be enclosed in quotes. The line specifying the direction must be of the form Direction n,
where n is a number specifying the direction the wave is progressing, in degrees, measured positive from
forward towards the port side. So direction 0 means waves coming from astern and direction 90 means waves
coming from the starboard side.
- Following these two lines, the first line of the table must be a set of headers defining the subsequent columns.
This headers line consists of a number of character strings, separated by spaces. The strings indicate the
contents of the columns – see Header Strings for Text RAO Tables. Columns with unrecognised header strings
are ignored.
- If you want OrcaFlex to ignore a column, for example because it contains irrelevant or superfluous data, then
insert an unrecognised header string, (e.g. "N/A" or "~"). In particular, if the table contains both wave period
and frequency you must indicate that one of these is to be ignored, since OrcaFlex will not accept two columns
specifying the same information.
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- The remaining lines in the table must contain numbers, one for each header in the headers line, separated by
tabs and/or spaces. Please note that it is the order of the columns that matters, not their actual position across
the page. Hence, although it is natural to align the headers above the columns of numbers, this is not in fact
necessary.
- The conventions and units used in the text file can be specified – see below. Doing so allows the imported data
to be converted to match the vessel type conventions and scaled to match the units of the OrcaFlex model.
- The RAO and phase origins are not read in and should be set on the Vessel Type form.
Specifying conventions and units
You can add markup to the file to specify the conventions and units of the data contained in the file. For example, a
typical markup block for conventions is as follows:
*** OrcaFlex Conventions Start ***
RAOResponseUnits = degrees
RAOWaveUnit = amplitude
RAOPhaseConvention = lags
RAOPhaseUnitsConvention = degrees
RAOPhaseRelativeToConvention = crest
SurgePositive = forward
SwayPositive = port
HeavePositive = up
RollPositiveStarboard = down
PitchPositiveBow = down
YawPositiveBow = port
*** OrcaFlex Conventions End ***
The block begins with a line containing the string OrcaFlex Conventions Start and ends with a line containing
OrcaFlex Conventions End. The lines in between specify the conventions using the standard OrcaFlex batch script
names and values.
The above list contains all possible conventions settings that can be included in the block. Note that the waves are
referred to by convention is not allowed because the WP, WFH or WFR header string identifies the period/frequency
convention. In addition the symmetry convention should not be specified in this block – instead you should simply
set it to the appropiate value in the OrcaFlex model.
If some conventions are omitted then OrcaFlex uses the corresponding value from the OrcaFlex model conventions.
If the block is omitted altogether then a warning is issued and no conventions conversion is performed.
The units of the data contained in the file are specified in a similar way:
*** OrcaFlex Units Start ***
LengthUnits = m
ForceUnits = kN
*** OrcaFlex Units End ***
The above list contains all possible units settings that can be included in the block. For displacement RAOs the
length unit is the only one which is used and consequently the force units can be omitted. For load RAOs both length
and force units should be specified.
If some units settings are omitted then OrcaFlex uses the corresponding value from the OrcaFlex model. If the block
is omitted altogether then a warning is issued and no units scaling is performed.
Moses output
See this example for Moses displacement RAOs, and this one for Moses wave load RAOs. Remember that RAO and
phase origins are not imported from text files – you should take particular care with Moses output to set these
correctly, since RAO origin may differ from phase origin in this case.
Note: Moses reports encounter period or frequency, to account for the effect of the speed of the vessel on
the apparent wave period or frequency. OrcaFlex requires the data at actual wave period or
frequency, so if possible your vessel in your Moses model should not have any forward speed.
HydrostarJARIANE output
Hydrostar has an option to output results in a format suitable for import directly into ARIANE, and this format is
also suitable for import, with the mark-up described above, into OrcaFlex. This format is usually indicated by the
phrase 'pour ARIANE' at the head of the file. This example demonstrates the necessary mark-up and the setting of
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conventions and units for displacement RAOs. Hydrostar requires that the 'horizontal' components of the RAOs are
listed first, then the 'vertical' components: you must take particular care here to order the column headers correctly.
Note: As with Moses, Hydrostar takes account of the effect of the speed of the vessel in determining the
added mass and damping, and reports results at encounter period or frequency. Your vessel in your
Hydrostar model should not have any forward speed.
Utber output
OrcaFlex can import data produced by other programs (or, more generally, text data obtained by any other means)
so long as it is in the format illustrated by the examples above, ie a series of tables of data, one for each direction,
arranged with rows representing wave period or frequency and columns for surge/sway/heave/roll/pitch/yaw
dimensional RAO values.
Header Strings for Text RAU Tables
When importing RAOs from a text file, the following strings can be used in the header line.
Header string Column contains
WP Wave period in seconds
WFH Wave frequency in Hertz
WFR Angular wave frequency in radians/second
XA Surge amplitude
XP Surge phase
YA Sway amplitude
YP Sway phase
ZA Heave amplitude
ZP Heave phase
RXA Roll amplitude
RXP Roll phase
RYA Pitch amplitude
RYP Pitch phase
RZA Yaw amplitude
RZP Yaw phase
In these header strings X, Y and Z represent the vessel axes, A denotes amplitude, P denotes phase and R rotation
about the given axis.
RAU Data Cbecklist
To derive vessel point motions, you need to obtain data giving both RAOs and phases for the vessel for the relevant
wave period. You also need to know what conventions apply to your data; these may be documented with the data,
but sometimes you may have to deduce what they are. You should have answers to all the following questions:
To wbat point on tbe vessel do tbe data apply?
This is the RAO origin and is often the vessel centre of gravity, but you need to be sure. If it is not specified check
with your data supplier.
To wbat point on tbe vessel are tbe pbases relative?
This is the RAO phase origin and is usually, but not always, the same as the RAO origin.
Are tbe responses in dimensional or RAU form?
RAO form (i.e. for unit wave amplitude) is the most common; data giving dimensional form would have to also give
the associated wave amplitudes/heights. OrcaFlex will only accept RAO form.
In wbat form are tbe rotational roll, pitcb and yaw RAUs?
Units such as degrees/metre or radians/metre (displacement RAOs), or kN.m/m (wave load RAOs), almost always
mean the rotational motions are relative to waves of unit amplitude.
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Very rarely, rotational RAO amplitudes are given per unit wave height (i.e. double amplitude) – check your data
source. In this case you will have to multiply the RAOs by 2 manually, before entry to OrcaFlex.
Units such as degrees/degree, radians/radian, or no units (displacement RAOs), or kN.m/radian (wave load RAOs),
imply rotational RAOs relative to waves of unit steepness or maximum slope.
For long wave periods in deep water, the rotational displacement RAOs in the wave plane (e.g. pitch in head or stern
seas) should tend to 1 for RAOs relative to unit maximum slope, or to pi for RAOs relative to unit steepness.
Are tbe pbases in degrees or radians?
Unless you only have a small amount of data, this should be obvious from the range of phase values.
Wbat directions are positive for surge, sway, beave, roll, pitcb and yaw?
Often they are surge positive forward, sway positive to port, heave positive up, but some authors use heave positive
downwards. Roll, pitch and yaw are usually positive when clockwise about the positive surge, sway and heave
directions.
Most data sources use right-handed axes, but not all. OrcaFlex allows complete generality in its data input, but you
must find out how your data are defined.
To wbat pbase time origin are tbe pbases relative?
OrcaFlex allows you to specify that the phases to be relative to the time the wave crest, trough, zero up-crossing or
zero down-crossing passes the phase origin. The passage of the crest past the RAO origin is the most common phase
time origin, but you need to check and tell OrcaFlex – see note on phase leads/lags below.
Are tbe pbases leads or lags?
Phase conventions are sometimes documented by giving the formula used to represent the harmonic motion.
Commonly used ones are:
- A.cos(ωt - P) or A.cos(P - ωt) imply that phase P is a lag.
- cos(ωt + P') implies that phase P' is a lead.
Using sin rather than cos in the above formulae has no effect on whether the phases are leads or lags.
Cbecking RAUs
The Cbeck RAUs button on the vessel types form allows a visual check on the RAO data for either displacement
RAOs or wave load RAOs. For a given draught and wave direction, it displays graphs (one for each vessel degree of
freedom) showing how the RAO and phase vary with wave period.
There are 3 types of graph available:
- Complex Values
- Amplitude
- Phase
Amplitude and Pbase Crapbs
These graphs provide a straightforward graphical representation of the RAO data as input on the Vessel Types data
form. The amplitude or phase is plotted on the Y axis of the graph. For the X axis you have the choice of plotting
period, frequency in rad/s or frequency in Hz.
Complex Value Crapbs
The graphs initially show the RAOs for the currently selected draught and direction. You can switch to other
draughts and directions, either by using the navigation buttons at the bottom of the form to step through the data,
else or by selecting from the drop-down lists. You can change the scale of the graphs (double click on the graph and
change the ranges of the axes). This is useful if the curve does not initially fit on the graph.
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The graphs depicts the RAO data specified by the user for the specified RAO origin. The graph has two parts:
- A curve showing the RAO data specified by the user as a series of points joined in order of increasing period.
The curve starts from the 'short' wave response, which should have zero or very small amplitude, so the curve
should start from near the origin. Moving along the curve away from the origin corresponds to the wave period
increasing from zero. For surge, sway and heave, the other end of the curve is the 'long' wave RAO data specified
for period 'Infinity'. For roll, pitch and yaw, the RAO data for period 'Infinity' cannot (for technical reasons) be
included in the curve, so instead the other end of the curve is the RAO data for the largest finite period specified.
- A solid circle representing the expected long wave response limit for a freely floating vessel. See RAO Quality
Checks for details of the expected long wave RAOs.
Warning: The expected long wave response limits calculated by OrcaFlex only apply to free-floating vessels.
Also, the yaw response limit only applies to slender vessels (i.e. vessels that are long in the x-
direction and narrow in the y-direction).
The purpose of the graph is help you check your RAO data – the curve should normally be reasonably smooth and
tend towards the expected limit shown by the solid circle. See How to Check RAO Data for details.
The graph represents RAOs as points in polar coordinates (R,φ), where:
- R is the non-dimensional amplitude. For surge, sway and heave R is the vessel motion amplitude divided by the
wave amplitude. And for roll, pitch and yaw, R is the rotational response normalised with respect to maximum
wave slope – i.e. it is vessel rotation amplitude divided by the maximum wave slope.
- φ is the phase lag, from the time the wave crest passes the user-specified phase origin until the maximum
positive motion occurs.
Note: Positive here means as in the OrcaFlex conventions (not necessarily the same as the vessel type RAO
conventions). So positive surge is forward, positive sway is to port, positive heave is up, positive roll
is starboard down, positive pitch is bow down and positive yaw is bow to port.
This polar coordinates way of representing RAOs is better than drawing separate graphs of amplitude and phase,
since it presents all the information on a single graph and also the resulting curves are smooth, whereas phase
graphs frequently show phase jumps.
How to Cbeck RAUs
For each draught and wave direction, you should check that the curves on the Complex Value RAO graphs are
reasonably smooth and approach the circle, which is the expected long-wave limit for a free-floating vessel. Note
that:
- The curve may not approach the expected long wave limit if the RAO data does not include values for any long
waves. Wave periods over 20 seconds for ships, or 30 seconds for semisubmersibles, are considered to be
sufficiently long for this purpose.
- The curve might also not approach the circle if the vessel is not free-floating. For example the heave
displacement RAO amplitude of a tension leg platform will not approach the usual long wave limit of 1.
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- The circle on the yaw graph only applies to slender vessels (i.e. long in the x-direction and narrow in the y-
direction).
- Smooth graphs can only be expected if the data includes RAOs for reasonably closely spaced periods.
As examples, consider the following three example graphs:
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1.5 1 0.5 0 -0.5 -1 -1.5
1.5
1
0.5
0
-0.5
-1
-1.5
1.5 1 0.5 0 -0.5 -1 -1.5
1.5
1
0.5
0
-0.5
-1
-1.5
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1.5 1 0.5 0 -0.5 -1 -1.5
1.5
1
0.5
0
-0.5
-1
-1.5

The first graph shows a typical, well-behaved set of displacement RAO data – the curve is smooth and the long-wave
limit agrees with the expected value marked by the circle.
For a freely floating vessel, the second graph is clearly in error, since the curve does not lead to the expected long
wave limit. The RAO data for long waves (represented by the end of the curve) has the correct amplitude, but its
phase differs by 180° from the expected long-wave value (represented by the circle). There are two likely causes – it
may be that the phase lead/lag convention data has been set wrongly (this would give a phase angle sign error) or
else that the convention data for the direction of positive motion has been set wrongly (this would give a phase
error of 180°).
The curve on the third graph approaches the expected long wave limit, but then suddenly goes to zero. This suggests
that the RAO data for period 'Infinity' has not been set correctly and is zero.
Common Problems
It is not unusual to be given RAO data for a vessel but not be given all the conventions that apply to the data. Below
are some common problems and their symptoms. But beware that several common problems have very similar
symptoms, so it is not possible to be sure what the problem is unless you are sure about most of the data's
conventions and only unsure about one. It is therefore important to get as much information as possible from the
original RAO data supplier.
- The quoted wave direction might be measured clockwise (viewed from above) from the x-direction, rather than
anticlockwise (which is the OrcaFlex convention). The effect would be a 180° shift in the sway, roll and yaw
phases.
- The quoted wave direction may be the direction the wave is coming from, rather than the direction it is
progressing towards (which is the OrcaFlex convention). The effect would be to negate all the phase values.
- The phases may be leads instead of lags (OrcaFlex will accept either – see RAO Phase Conventions). The effect of
an error here would be to negate all the phase values.
Importing QTFs
Wave drift QTF data may be imported using the Import QTFs button on the vessel types form. Data may be
imported directly from AQWA or WAMIT output files, from NMIWAVE output files, and, with the addition of some
markup text, from Moses and Hydrostar/ARIANE output files. The form of this markup also allows for import from
other text files.
Import QTFs from specific program output
OrcaFlex can import QTFs directly from AQWA and WAMIT output files, as described under Importing
Hydrodynamic Data. All existing QTF data for the selected draught will be overwritten.
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NMIWAVE files
NMIWAVE text output files may be imported with the addition of a single line containing the string NMIWAVE Wave
Drift at the start of the file, as in this example
NMIWAVE uses the ITTC conventions, which are surge +ve forward, sway +ve to starboard, heave +ve down, roll
+ve starboard down, pitch +ve bow up, yaw +ve bow to starboard. As with AQWA and WAMIT, OrcaFlex recognizes
the type of file and 'knows' what these conventions are, so you do not need to specify them explicitly in the file
before import. The imported data is converted from these conventions to match the vessel type conventions.
The wave heading convention used by NMIWAVE is that wave heading is measured +ve clockwise when viewed
from above, and zero wave heading means a stern wave. This is the opposite sense to OrcaFlex, and is handled
automatically on import by changing the sign of the wave headings when an NMIWAVE file is imported.
Also, note that NMIWAVE QTFs are non-dimensional: OrcaFlex will re-dimensionalise them on import, in the same
way as for WAMIT.
Import QTFs from marked-up text files
QTF data can be imported from generic text files using a similar format to that for RAOs. Only the direction
conventions are required in this case:
*** OrcaFlex Conventions Start ***
SurgePositive = forward
SwayPositive = port
HeavePositive = up
RollPositiveStarboard = down
PitchPositiveBow = down
YawPositiveBow = port
*** OrcaFlex Conventions End ***
Since QTFs contain no phase information, the conventions relating to phase have no relevance; and all QTFs are
assumed to be given relative to waves of unit amplitude, so the RAOWaveUnit convention is implicitly set to be
"amplitude".
The units of the data contained in the file are specified in the same way:
*** OrcaFlex Units Start ***
LengthUnits = m
ForceUnits = kN
*** OrcaFlex Units End ***
The QTF format differs from that for RAOs as follows:
- The identifier line is OrcaFlex QTF Start rather than OrcaFlex Displacement RAO Start or OrcaFlex Load RAO
Start.
- The column headers are surge, sway, heave, roll, pitch and yaw instead of X, Y, Z, RX, RY and RZ respectively.
- Phase data are not specified.
Otherwise, the format follows that for importing RAOs. The QTF origin is not read in and should be set on the Vessel
Type form.
Moses output
QTFs in all six degrees of freedom are included in this example of Moses output.
Note: Moses reports encounter period or frequency, to account for the effect of the speed of the vessel on
the apparent wave period or frequency. OrcaFlex requires the data at actual wave period or
frequency, so if possible your vessel in your Moses model should not have any forward speed.
HydrostarJARIANE output
As is the case with RAOs, Hydrostar's output format 'pour ARIANE' is suitable, with the mark-up described above, for
import into OrcaFlex. This example demonstrates the necessary mark-up and the setting of conventions and units
for horizontal-plane QTFs (surge, sway and yaw). OrcaFlex will set the data for the degrees of freedom which are not
imported (so heave, roll and pitch in this case) to zero. Data in this form are common for vessels with large water
plane areas, such as barges, tankers, etc.
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Note: As with Moses, Hydrostar takes account of the effect of the speed of the vessel in determining the
added mass and damping, and reports results at encounter period or frequency. Your vessel in your
Hydrostar model should not have any forward speed.
Utber output
OrcaFlex can import data produced by other programs (or, more generally, text data obtained by any other means)
so long as it is in the format illustrated by the examples above, ie a series of tables of data, one for each direction,
arranged with rows representing wave period or frequency and columns for surge/sway/heave/roll/pitch/yaw
dimensional QTF amplitudes. As in the Hydrostar/ARIANE example above, any missing columns will have their data
set to zero.
Importing Added Mass and Damping Data
Added mass and damping matrices may be imported using the Import Matrices button on the vessel types form.
Data may be imported directly from AQWA or WAMIT output files, and with the addition of some markup text from
Moses, Hydrostar/ARIANE and Wadam output files. The form of this markup also allows for import of reasonably-
formatted 6x6 added mass and damping matrices from any generic text file.
Direct import from specific program output
OrcaFlex can import data directly from AQWA and WAMIT output files, as described under Importing
Hydrodynamic Data. Note, however, that in this case the reference origin is not imported. All existing added mass
and damping data for the selected draught will be overwritten.
Import from marked-up text files
With the addition of some tags indicating the start and end of the data, and others defining which vessel properties
should receive the imported data, data may be imported from the plain ASCII text files which are written by a
number of analysis programs in addition to AQWA and WAMIT. The form of these tags is given below for each such
program. Common to each is a line of the form "Draught [DraughtName]" specifying the vessel type draught into
which the data are to be imported. If DraughtName already exists, the existing added mass and damping data will be
overwritten; if not, then it will be created and all the other data will be set to those of the OrcaFlex default vessel
type.
The conventions used in the text file can be specified in exactly the same way as for RAO and QTF import. Doing so
allows the imported data to be converted to match the vessel type conventions. Note that, as for QTFs, only the
direction conventions apply to the added mass and damping data and so only these conventions need to be
specified. So a typical conventions block might look like this:
*** OrcaFlex Conventions Start ***
SurgePositive = forward
SwayPositive = port
HeavePositive = up
RollPositiveStarboard = down
PitchPositiveBow = down
YawPositiveBow = port
*** OrcaFlex Conventions End ***
You can also specify scaling factors to allow for the different ways in which various programs scale their output.
OrcaFlex requires unscaled, fully-dimensional values for added mass and damping matrices, so some data may need
to be un-scaled or re-dimensionalised. You may also use these scaling factors to allow for differences in units
systems – unlike RAOs, OrcaFlex does not read units definitions and convert them automatically for added mass and
damping matrices. These scaling factors are described in the sections below.
Moses output
Added mass and damping may be output in two forms by Moses:
(i) Diagonal elements only
The standard Moses output file may contain tables of the diagonal elements (surge-surge, sway-sway, yaw-yaw etc
terms only) of the added mass and damping matrices, listed against period or frequency. OrcaFlex will import these
values, setting the off-diagonal elements to zero. These data are identified to OrcaFlex by the addition of a line
containing the phrase "OrcaFlex Added Mass Table Start" (analogously for Damping), followed by a draught
specifier and a line containing one of the strings "WP", "WFR" or "WFH" to indicate that the data are given in the
Moses file by period, frequency in radians/sec, or frequency in Hz respectively. These lines must immediately
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precede the table of data, after any column headings, and each table must be terminated by a corresponding
"OrcaFlex Added Mass Table End" (or Damping) line. The use of this markup is illustrated in this truncated example
(ii) Full matrices
Moses will also optionally output the full 6x6 matrices to a PPO file: in general, if you have this file you should
import the data from here in preference to the diagonal values only. In this case, the required tags are "OrcaFlex
Added Mass Matrix Start" (again, analogously for Damping), followed by a draught specifier and one of "WP x",
"WFR x" or "WFH x", where x is the value of the period or frequency, at the beginning of each matrix, and the
corresponding End tag immediately after each matrix. This sample demonstrates the use of these tags.
In both cases, Moses presents added mass and damping values which are scaled by mass. Since OrcaFlex requires
non-normalized data, the import process must account for this scaling factor. To do so, note that towards the
beginning of each of the two examples above is a section of the form
OrcaFlex Scaling Factor Start 1381.8 OrcaFlex Scaling Factor End
The number 1381.8 here is the mass of the vessel, as specified in the standard output file. OrcaFlex will scale all the
imported data by this value.
Note: Moses reports encounter period or frequency, to account for the effect of the speed of the vessel on
the apparent wave period or frequency. OrcaFlex requires the data at actual wave period or
frequency, so if possible your vessel in your Moses model should not have any forward speed.
HydrostarJARIANE output
Full 6x6 added mass and damping matrices are output, without any normalising or scaling factors. Other than the
lack of scaling factors, the tags required by OrcaFlex are the same as those for Moses 6x6 matrices: you will need
Start and End tags surrounding each matrix and a "Draught" line, and a "WP x", "WFR x" or "WFH x" line, where x is
the value of the period or frequency, at the beginning of each matrix. Note that OrcaFlex will allow, as necessary, for
the row and column headings 1, 2, ..., 6 if they are present. A short example of marked-up Hydrostar output is given.
You should be aware that Hydrostar results may be given in either Hydrostar's own axis conventions or those of
ARIANE, and that the two differ. The latter is usually indicated by the phrase 'pour ARIANE' in the file: the
conventions in the example here are those for ARIANE.
Note: As with Moses, Hydrostar takes account of the effect of the speed of the vessel in determining the
added mass and damping, and reports results at encounter period or frequency. Your vessel in your
Hydrostar model should not have any forward speed.
WADAM output
WADAM also outputs full 6x6 added mass and damping matrices, but these are non-dimensional. The tags required
for each matrix are as for Hydrostar/ARIANE as above; in addition, the non-dimensionalising factors must be
specified in the file. Since the data are fully non-dimensional, the scaling is rather more complex than Moses' scaling
by mass alone: the factors differ between the added mass and damping matrices, and each matrix requires a
different factor for each constituent 3x3 sub-matrix (since their units differ). Full details of the calculation of these
factors are given in the WADAM output file itself (search for the string 'non-dimensional'); see this edited example,
which shows the relevant text and the corresponding markup text required by OrcaFlex.
Note: The conventions are not specified in this example, as we (Orcina) do not have any information on
them. If you are able to let us know what they are, and help us improve this example, then please do
get in touch with us.
Uutput from otber programs
OrcaFlex should be able to import added mass and damping data from other programs, not listed above, so long as
they are presented in text files as 6x6 matrices. As in the above examples, you will need to: add the appropriate text
strings in the file to delimit the data, nominate the draught into which the data are to be imported, and indicate the
wave period or frequency for each matrix. If the matrices are non-dimensional, either partially or fully, you will need
to enter the scaling factors into the file. Note that these factors may be entered multiple times and will be updated
each time – this may be useful if, say, they depend on frequency.
ó.7.3 Modelling Vessel Slow Drift
When a vessel is exposed to waves it experiences wave loads that can be split into first order and second order
terms. The first order terms generate motion at wave frequency and this is modelled in OrcaFlex using RAOs to
specify either the displacement or the load. The second order terms are much smaller but they include loads with a
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much lower frequency. These low frequency terms are called the wave drift loads and they can cause significant
slow drift motions of the vessel if their frequencies are close to a natural frequency of the vessel.
One common situation where the wave drift loads can matter is with a moored vessel. The vessel's natural
frequencies in surge, sway and yaw are typically quite low and so the low frequency wave drift loads can generate
quite significant slow drift excursions.
If you have already calculated the vessel slow drift motion then that motion can be applied in OrcaFlex using
harmonic motion or a time history file. But OrcaFlex can calculate and apply the slow drift motion for you. To do this
you need to do the following:
- Specify QTF data on the wave drift page of the vessel type form (the wave drift loads are calculated based on
this data). Also, ensure that Wave Drift Load {2nd Urder] is in the vessel's Included Effects. This tells OrcaFlex
to apply the mean wave drift load to the vessel during the static analysis, and then in the dynamic analysis to
apply the time varying wave drift load.
- Optionally, specify appropriate data for hydrodynamic and wind damping and any applied load, etc., and include
these loads in the vessel's Included Effects. OrcaFlex will automatically include loads from added mass and
damping and loads from any lines or other objects that are connected to the vessel.
- On the Structure page on the vessel type form, specify the vessel centre of gravity, mass, moments of inertia data
for the appropriate draught. And on the Stiffness, Added Mass and Damping page, specify the added mass and
damping matrices and the reference origin to which they apply. The stiffness and hydrostatic equilibrium
position data are not required for 3DOF analyses, since they only apply in the heave, roll and pitch directions.
- On the vessel form, include 3 degrees of freedom in the static analysis. The OrcaFlex static analysis will then
calculate the equilibrium position allowing for the mean wave drift load. And set the primary motion to
Calculated {3DUF]. The OrcaFlex simulation will then calculate the vessel surge, sway and yaw motion that
results.
- Set the vessel's superimposed motion according to whether and how you want to model first order wave
frequency motion.
In the dynamic simulation OrcaFlex will then calculate all the loads on the vessel and the resulting slow surge, sway
and yaw motion.
Damping Effects on Vessel Slow Drift
Drag and damping loads have an important effect on vessel slow drift motions. The following discussion documents
the various damping effects and how they are modelled in OrcaFlex. See CMPT (1998) section 3.12.
- Hydrodynamic drag and skin friction on tbe vessel bull. This is modelled in OrcaFlex using a combination of
the OCIMF approach, a yaw drag moment proportional to (yaw rate)
2
and roll damping terms (both linear and
quadratic). See the Hydrodynamic Damping data on the vessel type data form. For details of the theory see
Vessel Theory: Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping. Note that OrcaFlex does not yet have the dependency of yaw
drag on sway velocity proposed by Wichers, 1979.
- Wind drag on tbe vessel bull. This is the aerodynamic drag due to wind and any vessel velocity. It is modelled
in OrcaFlex based on the OCIMF approach. See the Wind Damping data on the vessel type data form. For details
of the theory see Vessel Theory: Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping.
- Hydrodynamic drag on tbe risersJmoorings. This is modelled in OrcaFlex by the drag force part of the
Morison force on the lines that model the risers/moorings.
- Wave radiation damping. This is not usually very significant at low frequencies, because the asymptotic limit
of the wave frequency damping is zero. It can be modelled in OrcaFlex using the constant damping matrix on the
vessel type form.
- Wave drift damping. This arises because the wave drift loads vary with vessel velocity. It can be modelled in
OrcaFlex by including it in the constant damping matrix on the vessel type data form. See CMPT (1998) page 3-
78 and Faltinsen (1990) page 161.
- Material damping in tbe risersJmoorings. This is the structural damping in the material of the risers and
mooring lines. This can be modelled in OrcaFlex by the line target damping value. However Triantafyllou et al
(1994) concluded that its effect is negligible.
- Seabed soil friction on tbe risersJmoorings. This arises from the frictional force acting on the part of a
mooring/riser that is lifting off and touching down on the seabed. It is modelled in OrcaFlex by the friction
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between the seabed and the line used to model the mooring/riser. However Triantafyllou et al (1994)
concluded that its effect is negligible.
ó.7.4 Vessel Response Reports
The vessel response window can be opened using the Results Menu or using the Report Vessel Response button on
the vessel data form. It offers two pages: Displacement Response, and Impulse Response, Added Mass and Damping.
Generation of vessel response reports can be automated through the batch script, or from the OrcaFlex
programming interface.
Note: The reported RAOs are first order RAOs calculated using small-angle theory to transform the RAOs
from the vessel RAO origin to the points specified on the Vessel Response form. Theses results are
accurate for small-angle rotational motion, but if the vessel undergoes large-angle rotational
motion it will exhibit a non-linear higher-order response that can only be approximated by RAOs.
More accurate results can be obtained in this case by running a simulation, which uses large angle
theory, and this can often be done very quickly by removing from the model all other objects that
do not affect the motion of the vessel.
Displacement Response
The Displacement Response page gives access to two spreadsheet reports, one giving displacement RAOs and one
giving spectral values, of the vessel's response to waves, based on its vessel type's displacement RAOs. It can be
accessed from the Results menu or from the Vessel data form.
Directions and Uutput Points
You specify one or more vessel-relative wave directions, and one or more points on the vessel, for which the RAOs
and spectral response will be reported.
If you specify a direction of '~' then the direction of the wave relative to the vessel is used. If there is more than one
wave train then the direction of the first wave train is used.
The output points are specified by giving their coordinates relative to vessel axes.
Report RAUs
The RAO report gives a separate worksheet for each specified direction, containing the RAOs for each of the
specified output points, derived from the displacement RAOs of its vessel type.
The reported RAOs allow for the following effects:
- They allow for the position of the output point relative to the RAO origin to which the vessel type RAOs apply.
- They give the RAOs for the specified wave direction, relative to the vessel. If this is not one of the directions for
which RAOs are specified, then the RAOs are derived by interpolation on direction.
- They allow for Froude scaling if there is a difference between the vessel type length and the vessel length. This
affects the periods at which the RAOs are reported.
RAOs are given for the position, velocity and acceleration of the output points, for all 6 degrees of freedom and for Z
Above Wave.
The RAO report covers the wave periods specified on the vessel type data form, plus (if appropriate) the regular
wave period specified on the environment data form.
Pbase Urigin
You can choose the Pbase Urigin to use for reporting phases, the options being:
- RAU Pbase Urigin. The phases will then be reported relative to the time that the wave (crest or trough, as
specified in the vessel type RAO conventions) passes the RAO phase origin specified on the vessel type form.
- Eacb Point. The phases will then be reported relative to the time the wave (crest or trough, as specified in the
vessel type RAO conventions) passes that particular output point.
The translational RAOs depend on the position of the output point. The rotational RAO amplitudes do not depend on
the position of the output point, since the roll, pitch and yaw of a vessel are the same everywhere on it. The
rotational RAO phases depend on the position of the output point only if you specify the Pbase Urigin to be Eacb
Point.
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Conventions
You can choose for the RAOs to be reported either using the same RAO conventions as specified for this vessel's type
or using Orcina standard conventions.
Z Above Wave
Z Above Wave reports the heave of the vessel relative to the water surface. This can be useful when evaluating
whether an object at some point on the vessel will contact the water surface and if so with what relative velocity.
Warning: Z Above Wave does not take account of wave surface disturbance due to the presence of the vessel.
Report Spectral Response
The spectral response report contains a separate worksheet for each specified direction and each random wave
train specified on the Environment data form. The worksheet contains tables of spectral values for position, velocity
and acceleration, for all 6 degrees of freedom and for Z Above Wave. Separate tables are given for each of the
specified output points.
Notes: The spectral response report is not available if no random wave trains are specified.
It is also not available if (for any of the specified directions and for any degree of freedom) the
vessel has a non-zero RAO amplitude for the zero wave period limit. This is because some of the
spectral integrals do not converge in such cases. Such RAO data is not realistic, since no vessel can
respond to infinitely high frequency waves.
The following spectral values are reported.
- The significant amplitude.
- The most probable maximum amplitude for a period of the specified Storm Duration.
- The average period of the response. This is the mean period between zero up-crossings.
Note: The significant and maximum values are reported as single amplitudes, i.e. the motion is +/- the
value reported.
Warnings: Wave directional spreading spectra are not taken into account. The calculation assumes that all
the spectral energy is in the specified direction for each wavetrain.
The standard formulae used to calculate the spectral values (see below) are based on the further
assumptions that the spectrum is narrow-banded and Gaussian, and that the extremes are
Rayleigh distributed. They are also based purely on small amplitude linear theory.
The storm duration should be short-term, ie of the order of hours rather than days or years, since
the sea-state, as represented by (Hs,Tz), is assumed to remain constant over this duration.
These spectral values are calculated as follows:
The spectrum of the wave train is combined with the vessel response specified by its RAOs, to obtain the response
spectrum for each degree of freedom. The zeroth and second spectral moments, m0 and m2, of the response
spectrum are then calculated. The spectral values are then given by:
Significant Amplitude = As = 2m0
½

Average Period = Tave = (m0/m2)
½

Max Amplitude = As(½ln(D*60*60/Tave))
½

where As is the significant amplitude, D is the specified Duration (in hours) and Tave is the average period (in
seconds). See, for example, Faltinsen, pages 24-27, or Ochi, pages 151-152.
Notes: For Z Above Wave, no spectral values can be reported for acceleration and only the significant
amplitude can be reported for velocity. This is because the RAO of Z Above Wave does not decay to
zero as wave period goes to zero, so some of the integrals for the spectral moments do not
converge. For velocity of Z Above Wave you could perhaps estimate the expected maximum
amplitude by assuming that the ratio of maximum amplitude to significant amplitude is roughly
the same for velocity as for position.
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All these reports are based on the vessel type displacement RAOs. Any wave load RAO data are
ignored.
Impulse Response, Added Mass and Damping
The Impulse Response, Added Mass and Damping page has only one button: Show Graphs. This button is enabled
only if the Vessel Type and Draught used by the vessel have Added Mass and Damping Method set to Frequency-
Dependent. Clicking the button will open a form showing:
- A graph of the Impulse Response Function (IRF) for the vessel.
- Graphs of the original frequency-dependent added mass or damping data.
The scale of the time lag axis for the IRF is determined by the cutoff time chosen. This graph may be useful in judging
what value should be selected for this cutoff time: a shorter cutoff time will allow for faster calculation, but too short
may mean significant IRF values are discarded and accuracy lost as a result.
The graph of Added Mass against frequency has superimposed on it a horizontal intercept representing the
calculated value of the "infinite-frequency" added mass. So long as the data are given to sufficiently high frequency,
this is an indicator of the consistency of the added mass and damping data.
Note that the values of added mass and damping shown may have been Froude scaled according to Vessel length.
ó.7.5 Vessel Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
Motion Results
The vessel motion is split into two components, the primary and superimposed motions. Both the total overall
motion and these two components are available as time history results.
X, Y, Z, Rotation 1, Rotation 2, Rotation 3 and Sea Surface Clearance
The position, orientation and sea surface clearance of the vessel, relative to global axes, due to the combination of
the primary and superimposed motion.
X, Y and Z are the global coordinates of a user specified point P on the vessel. The point P is specified in vessel local
coordinates. If P=(0,0,0) then the global X, Y and Z coordinates of the vessel origin are reported.
Sea Surface Clearance is the vertical clearance of point P from the instantaneous sea surface. A positive value
indicates the point P is above the sea surface.
Rotation 1, 2 and 3 define the final orientation relative to global axes. The 3 rotations (called Euler angles) are 3
successive rotations that take the global axes directions to the final axes directions. Rotation 2 is in the range -90° to
+90°. Range jump suppression is applied to the Rotation 1 and Rotation 3 angles (so values outside the range -360°
to +360° might be reported).
Velocity, CX-Velocity, CY-Velocity, CZ-Velocity
The magnitude and components of the velocity of the vessel, relative to global axes, due to the combination of the
primary and superimposed motion. These results are reported at a user specified point P on the vessel. The point P
is specified in vessel local coordinates.
Angular Velocity, x-Angular Velocity, y-Angular Velocity, z-Angular Velocity
The magnitude and components of the angular velocity of the vessel, relative to vessel axes, due to the combination
of the primary and superimposed motion.
Acceleration, CX-Acceleration, CY-Acceleration, CZ-Acceleration
The magnitude and components of the acceleration of the vessel, relative to global axes, due to the combination of
the primary and superimposed motion. These results are reported at a user specified point P on the vessel. The
point P is specified in vessel local coordinates.
Acceleration {incl. g], x-Acceleration {incl. g], y-Acceleration {incl. g], z-Acceleration {incl. g]
The magnitude and components (with respect to vessel axes) of the vector a - g where a is the acceleration of the
vessel and g is the acceleration due to gravity, a vector pointing vertically downwards. These results are reported at
a user specified point P on the vessel. The point P is specified in vessel local coordinates.
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These results can be used to compare against accelerometer readings.
Angular Acceleration, x-Angular Acceleration, y-Angular Acceleration, z-Angular Acceleration
The magnitude and components of the angular acceleration of the vessel, relative to vessel axes, due to the
combination of the primary and superimposed motion.
Primary X, Primary Y, Primary Z, Primary Rotation 1, Primary Rotation 2 and Primary Rotation 3
The primary position of the vessel, as produced by any primary motion, relative to global axes. So Primary X,
Primary Y and Primary Z are the global X,Y,Z coordinates of the primary position of the vessel origin, and Primary
Rotation 1, Primary Rotation 2 and Primary Rotation 3 are the primary orientation of the vessel, again relative to
global axes.
Primary Rotation 2 is in the range -90° to +90°. Range jump suppression is applied to Primary Rotation 1 and
Primary Rotation 3 (so values outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
Surge, Sway, Heave, Roll, Pitcb and Yaw
The offset of the vessel, due to any superimposed motion, relative to the primary position of the vessel. They are
usually, therefore, the wave-generated part of the motion, so Surge, Sway and Heave are the offsets from the
primary position to the final position and are measured in the primary vessel axes directions. And Roll, Pitch and
Yaw are the wave-generated rotations and are relative to the primary vessel axes directions.
Pitch is in the range -90° to +90°. Range jump suppression is applied to the Roll and Yaw angles (so values outside
the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
Sea Surface Z
The global Z coordinate of the sea surface directly above the instantaneous vessel primary position.
Force and Moment Results
For each load on the vessel, so long as it is not explicitly excluded from the list of that vessel's Included Effects, time
history results are available for the magnitude of the force and moment, and for each component of the force or
moment. All these results are reported in vessel axes directions, with moments taken about the vessel origin. If a
load is excluded then it will not be calculated and will not appear in the list of available results.
Total Load
The magnitude and components (in vessel axes directions) of the sum of the constituent loads on the vessel which
are included in the calculation.
Connections Load
The sum of the loads from all attached lines, links, winches, shapes, etc. Available only if at least one such object is
attached to the vessel. For convenience, the components of Connection Force and Moment are also available in
Global axes directions (GX,GY,GZ). Details of the loads exerted by each individual object are available as results
tables, and can also be found under the results for each object itself.
Applied Load
The sum of all the local and global applied loads. Available only if Applied Loads is in the list of the vessel's included
effects.
Hydrodynamic Damping Load
The hydrodynamic damping force and moment on the vessel. Available only if Hydrodynamic Damping is checked
in included effects.
Wind Damping Load
The wind damping force and moment on the vessel. Available only if Wind Damping is checked in included effects
and Include Wind Loads on Vessels is checked on the Wind data page of the Environment data form.
Wave Drift Load
The wave drift force and moment exerted on the vessel. These results are available only if Wave Drift Load {2nd
order] is included.
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Added Mass & Damping Load
The force and moment on the vessel due to added mass and damping.
Hydrostatic Stiffness Load
The Hydrostatic stiffness force and moment on the vessel.
Wave Load RAU Force and Moment
The force and moment on the vessel due to the wave load RAOs. Available if Wave Load {1st Urder] is checked in
included effects.
Note: First order wave RAO load and second order wave drift load results, though reported with respect
to vessel axes, are applied with respect to primary heading axes. In most cases there will be little
difference between the two frames of reference, but large values of Primary Rotations 1&2 may
have a significant effect on these results.
Multiple Static Results
For multiple statics calculations the results variables available are as follows. The loads reported are the total loads,
including those from current, wind, applied loads and attached lines and other objects.
Restoring Force
The magnitude of the horizontal component of the total force applied to the vessel. Note that this force is not
necessarily in the offset direction.
Vertical Force
The vertically downwards component of the total force applied to the vessel.
CZ-Moment
The total moment, about the vertical, applied to the vessel.
Worst Tension
The largest tension in any segment of any Line connected to the Vessel.
ó.8 LINES
Lines are flexible linear elements used to model cables, hoses, chains or other similar items. Lines are represented in
OrcaFlex using a lumped mass model. That is, the line is modelled as a series of lumps of mass joined together by
massless springs, rather like beads on a necklace. The lumps of mass are called nodes and the springs joining them
are called segments. Each segment represents a short piece of the line, whose properties (mass, buoyancy, drag
etc.) have been lumped, for modelling purposes, at the nodes at its ends. See the figure below, which shows an
example line spanning from a Vessel to a Buoy.
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End positions and no-moment directions are defined
relative to the objects to which the ends are connected
and move with those objects.
x
y
z
V
x
y
z
B
End B
End A
Clump
section 1
(3 segments)
section 3
(9 segments)
section 2
(7 segments)

Figure: Line Model
The properties of a Line are specified by dividing it up into a number of consecutive sections that are chosen by the
user. For each section you must define its length, the Line Type of which it is made and the number of segments into
which it should be divided for modelling purposes. A Line Type is simply a set of properties (for example the
diameter, mass per unit length and bend stiffness) given a name so that they can be called by that name. The Line
Types are defined separately, on the Line Types data form. This allows the same set of line properties to be used for
a number of different sections of the line, or for different lines. There is also a Line Type Wizard tool that helps you
set up Line Types representing common structures like chains, ropes, etc.
In addition, a number of attacbments may be specified, to represent items that are connected to the Line. For
example, attachments may be used to model clump weights, drag chains or buoyancy bags attached to the line. Two
types of attachment are available – clumps (buoyancy or heavy) and drag chains.
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Each attachment attached to the Line is specified by giving the Attacbment Type and the arc length, measured from
End A, at which it should be attached. The attachment is then attached to the nearest node to that arc length.
Attachment Types are similar to Line Types – they are simply named sets of attachment properties. The properties
themselves are then given separately, on the Attachment Types data form. This allows the same set of attachment
properties to be used for a number of different attachments.
The two ends of a Line are referred to as End A and End B and each end can be Free, Fixed, Anchored or else
connected to a Vessel or Buoy. The two ends of a line are treated in essentially the same way, but some aspects of
the line are dependent on which end is which. In particular the numbering of parts of a Line is always done starting
at End A.
ó.8.1 Line Data
For every line in the system there is a data form defining its structure and interconnection. It is on these data forms
that the system is built up by connecting lines between the objects that have been defined.
Name
Used to refer to the Line.
Include Torsion
Torsional effects can be included or ignored, for each line in the model. If torsion is included then the line type
torsional properties must be specified. See Torsional Stiffness.
To see the line orientation visually on the 3D views, select Draw Node Axes on the View menu. OrcaFlex then draws
the node axes Nxyz at each node, and these axes allow you to see how the line is behaving torsionally.
Notes: The node axes are drawn using the node pen, specified on the line data form.
If torsion is included for a line, you must specify the torsional orientation at each end of the line.
This is done by setting the Gamma angle of the end connections on the line data form. The Gamma
angle determines the torsional position of the line end – for details see Line End Orientation. To
check visually that you have the orientation you expect, select Draw Node Axes on the View menu.
If torsion is included for a line, the static analysis should also include the effects of torsion –
otherwise the simulation will start from a position that is not in torsional equilibrium and an
unstable simulation may result. We recommend that the Full Statics option is selected because this
is the only statics option in OrcaFlex that includes the effects of torsion.
Top End
This data item is used to give OrcaFlex information about the sense of the Line. Various calculations performed by
the program need to know which end of the line (End A or End B) is at the top, and which end is at the bottom. You
specify which end is at the top, and the program assumes that the other end is at the bottom.
Suppose you have a line with the top end connected to a vessel, and the bottom end anchored to the seabed. If you
wish to measure arc length from the vessel then you should connect End A to the vessel, make End B anchored and
set Top End to End A. On the other hand, if you wish to measure arc length from the seabed then you should connect
End B to the vessel, make End A anchored and set Top End to End B.
The setting of the Top and Bottom Ends is used by the program as follows:
- The Lay Azimuth data defines a lay direction starting from the Bottom End and moving towards the Top End.
- The Touchdown results point is determined by starting at the Top End and then moving towards the Bottom
End until the first node in contact with the seabed is found.
- The Contents Pressure Reference Z level can be set to '~' (indeed this is the default value) which OrcaFlex
interprets as the Z level of the Top End in the reset state.
- The Line Setup Wizard uses the bottom end when calculating anchor positions and also for the layback
calculation.
If the Line is not in contact with the seabed then this data is somewhat arbitrary. You are free to make whatever
choice suits your model, but remember that the contents pressure will be referenced from the Top End. If the entire
Line is in contact with the seabed then again you are free to make whatever choice of Top and Bottom Ends suits
your model.
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Connections
The line end connection data specifies whether the line ends are connected to other objects, the position, angle and
stiffness of the connection, and whether the end is released during the simulation.
You can view and edit an individual line's connection data on the line's data form. Or you can view and edit the
connection data for all the lines together on the All Objects Data Form.
Connect to Ub|ect
The line spans from End A to End B and each end may be connected to another object in the model, such as a buoy or
vessel, or else Fixed, Ancbored or left Free.
Ub|ect Relative Position
Defines the position of the centre of the node at the line end.
- If the end is connected to another object this defines the coordinates of the connection point relative to that
other object's local axes.
- If the end is Fixed this defines the coordinates of that point relative to global axes.
- If the end is Ancbored this defines the X and Y coordinates of the anchor relative to global axes, plus the Z-
coordinate relative to the seabed level at that (X,Y) position.
- If the end is Free then this defines the coordinates of the estimated equilibrium position of the line end, relative
to global axes.
Heigbt above seabed
This data item is only available for Ancbored connections and specifies the vertical height above the seabed of the
pipe underside. This value is coupled to the Object Relative z coordinate – changing either one results in the other
being changed to match.
To understand how this data item should be used consider, for simplicity, a line end anchored to a flat horizontal
seabed. The Object Relative z coordinate specifies the position of the centreline. If it is set to 0 then the end node will
penetrate the seabed by a distance of ½D, where D is the contact diameter.
The net result of this is that the end node is 'buried' in the seabed and receives a large seabed reaction force.
Because it is anchored this force cannot displace the end node, but the adjacent node is free to move and it will try to
take up a position sitting on top of the seabed. This in turn will lead to unrealistic values of curvature, bend moment
etc. at the end.
If, however, you set Height above seabed to 0 then the end node centreline will have a z coordinate of ½D, relative to
the seabed. The node sits just in contact with the seabed and the above problems are removed.
If the seabed is not horizontal then the mathematics is slightly more complicated as it has to take into account the
slope of the seabed. However, the recommendation of setting Height above seabed to 0 remains valid.
End Urientation
When a line is connected to an object, it is connected into an end fitting that is rigidly attached to that object and you
specify the orientation of this connection by giving its Azimutb, Declination and Camma angles.
These angles define the end fitting orientation relative to the object, so for objects that rotate (e.g. vessels and 6D
buoys) the fitting rotates with the object. For Fixed or Ancbored ends the end orientation is defined relative to
global axes. For Free ends the end orientation is not used.
Azimuth, Declination and Gamma define the end fitting orientation by specifying the directions of the axes (Ex, Ey,
Ez) of its frame of reference, where E is the end fitting origin – the point to which the line end is connected. See Line
End Orientation.
The direction of Ez is defined by specifying its Azimuth and Declination angles. Ez is the end fitting axial direction;
when the end segment is aligned with Ez then no bending moment is applied by the joint, so Ez is sometimes called
the no-moment direction. Note that Ez must be specified using the End A to End B convention, i.e. Ez is into the line
at End A, but out of the line at End B.
Ex and Ey are perpendicular to Ez and they are defined by specifying the Gamma angle, which is a rotation about Ez.
The Ex and Ey directions are used for reporting results (e.g. the 2 components of shear force). And if the line has
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torsion included and the joint twisting stiffness is non-zero, then Ex and Ey also define the line end orientation at
which no torsional moment is applied by the joint.
The connection at a line end is modelled as a ball-|oint with this orientation being the preferred "no-moment"
orientation, i.e. the orientation of the line end that gives rise to no moment from any rotational stiffness of the
connection.
If all of the end connection stiffness values are zero, e.g. to model a ball joint that is completely free to rotate, then
the end orientation angles have no effect on the line behaviour. The angles then only serve to define the local x, y
and z-directions that are used to define results (e.g. shear and bend moment components, stress components, etc.)
that depend on the local axes directions.
Bending and Twisting Stiffness
The connection at a line end is modelled as a joint with the specified rotational stiffness. The restoring moments
applied by the joint depend on the deflection angle, which is the difference between the end fitting orientation and
the orientation of the line. The end orientation is therefore the orientation of the line that corresponds to zero
moment being applied by the joint.
The connection stiffness is the slope of the curve of restoring moment against deflection angle.
The bending and twisting connection stiffnesses can be set to:
- Zero: free to rotate with no resistance.
- Non-zero, finite: can rotate but with resistance.
- Infinity: a rigid connection.
- Variable: non-linear (for bending connection stiffness only).
The x bending and y bending values specify the connection bending behaviour for rotation about the end Ex and Ey
directions, respectively. For an isotropic ball joint the two values must be equal; this can conveniently be specified
by setting the y-bending value to '~', meaning 'same as x-value'. A non-isotropic ball joint can be modelled by giving
different x and y bending values; in this case the line must include torsion.
The x bending and y bending behaviour can either be linear or non-linear, as follows:
- For a simple linear behaviour, specify the bending stiffness to be the constant slope of the curve of restoring
moment against deflection angle.
- For a non-linear behaviour, use variable data to specify a table of restoring moment against deflection angle.
OrcaFlex uses linear interpolation for angles between those specified in the table, and linear extrapolation for
angles beyond those specified in the table. The restoring bend moment must be zero at zero angle.
The Twisting Stiffness value is only relevant if torsion is included for the line. It specifies the rotational stiffness
about the end Ez direction. For the twisting stiffness this variation is always modelled as linear so the twisting
stiffness you specify should be the slope of the linear angle-moment curve.
A flex joint can be modelled by setting the stiffness values to be non-zero and finite.
Warning: Avoid specifying large connection stiffness values (except the special value Infinity) since they
require very short simulation time steps.
Release at Start of Stage
If desired each line end can be disconnected at the start of a given stage of the simulation. If no release is wanted
then set this item to "~", meaning "not applicable".
Structure
Each line can be made up of up a number of sections with different properties, the sections being defined in
sequence from End A to End B.
Line Type
This determines the properties of the section.
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Section Lengtb
The unstretched length of the section. This is the unstressed length (i.e. zero wall tension) at atmospheric pressure
inside and out. Length changes due to external and internal pressure, and allowing for the Poisson ratio effect, are
calculated and allowed for by OrcaFlex.
If the line type is profiled then the section length is determined by the profile data and so cannot be edited here.
Expansion Factor
The expansion factor allows you to model time-varying changes in unstretched length, for example due to thermal
expansion or contraction.
A value of '~' means that no expansion factor is applied – this is equivalent to a value of 1. Other positive values can
be used, in which case the unstretched length remains constant throughout the simulation.
Alternatively the expansion factor can be a variable data source which specifies a table of expansion factor against
simulation time. It specifies a multiplicative factor which is applied to the unstretched length when calculating axial
strain which in turn is used to calculate effective tension (see Line Theory: Calculation Stages).
Note: Expansion factor is only used in the calculation of strain. It has no effect on mass, buoyancy, drag,
added mass etc.
Target Segment Lengtb, Number of Segments
These data items determine the segmentation of the section.
If Target Segment Lengtb is set to ~ then the number of segments in the section is set by Number of Segments.
Otherwise, the segmentation is chosen based on Target Segment Lengtb. The Number of Segments is not editable
and reports the actual number of segments used which is given by the formula:
Number of Segments = Round(Section Length / Target Segment Length)
where Round is the function that rounds a floating point value to the nearest integer.
Note: It is usually preferable to determine segmentation by specifying Target Segment Length. This
allows you to alter section lengths without altering segment length.
Clasb Cbeck
Clash modelling is included when this data item is set to Yes. If it is set to No then the section will be ignored for
clashing purposes.
Notes: Line clashing is not modelled during statics.
Clash checking is quite time-consuming, so you should only set this item to Yes for those sections
for which you need clash modelling to be included. See Line Clashing.
Cumulative Lengtb, Cumulative Segments
These columns report the cumulative length and cumulative number of segments counted from the first section. The
values are for reporting purposes only and cannot be edited.
Profile Crapb
The profile graph plots the inner and outer radii of the line as they vary with arc length. This is especially useful to
check that stress joint and bend stiffener data has been correctly input.
Pre-bend
Pre-bend is only available when torsion is modelled. Pre-bend is provided for modelling lines which are not straight
when unstressed, e.g. spool pieces.
The pre-bend is defined for each section by specifying the pre-bent curvature (in radians per unit length) of the
section. The pre-bent curvature is the curvature of the pipe in its unstressed state. For lines which are straight when
unstressed then pre-bend should be specified to be zero – which is the default setting.
Pre-bend can be specified in both the line local x and y directions. However, to simplify data preparation and
interpretation of results we recommend that you arrange the line's local axes such that the pre-bend is entirely in
either the local x or local y direction.
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Note: When pre-bend is modelled curvature and bend radius results are reported relative to the pre-bent
curvature.
Warning: Pre-bend breaks the assumptions of the stress results and fatigue analysis.
Attacbments
A number of attachments may be added to each line. Each attachment can either be of a specified Attachment Type
or else be a clone of a specified 6D buoy.
Attacbment Type
Can be a Clump Type, a Drag Chain Type, a Flex Joint Type, a Stiffener Type or an existing 6D Buoy.
If you specify a 6D buoy as the attachment type then the attachment is a clone of that 6D buoy and changing the
properties of the 6D buoy also changes the properties of the attachment. The 6D buoy from which the attachment is
cloned cannot be deleted, without first deleting all the attachments that are clones of it.
6D buoy attachments are useful when you want a number of identical 6D buoys attached to a line. To attach 20
identical buoys to a line, for example, first create the first buoy separately from the line and then connect it to the
line by setting its connection data item on the buoy data form. This first buoy acts as the master from which all the
other attachment buoys are cloned. Then, on the line data form, specify 19 attachments and set their attachment
type to be the first 6D buoy.
Note: 6D Buoy attachments can only be used when the Line includes torsion.
Position
The x, y and z coordinates specify the position of the attachment relative to the line.
The z coordinate specifies the arc length at which the attachment is connected and this arc length may be measured
relative to either End A or End B as specified by the user.
- For Clumps, Drag Chains, Flex Joints and Stiffeners the x and y coordinates must be zero and the z coordinate is
the arc length. These attachments are connected at the node nearest to this arc length.
- For Stiffeners the z coordinate specifies the arc length of the stiffener connection point.
Note: If the attachment is a clump then it is also offset vertically from the node by the offset distance
specified in the clump type data. Beware that the sign convention for this offset varies depending
on whether the clump is net buoyant (positive offset is upwards) or heavy (positive offset is
downwards).
- For 6D Buoy attachments the z coordinate specifies the arc length at which the buoy should be connected to the
line. The buoy will be connected to the nearest node to that arc length. The buoy will be connected with an offset
(relative to that node's axes) that is given by (x, y, 0). See 6D Buoy Initial Position for more details.
Urientation
For 6D Buoy attachments only. Rotation 1, Rotation 2 and Rotation 3 determine the Initial Attitude of the attached
buoy.
Name
For 6D Buoy and Drag Chain attachments only. This is the name of the attached object and is used to select results
for that object.
Contents
Contents Metbod
Three methods of modelling contents are available, as outlined below:
- If uniform is selected then the entire line is assumed to be filled with contents of a uniform density.
- The free-flooding option results in the line being filled with sea water, up to the instantaneous water surface.
- The slug flow method allows for spatial and temporal variation of contents. The contents flow velocity can also
vary with time.
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Include axial contents inertia
This data item allows the component of inertia due to contents in the line's axial direction to be omitted from the
analysis. Typically the axial contents inertia would be excluded from an analysis of a line with free-flooding
contents, for example a drilling riser in emergency disconnect mode.
Contents Pressure and Reference Z level
The contents pressure specifies the internal pressure in the line at a specified fixed reference Z level (specified
relative to global axes). The internal pressure at this Z level is assumed to remain constant throughout the
simulation. The internal pressure at other levels is calculated allowing for the static pressure head due to differences
in Z level. For slug flow, the static pressure head is calculated using the mean contents density in the line.
The reference Z level can be set to '~' and this is taken to mean the Z level of the Top End of the line in the reset
state.
See Line Pressure Effects for details of contents pressure modelling.
Uniform contents data
Contents Density
Each section of the line is assumed to be full of contents of this density and the mass of the section is increased
accordingly.
All pressures in OrcaFlex are gauge pressures, not absolute pressures. That is, they are relative to atmospheric
pressure and so can be as low as -1 atmosphere (-101.3 kPa).
Flow Rate
The rate of flow of mass through the line. If it is non-zero then it is used to calculate the centrifugal and Coriolis
forces due to flow of fluid in the line. Positive values mean flow from End A towards End B and vice versa. To
convert between mass flow rate, volume flow rate and flow velocity use the following simple formulae:
Volume flow rate = Mass flow rate / ρ
Flow velocity = Volume flow rate / A
where ρ is the contents density and A is the internal cross-sectional area.
Slug flow data
The slug flow data allows you to specify variation of contents density along the arc length of the line. This pattern of
contents can also progress along the line over time. The program accounts for the resulting variations of mass,
weight and centrifugal and Coriolis forces
Flow velocity
The velocity at which the contents pattern flows along the line. This value can be constant, or can vary as simulation
time varies. Positive values mean flow from End A towards End B and vice versa.
A value of zero can be used to specify spatial contents variation with no temporal variation. A variable flow velocity
can be used to model, for example, the flow of contents out of a drilling riser in emergency disconnect mode.
Note: There is no need to ramp flow velocity at the beginning of dynamics – in fact it is better to include
the fluid flow in the static calculation because this removes undesirable transients during the
dynamic analysis. Therefore, if you wish to model a constant flow rate, you should set the flow
velocity to be this constant value.
Density between slugs
The contents density for sections of the line that fall in between slugs.
Slug flow contents pattern
The spatial variation of contents density, i.e. the contents pattern, is specified in a table. Each row of the table allows
you to define a number or group of identical slugs specified by their density and lengtb together with the distance
between slugs.
In addition you specify a reference point, an arc length which can be relative to either end of the line, and the
simulation time at which the first slug in the group reaches that reference point. If the flow velocity is zero then the
previous definition is meaningless. In this case we adopt the convention that the group of slugs covers arc lengths
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(measured from End A) greater than the reference point. For example, if the flow velocity is zero and you have a
single slug with length L and reference point at End A then the slug will stretch between arc lengths 0 and L.
Simple repeating patterns of slugs can easily be modelled using a single row in the table. For irregular patterns of
slug you can model each slug as a single row in the table. Range graphs of contents density can be used to confirm
that your data corresponds to your desired pattern of slugs.
Statics
The line static calculation is performed in 2 steps as described in Statics of Lines.
Included in Statics
This switch allows you to exclude certain lines from the statics calculation. This is mainly useful when building a
model and a particular line is not converging. In this situation you could exclude all other lines from statics (this is
easiest from the All Objects Data Form). This would allow you to experiment with different statics convergence
parameters for the problematic line without having to wait for all the other lines to converge each time you tried a
new set of convergence parameters.
Note: Results are not available for such lines and dynamics is disabled if you have any lines which are
excluded from statics. Lines which are excluded from statics have no influence on other objects in
the model.
Step 1 Statics Metbod
This can be either Catenary, Spline, Quick, Prescribed or User Specified.
The normal setting is Catenary, in which case the static analysis finds the equilibrium catenary position of the line,
allowing for weight, buoyancy, drag, but not allowing for bend stiffness or interaction with shapes. See Catenary
Statics.
The Catenary solution has some limitations and some systems, such as those with slack or neutrally buoyant lines,
can be troublesome. For such lines you can instead specify Spline, in which case the line is instead set to a 3D spline
curve based on spline control points specified by the user. See Spline Data and Spline Statics.
The Quick method leaves the line in the rough catenary shape used in the Reset state. See Quick Statics.
For pull-in analysis the Prescribed option has been provided. Here the user specifies the starting position of the line
as a sequence of straight line or curved sections on the seabed. See Prescribed Starting Shape.
The User Specified option allows you to specify the position for each node on the line. No calculation is performed,
the nodes are merely placed at the specified positions. See User Specified Starting Shape and User Specified Statics.
Step 2 Statics Metbod {Full Statics]
This can be either None or Full Statics.
If None is selected then the position obtained by the Step 1 Statics Method is used.
The Full Statics calculation finds a full equilibrium position for the model. Unlike the Step 1 Catenary method, bend
stiffness and interaction with shapes are included. Full statics needs a starting shape for the line, and it uses the Step
1 Statics Method to obtain this; it then finds the equilibrium position from there. You should therefore set the Step 1
Statics Method to give a reasonable starting shape. See Full Statics.
For more details of the Statics Calculation see Statics Analysis.
Warning: If you do not use Full Statics, then the starting position will not (in general) be an equilibrium
position.
Note: It is only possible to include buoys in the static analysis (see Buoy Degrees of Freedom Included in
Static Analysis) if either the Catenary method or Full Statics is used for all lines in the model.
Include Friction
Friction can be included in the static analysis only if the Step 1 Statics Method is Catenary or if Full Statics is used for
the Step 2 Statics Method.
With seabed friction present there is not, in general, a unique static position for the line, since the position it adopts
depends on how it was originally laid and its history since then. In order to define a unique solution, we therefore
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need to make some assumptions about how the line was originally laid and friction is then assumed to act towards
this position.
If the Step 1 Statics Method is Prescribed, then this 'originally laid' position is assumed to be the position defined by
the Prescribed track. Otherwise, the 'originally laid' position is defined by specifying the Lay Azimuth and As Laid
Tension values.
Lay Azimutb
This data is only used when seabed friction is included in the static analysis and the Step 1 Statics Method is not
Prescribed. It then defines the position in which the line is assumed to have been originally laid, and friction is then
assumed to act towards this position. When Statics Method is not Prescribed, it is assumed that:
1. The line was originally laid, with the specified As Laid Tension, starting with the Bottom End at its specified
position (or at the point on the seabed directly below, if the Bottom End is not on the seabed).
2. The line was then laid in the Lay Azimuth direction, leading away from the Bottom End position and with the
specified As Laid Tension.
3. The line was laid following the profile of the seabed.
4. The Top End was then moved slowly from that original position to its specified position.
To help set this data item, there is a button on the form marked Set. This button sets the Lay Azimuth value to be the
direction from the Bottom End towards the Top End, based on their current positions.
Notes: Whilst the program will accept any Lay Azimuth, we would expect the statics convergence routine
to have increasing difficulty in finding a solution as the angle between the Lay Azimuth direction
and the vertical plane through the line ends increases. For example, if we have a line top at X=0,
Y=0, and anchor at X=100, Y=0, we would expect trouble for a Lay Direction of 90°.
The Line Setup Wizard also uses the Lay Azimuth direction.
As Laid Tension
This data specifies the effective tension with which the line was originally laid. OrcaFlex uses this to determine the
as-laid node positions, which are used as the friction target positions towards which friction acts in the static
analysis. This data is therefore only used if friction is included in statics.
If the Step 1 Statics Method is set to Prescribed starting shape, then the statics friction target positions are laid out
along the prescribed shape with a strain determined by the axial stiffness and this As Laid Effective Tension value.
If the Step 1 Statics Method is not Prescribed, then this data is used as described in the Lay Azimuth section above.
Catenary Convergence
If the Catenary statics method is chosen, then an iterative catenary calculation is used to determine the static
position of the line. This calculation is controlled by a number of convergence parameters which can normally be left
at their default values. However sometimes the calculation can fail to converge. If this happens, first check your data
for errors and check for the following common causes of convergence failure:
- Does the solution have a slack segment? This can happen in lines that touch down on the seabed almost at right
angles or in lines that hang in a very narrow U shape. The catenary calculation cannot handle lines with slack
segments – try increasing the number of segments in the relevant section of the line.
- For lines that touch down on the seabed, is the Lay Azimuth value specified correctly? It is the azimuth direction
leading away from End B and it is easy to get it wrong by 180°.
- Is the line buoyant, either deliberately or by mistake. The catenary calculation has problems with floating lines –
you may need to use the Spline statics method instead.
- Does the line have a surface-piercing buoyant clump attached? If the clump is short then the catenary
calculation is more difficult.
If the calculation still fails to converge, then it is sometimes possible to obtain convergence by changing one or more
of the convergence parameters, as outlined below.
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Max Iterations
The maximum number of iterations that OrcaFlex will make before treating the calculation as having failed to
converge. Increasing this value can sometimes help.
Tolerance
The non-dimensional accuracy to which the calculation is done, before the calculation is treated as having
converged. Increasing the tolerance increases the chances of convergence but reduces the accuracy.
Min Damping
The minimum damping factor to be used in the calculation. Convergence can sometimes be achieved by increasing
this parameter to a value greater than 1 – try values in the range 1.1 to 2.0. The minimum damping should not be set
to less than 1.
Mag. of Std. Error, Mag. of Std. Cbange
These parameters control the maximum size of the change, in the estimated solution, this is allowed in a single step.
Reducing these values can sometimes help, but the calculation will then usually require more iterations.
The remaining parameters should not normally be changed. For further information contact Orcina.
Full Statics Convergence
The numerical method used to solve for the static position is an iterative process in which the program tries to
converge on the solution in a series of steps. This process is controlled by a number of convergence parameters,
found on the Line data form.
Convergence Control Metbod
Either Line Searcb or Mag. of Std. Error J Cbange. We recommend using the default value, Line Search, but if this
fails then the alternative Mag. of Std. Error / Change may succeed.
Max Iterations
The calculation is abandoned if convergence has not been achieved after this number of steps. For some difficult
cases simply increasing this limit may be enough.
Tolerance
This controls the accuracy of the solution. The program accepts the line position as a static equilibrium position if
the largest out of balance force component on any node is less than Tolerance * total weight in air.
When torsion is included the static equilibrium position must also satisfy the condition that the largest out of
balance moment component on any node is less than Tolerance * total weight in air * ODmax where ODmax is the
maximum diameter, contact diameter, stress diameter or normal drag diameter over the entire line.
Reducing the Tolerance value will give a more accurate static equilibrium position, but will take more iterations.
OrcaFlex may not be able to achieve the Tolerance specified if it is too small, since the computer has limited
numerical precision.
Delta
This is a perturbation size, used to calculate the Jacobian matrix for the problem. Delta should always be less than
the tolerance specified.
Note: This parameter is only used when torsion is included.
Min Damping, Max Damping
For some cases it is necessary to control the convergence process by damping down (i.e. reducing) the step taken at
each stage. The program includes an automatic damping system that chooses a suitable damping factor for each
iteration, but the user can set the minimum damping and maximum damping factors that are used.
Normally the default values will suffice but for difficult cases the default values can be altered. For cases that appear
to make the convergence unstable (e.g. giving very bad line positions on the screen) try increasing the Min
Damping factor to a value greater than 1, say values in the range 1 to 10. You can also try increasing the Max
Damping factor, say to values in the range 10 to 100.
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Note: Convergence will be slower with larger damping values so you should use the smallest values that
result in statics converging.
Mag. of Std. Error, Mag. of Std. Cbange
These parameters are only available when the Mag of Std. Error / Change convergence control method is selected.
For some cases it may be necessary to reduce one or both of these values from their defaults. Doing so is likely to
slow down the convergence, but it may be necessary in order to achieve convergence!
Spline Starting Sbape
The following data is only used if the Spline statics method is specified.
Urder
This sets the smoothness of the spline shape; generally order 3 is reasonable. If a higher order is chosen, a smoother
curve results. The order cannot exceed the number of spline points.
Control Points
The line shape is specified by a number of Control Points. The first and last control points are automatically placed
at the line ends A and B respectively and OrcaFlex generates a smooth curve between the first and last control
points and passing near to the intermediate control points. These intermediate control points may be adjusted to
'pull' the curve into the desired shape.
The first and last control points correspond to line ends A and B respectively. The line is stretched to the specified
As Laid Tension and laid out following the spline curve starting at End A and working towards End B.
For a line with a Free end the line is laid out along the curve until End B is reached. If the length around the curve is
not equal to the stretched line length then the end will either fall short of the end Estimated Position or lie beyond it
(along the continuation of the curve along its 'final' direction).
For a line with a Fixed end, Ancbor or attached to some object the curve is automatically expanded or contracted to
allow the end to lie at the specified end position. An error is reported if this process fails.
Prescribed Starting Sbape
This data is only used if the Prescribed method is used for Step 1 statics. It can be found in the Prescribed Starting
Sbape page on the line data form and can be edited in several ways:
- By editing the Length and Turn values of a track section on the line data form. OrcaFlex then creates an arc of
the specified Length and Turn, and the X and Y coordinates of the end of this section, and all subsequent
sections, are automatically adjusted to match.
- By editing the X and Y coordinates of the ends of a track section on the line data form. OrcaFlex then creates the
(unique) circular arc (or straight line) that is a smooth continuation of the previous section and passes through
the new (X,Y) point. The Length and Turn values for this section, and the X and Y coordinates for subsequent
sections, are then automatically adjusted to match.
- By dragging the end points of the track sections on a 3D view using the mouse. The track and the track section
end points are drawn on the 3D views. Dragging a track section end point is equivalent to editing its X and Y
values, as described above.
The individual data items (see Figure: Plan View of Example Track) are as follows:
End A Azimutb
The initial direction of the track.
Track Sections
The number of sections used to define the track.
Section Lengtb
The length of the circular arc (or straight line if Section Turn = 0).
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Section Turn
The amount by which the track azimuth increases over this section. A positive value denotes a turn to the left, when
viewed from above, and a negative value denotes a turn to the right. A value of zero can be entered to specify a
straight track section.
Section Radius
The radius of curvature of the circular arc. The radius equals (180L)/(πT), where L is the section length and T is the
absolute value of section turn, in degrees. For straight sections (i.e. if Section Turn = 0) the radius is reported as
Infinity.
Notes: This is a reported value, not an editable data item, and is hence always shown in grey.
With a profiled or sloping seabed the actual track on the seabed will have a slightly different radius
of curvature – see Laying out the Line.
Section X and Y
The global X and Y coordinates of the end of this track section. You can either edit these X and Y coordinates
explicitly, on the line data form, or else by dragging the end point on a 3D view. If you edit X or Y then OrcaFlex fits a
circular arc (starting at the previous section's end point) through the new end point and the Section Lengtb and
Section Turn are automatically updated to match this new arc.
Section Z
The global Z coordinate of the section end point on the seabed. This is a reported value, not an editable data item,
and is hence always shown in grey.
Section Arc Lengtb
The total arc length to the end of the section. This is a reported value, not an editable data item, and is hence always
shown in grey.
Section Azimutb
The azimuth direction at the end of the section. This is a reported value, not an editable data item, and is hence
always shown in grey.
Track Pen
This controls how the track is drawn. You can switch between the options of drawing the track in the chosen pen
and not drawing it at all.
Laying out tbe Line
The track data defines a sequence of straight lines and circular arcs in the horizontal plane, which are then projected
vertically onto the seabed to define the track itself. The program then lays the line out along the track, allowing for
any As Laid Tension specified by the user on the line data form.
Because the line is modelled as a series of straight segments, when the line is laid out along a curved track it will
repeatedly 'cut corners' and so the length of line laid along a given curved track section will be slightly shorter than
the length of that section. The size of this discrepancy reduces as more segments are used.
If End A is above the seabed then the height above the seabed varies linearly between End A and the first track
section point, reaching the seabed at the end of the first track section. If the end of the last track section is reached
before all the line has been laid out, then the rest of the line is laid out in a straight line in the direction of the end of
the track.
Sloping and profiled seabeds
The track on the seabed is obtained by projecting the specified circular arcs or straight sections vertically down onto
the seabed. With a horizontal seabed this vertical projection has no effect on the shape of the track. But with a
sloping seabed the vertical projection does not preserve distances and this causes some effects that users should
note:
- The section lengths and arc lengths that appear in the prescribed starting shape data table are lengths in the
horizontal plane, i.e. before projection down onto the seabed. With a sloping seabed the true section and arc
lengths on the seabed will differ, the difference depending on the slope of the seabed. The actual arc lengths can
be obtained by running the static analysis and looking at the Full Results table for the line.
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- The section radius reported in the prescribed starting shape data table is that of the circular arc in the
horizontal plane, i.e. before projection down onto the seabed. When the circular arc is projected down onto a
sloping seabed the resulting track section is slightly elliptical rather than circular, so again the actual radius of
curvature will differ. The actual radii of curvature can be obtained by running the static analysis and looking at
the Full Results table for the line.
User Specified Starting Sbape
Starting Sbape
The User Specified Starting Shape statics method places each node at the position specified in this table. If torsion is
modelled then node orientations can also be specified.
Drag and Wake
Drag Formulation
A number of authors have proposed formulae to model how the drag force on a line varies with the incidence angle.
OrcaFlex offers the choice of the Standard, Pode or Eames formulations. All of these use drag coefficients that are
specified on the Line Types data form.
For details of the formulations see the Line Theory section.
Line Wake Interference
To include wake interference modelling you must first define one or more wake interference models. See the Wake
Models button on the Line data form.
You must then specify which line sections to include in wake modelling, by either being included as a wake
generator (an 'upstream' section) or as a section that reacts to wake (a 'downstream' section), or both (a
downstream section that reacts to wake generated further upstream, but also generates its own wake that further
downstream sections might react to). For details see the Line Wake Interference Data on the Drag & Wake page of
the Line Data Form.
Note: Wake modelling is only included in the static analysis if the Statics Method is set to Whole System
Statics. It is not included if the Separate Buoy and Line Statics method is specified. This is
because wake effects require that the static positions of the lines involved are calculated together,
not separately.
How Wake Effects Are Modelled
The wake models are steady state models of wake effects. Also OrcaFlex does not model the effect that wake takes
time to convect downstream. OrcaFlex therefore only attempts to model the steady wake effects.
Wake is generated when there is fluid velocity relative to the upstream cylinder, so both fluid motion and upstream
cylinder motion can contribute to the wake. Therefore the velocity OrcaFlex uses as the input to the wake model is
the steady relative velocity Vs given by
Vs = [undisturbed current velocity vector at upstream cylinder centre] - [any steady starting velocity
specified for the model]
The wake effects therefore do not include any effects of wave motion, or of any changes in upstream cylinder
velocity during a simulation.
Note: OrcaFlex does not model combined wake effects. If a given 'downstream' node is in the modelled
wake of more than one 'upstream' node, then OrcaFlex chooses to apply the wake effects of the
upstream node that gives the strongest wake effect at that downstream position when the wake
effects from other upstream nodes (which give weaker wake effects at that point) are ignored. So if
you are modelling riser arrays, for example, then the wake effects at any given point are modelled
as if they came from the upstream wake-generating node that gives largest wake effect in
isolation, i.e. with the other upstream nodes were absent.
The strength of a given node's wake decays with distance downstream and also with distance in the transverse
direction, as specified by the wake model. But in addition OrcaFlex also makes the wake strength decay in the axial
direction of the upstream line, so that the strongest wake selected comes from the upstream node that is axially
closest to the downstream node. More details are given in the paper by Wu et al.
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Line Wake Interference Data
Wake modelling requires significant computation, so to avoid slowing simulations unnecessarily OrcaFlex enables
you to only include wake modelling for sections of line where you think wake effects might be significant. This is
done on the Drag & Wake page of the line data form, by specifying which line sections generate modelled wake (the
'upstream' sections) and which line sections react to modelled wake (the 'downstream' sections).
The fluid forces applied to sections that react to modelled wake will include the strongest wake effect from the
sections that generate modelled wake. The following two data items specify which sections generate and/or react
to wake:
Wake Cenerated
This can be set to one of the defined wake models, in which case OrcaFlex will model wake generated by that line
section acting as an 'upstream' line. Or it can be set to None, in which case OrcaFlex will not model wake generated
by that line section.
Three types of wake model are available.
- The Huse model is an analytic wake model that models the velocity reduction and hence drag reduction on the
downstream object, but does not model the wake lift effect.
- The Blevins model is an analytic model that models the both the drag reduction and the wake lift force that
tends to draw the downstream object into the centre of the wake.
- The User Specified model allows you to model both the drag reduction and wake lift effect using your own data,
by specifying the drag and wake lift coefficients as a function of the position of the downstream object relative
to the wake of the upstream object.
See the Wake Models section for details.
Reacts to Wake
If Reacts to Wake is turned on then each node in the section will act as a 'downstream' cylinder in the wake
modelling. Those nodes will then be subject to the strongest wake effects (i.e. strongest at that downstream
position) from any upstream node that generate modelled wake. Sections with Reacts to Wake turned off will
ignore any modelled wake generated by upstream sections.
So to summarise, the wake modelling will include the strongest wake effects on downstream sections that have
Reacts to Wake turned on, due to modelled wake from upstream nodes with Wake Cenerated set to a wake model.
Note: A line section is allowed to be both a 'downstream' section, i.e. Reacts to Wake is turned on, and at
the same time also act as an 'upstream' section, i.e. generate modelled wake that further
downstream line sections can react to. However the wake effects of such a section will be based on
the undisturbed steady relative flow velocity, so the wake effects of this wake-generating section
will not take into account any velocity reduction due to it in turn being in the wake of another
wake-generating section further upstream.
Wake Models
The Wake Model Data form enables you to define one or more models of wake interference. The wake interference
model specified determines how the flow velocity, wake drag reduction and wake lift force on a downstream
cylinder varies as a function of the (x,y) position of the downstream cylinder centre relative to the wake frame of
reference of the upstream cylinder.
You can define more than one wake model, for example if you want to use different wake models to model the wake
generation by different lines. A wake model that isn't used by any line in the model will be ignored, so you can define
wake models and then decide later which (if any) to use to model wake generation.
Wake frame of reference
The wake modelling is done relative to a wake frame of reference that is based on the steady relative fluid velocity
vector Vs at the upstream cylinder, and is given by:
- The wake frame origin is at the upstream cylinder centre.
- The wake frame x-axis is in the direction of the steady relative fluid velocity vector Vs.
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- The wake frame z-direction is the direction obtained by projecting the upstream cylinder axial direction normal
to Vs. It is therefore the direction normal to Vs and in the plane formed by the Vs and the cylinder axial direction.
The +ve wake z-direction is towards end B of the upstream line.
- The wake frame y-axis is the direction that completes the orthogonal right-hand triad of wake axes x,y,z. It is
therefore normal to the plane formed by Vs and the cylinder axial direction.
The wake model theory below uses the following key variables. Upper case subscript 'D' denotes 'drag', lower case
subscripts 'u' and 'd' denote 'upstream' and 'downstream', and subscript '0' denotes 'undisturbed', i.e. ignoring any
wake effects.
Vd(x,y) is the disturbed fluid velocity vector at downstream position (x,y) relative to the upstream cylinder
wake, allowing for wake effects.
Vd0(x,y) is the undisturbed fluid velocity vector at position (x,y).
Vu0 is the undisturbed fluid velocity at the upstream cylinder centre.
Du, Dd and CDu0, CDd0 are the normal drag diameter and undisturbed drag coefficient of the upstream and
downstream cylinders, respectively, as specified on the line type data form. Note that the wake modelling
does not allow for any non-isotropic aspects of the drag coefficients. If different drag coefficients have been
specified for the line x- and y-directions then the wake modelling uses the mean of the two values.
Wake Model Data
Each wake model is given a user-specified Name. And each model can be one of three types: Huse model, Blevins
model or User-Specified model, as described below.
Huse Model
This is an analytic model proposed by Huse (1993). It models the wake velocity reduction, and hence drag
reduction, but does not give any wake lift force.
In the Huse model the wake fluid flow velocity Vd(x,y) at a given position (x,y) in the wake is given by:
Vd(x,y) = Vd0(x,y) - k2Vu0[CduDu/xs]
½
exp[-k3(y/b)
2
]
where
xs = x + 4Du/Cdu
b = k1[CduDuxs]
½

and the other terms are defined above.
k1, k2 and k3 are user-editable non-dimensional model parameters. They should normally be left as the default
values, since these give the original Huse model. (Note that the parameter k3 is mis-printed in Huse, 1993 as 0.639
and was corrected in a later paper to 0.693.) Changing these model parameters from their default values will give a
variant of the Huse model.
Blevins model
The Blevins model is an analytic model that models velocity and drag reduction, and also models the wake lift force
that tends to draw the downstream object into the centre of the wake. See the Appendix of Blevins OMAE 2005
paper for the theory of the model.
The model has 3 non-dimensional model parameters a1, a2, a3 that are user-editable. They should normally be left as
the default values, since these are the values given by Blevins. Changing these model parameters from their default
values will give a variant of the Blevins model.
User Specified model
This option allows you to define a model (of both wake drag reduction and wake lift effect) by specifying drag and
lift coefficient factors as a function of the position of the downstream object relative to the wake of the upstream
object.
The wake effects are specified by giving a table of wake drag and lift coefficient factors for the downstream
cylinder, as a function of the downstream cylinder position relative to the upstream cylinder wake, as follows. See
above for notation.
- The Position columns of the table define, in non-dimensional form, a number of downstream cylinder centre
positions relative to the upstream cylinder wake frame of reference. This is done by specifying non-
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dimensionalised distances LJDu (downstream) and TJDu (transverse) from the upstream cylinder centre to the
downstream cylinder centre, where Du is the normal drag diameter of the upstream cylinder.
- The Coefficient Factor columns of the table define the wake effects at the given (L/Du, T/Du) positions, by
specifying drag and lift coefficient factors. Note that these data are scaling factors, not the drag and lift
coefficients themselves. The drag factors are non-negative scaling factors that are applied to the reference drag
coefficient CDd0 that is specified on the line type data form. The lift coefficient factors are signed scaling factors
that are applied to the Reference Wake Lift Coefficient CLd0, which is specified on the wake models data form.
A +ve lift coefficient factor means a lift force in the +ve wake frame y-direction, so the lift coefficient factor at a
given TJDu position will normally have the opposite sign to the TJDu value, since wake lift effects are normally
towards the centre line of the wake.
Wake drag effects are normally symmetric, and wake lift effects anti-symmetric, either side of the wake centre line.
So to avoid the need to specify in the table both +ve and -ve values of T/Du you can tell OrcaFlex to Reflect Data. In
this case you must only specify table rows for one half of the wake plane, i.e. either for T/Du>= 0 only, or for T/Du<=
0 only. For a wake frame position (x,y) that is on the other side of the wake centre line OrcaFlex will then
automatically use the drag and lift coefficient factors defined for the symmetric position (x,-y), but with the lift
coefficient factor negated.
OrcaFlex uses linear triangular interpolation to obtain the drag and lift coefficient factors to use for wake frame
positions between those specified in the table.
Results
Log Results
This option is checked by default and this means that simulation results at all points on the Line are available. If this
option is unchecked then no simulation results are available for this Line.
OrcaFlex stores simulation results in an efficient way, only logging a minimal set of variables to the simulation file.
Other results variables which have not been logged are then derived when the results are requested. Usually this
means that simulation files are a reasonable size and we recommend that this value is checked.
Should you need to reduce the size of simulation files then this option can be unchecked for those lines for which
you do not need results.
Arc lengtb axis, Arc lengtb axis inverted, Value axis inverted
These data items allow you customise the way range graphs are displayed. The Arc lengtb axis setting allows you to
control whether the arc length axis is horizontal or vertical. The latter option would typically be used for vertical
risers.
Normally the axes on an OrcaFlex graph display increasing values to the right (for a horizontal axis) or upwards (for
a vertical axis). The axis inverted options allow you to reverse the axes. Again this would typically be used for
vertical risers to arrange that up and down on the arc length axis of the graph matched up and down in the physical
system being modelled.
Since changes to these settings are usually motivated by the physical layout of the line in question, each line in an
OrcaFlex model has its own copies of these settings.
These data items can also be set on the results form.
Drawing
Nodes
You can define the colour, line style and thickness of the pens used for drawing the nodes and sections of the line.
See How Objects Are Drawn. You can also choose to draw nodes as circular discs with diameter equal to the contact
diameter.
Segments
There is a choice for which pen is used to draw the segments. You may either specify the pen explicitly on the Line
Data form, in which case it will be used for all segments of that line. This allows you to use different pens to
distinguish between different lines. Alternatively, you can choose to have the segments drawn using the appropriate
Line Type Pen defined on the Line Types form. This allows you to use different pens to distinguish sections of
different line types.
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Node axes
Node axis directions (x, y, z) can be given individual colours. This helps distinguish between x and y directions thus
making component results easier to interpret. The node axes directions are drawn optionally and can be controlled
by the Draw Node Axes preference or by pressing CTRL+ALT+Y.
Contact
You can define a contact pen which is used when drawing nodes and segments which are in contact with the seabed,
elastic solids and other lines. Should you wish you can choose to disable the contact drawing.
Prescribed Statics Metbod {Track]
For Lines with Prescribed Statics Method you can control how the track is drawn. You can switch between the
options of drawing the track in the chosen pen and not drawing it at all.
Spline Starting Sbape
For the Spline Starting Shape you can switch between the options of drawing the unscaled spline in the chosen pen
and not drawing it at all.
VIV Drawing
The VIV Drawing page is visible when a time domain VIV model is used. For details see the VIV Drawing topic.
Properties Report
The Line properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Total lengtb
The sum of all the section lengths.
Total weigbt in air
The force due to gravity of the entire line. The contents are included but the weight of any attachments is excluded.
Total displacement
The weight of water displaced by the entire line's volume. The displacement of any attachments is excluded. The
reported value uses the water density at the sea surface.
Total weigbt in water
Equals Total line weight in air - Total line displacement.
Full Statics force accuracy, Full Statics moment accuracy
Full Statics force accuracy is only reported if the line uses the Full Statics method. Full Statics moment accuracy is
only reported if the line uses the Full Statics method and torsion is included.
The Full Statics method finds an equilibrium configuration – that is a set of node positions for which the resultant
force and moment on each node is zero. We refer to the resultant force and moment as the out of balance load.
Because computers have limited numerical precision the static analysis cannot always find a configuration where
the out of balance load is exactly zero. OrcaFlex accepts a position as a static equilibrium position if the largest out of
balance load component is less than the statics accuracy.
The Full Statics force accuracy equals Tolerance * line typical force and the Full Statics moment accuracy equals
Tolerance * line typical moment. The line typical force is defined to be the total weight in air. The line typical
moment is defined to be total weight in air * total length.
Reducing the Tolerance value will give a more accurate static equilibrium position, but will take more iterations.
OrcaFlex may not be able to achieve the Tolerance specified if it is too small, since the computer has limited
numerical precision.
ó.8.2 Line Types
Data
The Line Types form defines the properties of a number of named line types, which can then be used to specify the
structure of the Lines used in the model.
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The line types form must include all the line types referred to on all of the Lines forms, but it can also include other
line types that are not currently in use in the model. This allows you to build up a library of standard line types
which can then be easily used when building Lines.
There is not enough room on the screen to show all the properties of all the line types, so OrcaFlex offers different
view modes:
- Individual mode shows one line type at a time, but shows you all its properties.
- All mode shows all the line types, but different types of properties are shown in different tables.
- Code Cbecks mode shows data used for post-processing code checks.
- External Function Parameters mode shows the data used by any external functions referenced by the Line
Type.
The Line Type Wizard is available to help set up line type data to represent commonly used structures such as
chains, ropes etc.
Line Type Name
Used to refer to the Line Type.
Category
Can be either:
- Homogeneous Pipe: This option is appropriate for a pipe constructed from a single homogeneous material, for
example a metal riser, or when modelling stress joints and bend stiffeners. The pipe's structural properties are
defined by specifying Young's modulus, material density and pipe diameters. When modelling stress joints and
bend stiffeners the outer diameter can be specified as varying with arc length.
- Ceneral: This option is used in all other situations. The axial, bending and torsional stiffnesses are directly
input instead of being calculated from E. Similarly the mass is specified as mass per unit length as opposed to
being calculated from a material density. This approach allows analysis of flexible risers, umbilicals, hoses,
mooring chains, ropes, wires, bundles, seismic arrays, power cables, nets etc.
Ceometry & Mass Data
Uuter and Inner Diameter
Used to define buoyancy and mass of contents per unit length respectively.
These data can also be used for other purposes as follows:
- If the Stress Diameters are set to '~' then these diameters are used for wall tension and stress results
calculations.
- If the Contact Diameter is set to '~' then the outer diameter is used for contact calculations.
- If the Drag / Lift Diameters are set to '~' then the outer diameter is used for drag calculations.
Profiled line types {bomogeneous pipe only]
For homogeneous pipes the outer diameter can vary with arc length. To do this you first specify the profile in a Line
Type Outer Diameter variable data source which is then referenced by the outer diameter data of the line type.
This feature is used when modelling stress joints and bend stiffeners. Arc length is defined relative to the start of the
line section which uses this line type and increases from End A towards End B.
CC Uffset
The x and y coordinates of the centre of gravity (CG) relative to the centreline. These data items are only used when
torsion is being modelled. Note that if the line has contents then the contents CG is assumed to be at the centreline
and is not affected by this CG Offset.
Bulk Modulus
Specifies the compressibility of the line type. If the line type is not significantly compressible, then the Bulk Modulus
can be set to Infinity, which means incompressible. See Buoyancy Variation.
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Material Density {bomogeneous pipe only]
The density of the material.
Mass per Unit Lengtb
The mass of the line or pipe structure, excluding contents, per unit length. For homogeneous pipes the material
density is used to calculate the structural mass and therefore the mass per unit length data item cannot be edited.
Coatings & Linings Data
Coatings and Linings are available for homogeneous pipe only.
They are typically used with steel pipes to model the additional mass and displacement of concrete coatings, plastic
linings etc. They contribute mass, weight and displacement and also modify the pipe's inner and outer diameters.
However, they contribute no additional structural strength and are assumed not to be load bearing. Stress results
are calculated based on stress diameters equal to the underlying pipe diameters.
Tbickness and Material Density
The tbickness specifies the physical dimension of the coating or lining. For a coating the buoyancy diameter, contact
diameter and drag diameters are all increased by twice the coating thickness. Similarly the pipe's inner diameter is
reduced by twice the lining thickness which has the effect of reducing the contents mass and weight.
The material density is used, together with the thickness, to calculate the additional mass and weight of the coating
or lining.
Multiple layers
The data on the Line Type data form only allow single coating or lining layers to be specified. It is, however, also
possible to specify multiple layers of coatings or linings. To do this you define Coatings or Linings variable data
sources which are then referenced by the thickness data on the Line Type data form.
These data sources specify a list of layers defined by thickness and material density. The layers are listed in the
order of application. In other words the first layer is immediately adjacent to the pipe, the second layer is next to the
first layer, and so on.
Limits Data
Limit Compression
The program has two modes for handling slack segments, i.e. when the distance between two adjacent nodes
becomes less than the original unstretched segment length:
- No means that the segment is treated as a strut which can support unlimited compression. This is the preferred
model except where bend stiffness is insignificant.
- Yes means that the segment is treated as an elastic Euler strut – the compression is limited to the segment Euler
load. This is a better model for cases where the bend stiffness is insignificant, such as for chains and soft ropes.
The segment Euler load is given by π
2
EI/L0
2
where EI is the bending stiffness of the pipe and L0 is the unstretched
length of the segment. In all cases, whenever a segment has been compressed to or beyond the segment Euler load,
then a warning of this is given on the results form and in the statistics table.
For items such as mooring chain, the bending stiffness is zero, and the segment Euler load is also zero. In this case
"Limit Compression" should be set to "Yes" – this correctly models a chain or very flexible rope, which cannot
support any compression. The segment Euler load warning is then simply a warning that the line has gone slack.
For a line with non-zero bend stiffness the Euler load warning is effectively a warning that the segments at that
point are too long to accurately model the bending that is occurring. Effectively, bending is occurring at a scale that
is less than the segment length, so shorter segments are needed to model it accurately. Using shorter segments in
that area will give a larger segment Euler load, and to obtain an accurate solution you should, ideally, use sufficiently
short segments that the resulting segment Euler load is not reached. See Line Compression and Modelling
Compression in Flexibles for details.
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Allowable Tension
The maximum permitted tension for this type of line. This value is used to draw a limit curve on Tension Range
Graphs and to calculate the Normalised Tension. It does not limit the tension achieved in the line. If no limit curve is
wanted then you may input "~".
Minimum Bend Radii {MBR]
You can specify the minimum permitted radii of curvature for bending about the x and y-directions. These values
are optional – they are only used to draw "allowable" curves on range graphs and in the calculation of Normalised
Curvature results. They do not limit the bend radius of the line. If you do not want these curves then set the x-radius
to "~" (meaning "not applicable") and the y-value to "~" (meaning "same as x-value").
Often the radii for the x and y-directions are equal and this can be specified by setting the y-radius to "~" which
means "same as x-radius".
The specified values are used to draw "allowable curvature" curves on the x and y-Curvature range graphs, and also
(if the x and y-minimum radii are equal) on the Curvature range graph. In addition, they are used (together with the
specified bend stiffness) to derive "allowable bend moment" curves which are drawn on the x and y-Bend Moment
range graphs, and also (if the x and y-values are equal) on the Bend Moment range graph. The MBR is also used to
calculate Normalised Curvature.
Notes: MBR can be specified as a variable data item defined as a table relating MBR to tension – either
wall tension or effective tension can be used. A typical example of this would be a steel core
umbilical. A variable MBR is used solely in the calculation of Normalised Curvature.
The "allowable" curve may not be visible on the range graph, since it may be outside the range
covered by the graph. To see the "allowable" curve in this case you will need to modify the graph to
increase the range of values covered.
Structure Data
Young's Modulus {bomogeneous pipe only]
The Young's modulus of the material which can be constant or variable.
- A constant value results in linear material properties.
- A variable data item specifies a non-linear stress-strain relationship which results in a bending stiffness with
non-linear elastic behaviour. Note however that the axial and torsional stiffnesses are still assumed to be linear.
For homogeneous pipes the Young's modulus determines the axial, bending and torsional stiffnesses. These stiffness
data items are reported on the data form, although they cannot be edited.
Bend Stiffness
The bend stiffness is the slope of the bend moment-curvature curve. You can specify separate values for bending
about the x and y-directions, but often these are equal. This can be achieved by setting the y-bend stiffness to '~'
which means 'same as x-bend stiffness'.
The bend stiffness specified may be zero, for example for chains. It can also be very large values, for example for
steel pipes, but this will often result in short natural periods in the model and hence require short simulation time
steps. See Inner and Outer Time Steps.
You can specify the bend stiffness to be linear, elastic non-linear, bysteretic non-linear or externally calculated,
as follows. See Calculating Bend Moments for further details of the bending model used.
Linear Bend Stiffness
For normal simple linear behaviour, specify the bend stiffness to be the constant slope of the bend moment-
curvature relationship. This slope is the equivalent EI value for the line, where E is Young's modulus and I is the
moment of area of the cross-section. The bend stiffness equals the bend moment required to bend the line to a
curvature of 1 radian per unit length.
Non-Linear Bend Stiffness
For non-linear behaviour, use variable data to specify a table of bend moment magnitude against curvature
magnitude. OrcaFlex uses linear interpolation for curvatures between those specified in the table, and linear
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extrapolation for curvatures beyond those specified in the table. The bend moment must be zero at zero curvature.
For homogeneous pipes the Plasticity Wizard may be useful to help set up the table.
With non-linear bend stiffness you must also specify whether the hysteretic bending model should be used.
- Non-hysteretic means that the non-linear stiffness is elastic. No hysteresis effects are included and the bend
moment magnitude is simply the specified function of the current curvature magnitude.
- Hysteretic means the bend moment includes hysteresis effects, so that the bend moment depends on the history
of curvature applied as well as on the current curvature. Also note that if the hysteretic model is used then the
line must include torsion effects.
Warning: You must check that the hysteretic model is suitable for the line type being modelled. It is not
suitable for modelling rate-dependent effects. It is intended for modelling hysteresis due to
persisting effects such as yield of material or slippage of one part of a composite line structure
relative to another part.
If you use the hysteretic bending model then the simulation speed may be significantly slowed if there are a large
number of points specified in the table of bend moment against curvature. You might be able to speed up the
simulation, without significantly affecting accuracy, by removing superfluous points in areas where the curve is very
close to linear.
In addition hysteretic bend stiffness usually requires shorter time steps than non-hysteretic modelling, when using
implicit integration.
Note: If you are using non-linear bend stiffness, then the mid-segment curvature results reported depend
on whether the bend stiffness is specified to be hysteretic or not. If the bend stiffness is not
hysteretic then the mid-segment curvature reported is the curvature that corresponds to the mid-
segment bend moment (which is the mean of the bend moments at either end of the segment). If the
bend stiffness is hysteretic then the mid-segment curvature cannot be derived in this way (because
of possible hysteresis effects) so the mid-segment curvature reported is the mean of the curvatures
at the ends of the segment. This difference may be significant if the bend stiffness is significantly
non-linear over the range of curvatures involved.
For further details see non-linear bend stiffness theory.
The External results data is still under development and is not available for general use.
Externally Calculated Bend Moment
This option allows the bend moment to be calculated by an external function. If this option is used then the line must
include torsion effects. The external function can be written by the user or other software writers. For details see
the OrcaFlex programming interface (OrcFxAPI) and the OrcFxAPI documentation.
Warning: Non-linear behaviour breaks the assumptions of the stress results and fatigue analysis in OrcaFlex.
You should therefore not use these facilities when there are significant non-linear effects.
Axial Stiffness
The axial stiffness is the slope of the curve relating wall tension to strain. The data specifies the behaviour in the
unpressured state, i.e. atmospheric pressure inside and out. Pressure effects, including the Poisson ratio effect, are
then allowed for by OrcaFlex.
You can either specify linear or non-linear behaviour, as follows:
- For a simple linear behaviour, specify the axial stiffness to be the constant slope of the line relating wall tension
to strain. This slope is the equivalent EA value for the line, where E is Young's modulus and A is the cross section
area. It equals the force required to double the length of any given piece of line, assuming perfectly linear elastic
behaviour. (In practice, of course, lines would yield before such a tension was reached.)
- For a non-linear behaviour, use variable data to specify a table of wall tension against axial strain. OrcaFlex uses
linear interpolation for strains between those specified in the table, and linear extrapolation for strains beyond
those specified in the table. The wall tension is allowed to be non-zero at zero strain.
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Note: Axial strain is defined to equal (L - L0) / L0, where L and L0 are the stretched and unstretched
length of a given piece of pipe. Here 'unstretched' means the length when unpressured and
unstressed. When a pipe is pressured its tension at this 'unstretched' length is often not zero
because of strains due to pressure effects. For a homogeneous pipe this can be modelled by
specifying the Poisson ratio. For a non-homogeneous pipe (e.g. a flexible) the Poisson ratio may not
be able to capture the pressure effects.
Warning: Non-linear behaviour breaks the assumptions of the stress results and fatigue analysis.
See Calculating Tension Forces for details of the tension model used.
Note: If you use explicit integration for dynamic simulation then the axial stiffness specified here will
have a major effect on how long the dynamic simulation will take. This is because very large axial
stiffness values lead to very small natural periods for the nodes, and this in turn requires very small
simulation time steps when using explicit integration. See Inner and Outer Time Steps.
Fortunately, the value of axial stiffness used is often not very important, providing it is large
enough that the axial strains produced are small. The exception to this is where snatch loads occur,
since the axial stiffness directly affects the peak tension that results. It is therefore normally quite
acceptable to specify a much smaller axial stiffness value than applies to the real line, so enabling
much faster simulations. We recommend that artificially low axial stiffness values are specified,
particularly for early investigative simulations. The effect of this can easily be investigated later by
re-running a selection of important simulations with the actual axial stiffness value.
Poisson Ratio
This specifies the Poisson ratio of the material that makes up the wall of the line type. It is used to model any length
changes due to the radial and circumferential stresses caused by contents pressure and external pressure.
A Poisson ratio of zero means no such length changes. For metals such as steel or titanium the Poisson ratio is about
0.3 and for polyethylene about 0.4. Most materials have Poisson ratio between 0.0 and 0.5.
Note: The Poisson ratio effect is calculated assuming that the line type is a pipe made from a
homogeneous material. It is not really applicable to complex structures such as flexibles, whose
length changes due to pressure are more complex. However for such cases an effective Poisson
ratio could be specified as an approximation.
Torsional Stiffness
The torsional stiffness is used only if torsion is included on the line data form.
The torsional stiffness specifies the relationship between twist and torsional moment (torque). You can specify
linear or non-linear behaviour, as follows:
- For a simple linear behaviour, specify the torsional stiffness to be the constant slope of the torsional moment-
twist per unit length relationship. This slope is the equivalent GJ value for the line, where G is the shear modulus
and J is the polar moment of inertia. It equals the torque which arises if the line is given a twist of 1 radian per
unit length.
- For a non-linear behaviour, use variable data to specify a table of torque against twist per unit length. OrcaFlex
uses linear interpolation for curvatures between those specified in the table, and linear extrapolation for values
outside those specified in the table. The torque must be zero at zero twist.
See Calculating Torsion Moments for details on how this data is used.
Note: When defining non-linear torsional stiffness you should specify values for both positive and
negative twist per unit length. This allows you, for example, to have different stiffnesses for positive
and negative twisting. If the behaviour is mirrored for positive and negative twist then you must
specify the full relationship – OrcaFlex does not automatically reflect the data for you.
Warning: Non-linear behaviour breaks the assumptions of the stress results and fatigue analysis.
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Drag, Lift & Added Mass Data
Drag Coefficients
The drag coefficients for the normal (x and y) directions and axial (z) direction are specified on the line type data
form. For the x and y directions the drag coefficients can be one of the following options:
- A fixed constant value.
- A value that varies with Reynolds number.
- A value that varies with Height above Seabed.
- A value that varies with both Reynolds number and Height above Seabed.
Often the coefficients for the x and y-directions are equal and this can be specified by setting the y-coefficient to "~",
which means "same as x-coefficient". OrcaFlex also offers a choice (on the line data form) of different formulations
for how the drag force components vary with the incidence angle.
If wake interference effects are being modelled for a given line, then these normal drag coefficients on the line type
data form specify the undisturbed drag coefficient. And the drag force will be calculated using a drag coefficient
that is modified from this value according to the wake model used.
For further details see the Line Theory section.
Typical drag coefficient values
For circular cylinders, the drag coefficient for normal flow depends on Reynolds number Re and surface finish. For
values of Re between 2E4 and 3E5 the drag coefficient takes the value 1.2 and is independent of surface roughness.
Values below this range are unlikely to occur in practice. For Reynolds numbers greater than 3E5, the drag
coefficient is strongly dependent on both Re and surface roughness.
For very smooth cylinders the drag coefficient falls rapidly to 0.28 at a Re of about 6E5 before recovering to a value
of 0.5 for Re values above 2E6. For rough cylinders the effect is less marked, but remains significant.
In view of this behaviour, the use of variable data for normal drag coefficients is strongly recommended. OrcaFlex
will then use the value of drag appropriate to the instantaneous local value of Reynolds number throughout the
simulation.
The functional form of the dependence is well documented in the open literature and also in proprietary data
sources, such as ESDU 80025.
Note that some of these sources take account of the effect of the amount of turbulence in the incoming flow by
defining an effective Reynolds number. Consequently, care is needed to ensure that the data are presented in a form
that is consistent with the definition of Reynolds number used by OrcaFlex.
Results for Reynolds number and drag coefficient are available as time history results.
The above values apply where vortex-induced vibration (VIV) is expected to be negligible. If significant VIV is
anticipated, then drag coefficients may be increased significantly. If this is the case, a more detailed VIV analysis
should be carried out.
Axial drag results from skin friction only. In subcritical flow (Re < 3.8E5), the drag coefficient for axial flow, Ct, is
0.008 for a smooth cylinder and 0.011 for a rough cylinder, based on ESDU data. At higher Re, ESDU suggest that
skin friction may be neglected, i.e. Ct = 0. In practice, axial drag is often negligible and Ct = 0 is often acceptable.
Lift Coefficient
The lift coefficient is used to specify a lift force which acts in the direction normal to the line axis and in the plane of
that axis and the seabed normal. It can be one of the following options:
- A fixed constant value.
- A value that varies with Reynolds number.
- A value that varies with Height above seabed.
- A value that varies with both Reynolds number and Height above seabed.
For further details see the Line Theory section.
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Drag J Lift Diameters
These are used when calculating drag area and lift area. A value of '~' results in the outer diameter being used.
Note: OrcaFlex calculates the normal drag / lift area to be DnL and the axial drag area to be πDaL where
Dn is the normal drag / lift diameter, Da is the axial drag diameter and L is the element length. Note
that different programs handle these calculations in different ways. For example it is common for
programs to use a single drag / lift area for both normal and axial flow and in addition some
programs do not include the factor of π in the axial drag area. Because of these differences you
must be careful when comparing or transferring data between different programs.
Added Mass Coefficients
The added mass coefficients Ca for normal (x and y-directions) and axial (z-direction) flow. Often the coefficients for
the x and y-directions are equal and this can be specified by setting the y-coefficient to "~" which means "same as x-
coefficient".
For each flow direction, the inertia coefficient, Cm, is automatically set to equal 1+Ca. See Added Mass for details.
Contact Data
Contact Diameter
Contact between lines and the seabed, elastic solids or other lines accounts for the diameter of the line. This value
specifies the diameter to be used. If a value of '~' is specified then the line outer diameter is used.
This value is also used in the calculation of Line Contact Clearance results and as the drawing diameter for shaded
graphics views.
Contact Stiffness and Damping
The stiffness and damping values used by the clashing algorithm. See Line Clashing.
Damping is always zero when using the implicit integration scheme.
Stress Data
Stress Uuter and Inner Diameter
The stress diameters are the inside and outside diameters of the load-bearing cylinder. They are used in the wall
tension and stress results calculations, which are based on the assumption that the loads in the line are taken by a
simple homogeneous cylinder. For simple cases, the stress diameters can be set to '~', in which case they will be
taken to be the same as the pipe diameters. For more complex cases, for example where the pipe outside diameter
allows for added buoyancy modules that are not load bearing, the stress diameters can be set separately. See Line
Results – Forces.
Allowable Stress
The maximum allowable stress for this type of line. This value is only used to draw a limit curve on Stress Range
Graphs; it does not limit the stress achieved in the line. If no limit curve is wanted then you may input the tilde
character "~" (meaning not applicable) instead of a number.
Stress Loading Factors
These are used to specify what proportion of the loads (tension, bend moment, shear and torque) are to be used
when calculating wall tension and stress results. The effective tension, bend moment, shear force and torque are
multiplied by the appropriate stress loading factor when they are used to calculate the wall tension and stress
results.
For many cases, e.g. when modelling a simple homogeneous pipe that carries all the loads, these load factors should
be set to 1, the default value.
In some cases, values less than 1 may be suitable. For example, consider a case where the line models a composite
structure that consists of a main carrier pipe and an external piggyback pipe. You might estimate that the main pipe
takes all of the tensile and torsional loads, but only carries 70% of the bending loads, the other 30% being taken by
the piggyback pipe. Then to obtain stress estimates for the main pipe you could set the Stress Outer and Inner
Diameters to '~' and set the bending and shear stress loading factors to 0.7.
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Note: The Allowable Stress and Stress Loading Factors only affect the wall tension results, stress results
and fatigue analyses. These results are derived after the simulation has run, and because of this
OrcaFlex allows these data items to be modified after a simulation has been run.
Friction Data
Seabed Friction Coefficients
OrcaFlex applies Coulomb friction between the line and the seabed. The friction force applied never exceeds μR
where R is the seabed reaction force and μ is the friction coefficient.
Lines lying on the seabed often move axially more readily than they move laterally. To enable this effect to be
modelled, you can specify different friction coefficients μ for motion normal (i.e. lateral) and axial to the line. For
intermediate directions of motion OrcaFlex interpolates between these two values to obtain the friction coefficient μ
to use. If the axial friction coefficient is set to '~' then the normal friction coefficient is used for μ for all directions of
motion. This provides a convenient way of using the same friction coefficient for all directions of motion.
See Friction Theory for further details of the friction model used.
Note: The friction coefficient for contact with elastic solids is specified on the Solid Friction Coefficients
data form.
Typical values
Published data are sparse. Some information is given in Puech (1984) and Taylor and Valent(1984). Both references
distinguish between sliding friction and starting friction: starting friction is greater to represent the "breakout"
force. OrcaFlex does not draw this distinction. In most cases, the sliding friction coefficient should be used; this will
usually be conservative. Both references are written in the context of the contribution of chains and cables to anchor
holding power, so we assume the friction values given are axial. Transverse values will be greater, perhaps by 50%
to 100%.
The values given below are recommendations from Taylor and Valent.
Line type Seabed Type Starting Friction
Coefficient
Sliding Friction
Coefficient
Cbain Sand 0.98 0.74
Mud with sand 0.92 0.69
Mud/clay 0.90 0.56
Wire rope Sand 0.98 0.25
Mud with sand 0.69 0.23
Mud/clay 0.45 0.18
Structural Damping Data
Rayleigb Damping Coefficients
A named Rayleigh Damping Coefficient data set. This data item can be set to "(no damping)", in which case no
Rayleigh damping will be applied for this Line Type.
This data is only available when using the implicit integration scheme.
Code Cbecks Data
The code check data can be found by setting the Line Type view mode to Code Cbeck.
API RP 2RD
Data used for the API RP 2RD stress calculation.
Design case factor Cf
See API RP 2RD, section 4.4, table 2 and section 5.2.3.1.
This value is a property of the entire model. To modify it using batch script you must first select the General object.
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Minimum wall tbickness
The minimum wall thickness, denoted tmin in API RP 2RD, section 5.2.4.4. A value of '~' results in the nominal wall
thickness, (OD-ID)/2, being used.
SMYS
The material minimum yield strength (SMYS), denoted ςy in API RP 2RD, section 5.2.3.1.
Drawing Data
Pen
Defines the colour, line style and thickness of the pen used for drawing this line type. See How Objects Are Drawn.
For each line there is a choice, on the Line Data form, of whether to draw the sections of the line using these Line
Types pens, or whether to define a specific pen to use for all the sections of the line.
External Functions
Parameters
This data item specifies the External Function Parameters, a free form multi-line text field which is passed to any
external function used by the Line Type.
Plasticity Wizard
OrcaFlex allows you to specify non-linear bend stiffness for Line Types. The data is given as a table of bend moment
against curvature. If you are modelling a uniform, homogeneous pipe you can use the Plasticity Wizard to create
this table.
Once you have entered the appropriate data as described below, click the Calculate button and the curvature / bend
moment relationship is generated. The Bend Stiffness variable data source that is created is initialised to be
hysteretic.
The Plasticity Wizard is opened by clicking the "Plasticity Wizard" button on the Variable Data form.
Note: Before you can open the Plasticity Wizard you must have created and selected a Bend Stiffness
variable data source.
Plasticity Wizard Data
The Plasticity Wizard requires the following data:
Stress Diameters
The inside and outside diameters of the load-bearing cylinder.
Direct Tensile Strain
The Plasticity Wizard calculates bend moment curvature relationship by integrating the stress profile across the
pipe cross-section. This calculation requires a direct tensile strain to be specified – this data item serves that
purpose.
Stress-Strain relationsbip
The relationship between stress and strain can be specified by either Ramberg-Usgood curve or Stress-Strain
table.
Material E, R‡ˆ ‡”‡•… ‡ – ”‡• • P y], K, n {Ramberg-Usgood curve only]
These data define the relationship between stress (ς) and strain (ε) in terms of a Ramberg-Osgood curve as follows:
ε(ς) = ς/E + K(ς/ςy)
n
.
The reference stress parameter is usually taken to be the yield stress, which is why it is denoted ςy here. Note that
there is an alternative parameterisation of the Ramberg-Osgood equation. It is straightforward to convert between
the two forms of the equation but please take care to ensure that the data you input correspond to the
parameterisation used by OrcaFlex.
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Stress, Strain {Stress-Strain table only]
This table directly specifies the relationship between stress and strain. The table is interpolated linearly and for
values of strain outside the table linear extrapolation will be used.
Maximum curvature for derived data source
The Bend Stiffness variable data source is defined for curvature values between 0 and Cmax = εmax/Ro where Ro is the
radius to the outer fibre. The outer fibre strain corresponding to Cmax is denoted εmax and is defined as follows:
- For a Ramberg-Osgood curve εmax = max{0.05, 5ε(ςy)}. So the value used for εmax will be 5 times the strain
corresponding to the reference stress or 5%, whichever is larger.
- For a Stress-Strain table εmax is simply the largest value of strain specified in the table.
Properties Report
The Line Type properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Weigbt in air
The force due to gravity acting on the line type's mass.
Displacement
The weight of water displaced by the line type's volume. The reported value uses the water density at the sea
surface.
Weigbt in water
Equals Weight in air - Displacement.
DiamJWt Ratio
Equals Outer Diameter / Weight in water.
Note: For Line Types that have a non-zero bore you must specify the contents density to be used in the
calculation of the above properties, since this will affect the properties that involve weight.
Used in, Contents Density
The names and contents densities of each line that uses that line type.
ó.8.3 Attacbments
Attacbment Types
The Attachment Types form defines the properties of a number of named attachment types. Attachments with these
properties can then be connected to lines. Attachment Types can be either Clump Types, Drag Chain Types, Flex
Joint Types or Stiffener Types.
The attachment types form must include all the attachment types referred to on all of the Lines data forms, but it can
also include other attachment types that are not currently in use in the model. This allows you to build up a library
of standard attachment types that can then be easily used when building Lines.
Clumps
A clump is a concentrated attachment that is connected to a node on a Line. It can be buoyant or heavy and is a small
body that experiences forces (weight, buoyancy, drag etc.) exactly as for a 3D Buoy. But instead of being free to
move it is constrained to move with the node and the forces acting on it are transferred to that node. A clump
therefore adds to the mass, buoyancy and hydrodynamic force of the node to which it is attached.
Clumps only have 3 degrees of freedom – X,Y and Z – which are determined by the position of the node to which they
are attached. Clumps can be aligned with the global axes directions or alternatively they can be aligned with the
node to which they are attached.
Each clump is assigned a height and an offset from the node which are used to determine the Z coordinate of the
clump for the purposes of evaluating buoyancy and hydrodynamic forces: no moment is applied to the node by the
clump. Where the clump pierces the water surface, buoyancy and hydrodynamic forces are applied in proportion to
the immersed length of the clump.
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Each clump is of a named clump type, from which it inherits all its properties. The clump types are specified on the
Attachment Types form and have the following data.
Clump Type Name
Used to refer to the Clump Type.
Mass
Mass or weight in air.
Volume
Used to calculate buoyancy and added mass for each clump of this type on a line. Clumps may be either net buoyant
or heavy as desired.
Heigbt
Used for drawing the clump and also to determine how much of the clump is below the water surface.
If the clump is aligned with global axes then it is centred at the Uffset position above the node, and extends for half
its Heigbt above and below this point.
If the clump is aligned with Line axes then it is centred at the node, and extends for half its Heigbt either side of this
point in the node's axial direction.
Uffset
A clump may be offset vertically from the line, for example to represent a line supported below the surface by floats.
The connection is not modelled fully: the clump is always treated as being at the specified offset vertically above
(offset positive) or below (offset negative) the node to which it is attached.
If the clump is aligned with Line axes then the clump offset is forced to be zero.
Align witb
Determines whether the clump is aligned with Clobal Axes or Line Axes.
This setting determines the clump's local directions. If it is aligned with global axes then the clump's local directions
are the same as the global axis system. If it is aligned with Line axes then its local directions are the same as the node
to which it is connected.
Drag
Drag forces are calculated in clump local directions for each clump on a line.
drag force = PW . ½ . Water Density . (velocity)
2
. Cd . Drag Area
where
Cd is Drag Coefficient as specified here,
Drag Area is specified here,
velocity is the velocity of the fluid relative to the clump in the appropriate direction.
Added Mass Coefficients
Added mass in clump local directions is given by
Added mass = PW . Ca . Water Density . Volume
where
Ca is the Added Mass Coefficient as specified here.
Pen
Defines the colour, line style and thickness of the pen used for drawing this clump type. See How Objects Are Drawn.
Clump Type Properties Report
The Clump Types properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
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Weigbt in air
The force due to gravity acting on the clump's mass.
Displacement
The weight of water displaced by the clump's volume. The reported value uses the water density at the sea surface.
Weigbt in water
Equals Weight in air - Displacement.
Drag Cbains
Drag chains are attachments to a line that model straight chains that hang down from the line. They apply weight,
buoyancy and drag forces to the node to which they are attached, but not any added mass effects. For details see
Drag Chain Theory.
Drag chains include two facilities that can be important in modelling towed systems. Firstly, the chain's drag
coefficients can vary with the incidence angle of the relative flow; this enables modelling the effect that as the
relative flow increases the chain hangs at a greater angle to the vertical and so fluid drag generates more lift, which
is applied to the line. Secondly, drag chains interact with the seabed (in a simple manner); if the node comes closer
to the seabed than the chain length, then the seabed provides a supporting reaction force and a friction force, both of
which are applied to the node.
Each drag chain is of a named drag chain type, from which it inherits all its properties. The drag chain types are
specified on the Attachment Types form and have the following data.
Name
Used to refer to the Drag Chain Type.
Lengtb
Length of the drag chain.
Effective Diameter
Effective diameter of the drag chain. This is the diameter of the cylinder that has the same displaced mass per unit
length.
Mass
Mass per unit length. Mass is assumed to be uniformly distributed along the length of the drag chain.
Friction Coefficient
Coefficient of friction for contact with the seabed. This coefficient is used for all directions of friction. The value can
be set to '~', in which case the drag chain will instead use the axial friction coefficient of the node to which the drag
chain is attached.
Drawing
Defines the colour, line style and thickness of the pen used for drawing drag chains of this type. See How Objects Are
Drawn.
Drag Coefficients
The fluid drag forces on the chain are specified by giving a table of the normal and axial drag coefficients, as a
function of the incidence angle α between the relative velocity vector and the drag chain. So α = 0° means flow
axially along the drag chain and α = 90° means flow normal to the drag chain.
Coefficients are specified for a range of incidence angles between 0° and 90° and linear interpolation is used to
obtain coefficients for intermediate angles. The Graph button shows the resulting coefficient variation. Symmetry is
used to obtain coefficients for angles outside the range 0° to 90°.
Note: To be realistic, the normal drag force should increase monotonically as the incidence angle α
increases from 0 to 90. This turns out to require that the gradient of the normal drag coefficient
curve Cdn(α) should be greater than -2.Cdn(α) / tan(α) for all α. OrcaFlex warns if the drag
coefficient data does not satisfy this.
See Drag Chain Theory for further details.
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Drag Cbain Type Properties Report
The Drag Chain Types properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Lengtb, Diameter
The data as specified on the data form.
Total Mass
The total mass of the drag chain given by Length × Mass per unit Length.
Total weigbt in air
Equals Total Mass × g.
Total displacement
The weight of the volume of fluid displaced by the drag chain. The volume is given by Length × πD
2
/4 where D is the
effective diameter as specified on the data form.
Total wet weigbt
Equals Total weight in air - Total displacement.
Flex )oints
Flex joints are attachments to a line that add additional bending stiffness to a particular node (specified by the
attachment's z-position). This additional local stiffness acts in series with the stiffness of the underlying line type
bend stiffness. If, for example, you set the stiffness for the flex joint to zero, then you effectively make that node pin-
jointed.
Each flex joint has properties determined by a named Flex Joint Type. The Flex Joint Types are specified on the
Attachment Types form and have the following data:
Name
Used to refer to the Flex Joint Type.
Bend Stiffness
Specifies the bend stiffness of the Flex Joint Type. You can specify separate values for bending about the x and y-
directions. A y-bend stiffness value of '~' is interpreted as 'same as x-bend stiffness'.
Similarly to line end connection stiffness the bend stiffness is specified in terms of moment per degree of deflection.
Drawing
Defines the colour, line style and thickness of the pen used for drawing flex joints of this type. See How Objects Are
Drawn.
Stiffeners
Stiffeners are attachments to a line intended for use modelling bend stiffeners. Each stiffener has properties
determined by a named Stiffener Type. The Stiffener Types are specified on the Attachment Types form and have
the following data:
Name
Used to refer to the Stiffener Type.
Line Type
Determines the physical properties of the stiffener. Usually this will be a profiled homogeneous pipe.
Because the stiffener properties are included in addition to the protected line properties this line type should just
specify the properties of the stiffener.
Lengtb
Defines the length of the stiffener. If the line type is profiled then the length is determined by the profile data and so
cannot be edited here.
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Connection Arc Lengtb, Relative to
Defines the point on the stiffener which corresponds to the protected line attachment position. This correspondence
is illustrated in the following table which assumes a stiffener length of 10:
Protected line
attacbment
arc lengtb
Stiffener
connection
arc lengtb
Protected line
protected arc lengtb
range
0 0 0-10
5 0 5-15
10 5 5-15
50 10 40-50
For a bend stiffener at End A of a line the connection arc length would set to 0 relative to End A. Similarly for a bend
stiffener at End B of a line the connection arc length would set to 0 relative to End B.
Axial loadJinertia transfer
Specifies how the axial loads and axial inertia are transferred from the stiffener to the protected line.
If at connection point is specified then the axial loads and axial inertia for the entire stiffener line are transferred to
the protected line at the connection point. This option is suitable when you wish to neglect the axial effects of
friction due to contact between protected line and stiffener.
If over full lengtb is specified then the axial loads and axial inertia are transferred and shared across the full length
of the stiffener. If the contact friction means that the protected line effectively carries the axial loads and inertia of
the stiffener then this option should be used.
For a stiffener which is connected to the protected line by means of a full length friction grip, e.g. a Cumberland Grip,
then you should use the over tbe full lengtb option for axial load/inertia transfer.
More technical details of how this data item is used are given in Modelling Bend Stiffeners.
ó.8.4 Rayleigb Damping
Rayleigh damping is used to model structural damping for Lines and is only available when using the implicit
integration scheme.
Classical Rayleigb damping
Classical Rayleigh damping uses a system damping matrix C defined as:
C = μM + λK
where
μ is the mass proportional Rayleigh damping coefficient.
λ is the stiffness proportional Rayleigh damping coefficient.
M is the system structural mass matrix.
K is the system structural stiffness matrix.
With this formulation the damping ratio is the same for axial, bending and torsional response.
Classical Rayleigh damping results in different damping ratios for different response frequencies according to the
following equation:
ξ = 0.5(μ/ω + λω)
where
ξ is the damping ratio (a value of 1 corresponds to critical damping).
ω is the response frequency in rad/s.
It can be seen from this that the mass proportional term gives damping ratio inversely proportional to response
frequency and the stiffness proportional term gives damping ratio linearly proportional to response frequency.
Separated Rayleigb damping
In addition to classical Rayleigh damping OrcaFlex offers a separated Rayleigh damping model where C is defined as:
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C = μM + λaKa + λbKb + λtKt
where
λa is the stiffness proportional Rayleigh damping coefficient for axial deformation.
λb is the stiffness proportional Rayleigh damping coefficient for bending deformation.
λt is the stiffness proportional Rayleigh damping coefficient for torsional deformation.
Ka is the system structural stiffness matrix corresponding to axial deformation.
Kb is the system structural stiffness matrix corresponding to bending deformation.
Kt is the system structural stiffness matrix corresponding to torsional deformation.
Note that K = Ka + Kb + Kt.
The separated model allows for different damping ratio in axial, bending and torsional response.
Data
Each Line Type has structural damping properties determined by a named Rayleigh Damping Coefficient data set.
Multiple Rayleigh Damping Coefficient data sets can be defined, each with the following data.
Rayleigb damping mode
OrcaFlex offers four distinct methods for specifying the Rayleigh damping coefficients:
- Stiffness proportional.
- Mass and stiffness proportional.
- Coefficients (classical).
- Coefficients (separated).
Stiffness proportional and Mass and stiffness proportional metbods
These methods allow you to specify structural damping in terms of % critical damping ratio. In addition you need
to specify response periods at which the damping ratio will be achieved. For Stiffness proportional damping only
one response period can be specified.
If Response Period 1 is set to '~' then OrcaFlex will choose response periods automatically based on the wave
period, or peak period Tp for a random wave. This method is generally recommended and is particularly useful if
you are running a batch of cases with varying wave conditions.
OrcaFlex uses the classical Rayleigh damping model and reports the mass and stiffness proportional coefficients μ
and λ.
Coefficients {classical] and Coefficients {separated] metbods
For these methods you specify the damping coefficients directly.
Damping ratio grapb
The damping ratio graph plots the damping ratio that will be achieved for a range of response frequencies. The
graph's x-axis can be either period of frequency.
Cuidance
Variation of damping ratio
Rayleigh damping is viscous damping that is proportional to a linear combination of mass and stiffness. The
damping matrix C is given by C = μM + λK where M, K are the mass and stiffness matrices respectively and μ, λ are
constants of proportionality.
Rayleigh damping does afford certain mathematical conveniences and is widely used to model internal structural
damping. One of the less attractive features of Rayleigh damping is that the achieved damping ratio varies as
response frequency varies. The stiffness proportional term contributes damping that is linearly proportional to
response frequency and the mass proportional term contributes damping that is inversely proportional to response
frequency. Mathematically, these frequency dependencies can be seen in the formula for damping ratio ξ = π(μ/f +
λf) where f is the response frequency.
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The plot below illustrates how the separate mass and stiffness damping terms contribute to the overall damping
ratio:
0%
1%
2%
3%
4%
5%
6%
0 1 2 3 4 5
Response angular frequency (rad/s)
(μ=0.025, λ=0.023)
D
a
m
p
i
n
g

r
a
t
i
o
Mass and Stiffness Mass term Stiffness term

Figure: Variation Uf Damping Ratio Witb Frequency
Artificial over-damping of system response
Consider a system which has two primary responses: one at the wave frequency and the other at a much lower
frequency, for example due to vessel drift. Clearly Rayleigh damping constants must be chosen carefully to avoid the
mass proportional term resulting in over-damping of the low frequency response.
It is common practice to do this by using the stiffness proportional term only. For example the DNV dynamic riser
code DNV-OS-F201 (Appendix A, K103) makes the following recommendation: "It should also be observed that the
mass proportional damping would give damping due to rigid body motions. The mass proportional damping is
therefore normally neglected for compliant structures undergoing large rigid body motions." In other words the
recommendation for such systems is to use stiffness proportional damping (the red curve above).
This is a good argument. However, an analogous argument can also be made about any high frequency response. If
only stiffness proportional damping is used then any high frequency response will be over-damped. It is quite
common for systems to have responses at frequencies higher than the wave frequency. Since high frequency
responses are often damaging to a system it is important to model them accurately. Stiffness proportional damping
is very effective at artificially removing high frequency responses from an analysis and this is a danger that must be
avoided.
Avoiding over-damping of system response
We recommend the following procedure for applying Rayleigh damping:
1. Identify a number of critical load cases.
2. Run these cases without Rayleigh damping.
3. Identify the minimum and maximum frequencies present in the system response, fmin and fmax.
4. Apply mass and stiffness proportional Rayleigh damping with response periods set to 1/fmin and 1/fmax.
This technique will apply the specified damping ratio at responses with frequency fmin and fmax. For frequencies
between fmin and fmax the damping ratio will be less than the specified damping ratio which ensures that artificial
over-damping is avoided.
Note: Since this approach leads to a damping ratio less than the specified damping ratio for frequencies
between fmin and fmax it could be argued that the response will be under-damped. Generally this
conservative under-damping is far less significant than the non-conservative over-damping that we
are trying to avoid.
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If your system response is concentrated at the wave frequency for all critical design cases then it is safe to apply
stiffness proportional damping.
Discussion
The above procedure will help you avoid non-conservative over-damping of high or low frequency responses in
your system. However, it is quite laborious and time-consuming. Can we adopt a simpler approach?
For a great many of the systems that are analysed by OrcaFlex it turns out that structural damping has little or no
effect on system performance. For subsea lines the structural damping is usually negligible in comparison with the
damping due to hydrodynamic drag. For this reason Rayleigh damping can usually be ignored for analysis of subsea
lines. For systems which show significantly different responses when Rayleigh damping is applied you should check
that this is not due to the over-damping issues described above.
For in-air lines (e.g. jumper hoses) the situation is different. These lines have no hydrodynamic damping and so the
structural damping can be significant. For such lines it is very easy for resonant responses to be excited and if no
damping is modelled then these responses do not decay. In this situation Rayleigh damping can be very useful. It is,
of course, important to apply it carefully as described above.
One common phenomenon that is sometimes modelled with Rayleigh damping is the damping due to internal
friction between layers of a pressurised, unbonded flexible riser. This effect is strongly amplitude dependent and is
poorly represented by Rayleigh damping. The problem is that the damping ratio depends on the amplitude of
response. This makes the damping ratio very difficult to set and it will differ for different load cases. Instead we
recommend that you use a hysteretic bend stiffness which gives a more accurate model of the riser.
ó.8.5 Line Results
This section describes the line results that are available for the static and dynamic analyses. These results are
available using the Results Selection form.
Results from the modal analysis and fatigue analysis are described elsewhere – see the Modal Analysis and Fatigue
Analysis sections.
Selecting wbicb Categories of Line Results are Sbown
For Lines there are a large number of results variables available on the Results form. So OrcaFlex groups the results
variables into the following categories:
- Positions.
- Motions.
- Angles.
- Forces.
- Moments.
- Contact.
- Pipe Stress / Strain.
- End Loads.
To ease results selection the Sbow boxes on the results form allow you to choose which of these categories of
variables are shown in the Variable list. To get the full list of available variables simply select all the categories. But
normally there are several categories of variable that you do not currently need, in which case de-selecting them
reduces the displayed list of variables to a more manageable set.
Specifying tbe Position on tbe Line
For line results you need to specify the position on the line at which you want results. This is done by setting the
entries in a row in the Position table on the results form. You are then offered the Variables that are available for
the point specified by the currently-selected row.
Each row in the table specifies one point on the line. There are multiple rows in the table, so you can set up rows
specifying a number of different points of interest and then easily switch between them by choosing which row you
select. In a row that you don't want to use you can set the Node or Arc Length column to '~', meaning 'unspecified'.
Three rows in the table are dedicated to special arc lengths on the line:
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- The first and last rows in the Position table are dedicated to the line's end points A and B.
- The next to last row in the table is dedicated to the Toucbdown point. This is defined to be the first node on the
seabed (starting from the Top End). If the results variable selected is a segment variable (i.e. is only available at
mid-segment points) then the value reported for the touchdown point is the mid-segment valued in the segment
that precedes the Touchdown node. When there are no nodes on the seabed then the results variable is reported
as N/A (meaning 'not available') and the graph shows no value.
Arc Lengtb and Node Columns
The Arc Lengtb column specifies how far along the line the point is, measured from zero at End A. For information,
if you set the Arc Length column then the adjacent Node cell is set to the number of the nearest node to that arc
length.
The Node column can also be used as an alternative way of setting the arc length. You can set the Node column to
the number of a node on the line. The adjacent Arc Length cell will then be set to the arc length to that node. The
node number must be in the range 1 (the node at End A) to N+1 (the node at End B), where N is the total number of
segments in the line.
Note: The actual arc length for which line results are reported may not be exactly the specified arc
length. OrcaFlex reports results for the 'nearest appropriate' result point. See Result Points below.
R and Tbeta Columns
For some variables (e.g. stress components) you must also specify the position of the point within the cross section
through the specified arc length. Whenever one of these variables is selected in the Variables list, two extra
columns become visible in the Position table. These extra columns specify the polar coordinates (R,Tbeta) of the
point within the cross section; see the diagram in the Pipe Stress Calculation section. The R column can only be set
to either Inner or Uuter, meaning the radii corresponding to the Stress ID or Stress OD respectively. Results are not
available for points between these two radii.
Clearance Results
Clearance results can be reported either as clearances from this line to all other lines or from this line to a specified
other line. You choose which of the options is used from the drop-down list labelled "Clearances are reported as
clearances from".
Result Points
OrcaFlex uses a discretised model and so results are only available at nodes, mid-segment points and line ends; we
call these points 'result points'. The available result points depend on which variable you request, they are
documented in the description of the variable.
When you ask for a variable at a specified arc length OrcaFlex gives the value for the 'nearest appropriate' result
point. The phrase 'nearest appropriate' here means that OrcaFlex considers the available result points that are in the
same section as the arc length you specified and then chooses the one that is nearest to the arc length you specified.
If you specify an arc length that is exactly at the boundary of two sections then OrcaFlex uses the section that starts
at that arc length.
OrcaFlex always labels results with the actual arc length to the result point to which they apply, so you can check to
ensure that you are getting results at the result point you want.
Positions
X, Y and Z
Available at nodes. The global coordinates of the selected node.
Layback
Available at nodes. The horizontal component of distance between the selected node and the touchdown point.
Layback is not defined (N/A) if there is no touchdown point, that is if there are no nodes on the seabed. Likewise, if
the selected node is after the touchdown point, then Layback is not defined.
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Proportion Wet
Available at nodes. The proportion of the part of the line that the node represents, that is submerged in the sea. The
value is in the range 0 to 1, a value of 0 meaning no submersion and 1 meaning is completely submerged. For details
see Line Interaction with the Sea Surface.
Sea Surface Z
Available at nodes. The global Z coordinate of the sea surface directly above the instantaneous position of the
selected node.
Deptb
Available at nodes. The depth of the node beneath the sea surface (= Surface Z - Node Z).
Sea Surface Clearance
Available at nodes. The vertical clearance from node centre to the instantaneous sea surface. Negative values mean
that the node is submerged.
Arc Lengtb
Available at nodes. The arc length from End A to the selected point. This is normally only useful for the touchdown
point, since for other points it is constant. For the touchdown point it gives the arc length from End A to the first
node on the seabed, or zero if there is no touchdown.
Expansion Factor
Available at mid-segments. The expansion factor of the selected segment.
Transverse VIV Uffset
Available at nodes. This is the node's offset from the non-VIV node position, in the transverse VIV direction.
Estimated Transverse AJD
Available only at nodes that use one of the time domain VIV models from the VIV Toolbox. The amplitude of the
oscillation in the transverse VIV direction divided by the node's VIV diameter.
Motions
Velocity, CX-Velocity, CY-Velocity, CZ-Velocity,
Acceleration, CX-Acceleration, CY-Acceleration, CZ-Acceleration
Available at nodes. The magnitude and components (with respect to global axes) of the velocity and acceleration of
the node.
Warning: The velocity results are derived by numerically differentiating the logged positions of the node with
respect to time, using the central difference scheme. The acceleration results are derived by a
further such numerical differentiation. Because of this the accuracy of the results (especially the
accelerations) will depend on the log sample interval. If the log sample interval is large then the
results will not show higher frequency components of velocity and acceleration. If the log sample
interval is small then the results may be inaccurate due to loss of precision due to subtraction.
Acceleration {incl. g], x-Acceleration {incl. g], y-Acceleration {incl. g], z-Acceleration {incl. g]
Available at nodes. The magnitude and components (with respect to node axes) of the vector a - g where a is the
acceleration of the node and g is the acceleration due to gravity, a vector pointing vertically downwards.
These results can be used to compare against accelerometer readings.
Relative Velocity, Normal Relative Velocity, Axial Relative Velocity
Available at nodes. Relative Velocity is the velocity of the fluid relative to the node, i.e. Vfluid - Vnode. The results
reported are the magnitude of the relative velocity and its normal and axial components (relative to the line). For
the axial component, a positive value means that the fluid is moving (relative to the line) towards End B.
The fluid velocity used is the velocity of the principal fluid affecting the node. The principal fluid is defined as
follows:
1. If proportion dry > 0.5 and the Include wind loads on Lines option is enabled in the Environment data then the
principal fluid is the air.
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2. Otherwise the principal fluid is the sea.
Note: For a node that is above the water surface OrcaFlex reports a relative velocity based on the fluid
velocity at the surface point vertically below the node.
Warning: The relative velocity results are derived using the node velocity results, so see the accuracy warning
given above.
Stroubal Frequency
Available at nodes. The Strouhal Frequency is defined to be St.V/D where St=0.2, V is the normal component of
relative velocity and D is the normal drag diameter.
Reynolds Number
Available at nodes. The Reynolds number is a measure of the flow regime. OrcaFlex offers a number of different
options for the calculation of Reynolds number, specified on the Environment data form.
x-Drag Coefficient, y-Drag Coefficient, z-Drag Coefficient, Lift Coefficient
Available at nodes. These are the drag and lift coefficients used in the calculation.
For constant coefficients then these results report the values given in the user's data, except for a node at the
junction between two sections with different coefficients, where an effective average value is used.
If the line's drag or lift coefficients vary with Reynolds number or Height above Seabed then these results report the
computed value that was used.
If the line uses a wake oscillator VIV model with inline drag amplification then the amplification factor is included in
these results. The inline drag amplification factor is also available as a separate result.
Wake Velocity Reduction Factor, Wake Cd, Wake Cl
Available at nodes only, for lines which include sections that react to wake effects.
Wake Velocity Reduction Factor is the factor applied to the velocity at the node as a result of upstream wake effects.
Wake Cd and Wake Cl are the drag and lift coefficients respectively, used to calculate the hydrodynamic forces at the
node as a result of any upstream wake effects.
Note: Wake Cl is positive when the lift force is applied in the y direction of the upstream wake's frame of
reference and negative when the lift force is applied in the -y direction of the upstream wake's
frame of reference.
Angles
Azimutb, Declination and Camma
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. These angles report the local orientation of the line relative to global
axes. The gamma angle is defined as for line ends – see Line End Orientation.
Declination is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to Azimuth and Gamma (so values outside
the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
Ez-Angle, Exy-Angle, Ezx-Angle, Ezy-Angle
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The direction angles of the mid-segment point, relative to the end
axes of the nearest line end. See End Direction Results.
Ez-Angle is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to Exy-Angle, Ezx-Angle and Ezy-Angle (so
values outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
Twist
Available at mid-segment points. The twist per unit length experienced by the segment.
Fluid Incidence Angle
Available at nodes. The angle between the relative velocity direction and the line axial direction. A value in the range
0° to 90°.
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No-Moment Azimutb, No-Moment Declination
Available at line ends. The azimuth and declination angles, relative to global axes, of the no-moment direction at the
end, allowing for any motion of the object to which the line is attached. These results are only available if the end
orientation angles are defined.
No-Moment Declination is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to No-Moment Azimuth (so
values outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
End Force Azimutb, End Force Declination
Available at line ends. The azimuth and declination of the end force vector, relative to global axes.
End Force Declination is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to End Force Azimuth (so values
outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
End Force Ez-Angle, End Force Exy-Angle, End Force Ezx-Angle, End Force Ezy-Angle
Available at line ends. The direction angles of the end force vector, with respect to the frame of reference of the line
end. See End Direction Results. These results are only available if the end orientation angles are defined.
End Force Ez-Angle is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to the other 3 end force angles (so
values outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
VIV Stagnation Point, VIV Neg Separation Point, VIV Pos Separation Point
Available only at nodes that use one of the vortex tracking VIV models from the VIV Toolbox. The values reported
are the angular positions of the stagnation and separation points.
Forces
Effective Tension and Wall Tension
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The structural force along the line axis. Positive values denote
tension and negative values denote compression.
The reported wall tension is the total wall tension, Tw, scaled by the tensile stress loading factor. By default this
loading factor equals 1.
For details of the difference between the effective tension, Te, and the wall tension, Tw, see the Line Pressure Effects
section. In particular see the warning in that section if the line type stress diameters differ from the outer and inner
diameters.
Normalised Tension
Defined to be Effective Tension divided by Allowable Tension. Available at mid-segment points and line ends; not
available if the Allowable Tension is set to '~'.
Contents Density
Available at nodes. This result is most useful when the free-flooding or slug flow contents methods are in use.
Sbear Force, x-Sbear Force, y-Sbear Force, Sbear Force component, In-plane Sbear Force, Uut-of-plane Sbear Force
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The magnitude of structural force normal to the line axis, its
components in the local x and y-directions, its component in the user specified local direction theta and its
components in the in-plane and out-of-plane directions.
The in-plane direction is normal to both the line's axis (at the specified arc length) and the vertical direction. The
out-of-plane direction is normal to both the line's axis and the in-plane direction.
If the line's axis is vertical then these directions are ill-defined and therefore no values can be reported.
Vortex Force Magnitude,
Inline Vortex Force, Transverse Vortex Force,
CX-Vortex Force, CY-Vortex Force, CZ-Vortex Force
Available only at nodes that use one of the time domain VIV models from the VIV Toolbox. The magnitude of the lift
and drag force per unit length of line, and its components in the VIV directions and global axes directions. For
details, see the documentation of the relevant time domain VIV model.
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Inline Drag Amplification Factor
Available only at nodes that use one of the wake oscillator VIV models from the VIV Toolbox. The instantaneous
value of the Inline Drag Amplification Factor.
Moments
Bend Moment, x-Bend Moment, y-Bend Moment, Bend Moment component, In-plane Bend Moment, Uut-of-plane Bend
Moment
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The magnitude of bend moment, its components in the local x and y-
directions, its component in the user specified local direction theta and its components in the in-plane and out-of-
plane directions.
The in-plane direction is normal to both the line's axis (at the specified arc length) and the vertical direction. The
out-of-plane direction is normal to both the line's axis and the in-plane direction.
If the line's axis is vertical then these directions are ill-defined and therefore no values can be reported.
Curvature, x-Curvature, y-Curvature, Curvature component, In-plane Curvature, Uut-of-plane Curvature
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The magnitude of curvature, its components in the local x and y-
directions, its component in the user specified local direction theta, the in-plane and out-of plane-components and
its components in the in-plane and out-of-plane directions, as defined above.
When pre-bend is modelled curvature results are reported relative to the pre-bent curvature.
Note: When using non-linear bend stiffness, the reported mid-segment curvature depends on whether the
bend stiffness is specified to be hysteretic or not. For details see the note in the Non-linear Bend
Stiffness section.
Warning: Curvature results are accurate only if the segment length is sufficiently short. The accuracy can be
estimated by performing a sensitivity study on segment length in the area of interest.
Normalised Curvature
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. Defined to be Curvature divided by Allowable Curvature.
If minimum bend radius (MBR) is specified as varying with wall tension then this variation is taken into account
when calculating Normalised Curvature.
Bend Radius, x-Bend Radius, y-Bend Radius, Bend Radius component, In-plane Bend Radius, Uut-of-plane Bend Radius
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The magnitude of bend radius, its components in the local x and y-
directions, its component in the user specified local direction theta and its components in the in-plane and out-of-
plane directions, as defined above.
When pre-bend is modelled these results are reported relative to the pre-bent curvature.
Notes: Bend radius is defined to be 1 / curvature. If the curvature is 0 then a value of 'Infinity' is reported.
When using non-linear bend stiffness, the reported mid-segment curvature depends on whether the
bend stiffness is specified to be hysteretic or not. For details see the note in the Non-linear Bend
Stiffness section.
Warning: Bend radius results are accurate only if the segment length is sufficiently short. The accuracy can
be estimated by performing a sensitivity study on segment length in the area of interest.
Torque
Available at mid-segment points and line ends only, and available only for lines with torsion included. The
component of structural moment along the line axis.
Contact
Note: As well as the results variables documented below OrcaFlex also provides a Line Clashing Report.
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Line Centreline Clearance, Line Contact Clearance
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The line clearance variables report shortest distances between lines.
These distances can be either the shortest distance between centrelines (Line Centreline Clearance) or the shortest
distance between outer edges (Line Contact Clearance). The results selection form lets you choose to report
clearances either:
- from this line to all other lines or
- from this line to a specified other line.
In the text below we refer to the other lines used in the clearance calculations as the clearance lines, be they all other
lines or a single specified other line.
Line Centreline Clearance reports the centreline clearance from this line to the clearance lines. More precisely, the
clearance reported for a segment is the shortest distance from the centreline of the segment to the centreline of any
segment on the clearance lines. Note that the clearance reported therefore does not allow for the radii of the lines
involved. When clearance is reported for a line end it reports the shortest distance from the centreline of the point
at the end node to the centreline of any segment on the clearance lines.
Line Contact Clearance is similar but it reports the clearance between line outer edges allowing for their contact
diameters.
Note: Line Contact Clearance can report negative values. This means that the segments in question are
penetrating each other. If clashing is being modelled for both segments then a clash force will
result from this penetration.
The line clearance variables are useful for checking for clashing between lines. They are available in both range
graph and time history form. The range graph, for a given period of the simulation, enables you to see wbere on the
line clashing may be a problem. You can then examine the time history of line clearance for that point on the line, to
see wben closest approach occurs. You can then use the replay to examine which other line is coming closest.
It is sometimes worth choosing carefully which line to check for clearance. An example is checking for clashing
between a single mooring line and one or more of a number of closely spaced flowlines. Let us assume that you are
reporting clearances from all other lines. The clearance graphs for the flowlines will include clearance to the other
flowlines, between which clashing may not be a concern. The mooring line clearance is probably more useful, since
it only includes clearance to the flowlines.
Line clearance only checks against other lines, not against edges of vessels, buoys, etc. However you can check
clearance against part of a vessel, for example, by attaching a dummy single-segment line to the vessel, spanning
across the area of interest. The line clearance graphs for that dummy line will then show how close other lines come
to that area of the vessel.
Notes: For mid-segment points the segment used is the one containing the selected arc length.
Line clearance results are only available if there are at least 2 lines in the model.
Warning: For complex models, building and updating clearance graphs can be slow. Having "live" clearance
graphs open while a simulation is running can significantly slow down the simulation.
Seabed Clearance
Available at nodes. The clearance is the shortest distance between the node and any point on the seabed, allowing
for the contact diameter. The value reported is for the node that is nearest the specified arc length. A negative value
indicates that the node is in contact with the seabed.
This result is not available for 3D seabeds because it is difficult to calculate. Instead you should use Vertical Seabed
Clearance.
Vertical Seabed Clearance
Available at nodes. The clearance is the vertical distance between the node and the seabed, allowing for the contact
diameter. The value reported is for the node that is nearest the specified arc length. A negative value indicates that
the node is in contact with the seabed.
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Line Clasb Force
Available at mid-segment points. The magnitude of the clash force between this segment and other lines. Please note
that this variable is only available if clash checking has been included for the lines concerned. See Line Clashing for
details.
Line Clash Force is given for the segment containing the selected arc length and results are available in the form of
time histories and range graphs. If multiple clashes occur simultaneously on the same segment then the value
reported is the magnitude of the vector sum of the clash forces involved.
Line Clasb Impulse
Available at mid-segment points. The integral of Line Clash Force with respect to time.
Line Clasb Energy
Available at mid-segment points. Clash energy is calculated by integrating the magnitude of clash force with respect
to depth of penetration.
Suppose that this segment is denoted by S1 and segment S2 is another segment which S1 is in contact with. The
clash energy for the spring/damper representing contact between these 2 segments is calculated by integrating the
magnitude of clash force with respect to depth of penetration. This then is the potential energy in the
spring/damper.
If multiple clashes occur simultaneously on the same segment then the value reported is the sum of all individual
clash energies between this segment and other segments.
Solid Contact Force
Available at nodes. The magnitude of the force per unit length due to contact with elastic solids.
Seabed Normal PenetrationJD
Available at nodes. The component of seabed penetration normal to the seabed, divided by the contact diameter.
Seabed Normal Resistance, Seabed Normal ResistanceJD
Available at nodes. Seabed Normal Resistance is the component of seabed resistance normal to the seabed, where
seabed resistance means the seabed reaction force per unit length of line. Seabed Normal ResistanceJD is the
Seabed Normal Resistance divided by the contact diameter.
The forces due to both seabed stiffness and seabed damping are included.
Warning: The damping force depends upon node velocity. This is derived by numerically differentiating the
logged positions of the node with respect to time, using the central difference scheme. Because of
this the accuracy of the results will depend on the log sample interval. See Motions results for more
details.
Pipe Stress J Strain
Stress and strain results are available at mid-segment points and at line ends. For terminology see Pipe Stress
Calculation.
The stress calculations make the following assumptions:
- At each point along the line all the loads are taken by a single simple cylinder of the specified Stress OD and
Stress ID and made of a homogeneous material.
- The stresses included are those due to tension, bending, shear and hoop stress.
- The loads (tension, bend moment, shear and torque) which are used in stress calculations are scaled by the
stress loading factors before being used.
- Internal pressure in the line generates wall tension in the line as it would do in a sealed cylinder.
- Shear stress is assumed to be uniformly distributed across the cross section. Although this is not strictly the
case, the shear stress is normally negligible so this simplifying assumption is reasonable.
- The hoop stress due to static internal and external pressure at the current Z-level is included, and is calculated
using the standard Lamé equation for thick walled cylinders. However the effect of dynamic variations in
pressure, for example from the passage of the wave, are not included.
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Limitations of stress calculations
The assumptions described above mean that the stress calculations are only valid for pipes such as steel or titanium
risers, not for composite flexible risers, ropes chains, etc.
If the pipe has non-linear stiffness then the program cannot, in general, accurately calculate pipe stresses. The
program uses the same formulae for stress calculation as it does for linear stiffness. For example the bending stress
is calculated as Mr/Ixy. An exception to this is made for a homogeneous pipe with non-linear stress-strain. In this
situation stress results can be calculated accurately by using the stress-strain data.
If the line type stress diameters differ from the outer and inner diameters then see the warning in the Line Pressure
Effects section.
The program does not, and indeed cannot, allow for the complex stress concentrations that can occur at joints or at
the top and bottom of a riser.
Direct Tensile Strain
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. This is the component of axial strain due to wall tension (which
includes the effects of internal and external pressure).
Max Bending Strain
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. This is the axial strain due to bending at the outer fibre on the
outside of the bend.
Worst ZZ Strain
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. This equals whichever of Direct Tensile Strain ± Max Bending Strain
has the larger absolute value.
ZZ Strain
Available at mid-segment points. This equals Direct Tensile Strain + Bending Strain. ZZ Strain varies across the
cross-section and so its value is reported at a specified (R,θ) position.
Internal and External Pressure
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The internal and external static pressures, Pi and Po. See Line
Pressure Effects for details.
Pressures in OrcaFlex are gauge pressures, not absolute pressures. That is, they are relative to atmospheric pressure
and so can be as low as minus 1 atmosphere (-101.325 kPa).
Net External Pressure
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. Defined as Pi - Po.
Direct Tensile Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. This is the axial stress due to wall tension (which includes the effects
of internal and external pressure). It is constant across the cross-section and equals Tw/A. A positive value indicates
tension; a negative value indicates compression.
Max Bending Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. This is the maximum value that the Bending Stress takes anywhere
in the section. It is given by
Max Bending Stress = (C2.M.ODstress/2) / Ixy
and this maximum occurs at the extreme fibre on the outside of the bend.
For a homogeneous pipe with non-linear stress-strain
Max Bending Stress = ς(εzz) - Direct Tensile Stress = ς(εzz) - Tw/A
where ς(·) is the specified stress-strain relationship and εzz is the axial strain at the extreme fibre on the outside of
the bend data.
Worst Hoop Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The Hoop Stress is due to internal and external pressure. It varies
across the section and can be positive (tension) or negative (compression), and by the Worst Hoop Stress we mean
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the hoop stress of greatest magnitude. It is obtained by finding the point in the cross-section where the unsigned
magnitude of the Hoop Stress is largest; this must be either at the inside or outside fibre of the stress area. The Hoop
Stress at this point is called the Worst Hoop Stress.
Max xy-Sbear Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The value (ςRZ
2
+ ςCZ
2
)
½
is called the xy-Shear Stress. This varies
across the cross-section, and OrcaFlex reports the maximum value that occurs anywhere in the cross-section. This is
the Max xy-Shear Stress and it is given by
Max xy-Shear Stress = (C4.τ.ODstress/2) / Iz + C3.S / A
von Mises Stress, Max von Mises Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. The von Mises stress, ςvm, is a stress measure that is often used as a
yield criterion. It is a combination of all the components of the stress matrix and in terms of principal stresses it is
given by:
ςvm = [{(ς1-ς2)
2
+ (ς2-ς3)
2
+ (ς3-ς1)
2
}/2]
½

where ς1, ς2 and ς3 are the principal stresses, i.e. the eigenvalues of the 3 by 3 stress matrix.
The von Mises Stress varies across the cross-section, so its value is reported at a specified (R,θ) position.
The Max von Mises Stress is an estimate of the maximum value of the von Mises Stress over the cross-section. The
way it is calculated depends on whether the line includes torsion or not, as follows.
- If torsion is not included, then OrcaFlex assumes that the torque is zero. In this case the maximum value of the
von Mises stress must occur in the plane of bending. OrcaFlex also assumes that the maximum occurs at either
the inner or outer fibre. (This is a commonly-used assumption that is almost always valid, since if the internal
pressure stress contribution is dominant then the maximum will be at the inner fibre, whereas if bending stress
is dominant then it will occur at the outer fibre.) OrcaFlex therefore calculates the von Mises stress at 4 points
(R = ±IDstress/2 and ±ODstress/2, in the plane of bending) and reports the largest value.
- If torsion is included, then the maximum value of the von Mises stress can, in general, occur anywhere in the
pipe wall. So OrcaFlex calculates the von Mises stress at a grid of points across the pipe wall and reports the
largest value found. Currently, the grid comprises 36 θ-values (i.e. every 10° around the pipe circumference) at
each of 5 R-values across the pipe wall.
API RP 2RD Stress, API RP 2RD Utilisation
Available at mid-segment points and line ends.
API RP 2RD Stress, ςAPI, is a von-Mises type stress defined in section 5.2 of API RP 2RD as:
ςAPI = max [{(ςpr-ςpθ)
2
+ (ςpθ-ςpz)
2
+ (ςpz-ςpr)
2
}/2]
½

where
ςpr = - (Po.ODstress + Pi.IDstress) / (ODstress + IDstress)
ςpθ = (Pi - Po)ODstress/2tmin - Pi
ςpz = Tw/A ± M(ODstress - t)/2Ixy
tmin is the minimum wall thickness
t is the nominal wall thickness, (ODstress - IDstress)/2
The max in the formula for ςAPI accounts for the fact that the ± sign in the formula for ςpz makes ςpz double-valued.
API RP 2RD Utilisation, UAPI, is reported as a percentage and is defined to be:
UAPI = ςAPI / (CfCaςy)
where
Cf is the design case factor
Ca is 2/3
ςy is the material minimum yield strength (SMYS)
The strength check for API RP 2RD code is therefore equivalent to the inequality UAPI ≤ 1.
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RR Stress, CC Stress, ZZ Stress, RC Stress, RZ Stress, CZ Stress
Available at mid-segment points and line ends. These are the individual stress components at a point in the cross-
section. The point is specified by its polar coordinates (R,θ) within the cross section. See Pipe Stress Calculation and
Pipe Stress Matrix for details.
End Loads
The line end load results are based on the end force and end moment vectors at the line end. There are 3 groups of
end load results:
- Standard results like Effective Tension, Bend Moment, etc. are available at line ends as well as at mid-segment
points. For example to obtain the end tension at End A you can ask for the Effective Tension (or Wall Tension) at
End A.
- Magnitude and other components of the end force and end moment vectors.
- Bend Restrictor Load, which is a special end load result useful for bend restrictor design.
Sign Convention
When considering the sign of end load components the question arises as to whether the load reported is that
applied by the line to its connection or vice versa. The OrcaFlex convention is that the load reported at any point is
that applied by the B side of that point to the A side. So at End A we report the end load applied by the line to its
connection (e.g. a vessel), but at End B we report the end load applied to the line by its connection. This is in keeping
with the OrcaFlex convention for specifying the no-moment direction.
Treatment of Links and Wincbes attacbed to tbe end node
Normally, the end force and end moment are the total load acting between the end node and the object to which it is
connected. This includes forces from any links or winches attached to the end node.
However if the line end is free, or has been released, then it is not connected to any object. In this case the end
moment is zero and the end force is taken to be the total force acting between the line end and any links or winches
attached to the end node. If there are no attached links or winches, or they have been released, then the end force is
zero.
Standard Results
Effective Tension, Wall Tension,
Sbear Force, x-Sbear Force, y-Sbear Force,
Bend Moment, x-Bend Moment, y-Bend Moment,
Curvature, x-Curvature, y-Curvature
These results variables are available at the line end nodes, as well as at mid-segment points. Whether you are given
end values or mid-segment values depends on the point at which you ask for the results. If you ask for these results
at EndA or EndB, or at an arc length that is closer to a line end than to the nearest mid-segment arc length, then the
values at the line end will be given. Otherwise the values for the nearest mid-segment point will be given.
For mid-segment values see Line Results: Forces, Line Results: Moments and Line Results: Pipe Stresses.
At a line end they report the components of the end loads in the local node directions of the end node, as follows:
- Effective tension is the component of the end force vector in the end node axial direction (= Nz direction).
- Wall tension is derived from the effective tension at the line end, using the pressure effects formula.
- Shear is the component of the end force vector normal to the end node axial direction.
- x-Shear and y-Shear are the components of the end force vector in the end node Nx and Ny directions.
- Torque is the component of the end moment vector in the end node axial direction.
- Bend moment is the component of the end moment vector normal to the end node axial direction.
- x-Bend Moment and y-Bend Moment are the components in the end node Nx and Ny directions.
- Stress results are based on the end load components in the end node axes directions.
Differences between End Loads and End Segment Loads
The end values of these results differ from the corresponding values for the end segment for two reasons.
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Firstly, they include the loads (weight, buoyancy, drag etc.) on the last half segment adjacent to the end.
Secondly, they are components in the local node directions (Nx,Ny,Nz) at the end node, whereas the end segment
values are components with respect to the segment directions (Sx,Sy,Sz). The end node is often not aligned with the
end segment because end connection stiffness turns it towards the end orientation direction. For example:
- If the end connection stiffness is zero, or if the line end is free or has been released, then the end node directions
are aligned with the end segment directions. The end node values then differ from the end segment values only
by the loads on the end half segment.
- If the end connection stiffness is Infinity (and the end is not free or released) then the end node directions stay
aligned with the line end axes Ex, Ey, Ez. The end node values are then usually in different directions to the end
segment values.
- For intermediate values of end connection stiffness, the end node directions will be somewhere between the
two. They will tend to be nearer to the end fitting directions if the end connection stiffnesses are stronger than
the line bend stiffness and torsional stiffness, but nearer to the end segment directions if it is weaker.
End Load Magnitude and Components
End Force, End Moment,
End CX-Force, End CY-Force and End CZ-Force, End CX-Moment, End CY-Moment, End CZ-Moment,
End Lx-Force, End Ly-Force and End Lz-Force, End Lx-Moment, End Ly-Moment, End Lz-Moment,
End Ex-Force, End Ey-Force and End Ez-Force, End Ex-Moment, End Ey-Moment, End Ez-Moment
These results report the magnitude of the end force and end moment vectors, and their components in the following
directions:
- The directions of the global axes GX, GY, GZ.
- The directions of the local axes Lx, Ly, Lz of the object to which the line end is connected. For example if the line
end is connected to a vessel, the Lx, Ly, Lz are the directions of the vessel axes.
- The directions of the line end axes Ex, Ey, Ez. See Line End Orientation.
For a line with a stiffener attached results are reported separately for the protected line and its stiffener. However, it
is sometimes necessary (e.g. when designing end fittings) to report combined end loads including the load from both
the protected line and its stiffener.
End load results are available for the protected line which include the stiffener end load, in addition to the protected
line end load. These results are all prefixed with "Total", e.g. Total End Load, Total End Moment, Total End CZ-
Force etc.
Bend Restrictor Load
This is defined as Bend Restrictor Load = End Force*(1 - cos(End Force Ez-Angle)). Another commonly used name
for this variable is "pseudo-curvature".
ó.8.ó Drag Cbain Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
For Drag Chains the following results variables are available.
Azimutb and Declination
The azimuth and declination of the drag chain, relative to global axes.
Supported Lengtb and Hanging Lengtb
The supported length is the length deemed to be supported by the seabed. The hanging length is the length of the
rest of the drag chain. The supported length plus the hanging length equals the total length of the drag chain. See
Drag Chain Seabed Interaction for details on how these values are calculated.
Drag Force
The magnitude of the drag force acting on the drag chain. This includes both the axial and normal components of the
drag force.
Axial Drag Force, Normal Drag Force
The components of drag force axial and normal to the drag chain.
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Horizontal Drag Force, Vertical Drag Force
The horizontal and vertical components of the drag force. For the vertical drag force a positive value indicates an
upwards force.
See Drag Chain Theory for details on how the drag force is calculated.
ó.8.7 Flex )oint Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
For Flex Joints the following results variables are available.
Bend Moment, x-Bend Moment, y-Bend Moment
The magnitude of bending moment at the Flex Joint and its components in the local x and y-directions.
ó.8.8 Line Setup Wizard
Intended principally for mooring analyses, this wizard adjusts line configuration to achieve specified tension,
declination or layback. The wizard is available when the current simulation is in Reset state and is opened by
clicking the Calculation | Line Setup Wizard menu item.

Figure: Tbe Line Setup Wizard
Calculation Mode
The Wizard has two modes of operation: Calculate Line Lengtbs or Calculate Ancbor Positions.
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The Calculate Line Lengtbs option operates by varying the length of the specified section of each included line until
the target top value is achieved. Because the section length is altered by the Calculate Line Lengths option we
recommend that you specify the segmentation using Target Segment Length rather than Number of Segments. Thus
if the wizard lengthens the line then the program will automatically add more segments to meet the Target Segment
Length.
The Calculate Ancbor Positions option operates by varying the position of the Bottom End of each included line
until the target value is achieved. The Bottom End position is constrained to be on a line in the Lay Azimuth
direction so you must set these data items before using the wizard.
Note: These calculations use a numerical method which is not 100% robust. We recommend that you set
up your model so that your top tension / top declination values are quite close to your exact target
values before using the wizard. If you do this the wizard is more likely to be able to find a solution.
Target Values
To use the wizard you must first specify the target tensions or declinations. The wizard presents a list of all Lines in
the model.
The Include tbis Line option determines which Lines are included in the calculation which allows you to exclude
certain Lines. For example, you may be modelling both moorings and flow lines in the same OrcaFlex file. Typically
you would only include the moorings in this calculation.
The Target Variable option allows you to switch between the following options:
- End A Tension or End B Tension.
- End A Horizontal End Force or End B Horizontal End Force.
- End A Declination or End B Declination.
- Layback, defined to be the horizontal component of distance between the Top End of the line and the
touchdown point.
- No Target, which means that the line will be included in the static calculation but that its data is not to be
modified. This is particularly useful if you are analysing buoyed systems where the upper and lower catenaries
are modelled with different Lines.
Finally you specify Tension, Horizontal End Force, Declination or Layback values, as applicable, in the Target Value
field.
Line section to be modified
Specifies which section on the line is to have its length modified when using the Calculate Line Lengths mode.
Convergence Parameters
The Wizard performs an iterative calculation and these parameters can be used to help convergence.
The calculation is abandoned if convergence has not been achieved after the number of steps specified by Max
Iterations. For some difficult cases simply increasing this limit may be enough.
The non-dimensional Tolerance parameter determines when the calculation is deemed to have converged. The
calculation has converged once the following conditions are satisfied:
- Calculated Value < Tolerance × Typical Force for tension and end force targets. Typical Force for a line is defined
as to be the total dry weight of the line.
- Calculated Value < Tolerance for declination targets.
- Calculated Value < Tolerance × Target Value for a layback target.
The Min Damping and Max Damping parameters can sometimes be used to help difficult problems converge. Try
increasing the Min Damping factor, say values in the range 1.5 to 10. You can also try increasing the Max Damping
factor, say to values in the range 10 to 100.
ó.8.9 Line Type Wizard
The Line Type Wizard is a tool that helps you set up a Line Type that represents one of the following commonly used
structures:
- Chain.
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- Rope/Wire.
- Line with Floats.
- Homogeneous Pipe.
- Hose.
- Umbilical.
What the Wizard does is ask you for the basic data of the structure – e.g. the bar diameter for a chain – and then
calculate for you as much of the line type data as it reasonably can for representing that structure. The Wizard
leaves you to set other data – e.g. friction coefficients – where there is no formula on which to base the data.
Warning: The values generated by the Wizard are offered in good faith, but due to variations in properties
between products they cannot be guaranteed. Please use suppliers' data where this is available.
How Tbe Line Type Wizard Works
The Wizard works on the currently selected line type on the line types form, so you should first create, name and
select the Line Type that you want to set up. You can then open the Wizard using the Wizard button on the Line
Types form.
The first time you use the Wizard on a given line type you must be in reset state, since you will be setting data. You
then tell the Wizard the category of structure that you want to model (chain, rope etc.) and the data for that
structure (e.g. chain bar diameter). This information is called the Wizard data, and from it the Wizard derives line
type data to correspond to that Wizard data. If necessary you can then manually adjust the derived line type data.
Once you have used the Wizard to set up data for a given line type, then the Wizard remembers the Wizard data you
gave it. If you re-open the Wizard when in reset state then you can edit the Wizard data and the Wizard will
calculate corresponding new derived line type data. Any manual adjustments will need to be done again.
You can also re-open the Wizard when in other states (e.g. in static state or when a simulation is active) but only in
order to view the Wizard data. You cannot edit Wizard data or re-derive line type data except in reset state.
Note: Remember that the current line type data might not correspond to the current Wizard data, since
you might have manually edited the line type data after it was derived by the Wizard.
Using tbe Line Type Wizard
The Wizard has three stages, with Next and Back buttons so that you can move between stages to set up the data
you want.
Stage 1 displays the name of the selected Line Type and asks you to specify the special category that you want. You
can then click Next to proceed to the second stage.
Stage 2 presents 3 frames of information. The top left frame asks you for the basic data of the special category you
have selected. The bottom left frame displays the resulting derived Line Type data – you should check that the
values are reasonable.
The right hand frame displays other properties of the resulting Line Type, which are often useful as a check. In some
cases these depend on contents density, in which case you can specify the contents density to be used for the
calculation of properties. If there are any errors then a message will be displayed. When everything is correct you
can click Next to proceed to the last stage.
Stage 3 displays all of the Line Type data. Bold text is data that has been derived for you by the Wizard, based on the
special line type data you specified. Non-bold text is data that has not been set by the Wizard – this data will be as
you last set it. You can adjust any of the data at this stage, overriding the values derived by the Wizard if you wish.
You can also still go back to previous stages of the Wizard if further modifications are required. When everything is
correct you can click the Finish button, in which case the new data will be written, overwriting the previous data for
that line type. Alternatively, you can Cancel to leave the line type unchanged, but then any newly entered special
category data will also be lost.
ó.8.10 Cbain
A chain can be modelled in OrcaFlex by using a Line Type with its various properties set to suitable values. This note
derives the values to use for anchor chain of nominal (i.e. bar) diameter D, as shown in the Figure: Chain Geometry.
The properties of an equivalent line type are given below.
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318
Studless Studlink
OD 1.80D 1.89D
ID 0 0
Contact diameter 3.35D 3.6D
Mass/Length 19.9D
2
21.9D
2
te/m for D in m
Axial stiffness 0.854x10
8
D
2
1.01x10
8
D
2
kN for D in m
Bend stiffness 0 0
Limit Compression yes yes
Normal drag coefficient 1.0 1.0
Normal drag diameter 2.10D 2.26D
Axial drag coefficient 0.4 0.4
Axial drag diameter 0.54D/π 0.60D/π
Normal added mass coefficient 1.0 1.0
Axial added mass coefficient 0.08 0.07
Stress diameters '~' '~'
Allowable stress '~' '~'
Friction coefficient typically 0.4 - 0.8 depending on the seabed
Reference
Puech A, 1984.
Ceometry

3.35D (studless)
3.6D (studlink)
6D
3.35D (studless)
3.6D (studlink)
D = Nominal Diameter
A
EDGE

A
FACE


Figure: Cbain Ceometry
Data
Chains are widely used in a variety of offshore applications, most obviously in mooring. The Line Type Wizard helps
derive a line type to represent a chain based on the following input data.
Bar Diameter
The diameter of the metal bar that forms the links.
Link Type
Can be either studlink or studless.
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Mecbanical Properties
Catalogue Data
When modelling mooring chain the Line Type Wizard aims to derive data for a line type whose characteristics are
equivalent to that of a chain.
Warning: The values generated by the Wizard are approximate only and are intended as first estimates for
preliminary use. They are offered in good faith, but due to variations in properties between
products they cannot be guaranteed. Please use suppliers' data where this is available.
In deriving these some of the available catalogue data will prove useful and we outline here the relevant aspects.
The Mooring Chain figure shows the geometry of a pair of chain links. The values are given in terms of the nominal
bar diameter of the chain (D), assumed to be in metres, and are given for both a studless chain and, where different,
for a studlink chain. The geometry given in the figure is based on catalogue data available from the chain
manufacturer Scana Ramnas (1990 & 1995), as is the following expression for mass per metre:
Mass per metre (M) = 19.9D
2
te/m (studless) or 21.9D
2
te/m (studlink).
The catalogue also gives the following value for the Young's Modulus of the chain that has been deduced from stress-
strain relationships in which the cross-sectional area of two bars is taken to be the load bearing area:
E = 5.44 x 10
7
kN/m
2
(studless) or 6.40 x 10
7
kN/m
2
(studlink).
Minimum Breaking Loads
For information, the properties window displays minimum breaking loads that depend on the nominal diameter and
chain grade. They are derived using the following relationship, which was obtained from the manufacturer's
catalogue:
Min Breaking Load = c.D
2
.(44 - 80D) kN
where c is a grade-dependent constant, given in the catalogue data as Grade 2: 1.37e4, Grade 3: 1.96e4, ORQ: 2.11e4,
R4 - 2.74e4.
Studless and Studlink chains with the same nominal diameters are stated to withstand the same break- and proof-
loads.
Derived Data
It will be useful to know the centreline length of bar needed to make a single link. We can obtain this by noting that,
for a long chain, there is one chain link every 4D length of chain. Hence, the number of links per metre of chain is N =
1/(4D), and thus for a single link:
Mass per link = M / N = 79.6D
3
te (studless) or 87 6D
3
te (studlink).
Assuming that the chain is made from steel, and using ρs as density of steel (= 7.8 te/m
3
), this then leads to:
Volume per link = (M / N) / ρs = 10.2D
3
m
3
(studless) or 11.2D
3
m
3
(studlink).
But, by considering the geometry of a link, we also have
Volume = L . πD
2
/4,
where L is centreline length of bar needed to make a single link (including the stud in the case of the studlink chain).
Hence:
L = Volume / (πD
2
/4) = 13.0D m (studless) or 14.3D m (studlink).
Uuter, Inner and Contact Diameter
The Line Type Wizard sets up diameters for a chain as follows:
Uuter Diameter
The effective outer diameter of the equivalent line is obtained using a similar argument to that deployed in
obtaining the overall length of bar per link. Firstly, note that the volume per metre can be expressed as both:
Volume per metre = M/ρs
and also as
Volume per metre = πOD
2
/4
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where OD is the equivalent diameter for a line with constant volume along its length. Equating these expressions
leads to:
Outer Diameter = [4M/(πρs)]
½
= 1.80D m (studless) or 1.89D m (studlink).
Inner Diameter
Chains do not have any contents, so the Inner Diameter is set to zero.
Contact Diameter
The contact diameter is set to the chain link envelope diameter. That is Contact Diameter = 3.35D m (studless) or
3.6D m (studlink).
Axial and Bending Stiffness
The Line Type Wizard sets up Axial and Bending Stiffness and Limit Compression for a chain as follows:
Axial Stiffness
As detailed in Mechanical Properties of Mooring Chains we have values for the Young's Modulus for both studlink
and studless chains from catalogue data. Taking A to be the combined cross-sectional area of two bars, that is:
A = 2(πD
2
/ 4) m
2

leads to:
EA = 0.854 x 10
8
D
2
kN (studless) or 1.01 x 10
8
D
2
kN (studlink).
Bending Stiffness
For both studlink and studless chains the bending stiffness is set to zero as the chains are assumed to bend when
subjected to very small moments.
Limit Compression
In conjunction with a zero value for bend stiffness, Limit Compression is set to 'yes'.
Axial Added Mass Coefficient
The Line Type Wizard sets up Axial Added Mass Coefficient for a chain as follows.
As for axial drag, the parts attracting added mass in axial flow are the projecting lobes only – see the figure. Each
pair of lobes are simply a link with the middle section (and stud if present) removed, and can be viewed roughly as
an ellipsoid split down the centre with the following dimensions:
length 6D, width D and height 2.35D (studless) or 2.60D (studlink).
J N Newman (1977) (page 147, Fig 4.8) gives added mass coefficients for spheroids. We approximate the ellipsoid as
a spheroid with a lenbgth of 6D (the link length) and a mean width of (D+2.35D)/2 = 1.675D for studless), or
(D+2.60D)/2 = 1.80D for studlink. This gives an aspect ratio (width/length) of about 0.3 in both cases.
For this aspect ratio and axial flow Newman gives an added mass coefficient of 0.1. This is for use with a reference
volume equal to the spheroid volume, which in this case is the volume of the lobes only. But OrcaFlex uses the total
displaced volume as the reference volume, so a suitable scaling of Newman's coefficient is needed to allow for this
difference in reference volume.
For a studless link the non-lobe length of bar is 2D (the middle section) out of a total of 13D, so the lobes represent
11D/13D = 84.6% of the total link volume. For a studlink chain the non-lobe length of bar is 2D + 1.6D (the stud) our
of a total of 14.3D, so the lobes represent 10.7D/14.3D = 74.8% of the total link volume. So we scale Newman's
added mass coefficient 0.1 by these factors and round to give OrcaFlex axial added mass coefficients of
Caa = 0.08 (studless) or 0.07 (studlink).
Axial Drag
The Line Type Wizard sets up the axial drag coefficient and axial drag diameter for a chain as follows.
Generally, axial drag is very low for smooth pipes, being due to skin friction only. However, for a chain there is some
projected area present even in axial flow and we consider the drag force due to this effect. We ignore the effect of
skin friction in the derivation outlined below.
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As in the calculation for normal flow we consider two adjacent links and calculate their projected area. The
projected area, normal to the flow, for axial flow consists of the four "lobes" only, since the central part is effectively
shielded from the flow – see the figure.
Hoerner (1965), page 5-8, Fig 14c, gives Cda = 0.32 for a hemispherical rivet head projecting from a plane. The lobes
here are similar – more elongated in the flow direction (implying a lower Cda) but on a less smooth body (implying a
higher Cda). Hence, we assume:
Cda = 0.40.
The reference drag area that corresponds to this is the axial projected area of the lobes. Each lobe is (3.35D - D)/2 =
1.175D long for studless, or (3.6D - D)/2 = 1.30D long for studlink, consisting of a semicircle of diameter D on the
end of a rectangle of width D and length 1.175D - 0.5D = 0.675D (studless), or 1.3D - 0.5D = 0.8D (studlink). And
each pair of links gives 4 lobes, so the total axial projected area per metre of chain (= 1/8D pairs of links) is given by:
4 . (πD
2
/8 + 0.675D
2
) / (8D) = 0.54D for studless
4 . (πD
2
/8 + 0.8D
2
) / (8D) = 0.60D for studlink.
However for axial drag OrcaFlex uses a reference drag area equal to πDa, where Da is the axial drag diameter. So the
axial drag diameter for OrcaFlex is:
Da = 0.54D/π (studless)
Da = 0.60D/π (studlink).
Normal Drag
The Line Type Wizard sets up the Normal Drag Coefficient for a chain as follows:
We first calculate the drag force on a chain in normal flow, for which we require a value for its projected area
(normal to the flow). To calculate this we must consider the chain as a collection of pairs of adjacent links, one face
on to the flow, with projected area AFACE, and one edge on, with projected area AEDGE – see Figure. The overall
projected area per metre will be a multiple of the sum of these two areas.
AFACE = L D - 2D
2
= 11.0 D
2
m
2
(studless) or 12.3D
2
m
2
(studlink)
and
AEDGE = 5D D + 2(πD
2
/4)/2 = 5.79 D
2
m
2
.
There are 1/(4D) links per metre and hence 1/(8D) such pairs of links per metre. Hence, the total projected area per
metre (normal to the flow) is given by the following expression:
ANORMAL = (AFACE + AEDGE) (1/(8D)) = 2.10D m (studless) or 2.26D m (studlink).
So, we are now able to calculate the drag force per metre length of chain as:
Drag force = ½ ρv
2
Cdn ANORMAL
for a given drag coefficient Cdn, where ρ is the density of seawater and v is the flow velocity. For irregular shaped
bluff bodies such as chain links, of either type, a suitable value for Cdn is 1.0.
The drag force per metre length as calculated by OrcaFlex is given by:
Drag force = ½ ρv
2
Cdn Dn
where Dn is the normal drag diameter. Equating the two equations for drag force leads to:
Dn = ANORMAL = 2.10D m (studless) or 2.26D m (studlink).
Normal Added Mass Coefficient
The Line Type Wizard sets up the Normal Added Mass Coefficient for a chain as follows:
When a line is accelerated in water it requires an impulse in excess of that needed for the same acceleration in air.
This is due to the extra force required to displace the water in the vicinity of the submerged part of the line. An
added mass term is used to reflect this and it is found to be proportional to the volume of displaced fluid:
Added mass = Ca . ρ . Vol
where
ρ is density of water,
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Vol is the displaced volume.
The parts of a line displacing the fluid are said to be attracting added mass. For asymmetrical bodies the parts
attracting added mass will differ in different directions. Hence, we consider the effect due to fluid flow exerting a
force in, first, the normal and then the axial directions.
For a circular cylinder in flow normal to its axis:
Can = 1.0.
The situation for a chain is more complicated as, for flow normal to a link, parts of the link are shielded from the
flow but there is also some entrapped water within each edge-on link. An accurate calculation is very problematic
and is unlikely to give a value for the normal added mass coefficient far distant from 1.0. Hence we assume:
Can = 1.0.
Stress Diameters and Allowable Stress
These are set to '~' because the entire structure is load bearing. Please note, however, that stress results are not
meaningful for a chain.
ó.8.11 RopeJWire
D = Nominal rope diameter
Wire with Fibre core Wire with Wire core Fibre rope
D

Figure: RopeJWire Ceometry
Ropes and wires have many applications in the offshore industry including towing, mooring and winching. The Line
Type Wizard can be used to derive Line Type data to represent five different types: Nylon (8-strand Multiplait);
Polyester (8-strand Multiplait); Polyethylene (8-strand Multiplait); 6x19 Wire Rope with Fibre Core; and 6x19 Wire
Rope with Wire Core.
Most of the calculations of the derived line properties are based on data from a catalogue published by Marlow
Ropes Ltd (1995). All quantities are expressed as a function of the rope's nominal diameter D. Note that this
documentation uses the SI units system, so D is in metres in this documentation, but the program automatically
adjusts the formulae to match the units specified by the user.
Warning: The values generated by the Wizard are approximate only and are intended as first estimates for
preliminary use. They are offered in good faith, but due to variations in properties between
products they cannot be guaranteed. Please use suppliers' data where this is available.
Data
The Line Type Wizard can be used to create line types representing a variety of ropes and wires. The input data
required consists of the following:
RopeJWire Nominal Diameter
The overall diameter of the rope or wire. The majority of the derived line type data are functions of this diameter.
Warning: The line type outer diameter derived by the wizard is less than this nominal diameter, in order to
give the correct buoyancy. You need to allow for this when setting the line type drag and added
mass coefficients, since the coefficients correspond to the derived line type outer diameter, not the
nominal diameter.
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Construction
Can be one of:
- Nylon (8-strand Multiplait).
- Polyester (8-strand Multiplait).
- Polyethylene (8-strand Multiplait).
- 6x19 Wire with Fibre Core (8-strand Multiplait).
- 6x19 Wire with Wire Core (8-strand Multiplait).
The construction affects both the mass per unit length of the line type and the strength of the line type.
Mass per unit lengtb
The Line Type Wizard sets up Mass for a Rope/Wire as follows:
The quantity Mass per unit length is available from catalogue data for ropes. The nominal rope diameter and
nominal mass are available for a variety of rope constructions. A simple statistical analysis of the available data
leads to the following expressions:
Mass Per Metre = 0.6476 D
2
te/m (for Nylon ropes).
Mass Per Metre = 0.7978 D
2
te/m (for Polyester ropes).
Mass Per Metre = 0.4526 D
2
te/m (for Polypropylene ropes).
Mass Per Metre = 3.6109 D
2
te/m (for Wire ropes with fibre core).
Mass Per Metre = 3.9897 D
2
te/m (for Wire ropes with wire core).
Uuter and Inner Diameters
The Line Type Wizard sets up outer and inner diameters for a Rope/Wire as follows.
The inner diameter is set to zero for all rope construction types. The line type outer diameter, OD, is set as follows:
OD = 0.85 D (for Nylon ropes).
OD = 0.86 D (for Polyester ropes).
OD = 0.80 D (for Polypropylene ropes).
OD = 0.82 D (for Wire ropes with fibre core).
OD = 0.80 D (for Wire ropes with wire core).
where D is the specified rope diameter.
These outer diameters are effective diameters that give the line type a displaced volume per unit length that equals
the estimated displaced volume per unit length of the rope/wire. The line type then has the appropriate buoyancy.
Note that this effective diameter is less than the specified rope diameter, because there are gaps between the fibres
and so not all of the specified nominal diameter contributes to buoyancy.
The above formulae for the line type OD were derived by equating the line type displaced volume per unit length,
πOD
2
/4, to the displaced volume per metre, M/ρ, where M is the rope/wire mass per unit length and ρ is the average
density of the material.
The following average material densities ρ (in te/m
3
) were assumed: Nylon 1.14; Polyester 1.38; Polypropylene
0.91; Wire with fibre core 6.87; Wire with Wire core 7.85. The average material density for the Wire with fibre core
was estimated by assuming a ratio of 6:1 between the wire and fibre volume, with the fibre taken to have the same
density as (fresh) water.
Axial and Bending Stiffness
The Line Type Wizard sets up Axial and Bending Stiffness and Limit Compression for a Rope/Wire as follows
Axial Stiffness
The expressions for axial stiffness are calculated in different ways for the two groups of fibre ropes and wire ropes.
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For Fibre Ropes we use the catalogue data. Load/extension characteristics depend on previous load history,
whether the rope is wet or dry, and the rate of application of the load. To reflect the likely working environment of
the rope we use data associated with ropes that have been tested under the following conditions:
- the rope has been pre-worked – loaded to 50% of breaking load and then rested for 24 hours (this causes the
rope to bed down so that its elastic behaviour is more consistent and repeatable)
- subjected to slowly varying loads (for loads varying at wave frequency, stiffness should be about twice the value
shown)
- a wet rope – pre-soaked in water (this is most significant for Nylon ropes which suffer a loss in performance
when wet)
- we use figures for the average performance when the mean extension is 10% (by taking the tangent of the
stress-strain curve at 10%).
Incorporating all of the factors indicated above we can produce values of axial stiffness for a range of rope
diameters. Once again using simple statistical techniques we obtain the following expression for axial stiffness of
fibre ropes:
Axial Stiffness = 1.18 x 10
5
D
2
kN (for Nylon ropes).
Axial Stiffness = 1.09 x 10
6
D
2
kN (for Polyester ropes).
Axial Stiffness = 1.06 x 10
6
D
2
kN (for Polypropylene ropes).
Axial stiffness for Wire Ropes is calculated directly, rather than estimated from empirical relationships. We assume
a value for Young's Modulus, for the 6x19 strand group, of:
E = 1.03 x 10
8
kN/m
2
(for Wire ropes with fibre core).
E = 1.13 x 10
8
kN/m
2
(for Wire ropes with wire core).
and work on an assumed metallic area of:
A = 0.455 (πD
2
/4) m
2
(for both wire ropes).
Both of these quantities have been obtained from the HER Group Marine Equipment & Wire Rope Handbook. Note
that for wire ropes with a wire core the additional axial stiffness is accounted for in the enhanced Young's modulus.
This leads to:
Axial Stiffness = 3.67 x 10
7
D
2
kN (for Wire ropes with fibre core).
Axial Stiffness = 4.04 x 10
7
D
2
kN (for Wire ropes with wire core).
Bending Stiffness
For all rope construction types the bending stiffness offered by the Wizard is zero. For systems where bend stiffness
is a significant factor you should override this value with the true value obtained from the rope supplier.
Limit Compression
In conjunction with a zero value for bend stiffness Limit Compression is set to yes.
Stress Diameters and Allowable Stress
These are set to '~' because the entire structure is load bearing. Please note, however, that stress results are not
meaningful for complex structures such as ropes or wires.
Minimum Breaking Loads
The properties window in the line type wizard displays approximate minimum breaking load (MBL) values for
ropes and wires. These may be useful for setting the Allowable Tension data item for the line type.
The MBL values displayed are calculated using the following functional formulae, where D is rope/wire nominal
diameter in metres:
Nylon ropes (dry) 163950.D
2
kN
Nylon ropes (wet) 139357.D
2
kN
Polyester ropes 170466.D
2
kN
Polypropylene ropes 105990.D
2
kN
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Wire ropes with fibre core 584175.D
2
kN
Wire ropes with wire core 633358.D
2
kN
These formulae were derived from manufacturer's catalogue data, which consist of minimum (dry) strength against
nominal diameter for each of the five rope/wire constructions. The formulae were derived using least squares
fitting, and they were found to give a good fit to the manufacturer's data, except that they tend to underestimate
MBL for small diameter non-wire ropes.
Note: Nylon ropes lose some strength when wet; the formula given for wet nylon ropes is based on the
manufacturer's statement that they can lose up to 15% of their (dry) strength when wet.
ó.8.12 Line witb Floats
You can model floats or buoyancy modules attached to a line by using buoyant Clumps attached at the relevant
points. However when a number of floats are supporting a length of line it is often easier to model the buoyancy as if
it were smeared, i.e. spread out evenly, along that part of the line. This allows the length and segmentation of the
buoyed section to be varied easily without having to add and remove individual floats.
To use this smeared properties approach you need to do the following:
- Create a new line type.
- Set the new line type's properties to be equivalent to those of the original pipe+floats. This is done by spreading
each float's buoyancy, drag, etc. uniformly over the length of pipe from Sf/2 before the float centre to Sf/2 after
the float centre, where Sf is the float pitch, i.e. the spacing between float centres (see diagram below). The result
is a uniform circular section line which will experience the same forces per unit length as the original line plus
floats. The line type wizard will automatically set up this equivalent line type for you.
- Set up a line section to model the length of line supported by the floats. The section's line type should be set to
the equivalent line type and its length should be N x Sf, where N is the number of floats and Sf is the float pitch.
Note that this length is a little more than the length between the start of the first float and the end of the last
one, since each float is effectively being smeared equally both ways from its centre; see the diagram below,
which show the situation when N=3.
We describe below how the Line Type Wizard derives the properties of the equivalent line type. Note that this
approach is also suitable for modelling a regularly weighted section of line.
Warning: The values generated by the Wizard are based on current best practice, but more specific project
data should be used where this is available.
Dp
Df
Sf Sf Sf
Floats

Figure: Ceometry of Line and Floats
We first define the notation to represent the underlying line onto which the floats are to be attached, which we refer
to as the Base Line Type. We then specify the quantities required to represent the floats.
The following properties are all deemed to be unaffected by the addition of floats to the base line and so are set to
have the same values as those of the base line.
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- Axial and Bending Stiffness
- Limit Compression
- Allowable Tension
- Minimum Bend Radius
- Torsional Stiffness
Data
Adding floats to a line to produce extra buoyancy is a common requirement. The Line Type Wizard helps you to
quickly derive such a line type by specifying both the existing underlying base line type, onto which the floats will be
added, and various properties of the floats:
Base Line Type
The line type on which the floats are mounted.
Float Diameter
The outside diameter of each float. It must be greater than the outside diameter of the underlying base line type.
Float Lengtb
The axial length of each float.
Float Pitcb
The average distance between the centres of successive floats.
Float Material Density
The density of the material forming the floats, excluding additional items such as fixing material.
Float Hardware Mass
This accounts for the extra mass due to the addition of the floats above that due to the material density and covers
such items as the clamping/fixing mechanisms.
Float Normal Drag Coefficient
The drag coefficient associated with the float for flow normal to the line.
Float Axial Skin Drag Coefficient
The drag coefficient associated with the floats, due to the floats' skin friction, for flow along the axis of the line.
Float Axial Form Drag Coefficient
The drag coefficient associated with the float, due to the projected annulus area of the end of the float, for flow along
the axis of the line.
Float Normal Added Mass Coefficient
The added mass coefficient for flow normal to the line.
Float Axial Added Mass Coefficient
The added mass coefficient for flow along the axis of the line.
The Line Type data that are derived, and the associated underlying expressions, are detailed in Modelling Lines with
Floats.
Properties of Base Line Type
For modelling lines with floats the line without floats is referred to as the base line type and the following notation is
used. The line without floats is assumed to be of circular cross-section and have the following characteristics:
- ODp – outer diameter.
- IDp – inner diameter.
- Mp – mass per unit length.
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- Dnp – normal drag diameter.
- Dap – axial drag diameter.
- Cdnp – drag coefficient in normal flow.
- Cdap – drag coefficient in axial flow.
- Canp – Added mass coefficient in Normal flow (commonly taken as 1.0 for circular section).
- Caap – Added Mass coefficient in Axial flow (commonly taken as zero).
Properties of tbe Floats
For modelling lines with floats the following notation is used for the floats. The floats are assumed to be short
cylinders fitted co-axially on the line at constant spacing:
Lf length
Df diameter
ρf float density
Sf float pitch
mfh float hardware mass (e.g. fixing clamps, bolts, etc.)
Cdnf drag coefficient, normal flow
Cdaf1 drag coefficient, axial flow due to form
Cdaf2 drag coefficient, axial flow due to skin friction
Canf added mass coefficients in normal flow
Caaf added mass coefficient in axial flow
With the above information we can calculate the volume occupied by an individual float as:
Vf = π/4 (Df
2
- ODp
2
) Lf
which leads to the mass of the float being calculated as follows:
Mf = Vf.ρf + mfh.
Uuter, Inner and Contact Diameter
The Line Type Wizard sets up diameters for a Line with Floats as follows:
Uuter Diameter
The Outer Diameter (OD) of the equivalent line is calculated by equating two equivalent expressions for the volume
per unit length of the line:
Vol per unit length = π/4.OD
2
(equivalent line)
Vol per unit length (V) = π/4.ODp
2
+ Vf /Sf (line with floats)
This leads to:
Outer Diameter (OD) = (4V/π)
½

Inner Diameter
The Inner Diameter is unaffected by the addition of floats and so is set to be the same as that of the base line.
Contact Diameter
The Contact Diameter is set to equal the float diameter Df. This allows float clearance to be reported using the Line
Contact Clearance result.
Mass per Unit Lengtb
The line type mass per unit length is calculated by allowing for the fact that there is one float for every Sf length of
the section and hence (1/Sf) floats per unit length, giving:
Mass per unit length = Mp + Mf / Sf
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Normal Drag Coefficient
The Line Type Wizard sets up the Normal Drag Coefficient for a Line with Floats as follows:
The drag force per unit length of the equivalent line when flow is normal to the line's axis can be expressed as:
Drag Forcen = ½ ρv
2
Cdn Dnp
in which the reference drag area per unit length, normal to the flow, is given by the normal drag diameter of the
base line, Dnp, and where ρ is the density of seawater and v is the flow velocity.
We can also express the drag force per unit length experienced by the equivalent line as the sum of the drag forces
experienced by the floats and the drag forces experienced by the part of the line not hidden by the floats:
Drag Forcen = Drag Forcen-FLOATS + Drag Forcen-EXP LINE
= ½ ρv
2
[Cdnf.Drag Arean-FLOATS + Cdnp.Drag Arean-EXP LINE]
in which the reference drag area for the floats in normal flow is given by:
Drag Arean-FLOATS = Df Lf/Sf
and the reference drag area for the exposed line in normal flow is given by:
Drag Arean-EXP LINE = Dnp (Sf-Lf)/Sf.
Equating the two expressions for drag force leads to:
Cdn = [Cdnf.Drag Arean-FLOATS + Cdnp.Drag Arean-EXP LINE] / Dnp.
In case the base line type uses drag which varies with Reynold's number, a variable data table is created which
specifies the drag variation with Reynold's number for the equivalent line. The formula above is then applied to the
drag coefficients in each row of the table.
Axial Drag Coefficient
The Line Type Wizard sets up the Axial Drag Coefficient for a Line with Floats as follows.
To derive the drag coefficient when flow is axial to the line we adopt a similar approach to that used above for
normal flow.
When considering the equivalent line, with the additional buoyancy smeared along it's outer surface, the drag force
per unit length, when flow is axial to the line, is due solely to skin friction and can be expressed as:
Drag Forcea = ½ ρv
2
Cda (πDap)
in which the reference drag area per unit length is the circumference of the base line (calculated using the axial drag
diameter Dap) and where r is the density of seawater and v is the flow velocity.
As in the case for flow normal to the line, we can also express the drag force per unit length experienced by the
equivalent line as the sum of the drag forces experienced by the floats and the drag forces experienced by the part of
the line not hidden by the floats. However, the drag forces experienced by the floats are slightly more complicated in
axial flow as there will be a drag force due to the exposed annulus on the end of each float and a drag force due to
skin friction.
Drag Forcea = Drag Forcea-FLOATS + Drag Forcea-EXP LINE
= ½ ρv
2
[Cdaf1.Drag Area1a-FLOATS + Cdaf2.Drag Area2a-FLOATS + Cdap.Drag Areaa-EXP LINE]
in which the reference drag area, due to the annulus, for the floats in axial flow is given by:
Drag Area1a-FLOATS = π/4 (Df
2
-ODp
2
)/Sf
the reference drag area, due to the skin, for the floats in axial flow is given by:
Drag Area2a-FLOATS = πDfLf/Sf
and the reference drag area, due to the skin, for the exposed line in axial flow is given by:
Drag Areaa-EXP LINE = πDap (Sf-Lf)/Sf.
Equating these two expressions leads to:
Cda = [Cdaf1.Drag Area1a-FLOATS + Cdaf2.Drag Area2a-FLOATS + Cdap.Drag Areaa-EXP LINE] / (πDap).
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Added Mass Coefficients
The Line Type Wizard sets up Normal and Axial Added Mass Coefficients for a Line with Floats as follows:
Normal Added Mass Coefficient
Added mass coefficients are calculated in a similar way to the drag force coefficients. For flow normal to the axis of
the line the added mass per unit length is given by:
Added Massn = ρ π/4 OD
2
Can
in which the reference volume is the volume of the equivalent line and where ρ is the density of seawater.
We can also express the added mass term of the equivalent line as the sum of the added masses due to the floats and
due to the underlying line:
Added Massn = ρ (Canf AMVolFLOATS + Canp AMVolEXP LINE)
in which the reference volume per unit length for the floats (and the portion of line they cover) is given by:
AMVolFLOATS = π/4 Df
2
Lf/Sf
and the reference volume per unit length for the exposed part of the line is given by:
AMVolEXP LINE = π/4 ODp
2
(Sf-Lf)/Sf
Equating the expressions for added mass leads to:
Can = (Canf AMVolFLOATS + Canp AMVolEXP LINE)/(π/4 OD
2
).
Axial Added Mass Coefficient
The added mass coefficients follow in a similar way to above. The reference volumes for the equivalent line and for
the floats and exposed part of the underlying base line are taken to be the same in axial flow as in normal flow.
Hence, we can take the above expression for the added mass coefficient in normal flow and replace the coefficients
for normal flow with those for axial flow:
Caa = (Caaf AMVolFLOATS + Caap AMVolEXP LINE)/(π/4 OD
2
).
Stress Diameters and Allowable Stress
The stress diameter and allowable stress are set to be the values used by the base line, since it is the base line which
is load bearing.
ó.8.13 Homogeneous Pipe
N N’
O
O’

Figure: Homogeneous Pipe
The Line Type Wizard for Homogeneous Pipe creates data for a General Category Line Type with properties
appropriate to a pipe constructed from a single homogeneous material, for example a metal riser.
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Note: If you are modelling a homogeneous pipe then it is normally better to do so using a Homogeneous
Pipe Category Line Type. This allows you to specify material density, Young's modulus etc. directly.
The derived properties are based on the following input data:
ρ material density
E Young's Modulus
ν Poisson Ratio
OD Outer Diameter
ID Inner Diameter = OD-2t where t is the wall thickness
The properties of the derived equivalent line type are given below.
Mass per Unit Lengtb
Mass per unit length = ρ (π/4) (OD
2
- ID
2
) where ρ is the material density specified.
Uuter and Inner Diameters
The line type outer and inner diameters are set to the pipe diameters specified by the user.
Axial Stiffness
The line type axial stiffness is given by:
Axial Stiffness = EA
where E is the Young's Modulus and A is the cross sectional area, hence:
Axial Stiffness = E(π/4) (OD
2
- ID
2
).
Bending Stiffness
The line type bending stiffness is given by:
Bending Stiffness = EI
where I is the second moment of area, about an axis in the plane of the cross-section through the centroid (e.g. NN'),
and leads to:
Bending Stiffness = E(π/64) (OD
4
- ID
4
).
Limit Compression
As the bending stiffness is significant this is set to 'no'.
Torsional Stiffness
The line type torsional stiffness is set as follows. The torque experienced by a pipe of length l when twisted through
an angle θ is given by:
Torque = (Gθ/l)J
where J is the second moment of area about the axial axis OO' (often called the polar moment of inertia) and G is the
Shear Modulus (sometimes called the modulus of rigidity). For homogeneous pipes J = 2I. The quantity G is related to
the Young's Modulus (E) and Poisson Ratio (ν) of the material through the following relationship:
G = E/{2(1+ν)}.
The Torsional Stiffness, representing the Torque resisting a twist of 1 radian, per unit length, is therefore given by:
Torsional Stiffness = GJ = E/{2(1+ν)} (π/32) (OD
4
- ID
4
).
Stress Uuter and Inner Diameters
The line type stress diameters are set to '~', since they are the same as the pipe diameters.
Stress Loading Factors
These are set to one, the default value, as a simple homogeneous pipe carries all the loads.
Data
The Line Type Wizard helps build a line type to represent a homogeneous pipe, based on the following data:
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Material
The Wizard provides 3 standard materials for a homogeneous pipe: Steel; Titanium and Higb Density
Polyetbylene. For these standard materials OrcaFlex automatically sets Material Density, Young's Modulus and
Poisson Ratio.
There is also an option to enter User Specified as the Material. In this case you must set Material Density, Young's
Modulus and Poisson Ratio.
Material Density
This is the density of the material used in the construction of the pipe.
Uuter Diameter, Wall Tbickness
These data specify the geometry of the pipe cross-section.
Young's Modulus
The ratio of the tensile stress to the tensile strain.
Poisson Ratio
The amount of lateral strain experienced by a material subjected to tensile strain as a negative proportion of the
tensile strain.
The Line Type data that are derived, and the associated underlying expressions, are detailed in Modelling
Homogeneous Pipes.
ó.8.14 Hoses and Umbilicals
The Line Type Wizard estimates typical properties for hoses and umbilicals based on project data.
Warning: The values generated by the Wizard are approximate only and are intended as first estimates for
preliminary use. They are offered in good faith, but due to variations in properties between
products they cannot be guaranteed. Please use suppliers' data where this is available.
There are three categories of hose available:
- Higb pressure which covers high pressure flexible risers and flowlines of unbonded construction with inside
diameters in the range 2 to 15 inches (50 to 380mm).
- Low pressure which covers low pressure floating hoses of bonded rubber construction with inside diameter
from 2 to 20 inches (50 to 500 mm).
- Fold-flat which covers low pressure, fold-flat hoses with steel reinforcement; inside diameter around 6 inches
(150 mm).
The umbilical properties assume construction with steel wire armour and thermoplastic hoses and outside diameter
up to 250mm.
The properties derived by the Wizard are obtained from empirically estimated relationships with the diameter of
the hose/cable. They have been estimated from a limited amount of data covering only the range of diameters
indicated above. For simplicity, only those relationships of the form:
Y = aX
b
,
where b is an integer, were considered.
In the details below the diameter is assumed to be in metres and the SI units system is applied throughout.
The amount of data available for low pressure hoses and fold-flat hoses is very small.
There is quite a bit more data for high pressure hoses and umbilicals but it is found to have quite a large spread. To
demonstrate this spread, the ratio of the observed value to the fitted value, expressed as a percentage, is calculated
and the largest and smallest of these is given.
The OrcaFlex stress analysis is not applicable to complex structures such as hoses and umbilicals. Any available
stress or wall tension results should therefore be ignored.
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Data for Umbilicals
The Line Type Wizard can help build a line type to represent umbilical. Umbilical cables have many applications
including the carrying of electrical communication wires and hydraulic connectors to submersibles. The Line Type
data quantities that the wizard derives have been estimated from a limited amount of project data. The single item
of input data is:
Umbilical Diameter
The outer diameter of the umbilical. Each derived line type property is a function of this diameter.
Data for Hoses
The Line Type Wizard helps you build a line type to represent a hose, based on the following data. A limited amount
of available project data has been collated and used to derive purely empirical relationships between the diameter
of types of hose and certain line type data quantities. The input data consists of:
Hose Inner Diameter
Each derived line type property is a function of the hose inner diameter.
Hose Type
The Hose Type can be one of bigb pressure, low pressure or fold-flat. These categories roughly cover the available
project data.
Uuter and Inner Diameters
The Line Type Wizard sets up Outer and Inner Diameters for hoses and umbilicals as follows:
Hoses
The inner diameter (ID) is specified by the user and the outer diameter (OD) is a function of the inner diameter:
OD = 1.40 ID m (for High Pressure) [90% 150%],
OD = 1.28 ID m (for Low Pressure),
OD = 1.34 ID m (for Fold-Flat).
Umbilicals
The inner diameter (ID) is set to zero and the outer diameter (OD) is specified by the user.
Mass per unit lengtb
The Line Type Wizard sets up mass for hoses and umbilicals as follows:
Hoses
For each type of hose the mass per metre has been estimated as a function of inner diameter giving:
Mass per metre = 0.7523 ID te/m (for High Pressure) [55% 145%],
Mass per metre = 0.3642 ID te/m (for Low Pressure),
Mass per metre = 0.1844 ID te/m (for Fold-Flat).
Umbilicals
For the umbilicals the mass per metre has been estimated as a function of outer diameter giving:
Mass per metre = 1.8 OD
2
te/m (for Umbilical) [35% 170%].
Axial and Bending Stiffness
The Line Type Wizard sets up Axial and Bending Stiffness and Limit Compression for hoses and umbilicals as
follows:
Axial Stiffness
For each type of hose the axial stiffness has been estimated as a function of inner diameter giving:
Axial Stiffness = 2.80 x 10
6
ID kN (for High Pressure) [40% 160%],
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Axial Stiffness = 3.40 x 10
4
ID kN (for Low Pressure),
Axial Stiffness = 6.56 x 10
3
ID kN (for Fold-Flat).
For the umbilicals the axial stiffness has been estimated as a function of outer diameter giving:
Axial Stiffness = 1.44 x 10
6
OD kN (for Umbilical) [15% 415%].
Bending Stiffness
For each type of hose the bending stiffness has been estimated as a function of inner diameter giving:
Bending Stiffness = 3 x 10
4
ID
4
kN.m
2
(for High Pressure) [45% 300%],
Bending Stiffness = 6 x 10
2
ID
3
kN.m
2
(for Low Pressure),
Bending Stiffness = 1 x 10
3
ID
3
kN.m
2
(for Fold-Flat).
For the umbilicals the bending stiffness has been estimated as a function of outer diameter giving:
Bending Stiffness = 3 x 10
3
OD
3
kN.m
2
(for Umbilical) [55% 240%].
Limit Compression
As the bending stiffness is significant this is set to 'no'.
ó.8.15 Modelling Stress )oints
A tapered stress joint is a riser joint with a tapered cross-section. Stress joints are used to spread loads over a
critical section of the riser. Stress joints are typically fabricated from steel or titanium.
Stress joints are modelled in OrcaFlex using profiled line types. To model a stress joints you need to take the
following steps:
1. Create a line type with the homogeneous pipe category and set the inner diameter, material data (Young's
modulus, Poisson ratio, material density), hydrodynamic properties etc.
2. Create a Line Type Uuter Diameter variable data source which defines the stress joint profile.
3. Set the line type outer diameter to refer to the variable data source of the profile.
4. Set the Line Type data item on the structure page of the line data form to refer to the profiled line type created
above.
Segmentation
OrcaFlex line segments are straight, that is the diameter is constant over the length of the segment. Each segment in
a profile line section has a diameter defined by evaluating the profile data at the mid-point of the segments.
Because of this you typically need to use quite short segments to model the taper accurately. However, note that a
stress joint is usually placed in a region of concentrated stress. Such regions also require short segments for
accurate modelling and so the use of straight segments to model the profile does not in practice turn out to be a
significant limitation.
In order to determine segment length we recommend that you perform sensitivity studies on segment length.
Arc lengtb convention
Profile arc length is defined relative to the start of the line section and increases from End A towards End B. To
illustrate this consider a stress joint defined by the following profile:
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Figure: Stress |oint profile
A stress joint specified this way would commonly be used in the first section of a line. If, however, your stress joint is
located adjacent to End B of the line, then the End A to End B convention means that the stress joint would be
incorrectly configured. This is easy to check with the profile graph available on the line data form:

Figure: Stress |oint profile at End B, incorrectly modelled
The problem is that the taper is now in the wrong direction. The thicker end of the taper should be adjacent to End B
of the line. In order to fix this we simply need to reverse the profile data. This is very simple to do using the Reverse
button on the variable data form. The result looks like this:

Figure: Stress |oint profile at End B, corrected
The line profile graph when using the reversed profile now shows that the data is now applied as intended:
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Figure: Stress |oint profile at End B, correctly modelled
ó.8.1ó Modelling Bend Restrictors
We begin by introducing some terminology. A bend restrictor is any device that controls, restricts or limits bending
on a line. A bend limiter is a bend restrictor that has no effect until a certain curvature is reached, and then
curvature is prevented from going above that value. A bend stiffener is a bend restrictor that provides increased
bend stiffness in order to distribute more widely the bending.
Modelling Bend Limiters
Non-linear bend stiffness can be used to model a bend limiter. The approach is to specify a relationship between
curvature and bend moment that has:
- Low stiffness for curvature values lower than the lock-out curvature.
- High stiffness for curvature values greater than the lock-out curvature.
Typically the low stiffness value will be close to zero and the high stiffness value will be one or two orders of
magnitude greater than the stiffness of the protected line. Try to avoid using too large a value since doing so can
result in numerical instability. It may also help to smooth the transition from low to high stiffness.
The most common modelling approach for bend limiters uses a single equivalent line type object to represent both
the protected line and the limiter. The bend stiffness for this equivalent line type must account for both the
protected line and the limiter. You may choose also to account for mass, displacement and hydrodynamic properties
but often these properties are of lesser importance.
An alternative to the equivalent line approach is to model the limiter as a separate object using the bend stiffener
attachment (see below). The main difference from an elastomeric stiffener is that a general category line type with
non-linear bend stiffness must be used for the attachment line type. The main advantage of this approach is that it
becomes easier to check that the data is specified correctly because you can keep the data for the protected line
separate from the data for the limiter.
Modelling Bend Stiffeners
Bend stiffeners are modelled in OrcaFlex using two separate lines to represent the stiffener and the line which it
protects, which we refer to as the protected line. The region of the protected line which is covered by the stiffener
is called the protected region.
The two line approach enables reporting of separate results for the protected line and stiffener. In particular this
makes fatigue analysis of the protected line quite simple since the reported loads and stresses for the protected line
do not include the contributions of the stiffener.
The protected line can have linear, non-linear elastic or hysteretic bending properties. The stiffener is modelled as a
profiled homogeneous pipe. The stiffener can have linear or non-linear elastic material properties.
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Data
Although the stiffener is modelled as a separate line you do not need to create this line manually – OrcaFlex creates
it automatically as an attachment. The procedure for setting up a bend stiffener is as follows:
1. Create a Line Type which defines the material, structural and hydrodynamic properties of the stiffener. Usually
this will be a profiled homogeneous pipe.
2. Create a Stiffener Type which uses this Line Type.
3. Create a line attachment based on this Stiffener Type.
4. Set the line attachment position and the Stiffener Type connection arc length so that the stiffener is attached at
the desired location on the protected line.
If you have multiple protected lines which all use identical bend stiffeners then you can create a single Stiffener
Type which can be re-used on each protected line.
The stiffener profile uses the convention that profile arc length increases from End A towards End B of the stiffener.
If you have a bend stiffener connected at End B of a line then you will need to define the profile so that the arc length
0 refers to the tip of the stiffener. The Modelling Stress Joints topic illustrates this issue in some more detail.
Although the discussion there centres on stress joints many of the points covered are equally applicable to bend
stiffeners.
We strongly recommend that you use the Profile Graph available from the Line Data form to check that the stiffener
is connected at the correct location on the line with the profile defined as you intended.
Segmentation
The stiffener line that OrcaFlex creates is modelled with constant segment length – that is every segment in the
stiffener has the same length. The segment length is determined by the segment length of the protected line in the
protected region.
The stiffener modelling (see below) requires that each node on the stiffener line is associated with a node on the
protected line. Each stiffener node is effectively clamped to its associated protected node.
These constraints have the following implications for the segmentation of the protected line:
1. The protected region must have constant segment length.
2. The stiffener length must be an exact multiple of the segment length.
One simple way to satisfy these requirements is to model the protected region as a single section with length equal
to the stiffener length.
Note that it is not essential for the protected region to be a single section. The protected region could comprise
multiple sections each using different line types, so long as you satisfy the two rules above.
Drawing and Results
The stiffener line is drawn using the drawing data of the protected line to which it is attached. Note that the stiffener
is not drawn when the program is in reset state; it is only drawn after the static or dynamic analysis has started.
Results are available for the stiffener line exactly as they are for any other OrcaFlex line.
OrcaFlex reports results separately for protected line and stiffener line and this does need some explanation. For
example, consider bend moment at a particular location in the protected line and at the corresponding location in
the stiffener line. Suppose that the bending stiffnesses are EIp and EIs for protected line and stiffener respectively
(we are assuming linear bend stiffness for simplicity). The bend moment carried by the protected line and stiffener
ensemble is given by BMtotal = C(EIp + EIs) where C is the curvature at this location. For the protected line OrcaFlex
reports the local protected line bend moment BMp = C.EIp and likewise for the stiffener line OrcaFlex reports BMs =
C.EIs. It is straightforward to see that BMtotal = BMp + BMs.
The total load is also split into separate protected line and stiffener loads for effective tension, wall tension, shear
force, torque and stress results. However, the method for doing this varies for axial components as explained in the
next section.
Modelling details
As mentioned above the stiffener is modelled as a separate OrcaFlex line which is created automatically by OrcaFlex
as an attachment. The stiffener line inherits a number of properties from its protected line, namely:
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- Include Torsion.
- Segment length.
- Statics friction data.
- Drag formulation and wake interference data.
- VIV data.
- Drawing data.
- Results data.
The stiffener line does not have any free degrees of freedom. Instead each node on the stiffener is clamped to and
moves and rotates with its associated node on the protected line. The stiffener line calculates its loads and inertia
and then transfers them to the protected line. How this transfer is performed is governed by the Axial load/inertia
transfer data of the Stiffener Type.
All components of load and inertia normal to the stiffener are transferred directly from each stiffener node to its
associated protected node. This, of course, enables the stiffener to perform its job of spreading the bend loads over
the protected region.
If the axial load/inertia transfer is specified to occur at the connection point then components of axial load/inertia
are transferred to the protected node at the connection point. Typically this connection point is at the end of the
protected line and the axial loads and inertia are thus transferred to the protected line's end connection. This
modelling option effectively neglects any axial friction due to contact between stiffener and protected line.
If the axial load/inertia transfer is specified to occur over the stiffener's full lengtb then components of axial
load/inertia are transferred directly from each stiffener node to its associated protected node. This corresponds to
the assumption that the axial contact friction is sufficient that there is no axial slipping. The axial load will be shared
between protected line and stiffener as determined by their relative axial stiffnesses, just as the bend moment is
shared.
Bend Stiffener design using UrcaFlex
The modelling approach described above applies where a bend stiffener has already been designed, and one of the
objectives of the analysis is to confirm that the stiffener provides the required protection. However, in many cases
the stiffener design does not yet exist and the analysis is needed in order to define design loads. If this is the case,
then run a preliminary analysis with no bend stiffener included. The line should be modelled with a pinned end (i.e.
zero bending stiffness at the line end connection).
The load information required for bend stiffener design then consists of paired values of tension and angle at the
pinned end. These can be extracted in the form of an X-Y graph showing Effective Tension against Ez Angle for the
first segment. In practice, it is often sufficient to consider just three points on this graph, corresponding to maximum
tension, maximum angle and maximum bend restrictor load: these can be extracted as linked statistics. Recall that
Ez Angle is an absolute magnitude and therefore always takes a positive value. If a signed value is required (e.g. to
define out-to-out load cycles for fatigue analysis), then use the Ezx or Ezy angle as appropriate.
It is usually necessary to combine results from several analysis runs in order to fully define the bend stiffener design
loading. This is most conveniently done by exporting the Effective Tension vs Ez Angle results as a table of values for
each analysis case, combining into a single Excel spreadsheet and using the plotting facilities in Excel to generate a
single plot with all results superimposed. A simplified set of load cases representing the overall loading envelope
can then be selected for use in stiffener design. The export to Excel can be done manually or automated through the
Results spreadsheet.
Bend Stiffener design using UrcaBend
The task of bend stiffener design is usually left to the manufacturer, since the actual stiffener shape selected is
governed in part by the manufacturing process, availability of tooling, etc., as well as by the load cases. The Orcina
program OrcaBend has been developed to assist this process. There is a demonstration version of OrcaBend on the
OrcaFlex CD – see CD:\Demo_CD\ReadMe for details. For further information contact Orcina.
ó.8.17 Modelling non-linear bomogeneous pipes
A non-linear stress-strain relationship is most commonly used to model either:
- non-linear behaviour of elastomeric bend stiffeners, or
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- plastic deformation of steel pipes during installation.
OrcaFlex can also model non-linear bend stiffness for General Category Line Types. However there are a number of
advantages of using the homogeneous pipe approach if it is applicable:
- The data are entered directly and there is no need to use the Line Type Wizard for Homogeneous Pipe or the
Plasticity Wizard which makes data checking simpler.
- The effects of a diameter profile and a non-linear material (e.g. bend stiffener) are handled automatically by the
program.
- The effects of direct tensile strain variation are again handled automatically by the program (see below).
- Stress results are derived using the stress-strain relationship.
On the other hand if you wish to model hysteretic bending behaviour then you must use the General Category Line
Types approach.
Data
Stress-Strain Relationship variable data sources are used to define non-linear elastic material properties for
homogeneous pipes.
Stress-Strain relationsbip
The relationship between stress and strain can be specified by either Ramberg-Usgood curve or Stress-Strain
table.
ƒ– ‡”‹ƒŽ á ‡ˆ ‡”‡•… ‡ – ”‡• • P y], K, n {Ramberg-Usgood curve only]
These data define the relationship between stress (ς) and strain (ε) in terms of a Ramberg-Osgood curve as follows:
ε(ς) = ς/E + K(ς/ςy)
n
.
The reference stress parameter is usually taken to be the yield stress, which is why it is denoted ςy here. Note that
there is an alternative parameterisation of the Ramberg-Osgood equation. It is straightforward to convert between
the two forms of the equation but please take care to ensure that the data you input correspond to the
parameterisation used by OrcaFlex.
Stress, Strain {Stress-Strain table only]
This table directly specifies the relationship between stress and strain. The table is interpolated linearly and for
values of strain outside the table linear extrapolation will be used.
Model building
OrcaFlex uses the stress-strain relationship to generate a table of bend moment against curvature using the same
algorithm as the Plasticity Wizard. Each segment in the OrcaFlex model uses a distinct bend moment / curvature
table which is clearly necessary if the line type has a diameter profile.
The use of distinct bend moment / curvature tables also allows OrcaFlex to account for the variation of direct tensile
strain within a line. The bend moment / curvature relationship depends upon:
- The stress-strain relationship (as described above).
- The inner and outer diameter (as specified in the Line Type data).
- The direct tensile strain.
The direct tensile strain can have a significant effect on the non-linear bending behaviour if it is large. To see why
this is so consider a steel pipe under tension such that the direct tensile strain equals the yield strain. When the pipe
is in this state then any small amount of curvature will yield the pipe outer fibres. On the other hand consider an
unstressed steel pipe, where the direct tensile strain is zero. In this state the pipe can withstand significant
curvature before the outer fibres yield.
In principle the bend moment / curvature relationship could be recalculated at each time step of an OrcaFlex
calculation. However this would incur a significant performance cost. Instead we make the assumption that the
effect of dynamic variation of direct tensile strain on the bend moment / curvature relationship is small.
This allows us to use a constant value of direct tensile strain for the purpose of deriving the bend moment /
curvature relationship. Note that each segment in the model has a distinct bend moment / curvature relationship
based on a distinct value of direct tensile strain. By "constant" we mean that we do not update the bend moment /
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curvature relationship during the dynamic simulation. Note also that this discussion of direct tensile strain only
pertains to the generation of bend moment / curvature relationships. The program does, of course, account for
dynamic variation of direct tensile strain when calculating wall tension, effective tension etc.
The program chooses the value of direct tensile strain by first performing a static calculation under the assumption
that direct tensile strain is 0. Non-linear bend moment / curvature relationships are created for each segment under
this assumption. The direct tensile strain values from this initial static solution are then used to update the non-
linear bend moment / curvature relationships. Finally the static calculation is repeated to obtain a solution which
accounts for the effects of direct tensile strain.
Stress results
The non-linear stress-strain relationship is also used to calculate certain stress results from strain values. Non-
linear stress-strain leads to a non-linear elastic bend stiffness, but the axial and torsional stiffnesses are still
assumed to be linear. This means that the only stress results affected are those that depend on bending: Max
Bending Stress, von Mises Stress, Max von Mises Stress and ZZ Stress.
ó.8.18 Line Ends
Lines in OrcaFlex run from End A to End B. Travelling from A to B, the orientation of any segment in the line is
defined in terms of Azimuth and Declination angles, relative to global axes. Azimuth is measured in the X-Y plane,
Declination is measured downwards from the Z axis. See No-Moment Direction.
No-moment Direction
Associated with each end is a stiffness, and a no-moment direction which is described in terms of azimuth and
declination. This too uses the End A to End B convention, so if we hang up a catenary of line, and then freeze the
ends, the no-moment directions are as shown below:
x
z
y
Declination
Angle
Azimuth
Angle
No moment direction
( Az = 0, Dec = 160 )
No moment direction
( Az = 0, Dec = 45 )
End A
End B

Figure: Directions
If the line end is attached to a body which can move (a Vessel or Buoy), then the no-moment direction is defined
relative to the body axes and therefore moves with the body. Otherwise, it is defined in global axes.
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End Stiffness
The stiffness associated with the end can be used to represent an item such as a flexjoint, whose stiffness is in units
of moment per unit angle, e.g. kN.m/degree. More commonly, the line end is either free to rotate or fully restrained.
In the first case, the end stiffness is set to zero; in the second case, the end stiffness is set to Infinity. Note that it is
never necessary (or correct) to 'convert' the line stiffness into an end stiffness: the program includes the line
stiffness for you automatically.
Free-to-rotate or Fully-restrained Ends
In many practical cases, the line ends are neither completely free nor fully restrained. Nevertheless, we recommend
that you should usually choose one of these conditions. When should you use one rather than the other? The
following notes offer a brief guide:
1. Many systems modelled using OrcaFlex consist of relatively long flexible lines where bend stiffness plays only a
minor role in determining the overall forces on and movements of the system. In such systems, line ends may
safely be modelled as free-to-rotate.
2. An exception to this rule is systems which include one or more 6D buoys. The rotational motions of the buoy
may then be influenced by moment transfer from the ends of lines attached to it, particularly where buoy
rotational inertias are small. In such cases, the end connections to the buoy should be fully restrained.
3. A further exception is systems where the flexible lines are relatively short and stiff, e.g. a large diameter under-
buoy hose in shallow water. Bend stiffness, including end moments, may have a significant influence on overall
system behaviour in such cases, and the end connections should be fully restrained.
4. Where fully restrained ends are used, it is necessary to pay more attention to the modelling of the line close to
the end. In particular make allowance for the additional stiffness of a bend stiffener, if one is fitted and use
shorter segments near the line ends so as to represent the moments with sufficient accuracy.
5. Roll-on/roll-off contact (e.g. stern rollers, pipelay stingers, mid-water arches for riser systems). A pinned
connection at the average contact point is often sufficient. For a more exact representation, use one or more
solids to represent the supporting surface, but remember that there must be sufficient nodes at the line end to
interact with the solid.
End Force and End Force Ez-Angle
The figure below shows the end connection of a flexible line fitted with a bend stiffener. The line applies a load
(tension) T as shown. If the local loads (weight, drag, etc.) on the end part of the line, including the bend stiffener,
are small by comparison with T, then the reaction force F is equal and opposite to T, and the bend moment at the
end fitting is M = T.h.
OrcaFlex reports the End Force, F, and the End Force Ez-Angle, θ, as shown. The "No moment direction" is defined in
the input data. When the reaction force F acts in the no moment direction, then the reaction moment M is zero.
It is clear from this that
1. End Force and End Force Ez-Angle are the same whether the end condition is defined as free-to-rotate, fully
restrained, or some intermediate condition;
2. The bend moment at the end fitting, M, is a function of the lever arm, h, which depends not only on the end
condition but also on the bend stiffness distribution in the line/bend stiffener.
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No moment direction
h
T
F
M
u

Figure: End connection of a flexible line fitted witb a Bend Stiffener
Design Loads for End Fittings
For design of end fittings, including bend restrictors, the principal parameters provided by OrcaFlex are End Force
and End Force Ez-Angle. The moment at the end can then be determined by a local (static) analysis which can be
developed to incorporate as much detail as required.
This approach is usually sufficient, except where End Force is very small. This occurs when the line tension T comes
close to zero. The direction of the end force is then no longer dominated by the line tension, and other loads (shear,
local drag and inertia loads etc.) which are usually negligible become important. In these conditions, the reported
End Force Ez-Angle is misleading and a more appropriate estimate should be made from the system geometry. This
can be done using the Ez-Angle results variable. Ez-Angle for any segment gives the angle of that segment relative to
the No Moment Direction at the adjacent line end, including allowance for the motion of line end where the line is
attached to a vessel or buoy. Ez-Angle for a point near the end of the bend restrictor is a reasonable alternative
where End Force Ez-Angle is not suitable.
Results
When examining results at line ends note that if a stiff pipe goes into compression, line tension becomes negative
but End Force remains positive, and End Force Ez-Angle may approach 180°.
Curvature is calculated in OrcaFlex by dividing the angle change at any node by the sum of the half-segment lengths
on each side of the node: bend moment is curvature multiplied by bend stiffness. At the end, OrcaFlex takes the
angle change between the end segment of the line and the no-moment direction, and reports the corresponding
curvature and bend moment based on the half length of the end segment. Where bend stiffness at the line end is
zero (pinned end or a zero stiffness line), curvature and bend moment are reported as zero.
Design Data for Bend Restrictors
We classify bend restrictors into 3 types:
- Bellmouths: curved surfaces which support the flexible and maintain acceptable curvature.
- Bend Limiters: articulated devices which rotate freely to a specified curvature, then stop.
- Bend Stiffeners: elastomeric devices which provide a tapered additional bend stiffness.
Different design information is required for each type:
Bellmoutb
The principal design requirement is that bellmouth angle should be greater than the maximum value of End Force
Ez-Angle. For cases where the bellmouth is not radially symmetrical, OrcaFlex reports components of End Force
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Angle in the local XZ and YZ planes. End Force Ezx-Angle is the component in the local xz plane; End Force Ezy-Angle
is the component in the local yz plane.
Bend Limiter
There are two design requirements:
1. The limiter length must be not less than a*R where a is End Force Ez-Angle and R is the limiter locking radius.
2. The limiter must be capable of withstanding the maximum bend moment M given by M = R*F*(1-cos(a)) where
F, a are simultaneous values of End Force and End Force Ez-Angle. OrcaFlex reports Bend Restrictor Load P =
F*(1-cos(a)) as an aid to bend limiter design. P is sometimes called "pseudo-curvature".
Bend Stiffener
The design process for a stiffener is more complex than for a bellmouth or a bend limiter, and the critical design load
cases are not always self-evident. An X-Y graph of F against a (End Force against End Force-Ez Angle) provides a
complete definition of the loading for one analysis case, with each (F,a) pair defining a load case. The bend stiffener
should be designed to prevent infringement of the permitted curvature for any (F,a) pair. In practice, it is often
sufficient to consider just the three (F,a) pairs corresponding to maximum values of End Force F, End Force Ez-
Angle a and Bend Restrictor Load P.
Once the stiffener design is known the stiffener can be modelled using a bend stiffener attachment.
ó.8.19 Modelling Compression in Flexibles
When a flexible line experiences compression, it responds by deflecting transversely: the magnitude of the
deflection is controlled by bend stiffness. Under static conditions, the behaviour of an initially straight section of line
under pure axial loading is described by classic Euler buckling theory. This defines the maximum compressive load –
the "Euler load" – which a particular length of line can withstand before transverse deflection occurs. The Euler load
is a function of the length of the straight section, the bend stiffness and the end conditions. For a simple stick of
length L, bend stiffness EI, with pin joints at each end, the Euler load is π
2
EI/L
2
. The Euler load is derived from a
stability analysis: it tells us the value of axial load at which transverse deflection will occur but nothing about the
post-buckling behaviour.
Under dynamic loading conditions, the transverse deflection is resisted by a combination of inertia and bending.
OrcaFlex is fully capable of modelling this behaviour provided the discretisation of the model is sufficient, i.e.
provided the segments are short enough to model the deflected shape properly. Another way of saying the same
thing is that the compressive load in any segment of the line should never exceed the Euler load for the segment.
Why are these two statements equivalent? Imagine the real line replaced by a series of rigid sticks connected by
rotational springs at the joints – this is essentially how OrcaFlex models the line. Under compression, the line
deflects: the sticks remain straight and the joints rotate. Provided the wavelength of the deflection is longer than the
length of the individual sticks then the rigid stick model can approximate it: shorter sticks give a better
approximation.
If the compressive load reaches the Euler load for an individual stick, then the real line which the stick represents
will start to deform at a shorter wavelength, and deflections within the stick length become significant. Clearly, this
stick model is no longer adequate. By replacing each long stick by several short ones, we can make the Euler load for
each stick greater than the applied compressive load. Each stick will then remain straight, but we now have more
sticks with which to model the deflected shape.
This gives us a convenient way of checking the adequacy of our model: provided the compressive load in each
segment always remains less than the Euler load for that segment, then we can have confidence that the behaviour
of the line in compression is adequately modelled. OrcaFlex makes this comparison automatically for all segments
and reports any infringements in the Statistics tables. The segment Euler load is also plotted in tension range graphs
(as a negative value – compression is negative) so that infringements are clearly visible.
If the segment Euler load is infringed during a simulation, then we have to decide what to do about it. If
infringement occurs only during the build-up period, perhaps as a result of a starting transient, then we can safely
ignore it. If it occurs during the main part of the simulation, then we should examine the time histories of tension in
the affected areas. Where infringements are severe and repeated or of long duration the analysis should be repeated
with shorter segments in the affected area. However it may be acceptable to disregard occasional minor
infringements of short duration on the following grounds:
- Transverse deflection caused by compression takes some time to occur because of inertia.
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- The segment Euler load used in OrcaFlex as a basis for comparison is the lowest of the various alternatives, and
assumes pinned joints with no bend stiffness at each end of the segment. This is a conservative assumption.
- Whether or not to disregard an infringement is a decision which can only be taken by the analyst in the context
of the task in hand.
Limit Compression Switcb
For each line type, the data includes a Limit Compression switch.
The usual setting is "No". This means that each segment of this line type is treated as a strut capable of taking
whatever compressive loads arise in the course of the simulation.
For some special cases, such as chains and soft ropes with little bend stiffness, this is not the most useful model and
OrcaFlex offers an alternative. Lines of this sort cannot take compression at all, so the "Limit Compression" switch
can be set to "Yes". OrcaFlex then does not allow compressive loading greater than the segment Euler load (which is
zero if the bend stiffness is zero).
Note: In either case, if the segment Euler load is reached then a Warning is given on the result form and
in the statistics table.
ó.9 óD BUUYS
óD Buoys are objects having all six degrees of freedom – 3 translational (X, Y and Z) and 3 rotational (Rotation 1, 2
and 3). The forces acting on a buoy are mass, buoyancy, added mass and damping and drag in the three principal
buoy directions. Corresponding moments are applied for the rotational degrees of freedom. Buoys can be surface-
piercing, and have a notional height; this allows the hydrostatic and hydrodynamic forces to be proportioned
depending on the depth of immersion.
6D Buoys can have wings attached to them. A wing is a rectangular surface, attached to the buoy at a specified
position and orientation, which experiences lift and drag forces, and a moment, due to the relative flow of the sea
past the wing.
Lines attached to a 6D Buoy can thus experience both moment effects and translations as the buoy rotates under the
influence of hydrodynamics and applied loads. Lines can be attached to an offset position on a buoy – this allows the
direct study of line clashing, including the separation introduced by spaced attachment points.
Three types of 6D Buoy are available, the differences being the way in which the geometry of the buoy is defined.
Lumped Buoys
The first type, Lumped Buoys, are specified without reference to a specific geometry. This necessarily restricts the
accuracy with which interactions with the water surface are modelled. Where a lumped buoy pierces the surface it is
treated for buoyancy purposes as a simple vertical stick element with a length equal to the specified height of the
buoy (thus buoyancy changes linearly with vertical position without regard to orientation). This model does not
provide the rotational stiffness that would be experienced by most surface piercing buoys.
Interactions with the seabed and with shapes are also modelled in a fairly simple manner, and friction effects are not
included. Arbitrary hydrodynamic and physical properties are modelled by deriving equivalent terms.
Spar Buoys
The second type, called Spar Buoys, are intended for modelling axi-symmetric buoys whose axis is normally
vertical, particularly where surface piercing effects are important (such as for a CALM buoy).
Spar Buoys are modelled as a series of co-axial cylinders mounted end to end along the local z-axis (see Spar Buoy
and Towed Fish Properties). This allows you to provide some information about the buoy geometry, by specifying
the number of cylinders and their lengths and diameters. A conical or spherical shape can be approximated as a
series of short cylinders of gradually increasing or diminishing diameter.
Spar Buoys model surface-piercing effects in a much more sophisticated way than Lumped buoys. Effects such as
heave stiffness and righting moments in pitch and roll are determined by calculating the intersection of the water
surface with each of the cylinders making up the buoy, allowing for the instantaneous position and attitude of the
buoy in the wave. However note that OrcaFlex does not calculate radiation damping (a linear damping term
resulting from the creation of surface waves as the buoy oscillates) or impact loads (slamming).
Because they are modelled as a stack of concentric cylinders, Spar Buoys are often not suitable for fully submerged
objects with more complex geometry.
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As with Lumped Buoys, the modelling of seabed interaction is simplistic and friction effects are not included.
Hydrodynamic loads on Spar Buoys are calculated using Morison's equation. Added mass and drag forces are
applied only to those parts of the buoy which are in the water at the time for which the force is calculated. For partly
immersed cylinders, added mass and drag are proportioned according to the fraction of the cylinder which is
immersed. The use of Morison's equation implies that the buoy diameter is small compared to the wavelength
(usually the case for CALM buoys and the like) but means that some load terms are not represented.
Towed Fisb
The third type, called Towed Fisb, are intended for modelling bodies, such as towed fish, whose principal axis is
normally horizontal. Towed Fish buoys are identical to Spar Buoys except that the stack of cylinders representing
the buoy is laid out along the x-axis of the buoy, rather than along the z-axis.
ó.9.1 Wings
6D buoys can have a number of wings attached; these are useful for representing lift surfaces, diverters etc. Each
wing has its own data and results available.
A wing is a rectangular surface, attached to the buoy at a specified position and orientation, which experiences lift
force, drag force and drag moment, due to the relative flow of fluid past the wing. These drag loads depend on user-
specified coefficients that depend on the incidence angle of the relative fluid flow.
The fluid referred to here can be the sea, the air, or both, as follows.
- Whenever the wing is completely below the instantaneous water surface, then the lift and drag loads are
calculated using the sea density, velocity and incidence angle.
- Whenever the wing is completely above the water surface, and if you have selected to include wind loads on
wings (on the Wind page on the Environment data form), then instead air lift and drag loads are calculated and
applied, using the same formulae and coefficients, but using the air density, velocity and incidence angle.
- When the wing is partially submerged, OrcaFlex calculates what proportion of the wing rectangle area is below
the instantaneous water surface, i.e. its 'proportion wet' PW. OrcaFlex then calculates the water lift and drag
loads as if the wing was fully submerged, but then scales them by PW before they are applied. In addition, if you
have selected to include wind loads on wings, then OrcaFlex also calculates the air lift and drag loads (as if the
wing was not submerged) and scales them by 1-PW, i.e. the 'proportion dry', before they are applied. When this
happens, therefore, both water and air lift and drag loads are applied, each appropriately scaled. The wing lift,
drag and moment results then report the water loads whenever the wing is more than half submerged and the
air loads whenever it is less than half submerged.
Wings do not have any mass, added mass or buoyancy associated with them. Therefore any mass, added mass or
buoyancy due to wings should be added into the properties specified for the buoy itself.
The drag force on a wing is the force applied in the direction of relative flow. The lift force is the force at 90° to that
direction. The moment represents the moment (about the wing centre) that arises due to the fact that the centre of
pressure may not be at the wing centre. These loads are applied at the wing centre and are specified by giving lift,
drag and moment coefficients as a function of the incidence angle α between the relative velocity vector (flow
velocity relative to wing) and the wing plane.
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Wy
Wx
Span
Chord
Wz Principal
Wing Axis
Flow Velocity V
(relative to wing)
o
+ve lift
-ve lift
W
Leading
edge

Figure: Wing Model
Each wing has its own set of local wing axes, with origin W at the wing centre and axes Wx, Wy and Wz.
- Wy is normal to the wing surface and points towards the positive side of the wing, i.e. the side towards which
positive lift forces act.
- Wx and Wz are in the plane of the wing. The wing is therefore a rectangle in the Wxz plane, centred on W.
- Wz is the principal axis of the wing. It is the axis about which the wing can easily be pitched, by adjusting the
wing gamma angle.
- Wx is in the plane of the wing, normal to the axis Wz, so that (Wx,Wy,Wz) form a right-hand triad.
- We normally choose Wz and Wx so that Wx is towards the leading edge of the wing. With this arrangement,
increasing the wing gamma angle moves the leading edge in the direction of positive lift.
We refer to the wing's length in the Wz direction as its span and its width in the Wx direction as its chord.
If the wing is not completely submerged, then the forces and moments applied by OrcaFlex are scaled down
according to the proportion of the wing area that is below the surface. However, note that the true effects of
breaking surface, for instance planing and slamming, are much more complex than this and are not modelled.
ó.9.2 Common Data
All types of 6D Buoy use a local buoy axes coordinate system. The origin of the buoy axes can any point chosen by
the user, but the buoy axes directions should be in the directions of the principle axes of structural inertia of the
buoy – see Mass Moments of Inertia below.
Name
Used to refer to the 6D Buoy.
Type
Three types of buoy are available: Lumped Buoys, Spar Buoys and Towed Fish. The following data items are
common to all types.
Connection
A 6D Buoy can either be Free, Fixed or connected to a Vessel, óD Buoy or a Line (provided that line includes
torsion).
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- If the buoy is Free then it is free to move in response to wave loads, attached lines etc. In this case the buoy's
Initial Position and Attitude are specified relative to global axes.
- If the buoy is Fixed then it cannot move. Its Initial Position and Attitude are specified relative to global axes.
- If the buoy is connected to a Vessel, óD Buoy or a Line, then it is rigidly connected to that object and so moves
and rotates with it. All resulting forces and moments on the buoy are transmitted to the object. In this case the
buoy's Initial Position and Attitude are specified relative to the object to which it is connected.
Initial Position and Attitude
Specifies the initial position of the buoy origin and the buoy initial orientation.
If the buoy is Free or Fixed then its initial position is specified by giving the X, Y and Z coordinates of the buoy
origin B, relative to the global axes. And its initial orientation is specified by giving 3 angles Rotation 1, Rotation 2,
Rotation 3, which are successive rotations that define the orientation of the buoy axes Bxyz, relative to global axes,
as follows. First align the buoy with global axes, so that Bxyz are in the same directions as GXYZ. Then apply
Rotation 1 about Bx (=GX), followed by Rotation 2 about the new By direction, and finally Rotation 3 about the new
(and final) Bz direction.
If a Free buoy is not included in the static analysis then this initial position is taken to be the static position of the
buoy. If the buoy is included in the static analysis, then this initial position is used as an initial estimate of the buoy
position and the static analysis will move and rotate the buoy from this position until an equilibrium position is
found. See Degrees of Freedom Included in Static Analysis.
If the buoy is connected to a Line, then the Initial Position and Attitude specify where on the line it is connected, and
with what orientation, as follows:
- The Initial Position z-coordinate specifies the arc length at which the buoy should be connected to the line. The
buoy will be connected to the nearest node to that arc length. This arc length may be measured relative to either
End A or End B as specified by the user.
- The buoy will be connected to that node, but with an offset relative to that node's axes that is given by (x, y, 0).
- The buoy orientation relative to the node axes is specified by the Initial Attitude angles.
Degrees of Freedom Included in Static Analysis
Determines which degrees of freedom are calculated by the static analysis. This data item only applies to Free buoys
and it can be set to one of:
- None: the buoy position and orientation are not calculated by the static analysis – they are simply set to the
initial position and orientation specified on the buoy data form.
- X,Y,Z: the buoy position is calculated by the static analysis, but its orientation is simply set to the initial
orientation set on the buoy data form.
- All: the buoy position and orientation are calculated by the static analysis.
Normally this data item should be set to All so that the static analysis calculates the true equilibrium position and
orientation of the buoy. However it is sometimes useful to fix the buoy position or orientation, for example if the
static analysis is unable to find the equilibrium position or orientation.
Mass
Mass or weight in air.
Mass Moments of Inertia
The solid moments of inertia of the buoy, about the local x, y and z buoy axes directions through its centre of mass.
Note: These moments of inertia are the diagonal terms in the structural inertia matrix about the
specified centre of mass. The off-diagonal terms are taken to be zero, so the buoy axes should be
chosen to be in the principle directions of inertia about the centre of mass (or at least be close to
those directions).
Centre of Mass
The centre of mass of the buoy, relative to the buoy origin. The weight force, mass and moments of inertia are
applied at this point.
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Bulk Modulus
Specifies the compressibility of the buoy. If the buoy is not significantly compressible, then the Bulk Modulus can be
set to Infinity, which means 'incompressible'. See Buoyancy Variation for details.
Seabed Friction Coefficient
OrcaFlex applies Coulomb friction between the buoy and the seabed. The friction force applied never exceeds μR
where R is the seabed reaction force and μ is the friction coefficient.
See Friction Theory for further details of the friction model used.
Note: The friction coefficient for contact with elastic solids is specified on the Solid Friction Coefficients
data form.
Total Contact Area
Used to determine contact forces when the buoy comes in to contact with the seabed and with elastic solids. If a
value of '~' is specified then OrcaFlex calculates a default value for total contact area based on the buoy geometry.
See Contact Forces for details.
Specifying a value of zero allows you to disable contact for the buoy.
ó.9.3 Applied Loads
You can apply to the buoy external Global Loads that do not rotate if the buoy rotates. These are specified by giving
the components of Applied Force and Applied Moment relative to global axes. These components can be constant,
vary with simulation time or be given by an external function. If the buoy rotates then the loads do not rotate with it.
In addition, you can specify external Local Loads that do rotate with the buoy. These are specified by giving the
components of Applied Force and Applied Moment relative to buoy axes. Again these components can be constant,
vary with simulation time or be given by an external function. If the buoy rotates then the loads do rotate with it.
These are suitable for modelling thrusters, for example.
In both cases the Point of Application of the load is specified by giving its x,y,z coordinates relative to buoy axes.
ó.9.4 Wing Data
6D buoys can have a number of wings attached, each having its own data and type.
Name
Used to refer to the wing.
Span
The length of the wing, in the local Wz direction.
Cbord
The width of the wing, in the local Wx direction.
Centre of Wing
The position of the wing origin, relative to buoy axes. The wing is drawn is drawn as a simple rectangle centred on
this origin, the rectangle's dimensions being the specified Chord and Span.
Note that this origin is the point at which the relative velocity is calculated and at which the resulting wing lift and
drag forces are applied. It should therefore normally be at the centre of pressure, which may not be at the centre of
area (even though OrcaFlex draws the wing as being centred at this point).
Urientation
The orientation of the wing is specified by giving 3 angles – azimuth, declination and gamma – relative to the buoy
axes. The angles can be fixed, or can vary with simulation time, or can vary and be given by an external function.
The angles define the orientation of the local wing axes relative to the buoy axes as follows:
- Start with the wing axes Wxyz aligned with the buoy axes Bxyz and then rotate Wxyz about Bz by the azimuth
angle. This leaves Wz aligned with Bz but Wx now points in the direction towards which the declination is to be
made.
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- Now rotate by the declination angle about the new direction of Wy. This declines Wz down into its final
direction, i.e. Wz now points along the direction whose azimuth and declination angles are as specified.
- Finally rotate by the gamma angle about this final Wz direction. This is a rotation about the principal wing axis,
so it allows you to adjust the pitch of the wing.
For each of these rotations, positive angles mean clockwise rotation and negative angles mean anti-clockwise
rotation, when looked at along the axis of rotation.
When setting these orientation angles, it is easiest to first set the azimuth and declination values to give the desired
Wz-direction. This is the direction of the axis about which the wing pitch is set. Then set gamma to give the correct
pitch of the wing. This process is best done with the Draw Local Axes option set on (see the View menu or the
Tools | Preferences menu) since the wing axes are then visible on the 3D view and you can check that the resulting
orientation is correct.
Wing Type
Determines the properties of the wing. You can define a number of wing types – click the "Wing Types" button to
access the wing types data form.
ó.9.5 Wing Type Data
6D buoys can have a number of wings attached, each having its own data and type.
Name
Used to refer to the wing type.
Wing Type Properties
The properties of each wing type are specified by giving a table of lift, drag and moment coefficients as a function of
the incidence angle of the flow relative to the wing.
A 'Graph' button is provided, which displays a graph of the 3 coefficients so that you can visually check your data.
Incidence Angle
The incidence angle is the angle, α, that the relative flow vector makes to the wing surface. This equals 90° minus the
angle between Wy and the relative flow vector.
The incidence angle is always in the range -90° to +90°, where positive values mean that the flow is towards the
positive side of the wing (i.e. hitting the negative side) and negative values mean that the flow is towards the
negative side of the wing (i.e. hitting the positive side).
The incidence angles in the table must be given in strictly increasing order and the table must cover the full range of
incidence angles, so the first and last angle in the table are set to -90° and +90° and cannot be changed. Linear
interpolation is used to obtain coefficients over the continuous range of angles.
Note: The wing lift, drag and moment are assumed to depend only on the incidence angle, not on the
angle of attack in the wing plane. OrcaFlex will therefore use the same lift, drag and moment
coefficients for flow (with the same incidence angle) onto the front, the side or the back of the wing,
even though your data may only apply over a limited range of in-plane attack angles. You can
check that the angle of attack in the wing plane stays within the range of your data by examining
the Beta angle result variable.
Lift, Drag and Moment Coefficients
These define the hydrodynamic and aerodynamic loads applied to the wing. Aerodynamic loads are only applied if
the Include wind loads on 6D Buoy Wings option is enabled in the Environment data.
The lift coefficient Cl(α) defines the lift force applied to the wing, as a function of incidence angle α. The lift
coefficients can be positive or negative and the lift force is given by:
Lift Force = P ½.Cl(α).ρ.A.V
2

where
P is the proportion wet or proportion dry as appropriate.
ρ is the fluid density,
A is the area of wing that is inside the fluid and
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V is the relative flow velocity at the wing centre.
The lift force is applied at the wing centre, along the line that is at 90° to the relative flow vector and in the plane of
that vector and Wy. For α = ±90° this line is ill-defined and the lift coefficient must be zero. Positive lift coefficients
mean lift pushing the wing towards its positive side (the +ve Wy side).
The drag force is defined by the drag coefficient Cd(α) using the formula:
Drag Force = P ½.Cd(α).ρ.A.V
2

The drag coefficient cannot be negative, so the drag force is always in the relative flow direction.
The moment coefficient Cm(α) defines a moment that is applied to the wing. This moment represents the fact that
the position of the centre of pressure may depend on the incidence angle α.
The moment coefficients can be positive or negative and the moment is given by:
Moment = P ½.Cm(α).ρ.A.V
2
.Chord
This moment is applied about the line that is in the wing plane and is at 90° to the relative flow vector. For α = ±90°
this line is ill-defined and the moment coefficient must be zero. Positive moment coefficients mean that the moment
is trying to turn the wing to bring Wy to point along the relative flow direction. Negative moment coefficients mean
the moment tries to turn the wing the opposite way.
Pen
This controls which pen is used to draw a Wing which uses this Wing Type. If it is set to Use Buoy's pen then the 6D
Buoy pen will be used. If it is set to Use tbis pen then the specified pen is used.
Sbaded Drawing
By default, for shaded 3D Views, wings are drawn as plates with the specified span and chord.
Alternatively the object can be represented by an imported 3D model by specifying the Sbaded Drawing File. This
must be a Direct X format file, usually with the .x file extension. If you use a relative path then the path will be taken
as relative to the folder containing the OrcaFlex file.
The Browse button allows you to specify the Shaded Drawing File quickly and also provides quick access to the
Orcina sample drawings via the Navigate to Urcina sample drawings button.
The Use Culling option is normally selected since it can provide a useful performance benefit. However, in order to
work it requires that the triangles defined in the .x file have their outward facing directions defined correctly. In the
unusual situation where the outward facing directions are not defined correctly then the .x file will not display
correctly. If this happens then typically sections of the model will be missing when drawn by OrcaFlex. Disabling the
Use Culling option resolves this problem.
Draw Size is provided to allow you to scale the drawing. All directions are scaled equally to arrange that the longest
side in the drawing is drawn to the specified Draw Size. This longest side is calculated by first fitting the smallest
possible cuboid around the vertices of the shaded drawing (these are defined in the .x file). This cuboid is aligned
with the shaded drawing's local axes. Then the length of the longest side of this cuboid is found.
Specify a value of '~' to display the drawing using the absolute coordinates as specified in the .x file.
Note: If you use a value of '~' for Draw Size then OrcaFlex uses the coordinates in the .x file directly. If
these coordinates use a different length units system from your OrcaFlex model then you should
specify the units used in the .x file by including an auxiliary file called AdditionalInformation.txt.
Examples of this can be found in the sample shaded drawings provided by Orcina.
Sbaded Drawing Urigin is provided because the shaded drawing and the wing may have different origins. The
Shaded Drawing Origin defines the origin of the shaded drawing with respect to the wing's local axis system.
Similarly Sbaded Drawing Urientation allows you to reorient the shaded drawing to match the wing's axis system.
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ó.9.ó Lumped Buoy Properties

pitch
roll
z (heave)
y (sway)
x (surge)
B
(B=buoy origin)
yaw
Vertices

Figure: Lumped Buoy
A Lumped Buoy is specified relative to its own local frame of reference Bxyz. The Centre of Mass is specified
relative to Bxyz.
The forces and moments are calculated as follows (ρ is water density, g is acceleration due to gravity). Each degree
of freedom is calculated independently.
Ceometry
Volume is the total volume of the buoy, with its centre at the Centre of Volume, defined relative to the local buoy
axes Bxyz.
Heigbt is the buoy vertical dimension, assumed equally spaced about the centre of volume. Height is assumed to be
independent of buoy rotation.
The Heigbt is used for two main purposes:
- To calculate the contact area used to calculate forces of contact with shapes and the seabed.
- To calculate the ProportionWet, which is used to scale the hydrostatic and hydrodynamic forces and to
determine the centre of wetted volume, which is the point at which they are applied.
Damping
Hydrodynamic damping forces and moments may be applied to the buoy. These are loads that are directly
proportional to the relative velocity, or angular velocity, of the sea past the buoy. For each of the local buoy axes
directions, you specify the magnitude of the Unit Force that is applied when the relative velocity is
1 length unit/second. OrcaFlex then scales these magnitudes according to the actual relative velocity and applies the
resulting force or moment. Similarly you can specify a Unit Moment that is applied when the relative angular
velocity is 1 radian/second.
Drag
Hydrodynamic drag forces and moments may be applied to the buoy. These are loads that are proportional to the
square of the relative velocity, or angular velocity, of the sea past the buoy.
The drag force properties are specified by giving, for each of the local buoy axes directions, the Drag Area that is
subject to drag loading in that direction and the corresponding Drag Coefficient.
Drag moment properties are specified in a similar way, except that instead of specifying a drag area you must
specify a Moment of Area.
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Note: Drag Area Moment is the 3rd absolute moment of drag area about the axis. Separate Cd values are
given for force and moment calculations.
Fluid Inertia
Fluid inertia properties are those that are proportional to the acceleration of the sea and the buoy. These
accelerations have two main effects. Firstly, they result in forces and moments being applied to the buoy – these are
referred to as the fluid acceleration loads. Secondly, the buoy experiences an increase in inertia – this is known as
the added mass.
Full details of the calculation are presented in the Lumped Buoy Added Mass, Damping and Drag topic.
The fluid inertia properties can be specified either by providing the Diagonal values or Full matrices.
Fluid Inertia specified by diagonal values
These properties are specified separately for translational and rotational motions and also separately for each local
axis direction.
The translational fluid inertia properties of the buoy are specified, for each of the local buoy axis directions, by
giving a reference Hydrodynamic Mass together with the two inertia coefficients, Ca and Cm. The translational Cm
values can be set to '~' to mean 1 + Ca.
The translational Hydrodynamic Mass values can be set to '~', meaning equal to the fully submerged displaced
mass.(= volume x water density). This is often a convenient reference mass to use.
Fluid Inertia specified by full matrices
The added mass and fluid inertia properties are specified as full 6x6 symmetric matrices. The added mass matrix is
simply added in to the buoy's virtual mass matrix. The fluid inertia matrix is multiplied by the instantaneous fluid
acceleration vector to produce the fluid acceleration loads.
The units of the added mass and fluid inertia matrices are as follows, where M, L and T indicate the units of mass,
length and time:
- The upper-left 3x3 block of cells has units M.
- The upper-right and lower-left 3x3 blocks have units M.L.
- The lower-right 3x3 block of cells has units M.L
2
.
ó.9.7 Lumped Buoy Drawing Data
Vertices and Edges
This defines a "wire frame" representation of the buoy. The wire frame representation of the buoy is used to draw
the buoy. It is also used to calculate the interaction of the buoy with shapes and the seabed. See Contact Forces for
details.
The vertices are specified by giving their coordinates with respect to buoy axes Bxyz, and the edges are specified by
giving the vertex numbers of the vertices they connect.
Edge diameter {used only for sbaded drawing]
For shaded graphics views, by default, the Lumped Buoy is drawn using a solid, filled-in shape based on the vertices
and edges. As an alternative you can use the vertices and edges to define a frame like structure. If the edge diameter
is '~' then that edge will be used to build a filled in shape, otherwise that edge is drawn as a cylinder with the
specified diameter.
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Figure: Wire frames witb different edge diameter. A value of '~' is used for tbe wire frame on tbe left
and a value of 1m is used for tbe wire frame on tbe rigbt.
ó.9.8 Spar Buoy and Towed Fisb Properties
The figure below shows the geometry of a Spar Buoy. The buoy is specified relative to its own local frame of
reference Bxyz. The Centre of Mass is specified relative to Bxyz.
A Spar Buoy is modelled as a series of co-axial cylinders mounted end to end along the local z-axis. The geometry of
a Towed Fisb is identical except that the buoy axis is aligned with the x-axis of the buoy.
The cylinders are numbered from the top downwards. So in the tables on the buoy data form the cylinder at the base
of the stack (lowest x or z) appears at the bottom of the table.
If you are modelling a CALM or SPAR buoy then see also Modelling a Surface-Piercing Buoy.
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Buoy Axis
Stack Base Position
Cylinder 1 Length
Cylinder 1 OD
pitch
z (heave)
y (sway)
x (surge)
B
(B=buoy origin)
yaw
roll

Figure: Spar Buoy
Ceometry
The shape of a Spar Buoy or Towed Fisb is specified by the following data on the Ceometry page on the buoy data
form.
Stack Base Centre Position
The centre of the base of the stack, relative to buoy axes.
Cylinders: Uuter Diameter, Inner Diameter and Lengtb
The diameters of the cylinder and its length measured along the axis.
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These parameters define the buoy geometry from which buoyancy forces and moments are determined. When the
buoy pierces the water surface, OrcaFlex allows for the angle of intersection between the sea surface and the buoy
axis when calculating the immersed volume and centre of immersed volume, and includes the appropriate
contributions to static stability.
If the inner diameter is greater than zero then the cylinder is actually a hollow cylindrical pipe. The internal region
of the cylinder contains sea water if the buoy is submerged. In this case then the contained water contributes to the
buoy's inertia. These inertial effects are only included in directions normal to the buoy.
The remaining parameters determine the hydrodynamic loads acting on each cylinder. Loads are calculated for each
cylinder individually, then summed to obtain the total load on the buoy.
Hydrodynamic Loads
See the Added Mass and Damping and Drag pages on the buoy data form.
ó.9.9 Spar Buoy and Towed Fisb Added Mass and Damping
There is a choice of how to model these first order effects, on the Added Mass and Damping page of the spar buoy
data form. They can either be specified by giving added mass and damping values for each cylinder, or else by giving
RAOs and matrices for the whole buoy.
Values for Eacb Cylinder
With this option, the added mass and damping effects are calculated separately for each cylinder using Morison's
Equation.
Added Mass
Translational added mass effects are calculated using the displaced mass as the reference mass for each cylinder.
Separate added mass coefficients are given for flow normal (x and y directions) and axial (z direction) to the
cylinder.
Rotational added inertia is specified directly (so no reference inertia is involved). Separate values can be given for
rotation about the cylinder axis and normal to that axis.
See Spar Buoy Theory.
Damping Forces and Moments
Damping forces and moments are the hydrodynamic loads that are proportional to fluid velocity (angular velocity
for moments) relative to the cylinder. They are specified by giving the Unit Damping Force and Unit Damping
Moment for the normal and axial directions. These specify the force and moment that the cylinder will experience, in
that direction, when the relative fluid velocity (angular velocity for moments) in that direction is 1 unit. See
Damping Forces and Moments for details.
RAUs and Matrices for Buoy
In this option the linear hydrodynamic effects are specified by giving wave force and moment RAOs, and added mass
and damping matrices. Normally this data would come from a separate program, such as a diffraction program.
Note: This option is only appropriate for circularly-symmetric spar buoys whose axis undergoes only
small oscillations about vertical. It was developed primarily for CALM buoys with diameter in the
range 5m to 15m. It is therefore not available for towed fish.
Warning: The RAOs and added mass and damping matrices specified must apply to the mean position of the
buoy. They are not modified to account for any variations in buoy attitude or immersion, so this
option is only suitable for buoys that undergo small oscillations about their mean position.
RAU, Added Mass and Damping Urigin
This specifies the coordinates, with respect to buoy axes, of the point on the buoy at which the RAOs and added
mass and damping matrices are applied. This means that:
- The RAOs are applied to the wave conditions at this point to give the wave loads, which are then applied at this
point.
- The damping matrix is multiplied by the current velocity relative to the buoy at this point to give the damping
load, which is applied at this point.
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- The added mass matrix is applied at this point.
Wave Force and Moment RAUs
The RAOs are specified in a table giving the amplitudes and phases of the surge force, heave force and pitch moment
RAOs, as a function of wave angular frequency. RAOs must be specified for both of the limiting cases, i.e. for long and
short waves, and for at least one other frequency.
The RAOs must be specified using the following Orcina conventions. The force and moment amplitudes must be the
forces and moments that are applied at the buoy origin when a unit amplitude wave is applied. The phases must be
lags, in degrees, from the time the wave crest passes the buoy origin until the maximum positive force or moment
occurs.
Added Mass and Damping Matrices
In reality the added mass and damping matrices are frequency-dependent, but in OrcaFlex you can only enter the
matrices for one frequency. You should give the values for the principal frequency of excitation expected.
The added mass and damping matrices are 6 x 6 symmetric matrices, so only the cells on and above the leading
diagonal are editable. The cells below the leading diagonal are non-editable and always equal the corresponding cell
values above the diagonal.
The units of the added mass and damping matrices are as follows, where M, L and T indicate the units of mass,
length and time:
- Added mass matrix. The upper-left 3x3 block of cells has units M. The upper-right and lower-left 3x3 blocks
have units M.L. The lower-right 3x3 block of cells has units M.L
2
.
- Damping matrix. The upper-left 3x3 block of cells has units F/(L/T). The upper-right 3x3 block has units
F/(rad/T). The lower-left 3x3 block of cells has units (F.L)/(L/T). The lower-right 3x3 block of cells has units
(F.L)/(rad/T).
Because the buoy is assumed to be axi-symmetric these matrices should both have the following axi-symmetric
form:
|
|
|
|
|
|
|
|
.
|

\
|
÷
÷
e
d b
d b
c
b a
b a
0 0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0
0 0 0 0

OrcaFlex warns at simulation time if the matrices are not of this form.
ó.9.10 Spar Buoy and Towed Fisb Drag
Munk Moment Coefficient
Slender bodies in near-axial flow experience a destabilising moment called the Munk moment. This effect can be
modelled by specifying a non-zero Munk moment coefficient.
Drag Forces and Moments
Drag loads are the hydrodynamic loads that are proportional to the square of fluid velocity relative to the cylinder.
For details of the drag load formulae see Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Theory. For information when modelling a
SPAR or CALM buoy see Modelling a Surface-Piercing Buoy.
The drag forces are calculated on each cylinder using the "cross flow" assumption. That is, the relative velocity of the
sea past the cylinder is split into its normal and axial components and these components are used, together with the
specified drag areas and coefficients, to calculate the normal and axial components of the drag force.
The drag forces are specified by giving separate Drag Area and Drag Coefficient values for flow in the normal
direction (local x and y directions) and in the axial direction (local z direction). The Drag Area is a reference area
that is multiplied by the Drag Coefficient in the drag force formula. You can therefore use any positive Drag Area that
suits your need, but you then need to give a Drag Coefficient that corresponds to that specified reference area.
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The Drag moments are specified and calculated in a similar way to the drag forces, except that the reference drag
area is replaced by a reference Area Moment. This and the Drag Coefficient are multiplied together in the drag
moment formula, so again you can use any positive Area Moment that suits your need, providing you then specify a
Drag Coefficient that corresponds to the specified Area Moment.
There are two alternative methods that you can adopt when specifying the drag data. The first method is to set the
OrcaFlex data to get best possible match with real measured results for the buoy (e.g. from model tests or full scale
measurements). This is the most accurate method, and we recommend it for CALM and discus buoys – see Modelling
a Surface-Piercing Buoy for details. Because the Drag Area and Drag Coefficient data are simply multiplied together,
you can calibrate the model to the real results by fixing one of these two data items and then adjusting the other. For
example, you could set the axial Drag Coefficient to 1 and adjust the axial Drag Area until the heave response decay
rate in the OrcaFlex model best matches the model test results. Or, you could set the axial Drag Area to a fixed value
(e.g. 1 or some appropriate reference area) and then adjust the axial Drag Coefficient until the heave response decay
rate in OrcaFlex best matches the model test results.
The second method is to set the drag data using theoretical values or given in the literature. It is less accurate but
can be used if you cannot get any real buoy results against which to calibrate. To use this method, set the data as
follows.
Set the Drag Areas to the projected surface area that is exposed to drag in that direction and then set the Drag Force
Coefficients based on values given in the literature (see Barltrop & Adams, 1991, Hoerner,1965 and DNV-RP-C205).
Note that the drag area specified should be the total projected area exposed to drag when the buoy is fully
submerged, since OrcaFlex allows for the proportion wet in the drag force formula. For a simple cylinder of
diameter D and length L the total projected drag area is D.L for the normal direction and (π.D
2
)/4 for the axial
direction, but if the buoy has attachments that will experience drag then their areas must also be included.
Set the Drag Area Moments to the 3rd absolute moments of projected area exposed to drag in the direction
concerned; see Drag Area Moments for details. And then set the Drag Moment Coefficients based on values given in
the literature.
ó.9.11 Spar Buoy and Towed Fisb Drawing
There are two alternative methods of drawing the Spar Buoy and Towed Fish cylinders:
1. Draw square cylinders. If this option is selected then each cylinder is drawn as a square-based cuboid. OrcaFlex
automatically generates the vertices and edges. There are eight vertices per cylinder and the square base has a
side length equal to the diameter of the actual circular cylinder.
2. Draw circular cylinders. With this option selected the circular cylinders are drawn as such. You can specify pens
for the outside and inside of the cylinders. In addition you specify how many lines are drawn. Increasing this
number makes the buoy drawing more realistic but increases the time taken to draw the buoy.
Notes: The selected drawing method only affects the way the object is drawn. It does not affect
calculations in any way.
The vertices of the square-based cuboids are used for calculation of any contact with the seabed or
shapes. This applies even if you choose for presentation purposes to draw circular cylinders.
ó.9.12 Sbaded Drawing
By default, for shaded 3D Views, Spar Buoys and Towed Fish are drawn as solid objects using the specified cylinder
geometry. Lumped Buoys are drawn using the wire frame data.
The wire frame drawing data comprises vertices and edges, but OrcaFlex needs a solid surface for the shaded
graphics representation. OrcaFlex uses the following procedure to generate this surface from the wire frame
vertices and edges.
First any edges with specified diameters (i.e. diameters not equal to '~') are drawn as cylinders. This allows you to
use such edges to visualise parts of the structure that are not solid, e.g. crane boom latticework. These edges are
now handled and are excluded from the remainder of the procedure.
The remaining edges are used to partition the vertices into sets of connected vertices. Two vertices are deemed to
be connected if there exists a path of edges between the two vertices.
Finally, for each set of connected vertices, the smallest convex hull enclosing the set is drawn.
This algorithm does not always generate the shaded drawings that you might expect. Consider the following two
wire frame vessels. When drawn in wire frame mode they look the same, but in shaded mode they differ.
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Figure: Wire Frame and Sbaded Drawing
For the green vessel the superstructure and the hull share vertices and so all vertices are connected. This results in a
single convex hull for all vertices being drawn. In the red vessel, the superstructure and hull do not share vertices
and so there are two distinct sets of connected vertices. This results in two separate convex hulls and a better
representation.
Alternatively the object can be represented by an imported 3D model by specifying the Sbaded Drawing File. This
must be a Direct X format file, usually with the .x file extension. If you use a relative path then the path will be taken
as relative to the folder containing the OrcaFlex file.
The Browse button allows you to specify the Shaded Drawing File quickly and also provides quick access to the
Orcina sample drawings via the Navigate to Urcina sample drawings button.
The Use Culling option is normally selected since it can provide a useful performance benefit. However, in order to
work it requires that the triangles defined in the .x file have their outward facing directions defined correctly. In the
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unusual situation where the outward facing directions are not defined correctly then the .x file will not display
correctly. If this happens then typically sections of the model will be missing when drawn by OrcaFlex. Disabling the
Use Culling option resolves this problem.
Draw Size is provided to allow you to scale the drawing. All directions are scaled equally to arrange that the longest
side in the drawing is drawn to the specified Draw Size. This longest side is calculated by first fitting the smallest
possible cuboid around the vertices of the shaded drawing (these are defined in the .x file). This cuboid is aligned
with the shaded drawing's local axes. Then the length of the longest side of this cuboid is found.
Specify a value of '~' to display the drawing using the absolute coordinates as specified in the .x file.
Note: If you use a value of '~' for Draw Size then OrcaFlex uses the coordinates in the .x file directly. If
these coordinates use a different length units system from your OrcaFlex model then you should
specify the units used in the .x file by including an auxiliary file called AdditionalInformation.txt.
Examples of this can be found in the sample shaded drawings provided by Orcina.
Sbaded Drawing Urigin is provided because the shaded drawing and the buoy may have different origins. The
Shaded Drawing Origin defines the origin of the shaded drawing with respect to the buoy's local axis system.
Similarly Sbaded Drawing Urientation allows you to reorient the shaded drawing to match the buoy's axis system.
ó.9.13 Utber uses
6D Buoys are frequently used for non-standard purposes. For example they can be used to connect Lines together.
Sometimes they are used as frame of reference objects where the properties are provided by various other objects
(usually single segment Lines) connected to the 6D Buoy.
For such uses the 6D Buoy needs negligible structural and hydrodynamic properties. Because this is such a common
thing to do we have provided a facility on the 6D Buoy data form to set up appropriate properties. Clicking on the
Cive Buoy negligible properties button has the following effects:
- Buoy Type will be set as Lumped Buoy.
- Mass will be set to a negligible value.
- Height will not be modified since it cannot be set to zero. Because other properties are set to zero its value is not
significant.
- All other Lumped Buoy properties are set to zero.
- Any existing Wing, Applied Load and Drawing data is not modified.
ó.9.14 External Functions
Parameters
This data item specifies the External Function Parameters, a free form multi-line text field which is passed to any
external function used by the Environment.
ó.9.15 Properties Report
The 6D Buoy properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Weigbt in air
The force due to gravity acting on the buoy's mass.
Displacement
The weight of water displaced by the buoy's volume. The reported value uses the water density at the sea surface.
Weigbt in water
Equals Weight in air - Displacement.
Volume
The volume of the buoy.
Centre of volume
Reported with respect to the buoy frame of reference.
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x-mass radius of gyration, y-mass radius of gyration, z-mass radius of gyration
Equals √ (Mass Moment of Inertia / Mass).
Total contact area
Reports the Total contact area data. If a value of '~' is set on the data form then the value reported here is the default
value calculated by OrcaFlex.
Number of vertices
The number of vertices in the wire frame drawing. Contact for 6D Buoys is calculated at each of these vertices.
Contact area per vertex
Equals Total contact area / Number of vertices.
Statics force accuracy, Statics moment accuracy
These are only reported if the buoy is included in statics.
The static analysis searches for an equilibrium position for the buoy – that is a position for which the resultant force
and moment on the buoy is zero. We refer to the resultant force and moment as the out of balance load. Because
computers have limited numerical precision the static analysis cannot always find a configuration where the out of
balance load is exactly zero. OrcaFlex accepts a position as a static equilibrium position if the largest out of balance
load component is less than the statics accuracy.
The Statics force accuracy equals Tolerance * buoy typical force and the Statics moment accuracy equals Tolerance *
buoy typical moment. The buoy typical force and moment are based on the weight in air, the height of the buoy and
the forces and moments applied by connected objects.
Reducing the Tolerance value will give a more accurate static equilibrium position, but will take more iterations.
OrcaFlex may not be able to achieve the Tolerance specified if it is too small, since the computer has limited
numerical precision.
Note: The statics accuracies change during the static analysis because the forces and moments applied
by connected objects vary with the position of the buoy. The statics accuracies reported in Reset
state may be quite different from those used for the final equilibrium position and should be
treated as rough approximations to the true statics accuracies.
ó.9.1ó Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
óD Buoy Results
For 6D Buoys the available variables are:
X, Y and Z
The position of a user specified point P on the buoy, relative to global axes. The point P is specified in buoy local
coordinates. If P=(0,0,0) then the global X, Y and Z coordinates of the buoy origin are reported.
Rotation 1, Rotation 2 and Rotation 3
Define the orientation of the buoy relative to global axes. They are 3 successive rotations that take the global axes
directions to the buoy axes directions. See Initial Position and Attitude for the definition of these angles.
Rotation 2 is in the range -90° to +90°. Range jump suppression is applied to Rotation 1 and Rotation 3 (so values
outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
Azimutb, Declination
The azimuth and declination of the local z axis.
Velocity, CX-Velocity, CY-Velocity, CZ-Velocity
The magnitude and components of the velocity of the buoy, relative to global axes. These results are reported at a
user specified point P on the buoy. The point P is specified in buoy local coordinates.
Angular Velocity, x-Angular Velocity, y-Angular Velocity, z-Angular Velocity
The magnitude and components of the angular velocity of the buoy, relative to buoy axes.
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Acceleration, CX-Acceleration, CY-Acceleration, CZ-Acceleration
The magnitude and components of the acceleration of the buoy, relative to global axes. These results are reported at
a user specified point P on the buoy. The point P is specified in buoy local coordinates.
Acceleration {incl. g], x-Acceleration {incl. g], y-Acceleration {incl. g], z-Acceleration {incl. g]
The magnitude and components (with respect to buoy axes) of the vector a - g where a is the acceleration of the
buoy and g is the acceleration due to gravity, a vector pointing vertically downwards. These results are reported at a
user specified point P on the buoy. The point P is specified in buoy local coordinates.
These results can be used to compare against accelerometer readings.
Angular Acceleration, x-Angular Acceleration, y-Angular Acceleration, z-Angular Acceleration
The magnitude and components of the angular acceleration of the buoy, relative to buoy axes.
Sea Surface Z
The global Z coordinate of the sea surface directly above the instantaneous position of the buoy origin.
Dry Lengtb
The length of buoy above the water surface, measured along the buoy z axis, calculated as follows:
- For a Lumped Buoy, this is calculated by assuming that the z-extent of a Lumped Buoy is ½Height either side of
its centre of volume.
- For a Spar Buoy it is the sum of the dry lengths of each of its cylinders, where the dry length of an individual
cylinder is calculated as:
(cylinder length) × (cylinder volume above surface) / (cylinder total volume).
Force, Moment
Lx-Force, Ly-Force, Lz-Force, Lx-Moment, Ly-Moment, Lz-Moment,
Cx-Force, Cy-Force, Cz-Force, Cx-Moment, Cy-Moment, Cz-Moment
These results are not available for buoys that are connected to other objects – you can instead use the Connection
Force and Connection Moment results.
These results are the total force and moment applied to the buoy. Force and Moment report the magnitudes of the
loads. The Lx, Ly and Lz results report the components of the force and moment in the local axes directions. The Gx,
Gy and Gz results report the components of the force and moment in the global axes directions.
Connection Force, Connection Moment
Connection x-Force, Connection y-Force, Connection z-Force
Connection x-Moment, Connection y-Moment, Connection z-Moment
These connection load results are only available for buoys that are connected to other objects. They report the total
force and moment applied to the buoy by the object to which it is connected.
Connection Force and Connection Moment report the magnitudes of the connection loads. The other results
report the components of the connection force and moment in the buoy axes directions.
These connection force and moment results include the inertial load on the buoy due to any acceleration of the
object to which it is attached. This means that these results can be used for sea fastening calculations, by using a 6D
buoy to model the object to be fastened and then attaching it to a vessel. The connection force and moment include
the weight of the buoy and the inertial loads due to the vessel acceleration. Note that if the vessel motion is specified
by a time history then the time history interpolation method used is important since it affects the calculation of
vessel acceleration and hence affects the inertial loads.
Wing Results
If the 6D buoy has wings attached then for each wing the following results are available.
Wing X, Wing Y, Wing Z
The position of the wing origin, relative to global axes.
Wing Azimutb, Declination and Camma
The orientation angles of the wing, relative to the buoy.
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Lift, Drag, Moment
The lift force, drag force and drag moment applied to the wing.
The lift force is applied at 90° to the relative flow direction. Positive values mean a force trying to push the wing
towards its positive side, negative values towards its negative side.
The drag force is applied in the relative flow direction and is always positive.
The drag moment is applied about the line that is in the wing plane and at 90° to the relative flow direction. Positive
values are moments trying to turn the wing to bring the wing y-axis Wy to point along the relative flow direction;
negative values are moments trying to turn the wing the opposite way.
Note: When the wing is less than half submerged, and you have included wind loads on wings, then the
lift force, drag force and moment reported are the air loads. Otherwise they are the water loads.
Incidence Angle
The angle, α, that the relative flow vector makes with the plane of the wing, in the range -90° to +90°. Positive values
mean that the flow is towards the positive side of the wing (i.e. hitting the negative side) and negative values mean
that the flow is towards the negative side of the wing (i.e. hitting the positive side).
The value reported is with respect to the principal fluid affecting the wing.
Beta Angle
The angle of the relative flow direction, measured in the wing plane. More specifically, it is the angle between wing
Wx axis and the projection of the relative flow vector onto the wing plane, measured positive towards Wz. Zero beta
angle means that this projection is in the Wx direction, 90° means it is along Wz and -90° means it is along the
negative Wz direction.
The value reported is with respect to the principal fluid affecting the wing.
Range jump suppression is applied to the Beta Angle (so values outside the range -360° to +360° might be reported).
ó.9.17 Buoy Hydrodynamics
3D and Lumped 6D buoys are generalised objects for which no geometry is defined in the data other than a height:
This is used for proportioning hydrodynamic properties when the object is partially immersed, and for drawing a
3D buoy.
Since the geometry of the object is undefined, it is necessary to define properties such as inertias, drag areas, added
masses, etc. explicitly as data items. This can be a difficult task, especially where a 6D buoy is used to represent a
complex shape such as a midwater arch of the sort used to support a flexible riser system.
We cannot give a simple step-by-step procedure for this task since the geometry of different objects can be widely
different. As an example, the hydrodynamic properties in 6 degrees of freedom are derived for a rectangular box.
This gives a general indication of the way in which the problem should be approached. If a 3D buoy is used, the
rotational properties are not used.
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ó.9.18 Hydrodynamic Properties of a Rectangular Box
O
X Y
Z
x y
z
O is the centre of the box

Figure: Box Ceometry
Drag areas
In X direction: Ax = y . z
In Y direction: Ay = x . z
In Z direction: Az = x . y
Drag Coefficients for Translational Motions
These are obtained from ESDU 71016, Figure 1 which gives data for drag of isolated rectangular blocks with one
face normal to the flow. The dimensions of the block are
a in the flow direction
b and c normal to the flow direction (c>b).
The figure plots drag coefficient, Cx against (a/b) for (c/b) from 1 to infinity (2D flow). Cx is in the range 0.9 to 2.75
for blocks with square corners.
Note: ESDU 71016 uses Cd for the force in the flow direction; Cx for the force normal to the face. For
present purposes the two are identical.
Drag Properties for Rotational Motions
There is no standard data source. As an approximation, we assume that the drag force contribution from an
elementary area dA is given by
dF = ½.ρ.V
2
.Cd.dA
where Cd is assumed to be the same for all points on the surface.
Note: This is not strictly correct. ESDU 71016 gives pressure distributions for sample blocks in uniform
flow which show that the pressure is greatest at the centre and least at the edges. However we do
not allow for this here.
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dz
Z
O
z
X

Figure: Integration for rotational drag properties
Consider the box rotating about OX. The areas Ay and Az will attract drag forces which will result in moments about
OX. For the area Ay, consider an elementary strip as shown:
For an angular velocity ω about OX, the drag force on the strip is
dF = ½.ρ.(ωz).|ωz|.Cd.x.dz
and the moment of this force about OX is
dM = ½.ρ.(ωz).|ωz|.Cd.x.dz.z = (½.ρ.ω.|ω|.Cd).x.z
3
.dz
Total moment is obtained by integration. Because of the V.|V| form of the drag force, simple integration from -Z/2 to
+Z/2 gives M = 0. We therefore integrate from 0 to Z/2 and multiply the answer by 2. The result is
M = (½.ρ.ω.|ω|.Cd).(x.z
4
/32)
OrcaFlex calculates the drag moment by
M = (½.ρ. ω.|ω| .Cdm).(AM)
so we set
Cdm = Cd, AM = x.z
4
/32.
This is the drag moment contribution about OX from the Ay area. There is a similar contribution from the Az area.
Since Cd is generally different for the 2 areas, it is convenient to calculate the sum of (Cd.AM) for both, set AM equal
to this value and set Cd equal to 1.
Added Mass
OrcaFlex requires the added mass and inertia contributions to the mass matrix, plus the hydrodynamic masses and
inertias to be used for computation of wave forces. For each degree of freedom (3 translations, 3 rotations), 3 data
items are required. These are Hydrodynamic Mass in tonnes (or Inertia in tonne.m
2
); and coefficients Ca and Cm.
Added mass is then defined as Hydrodynamic Mass . Ca; and wave force is defined as (Hydrodynamic mass . Cm)
multiplied by the water particle acceleration, aw.
On the usual assumptions intrinsic in the use of Morison's Equation (that the body is small by comparison with the
wavelength), the wave force is given by (Δ + AM) . aw, where Δ is body displacement and AM is added mass. OrcaFlex
calculates the wave force as Cm . HM . aw where HM is the Hydrodynamic Mass given in the data.
For translational motions, set HM = Δ for all degrees of freedom. Then Ca = AM/Δ, Cm = 1 + Ca. For rotational
motions, set HI = ΔI, the moment of inertia of the displaced mass. Then Ca = AI/ΔI, Cm = 1 + Ca where AI is the added
inertia (i.e. the rotational analogue of added mass).
Translational Motion
DNV-RP-C205, Table 6.2, gives added mass data for a square section prism accelerating along its axis. The square
section is of side a, prism length is b, and data are given for b/a = 1.0 and over. The reference volume is the volume
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364
of the body which is the same definition we have adopted. We can therefore use the calculated Ca without further
adjustment.
Consider the X direction: Area normal to flow = Ax.
For a square of the same area, a = √(Ax).
Length in flow direction = x.
Hence b/a = x/√(Ax).
Hence Ca can be obtained from DNV-RP-C205 by interpolation, and then Cm = 1 + Ca.
If b/a < 1.0 this approach fails and we use the data given in DNV-RP-C205 for rectangular flat plates. If y > z, aspect
ratio of the plate = y/z. Hence CA from DNV-RP-C205 by interpolation. The reference volume in this case is that of a
cylinder of diameter z, length y. Hence:
Added mass = CA.ρ.(π/4).y.z
2
= AMx, say
and then Ca = AMx/Δ and Cm = 1 + Ca.
Note: If y < z, then aspect ratio = z/y and reference volume = CA . ρ. (π/4) . z . y
2
.
Rotational Motion
DNV-RP-C205 gives no data for hydrodynamic inertia of rotating bodies. The only data for 3D solids we know of is
for spheroids (Newman 1977). Fig 4.8 of Newman 1977 gives the added inertia for coefficient for spheroids of
varying aspect ratio referred to the moment of inertia of the displaced mass. We assume that the same coefficient
applies to the moment of inertia of the displaced mass of the rectangular block.
Rotation about X
ΔI = Δ(Y
2
+ Z
2
)/12
Added inertia:
Using data for spheroids from Newman 1977 :
Length in flow direction = 2a = x, so a = x/2.
Equivalent radius normal to flow, b, is given by πb
2
= yz, so b = √(y . z/π).
Hence Ca from Newman 1977.
For bJa < 1.ó
Ca can be read from the upper figure where the value is referred to the moment of inertia of the displaced mass. In
this case no further adjustment is required.
For bJa > 1.ó
The coefficient CA is read from the lower graph in which the reference volume is the sphere of radius b. In this case:
Ca = CA . (2 . b
3
)/(a . (a
2
+b
2
))
In either case, Cm = 1 + Ca.
ó.9.19 Modelling a Surface-Piercing Buoy
Surface-piercing buoys, such as CALM buoys, SPAR buoys or meteorological discus buoys, can be modelled in
OrcaFlex using the Spar Buoy version of a 6D Buoy. Despite its name, the OrcaFlex Spar Buoy can be used to model
any axi-symmetric body.
Spar Buoys have many data items available. This enables you to model a wide range of effects, but it also makes
setting up a Spar Buoy model more complicated. To help in this task we describe, in this section, the approach we
adopt for setting up an OrcaFlex model of a surface-piercing buoy.
1. Create a simple model containing |ust a Spar Buoy
Start by modelling the free-floating behaviour of the buoy, without any lines attached. This allows us to get the basic
behaviour of the buoy correct, before complications such as moorings etc. are introduced. We therefore set up an
OrcaFlex model containing just a Spar Buoy and with no waves or current.
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Set the buoy's Applied Load to zero. This data allows you to apply extra forces and moments to the buoy, in addition
to those from any lines that you attach to it. You can use this later to model the wind force on the upper part of the
buoy. To do this you will need to know the projected area (i.e. the area exposed to wind) of the pipe work etc. in the
upper part of the buoy.
Set the buoy's Munk Moment Coefficient to zero. This data item is only used for slender bodies in near axial fully-
submerged flow only.
Set the number of wings to zero. Wings are normally only relevant for towed fish.
Finally, we start by setting all the buoy's drag and added mass data to zero. We will set up the actual values later.
2. Set up tbe geometry data
The Spar Buoy has its own local buoy axes coordinate system. You can choose the origin for these buoy axes, but the
buoy z-axis direction must be chosen to be parallel to the axis of the buoy, and the buoy x- and y-axes should be
parallel to the other two principle directions of structural inertia. You also need to specify the position of the centre
of gravity, relative to the local coordinate system. The buoy manufacturer should supply this information.
Set the Stack Base Position. This is the position of the centre of the bottom of the buoy, relative to the buoy axes. The
Stack Base Position therefore has z-coordinate = -h, where h is the distance axially from the bottom of the buoy to
the buoy origin.
Now set up a number of cylinders, and their lengths and diameters, in order to model the shape of the buoy. To do
this you need the dimensions of the various parts of the buoy. The buoy manufacturer should supply this
information. Set the cylinder lengths and diameters so that you get the correct length and volume for each section.
You can represent tapered sections by a series of short cylinders with diameters changing progressively from one to
the next.
We recommend using a number of short cylinders, even where the buoy diameter is constant over a long length.
Using more cylinders gives more accurate results, though at the cost of reduced computation speed.
You can check your geometry data by zooming in on the buoy in a 3D View window. Turn on the local axes so that
you can check that the buoy origin is in the correct place.
The Bulk Modulus data item is not relevant to a surface-piercing buoy, so it can be left at the default value of Infinity.
3. Set up tbe mass and inertia data
Now set the Mass and Moments of Inertia of the buoy. The buoy manufacturer should supply this information.
The mass equals the weight of the buoy in air. The moments of inertia are those of the buoy (in air) about its centre
of gravity, as follows:
- Iz = the moment of inertia about the buoy axis.
- Ix and Iy = the moments of inertia about axes perpendicular to the buoy axis, through the centre of gravity.
Usually it is sufficient to assume that Ix = Iy.
If you cannot obtain data for the moments of inertia, then they can be approximately calculated from a knowledge of
the masses of the various parts of the buoy, and approximately how that mass is distributed.
4. Cbeck tbat tbe buoy floats at tbe correct draugbt
Set the Initial Position and Initial Attitude of the buoy so that the buoy is in its expected equilibrium position. The
initial position is the position of the buoy local origin, and therefore of the CG, and you can calculate this point's
expected equilibrium position from the buoy draught, which should be available from the buoy manufacturer.
The Initial Attitude defines the initial orientation of the buoy. Set it to (0,0,0), which orients the buoy with its axis
vertical and the buoy local x,y axes aligned with the global X,Y axes.
Set the Degrees of freedom included in statics to None and then run the simulation and look at the time history of
buoy Z. If the data has been set up correctly then the buoy should have stayed basically in its initial position and
attitude, with perhaps just small oscillations about that position.
If the buoy Z has oscillated significantly then the model's equilibrium position does not match the expected
equilibrium position. This means that something is wrong in the data and this needs tracing and correcting before
you proceed. You can estimate the model's equilibrium position by looking at the mean Z position in the time
history.
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5. Cbeck tbat tbe buoy is stable
Now check that the buoy is stable - i.e. that if it is pitched over to one side and released then it rights itself. In the
Initial Attitude data, set the Rotation 2 value to say 10° and run the simulation. If the buoy falls over then there is
something wrong with the CG position or the volume distribution, and this must be corrected.
Note: The buoy on its own may not be intended to be stable, e.g. stability may only be achieved when the
moorings are attached. In this case you will need to model the moorings in order to check stability.
ó. Set tbe Added Mass data
The x and y added mass coefficients can be set to 1.0, which is the standard value for a cylinder in flow normal to its
axis.
Added mass in the z direction should be estimated for the buoy from the published literature (DNV rules, Barltrop &
Adams, 1991) and distributed between the immersed cylinders (remember that hydrodynamic loads are only
applied to the immersed parts of the model).
Ideally, this data should then be checked by comparing the heave and pitch natural periods of the model against
values obtained from model tests or full scale measurements, and adjustments made as necessary.
7. Set tbe drag and damping data
The best approach depends on whether the buoy is a SPAR whose length is great by comparison with its diameter,
or a surface-following Discus shape such as an oceanographic buoy. CALM buoys are usually closer to the Discus
configuration, often with a damping skirt which is submerged at normal draft.
Spar Buoys
Set the Drag Areas for each cylinder to the areas, of the part of the buoy which that cylinder represents, that are
exposed to fluid drag in the direction concerned. Note that you should specify the areas that are exposed to drag
when the buoy is fully submerged. OrcaFlex automatically calculates the proportion of the cylinder that is
submerged and scales all the fluid loads on the cylinder using that 'proportion wet' as a factor. So if a cylinder is not
submerged, or is partially submerged, then the drag loads will be scaled accordingly for you.
For a simple cylinder, of diameter D and length L, the normal drag area is D.L since that is the area of a cylinder
when viewed normal to its axis. And the axial drag area is (π.D
2
)/4 since that is the area of the cylinder when viewed
along its axis. However, where a cylinder is representing part of the buoy that is not in reality a simple cylinder (for
example, we may represent the pipework and turntable on the deck of a SPAR buoy as an equivalent cylinder) or
where the cylinder is shielded from drag by adjacent structure, then the drag areas should be set accordingly. For
example, if the cylinder is shielded below by another cylinder of diameter d (less than D) then the axial drag area
should be reduced by (π.d
2
)/4 to model that shielding.
Set the Drag Force Coefficient based on values given in the literature. For short simple cylinders fully immersed
there are standard values given in the literature (see Barltrop & Adams, 1991, Hoerner,1965 and DNV-RP-C205).
However, the standard book values do not include energy absorption by wave-making at the free surface. Strictly,
this is a linear term (forces directly proportional to velocity), but in OrcaFlex this must be done by adjusting the
drag coefficients of one or more cylinders.
The Unit Damping Force data can be set to zero. If you later find that the buoy shows persistent small amplitude
oscillations then you may wish to set a non-zero value to damp this out.
Set the Drag Area Moments, Drag Moment Coefficients and Unit Damping Moment data. For the normal direction
these data items can usually all be left as zero, providing you have subdivided the buoy into short enough cylinders
(since these terms involve a high power of L, the cylinder length). For the axial direction these data items model the
yaw drag and damping effects, so if this is important to you then set them to model the two main sources, namely
skin friction on the cylinder surface and form drag on any protuberances on the buoy.
Having set up this drag and damping data, it is well worth now running simulations of heave and pitch oscillations
and checking that their rate of decay is reasonable and consistent with any real data you have available.
Discus and CALM Buoys
These types of buoy require different treatment since they have little axial extension. Instead it is their radial
extension that most affects the buoy's pitch properties. As a result the axial discretisation of the buoy into cylinders
does not capture the important effects. For example the pitch damping is often mostly due to radiation damping, i.e.
surface wave generation; this is especially important for a CALM buoy with a skirt.
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To deal with this OrcaFlex offers the rotational drag and damping data, but there is little information in the
literature to help in setting up this data. We therefore strongly recommend that you set the data up by calibration
against real test results from model or full scale tests. The easiest information to work with are time history graphs
of the buoy heave and pitch in still water, starting from a displaced position. This will give the heave and pitch
natural periods and the rates of decay and you can adjust the buoy's drag and damping data until you get a good
match with this measured behaviour.
Here is the approach we use:
- For the normal direction, set the Drag Area, Drag Force Coefficient and Unit Damping Force as described for
Spar buoys above.
- Then set the axial Unit Damping Force to zero and run a simulation that matches the conditions that existed in
the real heave time history results, i.e. with the same initial Z displacement.
- Then adjust the axial Drag Area and Drag Force Coefficients until the OrcaFlex buoy's Z time history matches the
real time history. These two data items are simply multiplied together when they are used to calculate the drag
force, so you can give one of the two data items a fixed positive value (e.g. 1) and then adjust the other.
- The match will probably be poor in the later parts of the time history, where the heave amplitude has decayed
to small values. This is because the square law drag term is insignificant at small amplitude and instead the
damping force takes over. Therefore we now adjust the axial Unit Damping Force to further improve the match
where the amplitude is small. You may find that this disturbs the match in the large amplitude part, in which
case you might need to readjust the drag data.
- For the axial direction, set the Drag Area Moment, Drag Moment Coefficient and Unit Damping Moment as
described for Spar buoys above.
- Then set the normal Drag Area Moment, Drag Moment Coefficient and Unit Damping Moment to best match the
real pitch time history, in a similar way to that used above to match the heave time history.
ó.10 3D BUUYS
OrcaFlex 3D Buoys are simplified point elements with only 3 degrees of freedom: X, Y and Z. They do not rotate, but
remain aligned with the global axes. They therefore do not have rotational properties and moments on the buoy are
ignored. They should therefore be used only where these limitations are unimportant.
3D Buoys are able to float part-submerged at the surface, and may also be used independently, with no lines
attached. Although they are much less sophisticated than 6D Buoys, 3D Buoys are easier to use and are convenient
for modelling buoys at line junctions etc.
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368
B
y
z
x
height/2
height/2
Buoy Axes
always aligned
with Global Axes

Figure: 3D Buoy
ó.10.1 Data
Name
Used to refer to the 3D Buoy.
Included in Static Analysis
Determines whether the equilibrium position of the buoy is calculated by the static analysis. See Buoy Degrees of
Freedom Included in Static Analysis.
Initial Position
Specifies the initial position for the buoy origin as coordinates relative to the global axes. If the buoy is not included
in the static analysis then this initial position is taken to be the static position of the buoy. If the buoy is included in
the static analysis, then this initial position is used as an initial estimate of the buoy position and the statics
calculation will move the buoy from this position iteratively until an equilibrium position is found. See Buoy Degrees
of Freedom Included in Static Analysis.
Mass
Mass or weight in air.
Volume
Used to calculate buoyancy and added mass.
Bulk Modulus
Specifies the compressibility of the buoy. If the buoy is not significantly compressible, then the Bulk Modulus can be
set to Infinity, which means "incompressible". See Buoyancy Variation.
Heigbt
Used to model floating buoys correctly, where the buoyancy, drag etc. vary according to the depth of immersion. It
also determines the height used to draw the buoy. The Height is the vertical distance over which the fluid-related
forces change from zero to full force as the buoy pierces the surface. It is taken to be symmetrical about the buoy's
origin.
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Seabed Friction Coefficient
OrcaFlex applies Coulomb friction between the buoy and the seabed. The friction force applied never exceeds μR
where R is the seabed reaction force and μ is the friction coefficient.
See Friction Theory for further details of the friction model used.
Note: The friction coefficient for contact with elastic solids is specified on the Solid Friction Coefficients
data form.
Contact Area
Used to determine contact forces when the buoy comes in to contact with the seabed and with elastic solids. If a
value of '~' is specified then OrcaFlex uses Volume / Height.
Specifying a value of zero allows you to disable contact for the buoy.
Drag
Drag forces are applied in each of the global axes directions GX, GY and GZ. For each direction you must specify a
Drag Coefficient and Drag Area.
Added Mass
You must specify the added mass coefficient Ca for each global axis direction. The added mass is set to be Ca
multiplied by the mass of water currently displaced. The inertia coefficient, Cm, is set automatically to equal 1+Ca.
ó.10.2 Properties Report
The 3D Buoy properties report is available from the popup-menu on the data form. It reports the following:
Weigbt in air
The force due to gravity acting on the buoy's mass.
Displacement
The weight of water displaced by the buoy's volume. The reported value uses the water density at the sea surface.
Weigbt in water
Equals Weight in air - Displacement.
Statics force accuracy, Statics moment accuracy
These are only reported if the buoy is included in statics.
The static analysis searches for an equilibrium position for the buoy – that is a position for which the resultant force
on the buoy is zero. We refer to the resultant force as the out of balance load. Because computers have limited
numerical precision the static analysis cannot always find a configuration where the out of balance load is exactly
zero. OrcaFlex accepts a position as a static equilibrium position if the largest out of balance load component is less
than the statics accuracy.
The Statics force accuracy equals Tolerance * buoy typical force. The buoy typical force is based on the weight in air,
the displacement and the forces applied by connected objects.
Reducing the Tolerance value will give a more accurate static equilibrium position, but will take more iterations.
OrcaFlex may not be able to achieve the Tolerance specified if it is too small, since the computer has limited
numerical precision.
Note: The statics accuracies change during the static analysis because the forces applied by connected
objects vary with the position of the buoy. The statics accuracies reported in Reset state may be
quite different from those used for the final equilibrium position and should be treated as rough
approximations to the true statics accuracies.
ó.10.3 Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
For 3D Buoys the available variables are:
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X,Y and Z
Positions of the buoy origin, relative to global axes.
Velocity, X Velocity, Y Velocity, Z Velocity
Acceleration, X Acceleration, Y Acceleration, Z Acceleration
The magnitude and components (with respect to global axes) of the velocity and acceleration of the buoy.
Surface Z
The global Z coordinate of the sea surface directly above the instantaneous position of the buoy origin.
Dry Lengtb
Length of buoy above the water surface, measured along the buoy z axis. For this purpose, the z-extent of a 3D buoy
is assumed to be Height/2 either side of its volume centre.
ó.11 WINCHES
Wincbes provide a way of modelling constant tension or constant speed winches. They connect two (or more)
points in the model by a winch wire, fed from a winch inertia (typically representing a winch drum) that is then
driven by a winch drive (typically representing the winch hydraulics that drive the drum).
As well as connecting its two end points, the winch wire may, optionally, pass via intermediate points, in which case
it does so as if passing over a small frictionless pulley at that point. The wire tension either side of the intermediate
point is then applied to that point; if the point is offset on the object involved then this also gives rise to an applied
moment.
Winch Drive Winch Inertia
Drive
Force
f
t t
t
Wire
Tension
t
Winch may pull via
intermediate objects
Winch wire

Figure: Wincb Model
Two types of winch are available in OrcaFlex:
Simple Wincbes
Simple Winches model perfect constant tension or constant speed performance and are easiest to use. It is assumed
that the winch inertia is negligible and the winch drive is perfect, so that it always exactly achieves the requested
constant tension or constant speed. Because of these assumptions, no data needs to be given for the winch inertia or
winch drive.
Detailed Wincbes
Detailed Winches include modelling of the performance of the winch drive system – its deadband, stiffness, inertia,
damping and drag – but therefore require more data and are harder to set up.
We recommend using Simple winches unless you know the characteristics of the winch drive system and believe
that its performance significantly differs from the constant tension or speed ideal. In particular, Simple winches are
appropriate:
- At the early design stage, when the type of winch to be used has not yet been decided.
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- If the duty is such that the winch drive will give near to perfect constant tension or constant speed performance.
- If the winch drive data are not available.
Wincb Control
OrcaFlex winches allow quite complex offshore operations to be modelled. The winch drive can be operated in
either of two modes:
Lengtb Control Mode
For modelling constant speed winches. The winch wire is paid out or hauled in at a velocity specified in the data.
Force Control Mode
For modelling tension controlled winches. Since such winches are usually hydraulic devices whose performance
deviates quite seriously from the target tension ideal, OrcaFlex Winches provides facilities for modelling winch
deadband, damping and drag forces (force decrements proportional to velocity and velocity
2
respectively) and
winch stiffness effects such as those caused by hydraulic accumulators.
The winch can be switched between these two modes at predetermined times during the simulation and the
constant velocity or target tension can also be varied.
ó.11.1 Data
Name
Used to refer to the Winch.
Type
May be either Simple or Detailed. See Winches.
Connect to Ub|ect and Ub|ect Relative Position
The (mass-less) winch wire connects at least two objects, one at each end of the winch wire.
If more than 2 are specified then the winch wire passes from the first connection point to the last via the
intermediate points specified. When intermediate connections are specified, the winch wire slides freely through
these intermediate points as if passing via small friction-less pulleys mounted there. The winch wire tension on
either side then pulls on the intermediate points, so applying forces and moments (if the points are offset) to the
objects concerned.
Each connection is defined by specifying the object connected and the object-relative position of the connection
point.
For connecting to a Line, the object-relative z coordinate specifies the arc length to the connection point. The z
coordinate specifies the arc length along the Line and this arc length may be measured relative to either End A or
End B as specified by the user. The connection point is attached to the nearest node. If torsion is not modelled then
the x,y coordinates are ignored and the connection point is at the centreline of the Line. If torsion is modelled then
the x,y coordinates allow you to offset the connection from the centreline.
For Fixed connections the object-relative coordinates given are the global coordinates of the point.
For connecting to an Ancbor, the object-relative x,y coordinates given are the global X,Y coordinates of the anchor
point, and the z-coordinate is the distance of the anchor above (positive) or below (negative) the seabed at that X,Y
position.
For connecting to other objects, the coordinates of the connection point are given relative to the object local frame
of reference.
Release at Start of Stage
The winch wire can be released at the start of a given stage of the simulation, by setting this number to the stage
number required. Once released the winch no longer applies any forces to the objects it connects. If no release is
required, then set this item to '~'.
ó.11.2 Wire Properties
Wire Stiffness
Elastic stiffness of the winch wire.
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Wire Damping
Material damping value for the winch wire.
Note: The mass of the winch wire is not modelled.
Wincb Inertia {Detailed Wincbes only]
The inertia of the winch drive, which resists changes in the rate of pay out of haul in of the winch wire if the winch is
in Force Control mode. The Winch Inertia has no effect if the winch is in Lengtb Control mode.
This is a linear, rather than rotational, inertia. To represent the rotational inertia of a winch drum, set the winch
inertia to
l / r
2

where
I = drum rotational inertia,
r = radius at which the wire is fed.
Notes: The winch inertia does not contribute to the mass of any objects to which the winch is attached
and so does not directly resist acceleration of any of the connection points. (Such accelerations are
resisted indirectly, of course, through the changes they cause to the winch wire path length and
hence to the winch wire tension.) To include the true translational inertia of the winch drive, drum
and wire it is necessary to suitably increase the masses of the objects to which it is attached.
Setting the winch inertia to a small value to model a low inertia winch can lead to very short
natural periods for the winch system. These then require very short time steps for the simulation,
slowing the simulation. To avoid this, the winch inertia can be set to zero, rather than to a small
value; the winch system inertia is then not modelled at all, but the short natural periods are then
avoided. See Winch Theory for full details of the algorithm used when the winch inertia is zero.
ó.11.3 Control
Control Type
Can be either By Stage or Wbole Simulation.
When By Stage is selected the winch is controlled on a stage by stage basis. For each stage of the simulation you
choose from the winch control modes. These modes allow you to control the winch payout rate, control the rate of
change of target tension or specify a constant target tension.
Note: The control mode remains fixed for the duration of each stage. Because there is a limit on the
number of stages in an OrcaFlex simulation this can be restrictive.
When Whole Simulation is selected the winch is either tension controlled or length controlled for the whole
simulation. For the tension controlled mode the target tension can be fixed, vary with simulation time or be given by
an external function. Likewise for the length controlled mode the payout rate of unstretched winch wire can be
fixed, vary with simulation time or be given by an external function.
ó.11.4 Control by Stage
Wincb Control for Statics
For the static analysis, the Mode of the winch drive can be set to one of Specified Lengtb or Specified Tension.
Specified Lengtb
The winch drive is locked with the unstretched length of winch wire out, L0, being set to the Value specified. The
winch wire tension t then depends on the stretched length L of the winch wire path.
Specified Tension
The winch drive operates in perfect constant tension mode, the tension t being the Value specified. The unstretched
length out L0 is then set to correspond to this tension.
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Wincb Control for Dynamics
During the simulation the winch is controlled on a stage by stage basis. For each stage the winch control mode can
be set to one of Specified Payout, Specified Payout Rate, Specified Tension, Specified Tension Cbange or
Specified Tension Rate of Cbange.
Specified Payout
The Value specifies the unstretched length of winch wire to be paid out (positive) or hauled in (negative) at a
constant rate during this stage. That is, the Value specifies the total cbange in unstretched length during the stage,
so to keep a constant length set the Value to zero.
Specified Payout Rate
The Value specifies the rate at which the winch wire is to be paid out (positive) or hauled in (negative) during this
stage.
Specified Tension
The Value specifies the target constant tension for this stage.
For Simple winches the winch drive is assumed to always achieve this nominal tension, so the Value is used as the
actual winch wire tension.
For Detailed winches this nominal tension is used as the target tension for the wincb drive, which then applies
drive force to the wincbinertia to try to achieve this target tension. The algorithm for the winch drive force is
designed to model the characteristics of real-world winches that are nominally "constant tension". See Winch
Theory.
Note: Changes of nominal tension are applied instantly at the start of each stage, and this can therefore
apply a shock load which, if large enough, may affect the stability of the simulation.
Specified Tension Cbange
The Value specifies the change in target tension for this stage. That is, the Value specifies the total cbange in
nominal tension during the stage, so to keep at a constant nominal tension set the Value to zero.
The above comments for the Specified Tension control method also apply to this method.
Specified Tension Rate of Cbange
The Value specifies the rate of change in target tension for this stage.
The above comments for the Specified Tension control method also apply to this method.
Note: The Specified Tension Change and Specified Tension Rate of Change modes allow you, for example,
to model a constant tension winch where the tension is determined by an earlier simulation stage.
By specifying a tension change of 0 following a payout stage you can lock the winch at the tension
used at the end of the payout operation.
ó.11.5 Control by Wbole Simulation
Statics Mode
The winch control data for statics is the same as the data specified in the By Stage control type.
Dynamics Mode
The winch is controlled either by Specified Tension or by Specified Payout Rate.
If Specified Tension is set then you must also specify the target tension. This value can be fixed, vary with
simulation time or be given by an external function.
If Specified Payout Rate is set then you must also specify the payout rate of unstretched winch wire. This value can
be fixed, vary with simulation time or be given by an external function.
ó.11.ó Drive Unit
Note: The drive unit data applies to Detailed Winches only
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Wincb Drive
The winch drive controls the winch wire in one of two winch control modes: Lengtb Control mode ("Specified
Length", "Specified Payout" or "Specified Payout Rate") or Force Control mode ("Specified Tension", "Specified
Tension Change" or "Specified Tension Rate of Change").
- Lengtb Control mode is for modelling a constant speed winch. The winch tension then depends simply on the
unstretched length of winch wire out, and the wire properties (Stiffness and Damping).
- Force Control mode is for modelling a (nominally) constant tension winch. Because such winches often deviate
quite seriously from the constant tension ideal, facilities are provided for modelling winch Deadband,
Damping, Drag and Stiffness.
Deadband
A deadband of +/- this value is applied to the winch drive force between hauling in and paying out the winch. See
Winch Theory for full details.
Stiffness
This can be used to model, for example, winch hydraulic accumulators. It is the rate at which the zero-velocity winch
force (the drive force applied when the winch is neither hauling in nor paying out) varies with the total unstretched
length of winch wire paid out. See Winch Theory.
Damping Terms A and B
These terms can be used to model damping in a winch's hydraulic drive system. The winch drive force is taken to
vary with haul-in/payout velocity at rates A and B, respectively. See Winch Theory.
Drag Terms C and D
These terms can be used to model drag in a winch's hydraulic drive system. The winch drive force is taken to vary
with haul-in/payout velocity
2
at rates C and D, respectively. See Winch Theory.
ó.11.7 External Functions
Parameters
This data item specifies the External Function Parameters, a free form multi-line text field which is passed to any
external function used by the Environment.
ó.11.8 Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
For winches the available variables are:
X, Y and Z
The global coordinates of the specified winch connection point.
Tension
The tension in the winch wire.
Lengtb
The unstretched length of winch wire paid out.
Velocity
The rate of pay out of winch wire. Positive value means paying out, negative value means hauling in.
Azimutb and Declination
The azimuth and declination angles of the direction of the winch wire between the final 2 connection points, relative
to the global axes. This direction is measured from the last connection point towards the previous connection point.
Declination is in the range 0° to 180°. Range jump suppression is applied to Azimuth (so values outside the range -
360° to +360° might be reported).
Sea Surface Z
The global Z coordinate of the sea surface directly above the instantaneous position of the winch mount.
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Connection Force, Connection CX-Force, Connection CY-Force, Connection CZ-Force
The magnitude and components relative to global axes of the connection force at the specified winch connection
point. We adopt the convention that the force reported is that applied by the winch to the object to which it is
connected.
ó.12 LINKS
Links are simple spring or spring/damper connections linking two points in the model, for example a node on a line
to a vessel, or a buoy to an anchor. They pull the two points together, or hold them apart, with a force that depends
on their relative positions and velocities.
Links have no mass or hydrodynamic loading and simply apply an equal and opposite force to the two points. They
are useful for modelling items such as wires where the mass and hydrodynamic effects are small and can be
neglected; for example buoy ties can sometimes be modelled using links.
Two types of Link are available:
Tetbers
Simple elastic ties that can take tension but not compression. The unstretched length and stiffness of the
tether are specified. The tether remains slack and does not apply a force if the distance between the ends is
less than the unstretched length.
SpringJDampers
Combined spring and independent damper units. The spring can take both compression and tension and can
have either a linear or a piecewise-linear length-force relationship. The damper velocity-force relationship
can also be either linear or piecewise-linear.
Spring-Damper:
Tether:

Figure: Types of Link
ó.12.1 Data
Name
Used to refer to the Link.
Type
may be either:
- Tetber: a simple elastic tie having linear stiffness and no damping.
- SpringJDamper: a combined spring and independent damper, each of which can be either linear or piecewise-
linear.
Connect to Ub|ect and Ub|ect Relative Position
Specifies the objects to be linked.
For connecting to a Line, the object-relative z coordinate specifies the arc length to the connection point. The z
coordinate specifies the arc length along the Line and this arc length may be measured relative to either End A or
End B as specified by the user. The connection point is attached to the nearest node. If torsion is not modelled then
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the x,y coordinates are ignored and the connection point is at the centreline of the Line. If torsion is modelled then
the x,y coordinates allow you to offset the connection from the centreline.
For Fixed connections the object-relative coordinates given are the global coordinates of the point.
For connecting to an Ancbor, the object-relative x,y coordinates given are the global X,Y coordinates of the anchor
point, and the z-coordinate is the distance of the anchor above (positive) or below (negative) the seabed at that X,Y
position.
For connecting to other objects, the coordinates of the connection point are given relative to the object local frame
of reference.
Release at Start of Stage
The link can be released at the start of a given stage of the simulation, by setting this number to the stage number
required. Once released a link no longer applies any forces to the objects it connects. If no release is required, then
set this item to '~'.
Unstretcbed Lengtb
Is the unstretched length of the Tetber or Spring.
Linear
Both the spring and damper in a SpringJDamper can have either simple linear force characteristics or else a user-
specified piecewise-linear force table.
Stiffness
For a tetber the tension t depends on its strain and stiffness as follows:
t = k.(L-L0)/L0
where
k is the specified Stiffness,
L is the current stretched length between the two ends,
L0 is the specified Unstretcbed Lengtb.
Tethers remain slack and exert no force if L is less than L0.
For a linear spring in a SpringJDamper the tension (positive) or compression (negative) is given by:
t = k.(L-L0)
where
k is the specified Stiffness,
L is the current stretched length between the two ends,
L
0
is the specified Unstretcbed Lengtb.
The linear spring does not go slack if L is less than L0, but instead goes into compression.
Warning: Please note that this is not the same formula as for tethers.
Damping
A linear damper in a SpringJDamper exerts an extra tension of
t = c.(rate of increase of L)
where
c is the specified Damping,
L is the current stretched length between the two ends.
Non-linear force tables
For a non-linear spring (or damper) the force characteristic is specified as a table of tension against length (or
velocity). The table must be arranged in increasing order of length (velocity) and a negative tension indicates
compression. For a passive damper the tensions specified should therefore normally have the same sign as the
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velocities, since otherwise the damper will apply negative damping. For lengths (velocities) between, or outside,
those specified in the table the program will use linear interpolation, or extrapolation, to calculate the tension.
ó.12.2 Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
For links the following variables are available:
Tension
The total tension in the link.
Lengtb
The current stretched length of the link.
Velocity
The rate of increase of the stretched length.
Azimutb and Declination
The azimuth and declination angles, relative to global axes, of the End A to End B direction of the link.
End A X, End A Y, End A Z, End B X, End B Y and End B Z
The global coordinates of the link.
ó.13 SHAPES

Figure: Examples of Block, Cylinder and Curved plate sbapes
Shapes are simple 3 dimensional geometric objects that can be configured in a variety of ways:
1. Elastic solids are used to model physical obstacles,
2. Trapped water are used to model moonpools or other areas where fluid motion is suppressed.
3. Drawing shapes have no physical effect on the model and are just intended for drawing purposes.
You may choose between a number of different basic geometric shapes and several shapes can then be placed
together to defined more complex shapes. The basic shapes available are planes, blocks, cylinders and curved plates.
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Elastic solids
An elastic solid represents a physical barrier to the motion of lines and buoys. It is made of a material of a specified
stiffness and resists penetration by applying a reaction force normal to the nearest surface of the elastic solid and
proportional to the depth of penetration of the object into the elastic solid.
Note: Elastic solids do not resist penetration by Vessels, Links, Winches or other Shapes.
Each elastic solid has an associated stiffness, which determines the rate at which the force applied to an object
increases with the area of contact and depth of penetration into the elastic solid. The stiffness is the force per unit
area of contact per unit depth of penetration.
Contact with elastic solids can model friction. Friction coefficients are specified on the Solid Friction Coefficients
data form. Note that friction for contact with elastic solids is only included during dynamics.
Where an object interacts with more than one elastic solid simultaneously, the force acting on it is the sum of the
individual forces from each elastic solid.
Elastic solids are intended only for modelling the overall limitation on movement that a physical barrier presents;
they are not intended to model an object's interaction with the barrier in detail. For example the calculation of the
contact area and penetration depth are very simplistic and do not allow for the detailed geometric shape of the
object. The value given for Stiffness is therefore not normally important, providing it is high enough to keep
penetration small. On the other hand, although the actual stiffness of real barriers is usually very high, the Stiffness
should not be set too high since this can introduce very short natural periods which in turn require very short
simulation time steps.
Lines only interact with elastic solids by their nodes coming into contact, so elastic solids that are smaller than the
segment length can "slip" between adjacent nodes. The segment length in a line should be therefore be small
compared with the dimensions of any elastic solid with which the line may make contact.
Trapped water
Trapped water can be used to model hydrodynamic shielding – i.e. areas such as moonpools, the inside of spars or
behind breakwaters, where wave and current effects are suppressed.
Inside a trapped water shape the fluid motion is calculated as if the fluid was moving with the shape. So if the
trapped water shape is fixed then no fluid motion occurs in the shape – this could be used to model a breakwater.
But if the shape is connected to a moving vessel, for example, then the trapped water is assumed to move with the
vessel – this could be used to model a moonpool.
Note: Objects ignore any trapped water shapes which are connected to that particular object. If this
wasn't done then if you connected a trapped water shape to a buoy and part of the buoy was in the
trapped water shape then a feedback would occur (the buoy motion determines the motion of the
shape, which in turn would affect the fluid forces on the buoy and hence its motion). Such feedback
is undesirable so the buoy ignores any trapped water shapes that are connected to it.
Drawing sbapes
Drawing shapes have no physical effect on the model. They can be used to draw objects of interest and do not
interact with other objects.
ó.13.1 Data
Name
Used to refer to the shape.
Type
Either Elastic Solid or Trapped Water.
Sbape
Can be one of Block, Cylinder, Curved Plate or Plane.
Connection
Can be Fixed, Anchored or connected to another object (Vessels, 3D Buoys or 6D Buoys).
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Position
Each shape has position data. For blocks it is named Urigin, for cylinders and curved plates it is named End
Position and for planes it is named Point on Plane.
This point is taken as the origin of the shape's local x,y,z axes.
For Fixed connections this is the global position of the point.
For Ancbored connections the object-relative x,y coordinates given are the global X,Y coordinates of the anchor
point, and the z-coordinate is the distance of the anchor above (positive) or below (negative) the seabed at that X,Y
position.
For connections to other objects, the coordinates of the connection point are given relative to the object local frame
of reference.
Pens and Number of Lines
Each surface of the solid is drawn as a wire frame using one the specified pens. To aid visualisation, the Uutside pen
is used if the surface is being viewed from the outside of the solid, and the Inside pen is used if it is being viewed
from the inside.
The Number of Lines determines how many lines are used in the wire frames – a larger value gives a more realistic
picture, but takes a little longer to draw.
Data for Elastic Solids
Normal Stiffness
This is the reaction force that the solid applies per unit depth of penetration per unit area of contact. Stiffness may
be set to zero, giving a solid that is drawn but which has no effect on the other objects in the system.
Sbear Stiffness
The Sbear Stiffness is used by the friction calculation. A value of '~' results in the Normal Stiffness being used.
Damping
The percentage of critical damping for the elastic solid. Damping is always zero when using the implicit integration
scheme.
See Shape Theory for technical details.
ó.13.2 Blocks
Block Position B
x
y
z
y-size
x-size
z-size

A Block shape is a rectangular cuboid, defined by giving:
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Size
This defines the block's dimensions in its local x, y and z directions. With respect to its local axes, the block occupies
the volume x=0 to Size(x), y=0 to Size(y), z=0 to Size(z).
Urientation
This is defined by giving three rotation angles, Rotation 1, 2 and 3, that define its orientation relative to the object to
which the block is attached, or else relative to global axes if it is not attached to another object. For example, if the
block is attached to an object with local axes Lxyz, then the 3 rotations define the orientation of the block axes Bxyz
as follows. First align the block with the local axes of the object to which it is attached, so that Bxyz are in the same
directions as Lxyz. Then apply Rotation 1 about Bx (=Lx), followed by Rotation 2 about the new By direction, and
finally Rotation 2 about the new (and final) Bz direction.
ó.13.3 Cylinders
r
r = Inner Radius
R = Outer Radius
R
End 1 Position
End 2 Position

A cylinder shape is a thick walled hollow pipe defined by giving:
- Inner and Uuter Diameter.
- Lengtb.
- Azimutb and Declination of the axis.
The azimuth and declination define the direction of the axis relative to the local axes of the object to which the end is
connected. For objects that rotate, such as vessels and 6D buoys, the axis direction therefore rotates with the object.
For Fixed or Ancbored ends it is defined relative to global axes.
Cylinders are drawn using circles to represent the end faces and a number of rectangular facets to represent around
the curved surfaces. The number of facets used is the Number of Lines specified. Two gives a very simple wire frame
profile of the cylinder, whilst a very large number gives a pseudo-opaque cylinder at the expense of drawing speed.
If the Inner Diameter is zero then a solid disc is formed.
If the cylinder is an elastic solid then reaction forces are applied:
- Radially inwards if an object comes into contact with the inner curved surface.
- Radially outwards if an object comes into contact with the outer curved surface.
- Normally outwards if an object comes into contact with one of the end faces.
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ó.13.4 Curved Plates

Figure: Some example curved plate sbapes
Curved plate shapes are particularly suited to modelling bellmouths although they are not restricted to this
application. The curved plate shape is similar to the cylinder. It differs in that the radius of the shape can vary
smoothly between the ends. Curved plates can be either filled in or hollow.
Sbape is bollow
If ticked then the shape is hollow and has both inner and outer surfaces. The middle picture above is not hollow
whereas the other two are.
Urientation
This is defined by giving three rotation angles, Azimutb, Declination and Camma, that define its orientation
relative to the object to which the shape is attached, or else relative to global axes if it is not attached to another
object. The Azimuth and Declination values define the direction of the principal axis. The Gamma value specifies
rotation of the shape about its own axis and so is only relevant when the Included Angle of Revolution is not equal to
360°.
Included Angle of Revolution
The curved plate is a solid of revolution. A value of 360° gives a complete revolution as shown in the first 2 pictures
above. Other values can be used to model partial or cut-away curved plates – for example the right-most picture
above has an included angle of 90°.
Tbickness
If the shape is hollow then this data item specifies the wall thickness. This thickness specifies the thickness normal
to the shape's axis or centreline.
Note: You may need to specify an artificially large value for thickness in order to avoid objects passing
through the shape's wall during the static calculation.
Profile
A table specifying the variation of diameter with distance along the shape's axis or centreline. The radius is the
radial distance (i.e. in direction normal to the shape axis) from the axis to the surface. If the shape is hollow then the
profile defines the radius to the inner surface. If the shape is not hollow then the profile defines the radius to the
outer surface. Cubic Bessel interpolation is used to generate a smooth profile.
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ó.13.5 Planes
Direction of
Maximum Slope
Slope
Point on Plane

A plane shape is an infinite plane surface – one side of the plane is outside and the other is inside. The position of
the plane is defined by specifying a Point on Plane through which it passes.
The angle of the plane is specified by giving its (maximum) Slope Angle and Slope Direction, relative to the object
to which it is connected, as follows.
- For a fixed or anchored shape, the Slope Angle is specified by giving the angle of elevation of the line of
maximum slope, relative to the global XY plane (i.e. relative to the horizontal). A Slope Angle of 90° is therefore a
vertical plane. The Slope Direction is specified as the direction of the line of maximum upwards slope, relative to
global axes. For example a plane having a Slope Angle of 30° and a Slope Direction of 90° slopes upwards in the
positive Y direction at 30° to the horizontal.
- For a shape connected to another object, the Slope Angle and Slope Direction are relative to the object's local xy
plane. For example with a Slope Angle of 30° and a Slope Direction of 90°, the plane slopes upwards in the
positive y direction at 30° to the object's local xy plane.
A plane with zero slope angle is therefore parallel to the xy plane of the object to which it is connected, or parallel to
the global XY plane (i.e. horizontal) in the case of a Fixed or Anchored plane.
The 'inside' of a plane is on the negative z side (i.e. below for a Fixed or Anchored plane) if the Slope Angle is in the
range -90° to +90°, and on the positive z side (i.e. above for a Fixed or Anchored plane) otherwise.
Planes are drawn as a rectangular grid, with the specified Number of Lines, using a spacing determined by the view
size. Planes extend to infinity in all directions, but only a part of the infinite plane local to the view centre is shown
on the 3D view.
ó.13.ó Drawing
Wire frame drawing
Representation of shapes in the wire frame drawing mode can be confusing. OrcaFlex does not provide hidden-line
removal so shape objects are displayed by simple wire-frame drawings. You may exercise control over the display
by selecting the number of lines drawn for each object, and the sequence in which they are drawn. For pen details,
see How Objects Are Drawn.
Where it is necessary to keep the display simple you should set Number of Lines to 2 for blocks and cylinders. If the
number of lines is set large for blocks or cylinders they appear as solid objects, although they may take a long time
to draw.
For planes you can control how they are drawn with the Grid Density data item. This is specified in terms of the
length of the scale bar on the 3D view. A density of d means that there are d lines per scale bar length, so higher
density values give a finer grid (but takes longer to draw).
Please note also that the Number of Lines only affects the drawing, and not the calculations (which are correctly
performed with curved geometry). Planes and Blocks are drawn first, and then Cylinders, but otherwise the solids in
the model are drawn in the sequence that they were created. You can sometimes take advantage of this, by defining
background shapes before foreground ones, to obtain a pseudo-hidden line effect. You are encouraged to
experiment, but simplicity is best.
Hint: Although the program provides depth clues to the eye by drawing rear faces in a different colour,
the eye can sometimes be fooled by the picture – try rotating the view back and forth a few times.
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Sbaded Drawing
By default, for shaded 3D Views, shapes are drawn as solid objects using the specified geometry.
Alternatively the object can be represented by an imported 3D model by specifying the Sbaded Drawing File. This
must be a Direct X format file, usually with the .x file extension. If you use a relative path then the path will be taken
as relative to the folder containing the OrcaFlex file.
The Browse button allows you to specify the Shaded Drawing File quickly and also provides quick access to the
Orcina sample drawings via the Navigate to Urcina sample drawings button.
The Use Culling option is normally selected since it can provide a useful performance benefit. However, in order to
work it requires that the triangles defined in the .x file have their outward facing directions defined correctly. In the
unusual situation where the outward facing directions are not defined correctly then the .x file will not display
correctly. If this happens then typically sections of the model will be missing when drawn by OrcaFlex. Disabling the
Use Culling option resolves this problem.
Draw Size is provided to allow you to scale the drawing. All directions are scaled equally to arrange that the longest
side in the drawing is drawn to the specified Draw Size. This longest side is calculated by first fitting the smallest
possible cuboid around the vertices of the shaded drawing (these are defined in the .x file). This cuboid is aligned
with the shaded drawing's local axes. Then the length of the longest side of this cuboid is found.
Specify a value of '~' to display the drawing using the absolute coordinates as specified in the .x file.
Note: If you use a value of '~' for Draw Size then OrcaFlex uses the coordinates in the .x file directly. If
these coordinates use a different length units system from your OrcaFlex model then you should
specify the units used in the .x file by including an auxiliary file called AdditionalInformation.txt.
Examples of this can be found in the sample shaded drawings provided by Orcina.
Sbaded Drawing Urigin is provided because the shaded drawing and the shape may have different origins. The
Shaded Drawing Origin defines the origin of the shaded drawing with respect to the shape's local axis system.
Similarly Sbaded Drawing Urientation allows you to reorient the shaded drawing to match the shape's axis
system.
Sbaded Drawing Plane Translucency {only available for planes]
Controls how translucent the plane appears in the Shaded Graphics mode. A value of 0% gives a solid surface and all
objects behind the surface will not be visible. A value of 100% specifies transparency and leads to a completely see-
through surface.
Note: This data item is not used if an imported 3D model is used to draw the shape.
ó.13.7 Results
For details on how to select results variables see Selecting Variables.
Contact Force,
Contact CX-Force, Contact CY-Force, Contact CZ-Force,
Contact Lx-Force, Contact Ly-Force and Contact Lz-Force
The magnitude and components of the total force applied by an elastic solid to other objects in the model. The
components are reported relative to either global axes (GX, GY, GZ) or local axes (Lx, Ly, Lz).
These variables are only available for elastic solids.
X, Y, Z
The global coordinates of the shape origin.
Velocity, CX-Velocity, CY-Velocity, CZ-Velocity,
Acceleration, CX-Acceleration, CY-Acceleration, CZ-Acceleration
The magnitude and components (with respect to global axes) of the velocity and acceleration of the shape origin.
ó.14 ALL UB)ECTS DATA FURM
The All Objects Data Form allows you to view or edit data for all the objects in the model on a single form. This is
particularly useful for simultaneous viewing or editing of properties of multiple objects. The form can be opened
using the model browser.
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There are two modes of operation: Connections or Utber data.
Connections
The Connections mode allows you to edit connection specific data for all Lines, Links and Winches in the model.
You can choose to filter which object types appear in the list – each object type (Lines, Links or Winches) can be
included or excluded from the list.
Positions and Connections pages
The Positions and Connections pages allow you to view or edit all the connection data. This is the same data as on
the individual data forms and includes the following data items:
- The positions (as Cartesian coordinates) relative to the frame of reference of the object to which the connection
is attached.
- For Links and Winches connected to a line, the reference line end (either End A or End B) for the z coordinate.
- Height above seabed for anchored line ends.
- Connection orientation and stiffnesses for line ends.
- Release stage for line ends.
Polar Coordinates page
The Polar Coordinates page provides a way of viewing or setting the positions of the connections using polar
coordinates, relative to a choice of frames of reference. This facility is useful for cases, for example mooring arrays,
where a series of connections need to be laid out around a circle.
The polar coordinates (R, θ, Z) are those of the connection position relative to the selected polar coordinates frame
of reference (see below). The Cartesian coordinates of the connection, relative to the same reference frame, are
(Rcos(θ), Rsin(θ), Z).
On the other hand, the Object Relative Position data are the Cartesian coordinates of the connection relative to the
frame of reference of the object to which it is connected.
OrcaFlex keeps the two sets of coordinates synchronised, so if you change one then the other is automatically
updated to match. If you change any other data then the Cartesian Object Relative Position coordinates are taken to
be the master data and so left unchanged, and the polar coordinates are updated to match.
You have a quite a lot of flexibility to choose what reference frame you want for the polar coordinates. The reference
frame has its origin at your chosen Reference Urigin and has its axes are parallel to those of your chosen
Reference Axes.
For the reference origin you can choose between:
- The global origin.
- The point on the seabed that is directly below the global origin. This is only available if a connection point is
anchored.
- The origin of the frame of reference of any connected object.
- The position of the other end of the object – available for Lines and Links only.
And for the reference axes directions you can choose between:
- The global axes directions.
- The axes directions of the frame of reference of any connected object.
Example of Using Polar Coordinates
The choices of reference frame for the polar coordinates may seem complex at first sight, but they allow various
useful coordinate transformations to be done easily and accurately. Here is an example.
Consider mooring a spar with an array of 4 lines, each of which has End A connected to the spar and End B
anchored. Suppose you want to place the A ends of the lines so that they are evenly spaced circumferentially around
the spar, all at radius 5m from the spar axis and all 3m below the spar origin. To do this easily, first sort into
Connection order so that all the End A connections are grouped together. Then, for the first line, set the reference
frame origin and axes to be the spar origin and spar axes and set its polar coordinates to be R=5, and Z=-3. You can
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now use copy/paste or fill down to set all the other A ends to the same reference origin, axes and R and Z
coordinates. Finally you can set the θ coordinates for the A ends to 0°, 90°, 180° and 270°.
Similarly, suppose you want the End B connections to be anchored to the seabed, with the anchors again evenly
spaced circumferentially, and with each line spanning 200m horizontally. The easiest reference frame for this is
with the reference origin being End A and the reference axes being the spar axes. The θ coordinates should again be
set to 0°, 90°, 180° and 270° and the R coordinates set to 200m. But this time, to set the vertical positions of the B
ends, it is easier (especially if the seabed is sloping) to go to the Connections page and set Connect To Ub|ect to be
Ancbored and then go to the Positions page and set the Ub|ect Relative Position z coordinate to zero.
Utber data
The Utber data mode presents tables of data for Vessels, Lines, 6D Buoys, 3D Buoys, Links, Winches and Shapes.
The tables are laid out with each row containing related data for a single object. The notable exception is the Line
sections page in which each row contains data for a single section of a Line.
This tabulation allows data for multiple objects to be set in an efficient and coordinated way. The copy/paste or fill
down keyboard shortcuts are particularly useful here. Another useful technique is to build a table of data in Excel
with identical layout of columns and rows. This allows you to make use of Excel's formulae and data handling
facilities to prepare data, and then to paste it into OrcaFlex in a single operation.
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7 MUDAL ANALYSIS
The modal analysis form enables you to calculate and view the undamped natural modes of the whole system, or of
a single line. To open this form, see the Modal Analysis command on the Results menu. Note that the analysis is only
available when the static position of the model has been calculated.
For full details of the calculation, and a discussion of its limitations, see the Modal Analysis theory section.
Performing modal analysis
To perform a modal analysis you need to specify the following:
- What you want to analyse: the whole system or a single line.
- Which modes you want to calculate. You can ask for All modes or a specified range of modes. For large systems
it is much quicker to calculate only a small number of modes – see Modal Analysis Theory for more details.
- Whether you want to calculate the mode shapes or just the natural periods. If you exclude the mode shapes then
the analysis only calculates the natural periods, not the shapes of the natural modes. If you include the mode
shapes then the analysis takes longer.
When you have made your selections click the Calculate button. The modal analysis will then calculate the
undamped natural periods and, if requested, the mode shapes. Each mode is normalised to have largest offset
magnitude equal to 1, i.e. the offsets vectors are scaled so that largest offset vector is a unit vector. The modes are
numbered in order of increasing frequency.
Mode Table
The Table page then displays a spreadsheet giving the results in numerical form. If you do not calculate the mode
shape then the table reports only the periods of the requested natural modes. If you calculate the mode shapes then
the table also gives the shape in the form of the displacements of each degree of freedom. Mode shapes can be
reported with respect to either global axes directions or local axes directions.
If mode shapes are calculated then the table includes the following information:
- Uffset distribution displays a measure of how inline, transverse and axial the mode is. For details see Offset
Distribution below.
- Mode type classifies each mode according to the offset distribution. Transverse means that the transverse
component is more than 90% of the total, Mostly transverse means that it is between 50% and 90%, and
similarly for inline, mostly inline, axial and mostly axial. Mixed means that none of the components are more
than 50% of the total.
Note: The Offset Distribution and Mode Type information is only available for single line analyses where
there is relative flow normal to the line. So, if the line is entirely above the water, or there is no
current defined then this information will not be available.
Mode View
If you requested the mode shapes then the View page displays a 3D view of the system showing one selected mode
shape superimposed on the static position of the system. The current direction is also shown on the view, and you
can control the view angle, zoom etc., as on any 3D view. You may need to zoom out in order to see the system, and
you may need to adjust the view angle to suit the mode that you are viewing. For example an out of plane mode for a
catenary is best viewed by looking along the plane of the catenary.
You can use the mode drop-down list to control which mode is shown on the view. Note that when that drop-down
list has the focus (click it to give it the focus) then you can use the arrow keys to quickly increment or decrement the
mode shape number that is displayed.
The drawing exaggeration value allows you to vary the amplitude of the drawn mode shape. The animate mode
sbape and draw node axes options allow further control of the mode shape drawing.
If the mode shape is being animated then there is a further choice to make, the animation period. If you select the
mode period option then the animation has a cycle period equal to the mode period. However, for modes with
either very long or very short periods, this option can make visualisation of the mode shape quite difficult. The
alternative option, fixed, animates the mode with a 5s cycle period.
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For single line analyses, the offset distribution and mode type for the selected mode is also shown, provided that
there is relative flow normal to the line.
VIV Page
The VIV facilities related to modal analysis are not yet available for lines that have torsion included. These facilities
are also currently only available for single line analyses.
If you requested that mode shapes be calculated then the View page displays a table of information relating to VIV.
Each row of the table refers to a single mode and contains the following information:
- The mode number.
- The mode's period and frequency.
- The mode's offset distribution and mode type.
- Export to SHEAR7 Mds file determines whether or not the mode will be included in the exported SHEAR7 Mds
file.
The filter allows you to restrict the table to show only certain types of mode. For example, you may wish to view
only the transverse modes when considering transverse VIV. The table reports modes in order of increasing mode
number.
Uffset Distribution
For a given mode, let V be the mode offset vector at a given node, let Vi, Vt and Va be V's components in the local
inline, transverse and axial directions and let L be the length of line represented by that node. Then OrcaFlex
calculates the inline, transverse and axial components of the overall mode shape as follows:
Mode shape inline component = Mi = (∑ LVi
2
)
½

Mode shape transverse component = Mt = (∑ LVt
2
)
½

Mode shape axial component = Ma = (∑ LVa
2
)
½

where the summations are over all nodes in the line.
OrcaFlex then reports these 3 mode shape components as percentages of their sum, i.e. the offset distribution values
reported by OrcaFlex are Mi/M, Mt/M and Ma/M where M = Mi + Mt + Ma. These values are only used to provide some
measure of how inline, transverse and axial the mode is.
The root sum of squares formulation used above is the multi-dimensional equivalent of the standard 3D formula |V|
= (Vi
2
+ Vt
2
+ Va
2
)
½
. The scaling by L is there so that the values are independent of the level of discretisation.
Export SHEAR7 Mds File
This button exports a SHEAR7 .Mds file.
7.1 MUDAL ANALYSIS THEURY
A modal analysis calculates the undamped natural modes of a system. These modes are given in decreasing order
of period and are numbered starting from 1.
The analysis calculates the natural modes of the discretised model, not those of the real continuous system.
However the discretised modes are close to the continuous ones and for a mode number the accuracy improves as
more and more elements are used to model the system. For any given level of discretisation the accuracy is better
for the lower modes and progressively worsens as you go to higher and higher modes. The highest numbered modes
are unlikely to be realistic since they are oscillations whose wavelengths are of the same order as the segment
length.
If the system hangs in one of the global axis planes then you can often distinguish whether a mode is in-plane or out-
of-plane by looking at the pattern of zeros in the table of displacements. For example if the system hangs in the XZ
plane then the out-of-plane modes have non-zero Y-displacements but zero (or very small) X- and Z-displacements,
and the in-plane modes have the opposite pattern of zeros.
Uutline Tbeory
Modal analysis is a standard technique that is well-documented in the literature, but here is a brief outline. First
consider a single degree of freedom system consisting of a mass attached to a linear spring. The undamped equation
of motion is:
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Mx''(t) = -Kx(t)
where x(t) is the offset (at time t) from mean position, x''(t) is the acceleration, M is its mass and K is the stiffness of
the spring. Since this analysis neglects any damping the results are referred to as the undamped modes.
The solution of the equation is known to be simple harmonic, i.e. of the form x(t) = a.sin(ωt), where a and ω are
unknowns to be found by solving the equation. Differentiating x(t) gives:
x''(t) = -ω
2
.a.sin(ωt)
so when we substitute into the equation of motion we obtain:
-M.ω
2
.a.sin(ωt) = -K.a.sin(ωt) (1)
which can be rearranged to give:
ω = (K/M)
½
.
This is the angular frequency of the oscillation and so the natural period T is given by:
T = 2π(M/K)
½

For this simple harmonic oscillator there is just a single undamped natural mode, corresponding to the single degree
of freedom. For a continuous riser there are an infinite number of degrees of freedom, and hence an infinite number
of undamped natural modes, but computers work with discretised models with finite numbers of degrees of
freedom.
Consider a discretised line in OrcaFlex with N degrees of freedom. In this situation the above equations still apply,
but they now have to be interpreted as matrix/vector equations where ω and T remain scalars, a, x and x'' become
vectors with N elements, and M and K become N×N matrices.
Equation (1) is an eigen-problem with N solutions, the i
th
solution being ωi and ai, say, where ωi is a scalar and ai is a
vector with N elements. This i
th
solution is called the i
th
natural mode. It is an oscillation of the line in which all the
degrees of freedom oscillate at the same angular frequency ωi. But different degrees of freedom have different
amplitudes, given by the components of ai. This amplitude variation is called the mode's shape.
Eigen-solvers
Two eigen-solvers are used to perform modal analysis. The choice of which to use is made based on the number of
modes extracted, n, and the number of degrees of freedom, N.
If n ≤ N/3 and n ≤ 1000 then an iterative Lanczos algorithm will be used. Otherwise a direct method based on
tridiagonal MATRIX diagonalisation is used. For large problems the iterative Lanczos algorithm is much faster and
requires much less memory and so should be used if at all possible.
One final subtlety concerns the precise definition of n in the above inequalities. The Lanczos algorithm works by
finding the largest (or smallest) eigenvalue first, then the next largest (or smallest) and so on. Consequently if you
ask for modes 5 to 10 then the solver has to find modes 1 to 4 first and so the number of modes extracted, n, is 10.
Seabed friction
The theory outlined above requires that the mass and stiffness matrices are symmetric which is not always the case
in an OrcaFlex model. The most important example of this is the friction model. Friction is a non-conservative effect
and non-conservatism equates to non-symmetric terms in the stiffness matrix. Clearly this presents a problem.
The non-conservatism of the standard OrcaFlex friction model arises when a node is slipping, that is when the
deflection from its friction target position exceeds Dcrit. When performing modal analysis OrcaFlex assumes that
nodes on the seabed are restrained by a linear stiffness effect determined by the seabed's shear stiffness, Ks and the
node's contact area, A. This stiffness term corresponds to the stiffness of a linear spring acting in the plane of the
seabed, connecting the node and its target position, and with a stiffness of KsA.
This has the effect of restraining movement of the nodes on the seabed, in the plane of the seabed which is desirable
for a modal analysis of a system with seabed contact. This modification to the seabed friction model results in a
symmetric, conservative system and hence enables modal analysis to be performed successfully.
Stiffness terms due to fluid loading
As mentioned above, the modal analysis is an undamped analysis which means that damping terms (i.e. those
dependent on x') are neglected. So, for example, the effects of drag loading are neglected in the modal analysis.
However, fluid loads do contribute stiffness terms because perturbations of position and orientation can result in
changes of direction of the fluid load vector. These are stiffness terms, as opposed to damping terms, because they
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arise from displacements even though the magnitude of the loads themselves are dependent on velocities. OrcaFlex
does include these stiffness terms to improve convergence for whole system statics and implicit dynamics
calculations. However, these fluid load terms are neglected in the modal analysis.
Non-linear bend stiffness
Modal analysis inherently assumes linearity of the system under consideration. For non-linear, elastic bend stiffness
the local tangent stiffness is used. For small oscillations about the static configuration, such a system is linear and
modal analysis may be adequately accurate.
For hysteretic bend stiffness the situation is more complex. The local tangent stiffness is, in general, ill-defined
because it can be many-values depending on whether the perturbation increases or decreases curvature. In this
situation OrcaFlex uses an average of the possible stiffness values.
Yet another case to consider is externally calculated bend stiffness. The external function interface provides no
mechanism for specifying the local tangent bend stiffness. Hence OrcaFlex uses the nominal bend stiffness as
provided by the external function.
Clearly the modal analysis will be less accurate for hysteretic and externally calculated bend stiffness than it is for
the other bend stiffness options. However, it is often the case that tension, as opposed to bend stiffness, is the
dominant contribution to lateral stiffness and so the limitations described above are often not significant.
Vessel added mass
When performing a whole system modal analysis with vessel degrees of freedom included, the added mass of a
vessel is usually a significant factor in the analysis. However, if the vessel added mass and damping data is specified
as frequency dependent there is no easy way for the modal analysis to account for this dependency on frequency.
Therefore, for modal analyses, the program neglects added mass when the data is frequency dependent.
In order to perform a more accurate modal analysis you can use the constant option for added mass specification. In
this situation you provide a single added mass matrix which is included in the system wide mass matrix. Because
you can only specify a single added mass matrix you must first assess what modes are of interest and choose
appropriate added mass values. If the added mass varies significantly with mode period, over the range of periods
under consideration, then you may need to perform multiple analyses with different added mass matrices.
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8 FATICUE ANALYSIS
The OrcaFlex fatigue analysis is a post-processor which calculates fatigue damage using a variety of methods.
Damage is then collated and summed for specified load cases and then presented, either as plots or in tabular
fashion.
Damage can be calculated in a variety of ways:
- The S-N curve approaches recover stress using either bomogeneous pipe stress (suitable for metal risers) or
stress factors (suitable for umbilicals and flexibles). Damage is then calculated based on the specified S-N
curve.
- Mooring line fatigue calculates damage from effective tension ranges using T-N curves.
Likewise, damage is summed in a variety of ways:
- Deterministic regular wave fatigue analysis.
- Deterministic irregular wave fatigue analysis using the rainflow cycle counting method.
- Stochastic irregular wave fatigue analysis using spectral methods.
The SHEAR7 option is rather different because damage is calculated external to OrcaFlex by SHEAR7. This option
allows you to collate fatigue damage from a number of SHEAR7 load cases.
The fatigue analysis tool is accessed by selecting the Fatigue Analysis command from the OrcaFlex Results menu. It
is essentially a self-contained sub-program within OrcaFlex, with its own menus, data and results.
The steps involved in performing a fatigue analysis are:
1. Use the normal OrcaFlex facilities to set up and run simulations that model the various load cases that the line
will experience. Alternatively, for a SHEAR7 analysis, create a set of SHEAR7 .plt output files to represent your
VIV load cases.
2. Open the fatigue analysis tool and set up the fatigue analysis data. This fatigue analysis data is held separately
from the other OrcaFlex data and can be saved in a separate file with the file extension .ftg.
3. Check the data for errors.
4. Calculate and collate the damage.
Notes: The calculation stage of a fatigue analysis can take a long time , especially a rainflow analysis with
a lot of load cases. To help with this there is an Estimate Calculation Time facility and fatigue
analyses can be run in batch mode. The calculation makes use of all available processor cores to
process load cases concurrently.
The fatigue calculation performance is often limited by disk access – consequently it is important
that the disk access speed is as fast as possible. Usually this means that the simulation files should
be stored on a local disk of the machine performing the fatigue calculation.
Load Cases
Before the fatigue analysis can be performed you must first prepare a set of OrcaFlex simulation files that model the
same system but under the various load conditions that the system will experience in its lifetime.
The approach is to divide the range of sea states that the system will experience into a number of wave classes;
typically this is done with a wave scatter table.
For both regular and rainflow analysis you typically represent each wave class with a distinct OrcaFlex simulation
file. For regular analysis the simulation should use a regular wave representative of the wave class and for rainflow
analysis the simulation should use an irregular wave representative of the wave class.
For spectral analysis multiple wave classes with similar Hs values may be represented by a single response
calculation simulation. The reason this is possible is that the spectral response analysis provides information about
how the system responds to a range of wave frequencies. Typically you will have a range of simulations which cover
the range of Hs values in your wave scatter table.
For SHEAR7 fatigue analysis the load cases are specified by a set of SHEAR7 .plt output files. These are most easily
generated using the direct SHEAR7 interface, together with the standard OrcaFlex automation facilities – the .plt
files are automatically exported if you run the direct SHEAR7 interface in batch mode.
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Each load case is assigned an exposure level. For regular load cases this is the total number of occurrences of waves
within the wave class. For the other methods the exposure level is specified as the total time exposed to waves
within the wave class.
Cboice of fatigue analysis metbod
As described above OrcaFlex can perform three different types of fatigue analysis: regular, rainflow or spectral.
Rainflow fatigue is the most accurate of the methods, but also the most time consuming and demanding of disk
storage. The time and storage requirements can be somewhat alleviated by careful selection of load cases. The other
factor which can be adjusted is the duration of the irregular wave load case simulations. In our experience it is often
possible to achieve accurate damage predictions with simulations of 20 minutes duration.
Regular wave fatigue analysis is much faster and requires much less disk storage than rainflow fatigue. The wave
scatter conversion facility provides an efficient and productive way to generate a regular wave scatter table from a
random sea scatter table. Provided that the regular wave bin discretisation is performed well, the results from a
regular wave fatigue analysis will generally agree well with an equivalent rainflow analysis.
The spectral fatigue analysis method was originally included to provide a very quick alternative to the other
methods. The spectral fatigue method in OrcaFlex is much more difficult to use effectively than the other methods.
This is largely due to weaknesses and limitations in the response calculation approach used to generate response
RAOs. If you do perform a spectral fatigue analysis in OrcaFlex then it is very important that you check that the
spectral response RAOs are smooth. The response calculation method often results in very noisy RAOs which in turn
result in gross over-predictions of damage. It is our experience that use of the spectral fatigue method usually
results in poor and inaccurate results.
Recommendations
The advent of multi-core processors and the wave scatter conversion facility mean that regular wave fatigue
analysis is often just as fast as spectral fatigue analysis, as well as giving much more reliable and accurate answers.
Because of this we no longer recommend the use of spectral fatigue analysis in OrcaFlex.
This then reduces the choice of methods to regular and rainflow. Because of the calculation time and disk storage
advantages it is clearly desirable to use regular wave fatigue. Certainly during system design these advantages are
significant because they allow for greater coverage and exploration of the design space.
Another effective strategy is to use regular fatigue analysis for the bulk of the time and switch to rainflow analysis
for a final, more detailed check. If the regular wave fatigue analysis predicts a system life significantly in excess of
the design life then this final detailed check could be omitted.
8.1 CUMMANDS
File Menu
New
Clears previously entered Fatigue Analysis data and resets data to default values.
Upen
Opens a Fatigue Analysis file (.ftg). If the file contains results then these will be available without having to perform
the time-consuming calculation again.
Save
Saves the data to the currently selected file name (shown in title bar of the window). If results have been calculated
then these are also saved to the file. This allows you to view results at a later date without having to perform the
calculation again.
Save As
This is the same as Save, but allows you to specify the file name to save to.
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Upen Data
If the file contains results and there are a large number of load cases then the file can take a long time to load. If you
want to work with just the input data then this command loads just the input data which is a much quicker process.
Most Recent Files List
A list of the most recently used files. Selecting an item on the list causes the file to be loaded. The size of the list can
be adjusted from the Preferences form.
Analysis Menu
Estimate Calculation Time
Gives an estimate of how long it will take to do the fatigue analysis and present the results. This is useful for long
analyses, e.g. rainflow analyses involving a lot of cases or long simulations.
Cbeck
The Check command performs a preliminary check of the fatigue analysis data. For example it checks that all the
specified load case simulation files exist and that the named line and the specified arc length intervals exist in each
load case.
The Check command is generally much quicker that the fatigue analysis itself, so we recommend that the Check
command is used before the Fatigue Analysis is run, since the check can often detect data errors that would
otherwise only be found part way through what may be quite a long fatigue analysis. It is particularly important to
use the Check command when a new fatigue analysis has been first set up or when significant changes have been
made to the data.
Calculate
The Calculate command starts the Fatigue Analysis. The fatigue analysis can take a long time if there are many load
cases, or if there are many log samples in the load case simulations, or finally if there are a lot of segments in the arc
length intervals specified. A progress window is displayed and you can cancel the analysis if desired.
When the calculation is complete the results are displayed in a spreadsheet window.
8.2 DATA
Title
Used to label all output of the fatigue analysis.
Damage calculation
A variety of methods are available for calculating damage:
- Homogeneous pipe stress which assumes a pipe made of a straight, uniform, homogeneous, linear material.
The damage calculation is based on ZZ Stress. This option is appropriate for metal risers.
- An approach based on stress factors. Here the stress is assumed to comprise a tensile contribution
(proportional to either wall tension or effective tension) and a bending contribution (proportional to
curvature). This approach is commonly used for umbilicals but could also be used for unbonded flexibles.
- The mooring fatigue option calculates damage from effective tension ranges using T-N curves.
- The SHEAR7 option is rather different because damage is calculated external to OrcaFlex by SHEAR7. This
option allows you to collate fatigue damage from a number of SHEAR7 load cases.
- The final option, externally calculated stress, is not available for general use.
Analysis Type
Three types of fatigue analysis are available:
- Regular analysis must be based on a series of regular wave simulations that represent the various load cases
that will occur. For each of these load cases a single-occurrence damage value is calculated based on the last
wave cycle in the simulation. This damage value is then scaled up by the specified number of cycles expected to
occur during the structure's life, and this gives the total load case damage value. Finally these total load case
damage values are then summed for each load case to give the overall total damage.
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- Rainflow analysis is normally based on a series of random wave simulations. It uses a cycle counting technique
to break down each random wave case into a series of half cycles, and then sums the damage from each half
cycle according to the Palmgren-Miner law. For details see the book by Maddox and the paper by Rychlik. This
gives the damage value for that load case, which is then scaled to the specified total exposure time. Finally these
total load case damage values are then summed for each load case to give the overall total damage.
- Spectral analysis calculates damage in the frequency domain using statistical methods. The method requires a
power spectral density function (PSD) for a particular load variable (stress or tension). The PSD is obtained
from a response calculation simulation. This calculates RAOs for the load variables of interest and these are then
combined with the load case wave spectrum to give PSDs for load. These PSDs are then used to calculate
damage using either Dirlik's formula or the Rayleigh distribution. The damage is scaled to the specified total
exposure time for the load case. Finally these total load case damage values are then summed for each load case
to give the overall total damage.
Units
The units to be used for the fatigue analysis, for both the fatigue analysis data and for its results. The units are
specified in the same way as elsewhere in OrcaFlex.
Note that the units specified for the fatigue analysis need not match the units that were used in the various load case
simulation files. If they do not match, then the results from that simulation file will automatically be converted to the
units specified for the fatigue analysis. This is useful, since it allows the fatigue analysis to be done using m and MN
as the length and force units (giving stresses in MN/m
2
= MPa), for example, even if the simulation load cases use m
and kN (which corresponds to stresses in kN/m
2
= kPa). Similarly, in US units, the fatigue analysis can use inches
(giving stresses in ksi) even if the simulation files use feet as the length unit.
If you change units, then all existing fatigue analysis data is automatically changed to match the new units. This is
useful if you want to enter data in some other set of units, since you can simply change to the units of the new data,
then enter the new data, and then change back to the original units again.
Cycle Range Distribution {spectral analysis only]
The spectral fatigue calculation assumes that cycle ranges follow a statistical distribution which is specified by this
data item. The distribution can be either Dirlik's formula or the Rayleigb distribution. The Rayleigh distribution
is appropriate if the variation of the response is a narrow banded random Gaussian process. Dirlik's formula is
applicable even if the variation of the response is not a narrow banded process. For this reason we recommend
using Dirlik's formula.
8.3 LUAD CASES DATA FUR RECULAR ANALYSIS
Simulation File Name
The name of the simulation file which represents the load case. You can either specify the full path or a relative path.
Line Name
The name, in this load case simulation file, of the line to be analysed.
Note: Normally the line name will be the same in all of the load cases (though this is not necessary).
However the named lines in the various load cases must, of course, all represent the same physical
line and use the same discretisation in the areas being analysed.
Number of Cycles
The number of wave cycles, of this particular set of load conditions, that the line will experience.
8.4 LUAD CASES DATA FUR RAINFLUW ANALYSIS
Simulation File Name
The name of the simulation file which represents the load case. You can either specify the full path or a relative path.
Line Name
The name, in this load case simulation file, of the line to be analysed.
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Note: Normally the line name will be the same in all of the load cases (though this is not necessary).
However the named lines in the various load cases must, of course, all represent the same physical
line and use the same discretisation in the areas being analysed.
Simulation Period
The period of the pre-run simulation file that defines the load case.
Exposure Time
The total time the system is exposed to this load case.
8.5 LUAD CASES DATA FUR SPECTRAL ANALYSIS
Simulation File Name
The name of the simulation file which represents the load case. You can either specify the full path or a relative path.
Line Name
The name, in this load case simulation file, of the line to be analysed.
Note: Normally the line name will be the same in all of the load cases (though this is not necessary).
However the named lines in the various load cases must, of course, all represent the same physical
line and use the same discretisation in the areas being analysed.
Exposure Time
The total time the system is exposed to this load case.
Spectral Form, Spectral Parameters
For spectral analysis the simulation file specifies a response calculation simulation file from which response RAOs
are derived. The spectral fatigue calculation then proceeds by combining these response RAOs with a wave
spectrum to produce power spectral density (PSD) functions.
Spectral Form can be one of JONSWAP, ISSC, Ochi-Hubble or Torsethaugen. This specifies the general form of the
wave spectrum.
The parameters for the chosen spectral form are specified as follows:
- If )UNSWAP is selected then Spectral Parameters can be either Automatic, Partially Specified or Fully
Specified. This determines exactly how the spectral parameters for each load case are specified. For example, if
Automatic is selected then you specify Hs and Tz and the other JONSWAP parameters are calculated
automatically and reported. For details see Data for JONSWAP and ISSC Spectra.
- If ISSC is selected then you must specify Hs and Tz for each load case. You can also specify fm or Tp but since Tz,
Tp and fm are tied together then setting any one of them changes the other two to match. For details see Data for
JONSWAP and ISSC Spectra.
- If Ucbi-Hubble is selected then Spectral Parameters can be either Automatic, or Specified. Again, this
determines exactly how the spectral parameters for each load case are specified. If you select Automatic the
program calculates the parameters of the most probable spectrum, based on the overall significant wave height
Hs that you have specified. If you select Specified you must specify all 6 parameters and OrcaFlex then derives
and displays the corresponding overall Hs and Tz values. For details see Data for Ochi-Hubble Spectrum.
- If Torsetbaugen is selected then you must specify Hs and Tp for each load case. You can also specify fm but since
Tp and fm are tied together then setting either one changes the other to match. For details see Data for
Torsethaugen Spectrum.
Setting up load cases for Spectral Analysis
When performing a spectral fatigue analysis you will typically have a wave scatter table describing the relative
probability of storm occurrence. This determines a number of wave classes, e.g. storms defined by Hs,Tz pairs.
The load cases data should be setup to match load cases with wave classes. For example, suppose that you were
working with the following (truncated) wave scatter table:
4-5 9 3
3-4 6 18 6
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Hs 2-3 22 132 117
1-2 3 57 201 249
0-1 15 48 69 45
4-5 5-ó ó-7 7-8
Tz
The values in the table represent joint probabilities in parts per thousand, so that a value of 201 represents a
probability of 0.201.
This wave scatter table gives 16 wave classes and so the fatigue analysis data in OrcaFlex would be setup with 16
corresponding load cases with appropriate Hs and Tz values.
Simulation files for spectral fatigue analysis load cases
The simulation files used to represent a load case for spectral fatigue analysis should model all aspects of the system
and environment other than the wave spectrum. So you must specify vessel offset, current profile and direction,
wave direction and so on which are appropriate for the load case being analysed.
The wave type for the load case simulation file must be response calculation. This effectively calculates system
responses (i.e. RAOs) for a range of wave frequencies. The spectral fatigue analysis then combines these RAOs with
the load case wave spectra (i.e. the Hs,Tz pairs) to produce fatigue damage estimates for the load case.
Cboice of Hs for response calculation simulation files
The Spectral Response Analysis method which is used to calculate system responses (RAOs) includes non-linear
effects such as hydrodynamic drag. In order for these non-linear effects to be well modelled the choice of Hs for the
response calculation simulation files is important. Essentially the RAOs can be considered as being dependent on
wave height. How significant this dependence is will vary from case to case. Certain systems are dominated by linear
physical effects and the RAOs may not in fact be dependent on wave height. To determine how significant this effect
is we would recommend sensitivity studies.
In the example above we might choose to run a response calculation simulation for each row of the wave scatter
table (assuming that the system had significant non-linearities). This would give 5 simulation files for Hs ranges 0-1,
1-2, 2-3, 3-4 and 4-5. There are 4 wave classes corresponding to the 0-1 Hs range. The load case corresponding to
each of these wave classes would then be represented by the same simulation file. The other Hs ranges are dealt
with similarly and so the load cases table would look as below:
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Figure: Example load cases table
If the non-linearities in the system are not so significant then you may be able to obtain accurate results with fewer
simulation files. This may be desirable to reduce the amount of time taken to run the simulations. For example the
Hs1, Hs2 and Hs3 simulations could be combined into a single Hs2 simulation etc. Again, the accuracy of such a
simplification should be tested with sensitivity studies.
Response calculation simulation duration
The other decision to make is over the length of the response calculation simulations. You need to simulate for long
enough to get accurate results. As for the issue of Hs discussed above we would recommend using sensitivity studies
to determine how long is required.
8.ó LUAD CASES DATA FUR SHEAR7
Load Case File Name
The name of the SHEAR7 .plt output file which represents the load case. You can either specify the full path or a
relative path.
Exposure Time
The total time the system is exposed to this load case. The damage for the load case is calculated by multiplying the
exposure time by the damage rate read from the load case .plt file.
8.7 CUMPUNENTS DATA
The Components Data page is only available when damage is calculated using stress factors.
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You define a number of components for which damage is to be calculated. Components can be used to represent
different layers or components in the cross-section of an umbilical or a flexible.
Component Name
This is used to identify the component in the results.
Tension Variable
Specifies wall tension or effective tension is used to calculate stress.
Tension and Curvature Stress Factors
The stresses used to calculate damage are calculated according to the formula:
S = KtT + Kc(Cxsin θ - Cycos θ)
where
S is stress,
Kt and Kc are the tension and curvature stress factors, respectively,
T is either wall tension or effective tension, as specified by the tension variable data,
Cx and Cy are the components of curvature in the line's local x and y directions, respectively, and
θ is the circumferential location of the fatigue point.
In effect this formula defines stress to be the sum of contributions due to direct tensile strain and bending strain.
The circumferential variation (i.e. the terms which refer to θ) is to account for the fact that bending strain varies
with θ. So, for a point in the plane of bending, stress is given by S = KtT ± Kc|C|, where C is the curvature vector (Cx,
Cy). Similarly, for a point at 90° to the plane of bending, stress is given by S = KtT.
The stress factors will typically be calculated from experimental data or from detailed analytic models of the
umbilical or riser cross-section. Suppliers of such products are usually able to provide the necessary stress factors.
S-N Curve
Specifies which S-N curve is used for damage calculations for this component.
8.8 ANALYSIS DATA
The Analysis Data page contains the following data items, which specify the parts of the line to be analysed.
Critical Damage
Is a warning level. If the total damage at any fatigue point exceeds the Critical Damage then that damage figure will
be highlighted in the results.
Number of Tbetas
The number of points (N) around the pipe circumference, at which fatigue analysis will be performed. There will be
N fatigue points uniformly distributed at 360°/N intervals around the pipe circumference. A larger number of thetas
gives a more comprehensive analysis, but takes a little longer.
This data is not required, and hence not available, for mooring and SHEAR7 fatigue.
Radial Position {bomogeneous pipe stresses only]
Specifies whether the fatigue analysis is performed at the inner or outer fibre of the pipe.
Line Lengtb {SHEAR7 fatigue only]
Specifies the length of the line being consider by the SHEAR7 analysis. This data item is implemented solely to
provide some convenience to results reporting. A value of '~' results in arc lengths being reported as non-
dimensional x/L values, the native form for SHEAR7. If a value is specified for the line length then the x/L values are
re-dimensionalised using that specified value.
Arc Lengtb Intervals
You define the parts of the line that are to be analysed by specifying a number of non-overlapping Arc Lengtb
Intervals in the form of From and To arc length values. OrcaFlex will analyse cross-sections at each line end and
mid-segment whose arc length z is in the range From ≤ z ≤ To.
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For simple cases you can use just one arc length interval covering the whole line. However it is often clear which
part, or parts, of the line are liable to fatigue problems. If calculation time is significant then you can save calculation
time by analysing those parts of the line.
Warning: The included arc lengths must be the same in each load case, so the line to be analysed should have
the same number and distribution of segments in each of the load case simulations.
SCF and Tbickness Correction Factor {bomogeneous pipe stresses only]
When stress ranges are used with the S-N curve to calculate damage, the stress ranges are scaled by the Stress
Concentration Factor (SCF) and the Thickness Correction Factor before calculating damage.
If no stress correction is required then these factors should both be set to 1.
Notes: To use different stress correction factors for different parts of the line, you will need to specify
separate arc length intervals for those parts.
S-N Curve {bomogeneous pipe stresses only]
Specifies which S-N curve is used for damage calculations in this arc length interval.
T-N Curve {mooring fatigue only]
Specifies which T-N curve is used for damage calculations in this arc length interval.
8.9 S-N AND T-N CURVES
S-N Curves
An S-N curve defines the number of cycles to failure, N(S), when a material is repeatedly cycled through a given
stress range S. OrcaFlex uses the S-N curve to calculate the damage in a fatigue analysis. If needed you can define a
number of different S-N curves and use them at different arc lengths along a line.
With each S-N curve you must also specify an associated stress endurance limit, FL, which is the stress range below
which no damage occurs.
The S-N curve itself can be specified either by parameters or by a table.
When the curve is specified by parameters the user specifies two parameters, A and b, and the curve is then given
by either of the following equivalent formulae:
N = 10
A
S
-b

Log10(N) = A - b Log10(S)
When the curve is specified by a table the user gives a table of corresponding values of S and N. For other values of S
we use log linear interpolation or extrapolation to find the value of N.
Mean stress effects can be accounted for using Goodman, Soderberg or Gerber models.
For details of how the S-N curve is used to calculate the damage see How Damage is Calculated.
S-N Curve Units
The S-N curve parameters entered must be consistent with the fatigue analysis units. S-N curve parameters are
typically quoted with respect to stresses in MPa, but you might be doing the fatigue analysis using some other stress
units. You can handle this problem as follows. First change the fatigue analysis units and set the units system to be
'User', the length units to be 'mm' and the force units to be 'N'. This corresponds to stresses in MPa, so you can then
enter the S-N parameters in terms of MPa. Finally, restore the units to those that you want for the fatigue analysis.
The parameters will automatically be converted to allow for the change in units.
T-N Curves
For mooring fatigue damage is calculated with T-N curves. These define the number of cycles to failure, N(T), when a
material is repeatedly cycled through a given effective tension range T.
The T-N curve can be specified either by parameters or by a table.
When the curve is specified by parameters the user specifies three parameters, m, k and the reference breaking
strength (RBS). The curve is then given by the following formula:
N = k(T/RBS)
-m

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When the curve is specified by a table the user gives a table of corresponding values of T and N. For other values of
T we use log linear interpolation or extrapolation to find the value of N.
For details of how the T-N curve is used to calculate the damage see How Damage is Calculated.
8.10 INTECRATIUN PARAMETERS
Integration parameters are only available when the spectral fatigue analysis option is selected. Normally you should
not need to modify the parameters from their default values. However, if the spectral fatigue calculation has
problems with convergence then it may prove productive to try different values for these parameters.
We recommend that you contact Orcina for further details should you encounter problems with spectral fatigue
convergence.
8.11 RESULTS
Fatigue results are presented in a separate window. Results are available in either graphical or tabular form.
Crapbical output
The graphical output produces plots of fatigue damage or fatigue life against arc length – range graphs of fatigue.
We denote a damage value at arc length z and circumferential position as D(z,θ). This could be overall total damage
or the total exposure damage value for an individual load case. The damage graphs all plot D(z) = maxθ D(z,θ), that is
the maximum damage value at a given arc length z.
The life graphs plot the corresponding life values T/D(z) where T is the exposure time. For individual load cases T is
the exposure time for the load case. For total life T is the total exposure time of all the load cases.
Graphs are available for:
- Total damageJlife: the overall total damage/life.
- Individual load case damageJlife: the total exposure damage/life from the specified load case.
- Worst cases: the total exposure damage value from the five most damaging load cases. By most damaging we
mean the load cases with the largest values of maxz,θ D(z,θ), the maximum damage value over all z,θ.
The graphs can be customised in a number of ways:
- The arc length axis can be either horizontal or vertical, the latter option being more appropriate for vertical
risers.
- The arc length axis can be inverted. When it is inverted increasing values run from right to left (if it is
horizontal) and top to bottom (if it is vertical). Again this is particularly useful for vertical risers with arc length
values that increase from the top end to the bottom end.
- Fatigue damage/life can optionally be plotted on a logarithmic scale.
- Individual arc length intervals can be plotted.
Tabular output
The tabular output is presented in a spreadsheet that has one Damage Tables sheet, plus one Load Case sheet for
each load case. There is also a sheet echoing the S-N curve data.
Load Case sbeets
The Load Case sheets contain the derived stress results for each fatigue point that has been analysed, together with
general information such as the environmental data that applied to that load case.
There is one table of stress results for each arc length covered by the specified arc length intervals. Each such table
contains a row of results for each fatigue point in that arc length cross-section. These results are the stress ranges
(for each of the stress components), the maximum stress range and the resulting load case damage values.
In addition to the detailed tables a damage summary table is presented which tabulates the load case damage at
each fatigue point.
For mooring fatigue, tension results rather than stress results are reported. For SHEAR7 fatigue, since the damage
calculation has been performed by SHEAR7, only damage values are reported.
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Damage Table sbeet
The Damage Table sheet starts with an Excessive Damage table, which lists any fatigue points at which the overall
total damage has exceeded the specified critical damage value. Details of where on the line the worst total damage
occurred are also reported.
A table summarising the overall damage over total exposure for all arc lengths is presented.
Finally, the Damage Table sheet provides damage tables for each arc length cross-section analysed. These report, for
each fatigue point in the cross-section, the total exposure damage value from each load case and the overall total
damage.
In all of these tables, overall total damage values that exceed the specified critical damage value are highlighted in
red.
Printing and Exporting
To save the results you will need to export the spreadsheet as an Excel sheet. If you want to print the results then for
best results you should first export them and then use Excel to do the printing.
Customising results output
The tabular results output can be customised using the options on the Results page of the main fatigue form.
Uutput load case tables
If this option is deselected then the load case sheets are omitted from the fatigue results. This can significantly
reduce the time and memory required to generate the results tables.
Uutput detailed load case tables
If this option is deselected then the detailed tables on the load case sheets are omitted from the fatigue results. This
can significantly reduce the time and memory required to generate the results tables.
Load case damage units
Load case damage values can be reported as damage per hour, damage per day or damage per year, as specified by
this data item.
8.12 FATICUE PUINTS
Damage is calculated at a number of line end and mid-segment cross-sections along the line, as specified by defining
Arc Length Intervals in the Analysis Data. Each included arc length defines a cross-section through the pipe.
Damage calculated by bomogeneous pipe stresses
Each cross-section is described by polar coordinates (R, θ) where R is the radial distance from the centre-line and θ
is measured from the line's local x-axis towards its y-axis.
OrcaFlex calculates the damage at either the inner or outer fibre of the pipe and so R is either ODstress/2 or IDstress/2.
For θ we calculate damage at equally spaced intervals determined by the specified Number of Thetas. For example, if
you specify 16 theta values, then they will be equally spaced at 360°/16 = 22.5° intervals 0°, 22.5°, 45° etc.
Damage calculated by stress factors
For stress factor fatigue the radial position is implicit in the stress factors and so is not explicitly used in the
calculation. Damage is calculated at circumferential locations determined by the specified Number of Thetas, as
described above.
Mooring fatigue damage
For mooring fatigue there is no need to consider radial and circumferential variation and so there is one fatigue
point for each arc length considered.
8.13 HUW DAMACE IS CALCULATED
For each load case and fatigue point OrcaFlex calculates damage values as follows:
- The time history of response, in that load case, at that fatigue point, is calculated. For homogeneous pipes the ZZ
stress variable is used. For stress factor fatigue then the stress is calculated based on the stress factors. For
mooring fatigue the response variable is effective tension.
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- The damage value corresponding to the response time history is calculated – see below for details. This value is
the damage value at that fatigue point due to one occurrence of that load case.
- The load case damage values are scaled to allow for the exposure associated with that load case.
- The above step gives the total exposure damage value from that load case at this fatigue point.
- Finally, these total exposure load case damage values are summed over all load cases to obtain the overall total
damage value at that fatigue point.
Damage Calculation using S-N curves
The S-N curve defines the number of cycles to failure, N(S), for stress range S, and also defines a endurance limit, FL,
below which no damage occurs. OrcaFlex uses these to calculate a damage value given by:
D(S) = 1/N(S) if S > FL
D(S) = 0 if S ≤ FL
This damage value can be thought of as the proportion of the fatigue life that is used up by 1 cycle of stress range S.
If the S-N curve is defined by parameters then for S > FL we have:
Log10(N) = A - b Log10(S)
so D(S) can be expressed in the following form:
D(S) = 10
-A
S
b
.
Mean stress effects
Mean stress effects are handled by modifying each stress range according to a formula dependent on the mean
stress level. Three models of mean stress effects are provided: Goodman, Soderberg and Gerber. Each method is
defined by a formula for Se, the equivalent stress, allowing for mean stress effects, to be used in the zero mean stress
S-N curve.
The Coodman model is:
Se = Sr / (1 - Sm/SMTS) for 0 < Sm < SMTS
Se = Sr for -SMTS < Sm ≤ 0
where Sr is the true stress range, Sm is the mean stress and SMTS is the ultimate tensile strength as specified in the S-
N data.
The Soderberg model is:
Se = Sr / (1 - Sm/SMYS) for 0 < Sm < SMYS
Se = Sr for -SMYS < Sm ≤ 0
where SMYS is the yield strength as specified in the S-N data.
The Cerber model is:
Se = Sr / (1 - [Sm/SMTS]
2
) for -SMTS < Sm < SMTS
The definition of mean stress, Sm, depends on the analysis method being used. For regular analysis, Sm is defined to
be the mean of the min and max stress values associated with the stress range Sr. For rainflow analysis, Sm is the
mean value of the local turning points in the stress time history. For spectral fatigue, Sm is the mean of the time
history used to determine the stress RAOs.
Regular analysis
The minimum and maximum values of stress over the last simulated wave cycle define a stress range S. The
associated single-occurrence load case damage value is then given by D(κS) where κ is the product of the stress
concentration factor and the thickness correction factor. If mean stress effects are included then the equivalent
stress range Se is used.
Rainflow analysis
The stress time history is analysed using the rainflow cycle counting method. This gives a number of stress ranges
for half cycles, say Si where i runs from 1 to the number of stress ranges. The associated single-occurrence load case
damage value is then given by ½∑D(κSi) where the summation is over all the half cycles. Note that the factor of one
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half is present because the rainflow algorithm counts half cycles rather than full-cycles. Again, if mean stress effects
are included, then the equivalent stress range Se is used.
Spectral analysis
For spectral analysis damage is calculated in the frequency domain using statistical methods. The calculation
requires a power spectral density function (PSD) for stress. The PSD is obtained from a response calculation
simulation. This calculates RAOs for stress which is then combined with the load case wave spectrum to give the
PSD for stress. These PSD are then used to calculate damage using either Dirlik's formula or the Rayleigh
distribution. The stress concentration factor, thickness correction factor and mean stress effects are all accounted
for in the spectral damage calculation.
For detailed references on how spectral fatigue analysis calculates damage from stress PSDs please refer to:
- Barltrop and Adams (1991) which has an excellent section on spectral fatigue analysis.
- Dirlik (1985) is the original reference for Dirlik's stress range distribution formula.
Damage Calculation using T-N curves
T-N curves are handled in a similar way. A T-N curve defines the number of cycles to failure, N(T), for effective
tension range T. There is no analog of endurance limit for T-N curves. Likewise there are no analogs of stress
concentration factor and thickness correction factor.
As for S-N curves, OrcaFlex defines damage as:
D(T) = 1/N(T)
The summation of damage is then performed in an identical manner to that performed for S-N curves.
Damage Calculation for SHEAR7 fatigue
SHEAR7 fatigue is rather different from the other fatigue methods because damage is calculated external to OrcaFlex
by SHEAR7. OrcaFlex merely provides a means to collate, sum and plot the damage from a number of different
SHEAR7 load cases in a convenient manner.
The SHEAR7 damage calculation is based on the damage rate output in the SHEAR7 .plt file. This value is multipled
by the load case exposure time to produce the damage associated with that load case.
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9 VIV TUULBUX
The OrcaFlex VIV Toolbox provides analysis of vortex induced vibration (VIV) of lines. It offers a choice of various
alternative ways of modelling VIV, including both frequency and time domain approaches, and has been developed
in co-operation with academics in the UK and USA. The VIV Toolbox is included as standard in OrcaFlex.
A separate user guide for the time domain VIV models is available (Time Domain VIV Models.pdf).
Different VIV Models
The VIV Toolbox provides facilities for using the following different VIV models:
- VIVA. The VIV Toolbox provides a fully integrated link to VIVA. OrcaFlex automatically prepares the VIVA data
from the OrcaFlex data, calls VIVA and presents the results. To use this you will need a copy of VIVA, release
2.0.6 or later.
- SHEAR7. The VIV Toolbox provides facilities for exporting SHEAR7 structural data files and SHEAR7 .mds files
based on an OrcaFlex model. SHEAR7 can then be run manually using these files as input, or called directly from
OrcaFlex.
- Two wake oscillator models, the Milan model and the Iwan and Blevins model.
- Two vortex tracking models.
Of all these models, VIVA and SHEAR7 are the two main programs in current use in the industry. They are both
independent non-Orcina programs written and distributed by other companies, so to use them you need to
purchase and install them on your machine. They are both frequency domain models, so they only analyse steady
state conditions.
The other models are included in the VIV Toolbox within OrcaFlex, so no further software is needed. They are all
time-domain models, so they can analyse non-steady-state conditions. They do not yet have a track record in the
industry.
Using VIV Models
You choose which VIV model to use (if any) on the VIV page on the line data form. There are separate choices for the
static and dynamic analyses and so you do not have to use the same model for the two analyses. The time-domain
models are only applicable to the dynamic analysis.
9.1 FREQUENCY DUMAIN MUDELS
9.1.1 VIVA
VIVA is an independent frequency domain program developed by Prof. M Triantafyllou at MIT and distributed by JD
Marine (formerly DTCEL).
Orcina is a participating member of a Joint Industry Project run by DTCEL and Prof. Triantafyllou of MIT. The project
began mid-year 2000. Phase 1 was completed mid-year 2001 and a second phase is in progress.
As part of the project, a software link has been written between OrcaFlex and VIVA. The software link allows a riser
model to be built in OrcaFlex taking advantage of the existing interactive user interface. OrcaFlex then calls VIVA
which carries out a frequency domain calculation of VIV response based on an energy balance. Results are reported
in spreadsheet form for each single excited mode of vibration. A combined multi-mode response is also reported.
Results include amplitudes of vibration and mean effective drag coefficients. The drag coefficients can be
automatically used by OrcaFlex in further static and dynamic analysis.
The VIVA calculation can be repeated at intervals through an OrcaFlex analysis to update the drag coefficients.
OrcaFlex runs as usual in the time domain, but makes a call periodically to VIVA which repeats the VIV calculation
for the instantaneous riser configuration. The drag coefficient distribution is then read back into OrcaFlex which
continues with the analysis.
UrcaFlex VIVA Interface
The OrcaFlex interface to VIVA requires VIVA to be installed on your machine and available in the form of a dynamic
link library (DLL) called v3ddll.dll. This DLL file, and the VIVA database files that it uses, must be located in the same
directory as the OrcaFlex.exe program file.
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The current version of OrcaFlex is compatible, and has been tested with, the VIVA DLL version 2.0.6. Later versions
of the DLL can be used – OrcaFlex checks for interface compatibility before calling the DLL, and reports an error if
the DLL found is not compatible.
To use VIVA for VIV analysis of a line, set the line's Statics VIV or Dynamics VIV data item (or both) to VIVA. Then set
up the VIVA data that appears.
VIVA will then be called when you do the OrcaFlex static or dynamic analysis, and the drag coefficients predicted by
VIVA (for the specified Target Mode) will be used instead of the user-specified drag coefficients from the line type
form. These VIVA drag coefficients, and other results calculated by VIVA, are available in OrcaFlex – see VIVA
Results.
VIVA in Static Analysis
When Statics VIV is set to VIVA, OrcaFlex calculates the static position of the line using the drag coefficients
calculated by VIVA. A fully coupled statics calculation is performed since VIVA's analysis depends on the position of
the line and vice versa. The coupled static analysis is done as follows:
1. First OrcaFlex sets the line's drag coefficients to those specified on the OrcaFlex line type form.
2. OrcaFlex then calculates the static position of the line using those drag coefficients.
3. OrcaFlex then calls VIVA to analyse VIV for that position and the line drag coefficients are updated to those
calculated by VIVA for the specified Target Mode.
4. OrcaFlex then recalculates the static position of the line for those new drag coefficients.
5. Steps 3 and 4 are then repeated until the static position has converged.
The iteration is deemed to have converged when none of the nodes has changed position (compared with the
previous iteration) by more than Convergence Tolerance * NodeLength, where NodeLength is the length of line
represented by that node. The method usually requires only 2 or 3 coupling iterations to converge.
VIVA in Dynamic Analysis
When Dynamics VIV is set to VIVA, OrcaFlex calls VIVA at regular intervals, as specified by the Dynamics Time
Interval. After each call the drag coefficients of the line are updated to those calculated by VIVA for the specified
Target Mode.
Note that VIVA is a frequency domain program and so can only handle steady state conditions. It is therefore
unrealistic to use VIVA in dynamic analysis unless the conditions change only slowly compared to the Strouhal
period. See also Use Relative Fluid Velocity and Include Wave in Fluid Velocity.
Limitations
When using the OrcaFlex interface to VIVA please note the following limitations:
- The VIVA analysis involves a modal analysis of the line. Currently this modal analysis is done by VIVA but this
has limitations – see VIVA modal analysis limitations.
- There are difficulties in passing to VIVA details of attachments to the line (e.g. clumps, buoys, links, winches), so
attachment are ignored by the VIVA analysis.
- The VIVA DLL is not currently capable of handling multiple simultaneous use, so you should not use the VIVA
interface from more than one copy of OrcaFlex at a time running on a single machine.
VIVA Data
The VIVA data is the data that VIVA needs and which OrcaFlex cannot deduce automatically from the ordinary
OrcaFlex data. It is described below and appears on the VIV page on the line data form when you select VIVA for
Statics VIV or Dynamics VIV.
When using VIVA please note the following:
- You should set up the line with End A at the top and End B at the bottom.
- All the sections in the line must have the same segment length. This is a requirement of VIVA.
- If the line touches down on the seabed then OrcaFlex passes only the suspended part of the line to VIVA for
analysis. The rest of the line is not passed to VIVA. By 'suspended part' here is meant the part between End A
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and the first node in contact with the seabed. Note that if there are multiple touchdowns then the VIVA analysis
is only applied to the part of the line up to the first touchdown point.
- When there is seabed contact OrcaFlex tells VIVA to treat the touchdown point as pinned. This is as in the
touchdown example in the VIVA documentation.
- You need to use enough segments in the suspended part of the line. There is a lower limit in VIVA of 100
segments, and if the line has fewer than this then VIVA reports an error and no VIV calculation is done. If the
line has 100 or more segments then VIVA checks whether there are enough segments to reasonably model VIV;
and if not then VIVA gives a warning but the calculation continues. For details see the VIVA documentation.
- When modelling Vetco type risers (i.e. with auxiliary pipes attached), you need to set the OrcaFlex line end
orientation to match the orientation of the auxiliary pipes. For details see Modelling Vetco Risers.
- OrcaFlex passes VIVA the fluid density and viscosity at each node. For fully submerged nodes OrcaFlex passes
the sea density and kinematic viscosity at that point. For a node out of the water OrcaFlex passes the air density
specified in the OrcaFlex data and a hard-coded viscosity value of 1.5e-5 m
2
/s (Source: Batchelor, page 594, air
at 20°C). For a partially submerged node OrcaFlex interpolates between the two, based on the node's
Proportion Wet.
Wbole Line Properties
Target Mode
VIVA predicts which modes of oscillation might be excited and it gives separate VIV results for each possible excited
mode. In addition it gives VIV results for 'multi-mode' response, i.e. response that is a mixture of the possible modes.
You must specify which set of VIVA Cd results to use, based on the type of response you expect, by setting the Target
Mode data item. The Target Mode can be set to a mode number, meaning use the single mode results for that mode
number. Or it can be set to '~', meaning use the multi-mode results.
If you set the Target Mode to a mode number that VIVA does not predict will be excited then OrcaFlex will report a
warning and use the line type Cd values.
Dynamics Time Interval
This data item only applies when Dynamics VIV is set to VIVA. It specifies how often VIVA will be called during the
OrcaFlex simulation.
VIVA will be called after every T seconds of simulation, where T is the specified dynamics time interval. After each
call to VIVA, the drag coefficients used by the line will be updated to those calculated by VIVA for the specified
Target Mode.
Convergence Tolerance
This data item only applies when Statics VIV is set to VIVA. It specifies the tolerance used in the statics iteration. For
details see VIVA in Static Analysis.
Transverse Damping Ratio
The structural damping ratio that VIVA should use. It is a single value that applies to the whole line. For details see
the VIVA documentation, where it is referred to as ZETA.
VIVA Z Axis Direction
This data item specifies the direction of the VIVA global Z-axis.
VIVA uses its own global, right-handed frame of reference, in which the X-axis is vertically upwards (i.e. in the
OrcaFlex global Z-axis direction) and the Y and Z axes are horizontal.
VIVA recommends that the VIVA Z-axis is chosen to be in the downstream flow direction, if that is well-defined. For
constant uniform flow there is a unique flow direction, so it is well-defined. If the flow direction varies along the line
then there is no unique flow direction. In this case it is probably best to set the VIVA Z-axis to be in the average flow
direction.
A value of '~' is interpreted to mean the current direction at the sea surface.
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Use Relative Fluid Velocity, Include Wave in Fluid Velocity
VIVA needs to know the flow velocity at each point along the line. You can choose to either use the relative velocity,
including the velocity of the line, or else use only the fluid velocity, ignoring any velocity of the line. You can also
choose whether to include any wave contribution to the fluid velocity.
Ideally the relative velocity should be used and the wave should be included, since in reality it is the total relative
velocity that generates vortices. However VIVA is a frequency domain program and so can only handle steady state
conditions, whereas OrcaFlex can handle time-varying conditions. VIVA effectively assumes that the flow velocity it
is given is constant for long enough for VIV to settle. It therefore cannot correctly analyse cases where the flow
velocity includes time-varying components whose periods are comparable with or shorter than the Strouhal period.
(The same applies to SHEAR7, since it too uses a frequency domain analysis.)
We therefore provide these two switches, to allow you to control whether line motion and wave effects are included
in the flow velocity given to VIVA. If the line motion or wave include significant velocity components that are not
'slow' compared to the expected VIV period, then you might want exclude the line motion or wave. This is still not
ideal, since their effects are then ignored. The alternative is to use a time-domain model, such as a wake oscillator
model or the vortex tracking models.
Section-Specific Properties
For each section of the line, you must specify the VIVA section type and its properties. The OrcaFlex line type and
length of the sections are displayed for information, but they are not editable (to edit them see the Structure page on
the OrcaFlex line data form).
VIV Diameter
The VIV diameter specifies the diameter used by the VIV model. Separate values can be specified for each section.
The value specified is used for all nodes in that section. For a node at the intersection of two sections the VIV
diameter of the following section is used. The VIV Diameter can be set to '~', which is taken to mean 'same as the
section outer diameter'.
Section Type
The VIVA section type can be one of:
- Smootb: No further VIVA section data is needed.
- Strake: You must also specify the beigbt to diameter ratio for the strakes.
- Fairing: You must also specify the cbord lengtb and tbickness of the fairing.
- Vetco: No further VIVA section data is needed, but the line orientation must match the orientation of the Vetco
riser. See Modelling Vetco Risers below.
For details of this VIVA data see the VIVA documentation.
Modelling Vetco Risers
Vetco risers have auxiliary pipes attached and VIVA needs to know the direction of the flow, relative to the
orientation of the auxiliary pipes. The diagram below shows a section through the line, looking towards End B. VIVA
needs to know the angle Alpha.
OrcaFlex calculates this angle automatically by assuming that the auxiliary pipes are oriented, relative to the
OrcaFlex local x and y-direction, as shown in the diagram. You must therefore set up the line end orientation data so
that the line's local x and y-directions are oriented as shown. In other words you should set up the line end
orientation data so that the line local x-axis points through the larger of the two gaps between auxiliary pipes.
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Alpha
Flow
Direction
x
y

VIVA Results
The VIVA results are presented in OrcaFlex as extra worksheets in the Full Results tables. The worksheets give the
results from the latest VIVA call.
There is a separate worksheet for each excited mode, plus an extra worksheet for the multi-mode response. The
drag coefficients currently in use are those corresponding to the specified Target Mode.
The VIVA results are described briefly below. For details see the VIVA documentation.
Note: Amplitudes in VIVA results are single amplitudes, i.e. measured from the mean position to the peak.
Single Mode Results
The worksheet for a given single excited mode gives a table of 'Single Mode' results as a function of arc length along
the line. These are results predicted by VIVA if single-mode VIV response occurs in that mode. They include:
Max Amplitude
The amplitude of predicted VIV motion at that point.
Max Bend Moment, Max Stress
The dynamic bend moment and stress amplitudes due to VIV. Note that they do not include the bend moment and
stress due to the mean position of the line.
Drag Coefficient
The predicted drag coefficient, allowing for VIV.
Multi-Mode Results
The 'Multi-Mode' worksheet gives two tables. The second table is the multi-mode equivalent of the single mode
results table; it gives the same information, but this time for the case where multi-mode VIV response occurs.
The first table summarises the bending modes. It has the following columns:
Mode
This column shows which modes have been analysed. Those that VIVA calculates as possibly being excited are
marked with an asterisk.
Natural Mode Frequency Witb and Witbout VIV
These columns give the natural frequencies of the mode, as calculated by VIVA. Those 'Without VIV' are calculated
using VIVA's own default added mass coefficients (not those specified in the OrcaFlex line type data). Whereas in
those 'With VIV' the VIVA default added mass coefficients have been modified to allow for VIV.
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Warning: VIVA's modal analysis calculates bending modes only and does not allow for the mean curvature.
This omission is equivalent to VIVA calculating the out-of-plane modes, since there is no mean
curvature component in the out-of-plane direction. The natural frequencies in the VIVA results
therefore correspond to the out-of-plane bending modes predicted by the OrcaFlex modal analysis.
These are correct modes to use for in-plane flow (since VIV will then be in the out of plane
direction), but they are not the right modes to use for out-of-plane flow, since the VIV will then be
in-plane. The difference between the in-plane and out-of-plane bending modes depends on the
magnitude of the curvature and the wave length of the mode.
Max Amplitude
The largest offset of any node in this mode.
9.1.2 SHEAR7
SHEAR7 is an independent program, developed by Prof. K Vandiver at MIT and distributed by SBM Atlantia. The link
to SHEAR7 is based around OrcaFlex's ability to export SHEAR7 data files (.dat) and SHEAR7 mode shape files
(.mds).
Note: SHEAR7 must be licensed separately to OrcaFlex. Please contact SBM Atlantia for details.
When exporting a SHEAR7 data file the program assumes that you will also be using a mode shape file produced by
OrcaFlex. The procedure for linking SHEAR7 to your OrcaFlex model is as follows:
1. Build your OrcaFlex model as normal. SHEAR7 analyses VIV for one or more of your OrcaFlex Lines.
2. Input the appropriate values on the SHEAR7 data form.
3. Calculate the static position of the model.
4. Export a SHEAR7 data file and a SHEAR7 Mds file.
5. These files can now be used as inputs to SHEAR7.
Direct SHEAR7 interface
As an alternative to exporting files and running SHEAR7 manually, as described above, OrcaFlex is capable of calling
SHEAR7 directly. This capability is enabled by selecting the SHEAR7 statics VIV option on the VIV page of the Line
data form.
SHEAR7 executable file location, SHEAR7 lift file location
The direct SHEAR7 interface operates by executing the SHEAR7 executable file. In order to do this OrcaFlex must be
told where to locate the executable file. This data is specified on the SHEAR7 data form and is only available when
SHEAR7 is selected for the statics VIV option on the VIV page of the Line data form.
In addition SHEAR7 requires a file to specify lift coefficients, usually called "common.cl". Typically the lift file will be
the standard one supplied with SHEAR7. If the lift file location is left blank OrcaFlex attempts to use a file called
"common.cl" in the same directory as the executable file.
These file locations can be specified as either full paths or as paths relative to the directory containing the OrcaFlex
file.
These data are model-wide properties. A consequence of this is that if you wish to modify the values using batch
script then you need to select the General object rather than a Line object.
SHEAR7 coupling metbod
The SHEAR7 direct interface performs a coupled statics calculation since the SHEAR7 analysis depends on the
position of the line and vice versa. The coupled static analysis is done as follows:
1. First OrcaFlex sets the line's drag coefficients to those specified on the OrcaFlex line type form.
2. OrcaFlex then calculates the static position of the line using those drag coefficients.
3. OrcaFlex then calls SHEAR7 to analyse VIV for that position and the line drag coefficients are updated.
4. OrcaFlex then recalculates the static position of the line for those new drag coefficients.
5. Steps 3 and 4 are then repeated until the static position has converged.
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The iteration is deemed to have converged when none of the nodes has changed position (compared with the
previous iteration) by more than Convergence Tolerance * NodeLength, where NodeLength is the length of line
represented by that node. The method usually requires only 2 or 3 coupling iterations to converge.
The direct SHEAR7 interface offers a variety of coupling options which differ in how they handle the SHEAR7 .mds
file.
- The full coupling option generates a new .mds file at each coupling iteration, that is every time SHEAR7 is
called.
- The partial, automatic .mds file coupling option creates an .mds file on the first coupling iteration which is
then used in all subsequent coupling iterations.
- The partial, user .mds file coupling option uses an .mds file specified on the data form for all coupling
iterations.
The fully coupled approach does have the disadvantage that generating an .mds file at each coupling iteration can be
time consuming, especially for more complex models, and so the partially coupled approach can be significantly
faster.
The partially coupled approaches are more akin to running SHEAR7 manually. However, the ultimate static solution
will differ because it does include the effect of drag enhancement. When running SHEAR7 manually the only way to
account for drag enhancement is to manually modify drag coefficients in the OrcaFlex model which is extremely
impractical.
First and last modes
These data items specify which modes are to be included in the .mds file. These data are not required if you select the
partial, user .mds file coupling option.
A value of '~' for the first mode is interpreted as the lowest numbered transverse mode. A value of '~' for the last
mode is interpreted as the highest numbered transverse mode. By transverse we mean that the modal analysis
classifies the mode as either Transverse or Mostly Transverse.
These data items are interpreted in exactly the same way as the FirstMode and LastMode parameters to the
SHEAR7MdsFile batch script command.
SHEAR7 .mds file
The location of the .mds file to be passed to SHEAR7. This data is only required if you select the partial, user .mds
file coupling option.
The location can be specified as either a full path or as a path relative to the directory containing the OrcaFlex file.
The .mds file must be generated separately which is normally done either form the modal analysis form or using
batch script.
Although SHEAR7 requires .mds files to be named "common.mds" that restriction does not apply to OrcaFlex's direct
interface to SHEAR7. This is a significant benefit of the direct interface to SHEAR7 because it allows you to have
multiple .mds files in the same directory.
Results output
When OrcaFlex calls SHEAR7 it captures the SHEAR7 output file, .out and .plt. These output files are included in the
Full Results tables for the Line. These output files can also be exported from the SHEAR7 data form and by using the
SHEAR7OutFile and SHEAR7PltFile batch script commands.
The .out and .plt files are automatically exported if you run the static analysis in batch mode. The files are exported
with file names based on the model file name and the line name.
The enhanced drag coefficients can be obtained from a static state range graph of x-Drag Coefficient (or indeed y-
Drag Coefficient which is identical).
Tecbnical details
The direct SHEAR7 interface operates by calling the SHEAR7 executable directly as follows:
1. A temporary directory is created to contain the SHEAR7 input and output files.
2. A SHEAR7 .dat file is generated in the temporary directory.
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3. The SHEAR7 .mds file is created in the temporary directory and called "Common.mds". How this .mds file is
created is determined by the chosen coupling option as described above.
4. The specified lift file is copied to the temporary directory and renamed as "Common.cl".
5. The SHEAR7 executable is run and the SHEAR7 .out and .plt files are read by OrcaFlex.
6. The .plt file is parsed by OrcaFlex to find the drag enhancements factors Cf.
This process depends very heavily on the current implementation details of SHEAR7. We have developed and tested
the SHEAR7 direct interface with SHEAR7 versions 4.4 and 4.5. We cannot guarantee that other versions of SHEAR7
will be compatible with the SHEAR7 direct interface.
OrcaFlex uses linear interpolation of the the Cf values if the locations read from the .plt file do not correspond to the
node locations in the OrcaFlex model. This can occur if the discretisation of a user-supplied .mds file differs from
that of the OrcaFlex model.
SHEAR7 data file
To export a SHEAR7 data files you must first provide extra data that SHEAR7 requires but which is not needed by
OrcaFlex. This is done from the SHEAR7 data form which can be opened from the Model Browser. Note that your
model must include at least one Line for the SHEAR7 data form to be available.
When you have input all the necessary data on the SHEAR7 data form you create the SHEAR7 data file by clicking on
the Export SHEAR7 Data File button. The model must be in Statics Complete state when you export the SHEAR7
data file but please note that data on the SHEAR7 data form is editable while in this state.
A more convenient way to work is to use the direct SHEAR7 interface which can automatically save the required
SHEAR7 input files, run SHEAR7, extract drag amplification factors and perform a coupled static analysis.
Include SHEAR7 data in text data file
By default the SHEAR7 data is not included in text data files saved by OrcaFlex. You can check this option to override
that default and ensure that SHEAR7 data is included in text data files.
If you are using the direct SHEAR7 interface then the SHEAR7 data is always included in text data files irrespective
of this setting.
Exporting from Batcb Script
The SHEAR7 data file can be exported from an OrcaFlex batch script using the SHEAR7DataFile command.
SHEAR7 data
The majority of the information in a SHEAR7 data file can be derived from the data for an OrcaFlex Line. However,
there are a number of other values which SHEAR7 needs and these are documented below. Mostly these values are
given the same name as used by SHEAR7. For full details on how they are used please refer to the SHEAR7
documentation.
Line
Specifies the OrcaFlex Line to be described in the SHEAR7 data file.
SHEAR7 File Version
SHEAR7 changed the format of its data file with the release of SHEAR7 version 4.5. OrcaFlex can output data files for
either version 4.3/4.4 or version 4.5, as specified by this data.
Uutput summary Locations
These data specify the locations at which a summary of the response is given in the SHEAR7 .out file. A value of '~'
can be used for the Arc Lengtb Range Start to mean 'End A'. Likewise, a value of '~' for Arc Lengtb Range End
means 'End B'.
Reduced Velocity Bandwidtbs
For SHEAR7 version 4.3/4.4 you specify the single-mode and multi-mode reduced velocity bandwidth.
For SHEAR7 version 4.5 you specify just a single value for reduced velocity bandwidth.
Structural Damping Ratio
Corresponds to the SHEAR7 data item of the same name.
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Primary zone amplitude limit {SHEAR7 version 4.5 only]
Corresponds to the SHEAR7 data item of the same name.
Mode Bebaviour Cut Uff
Corresponds to the SHEAR7 data item called "Cutoff level".
Number of Lift Coefficient Tables {SHEAR7 version 4.3J4.4 only]
This is the number of tables you want SHEAR7 to read from the common.cl file.
Current Profile
The discretisation option allows you to control how the current profile is output. You can specify that the current
profile contains one entry for each node in the line. However this can give rise to numerical problems in SHEAR7,
especially for finely segmented models, and so it is preferable to discretise the current more coarsely using the
regular spacing option.
You also specify the probability of occurrence (a number between 0 and 1) of the flow profile and the flow profile ID.
Young's Modulus
Young's modulus for the strength member. SHEAR7 uses this for computing stress and damage rate.
Power Ratio exponent {SHEAR7 version 4.5 only]
Corresponds to the SHEAR7 data item of the same name.
S-N Curve
Specifies the S-N curve to be used by SHEAR7 for its fatigue calculations. An endurance limit can be specified – this is
called the "cutoff stress range" in the SHEAR7 documentation.
Stress Concentration Factors
Specify a global stress concentration factor for the line and optionally a number of local stress concentration factors.
Section Data
The following data is specified on a section by section basis. That is different values can be specified for each
OrcaFlex line section. The SHEAR7 terminology for this is sectional zones. In the SHEAR7 data file that OrcaFlex
produces there is a one-to-one correspondence between OrcaFlex line sections and SHEAR7 sectional zones.
VIV Diameter
The VIV diameter specifies the diameter used by the VIV model. Separate values can be specified for each section.
The value specified is used for all nodes in that section. For a node at the intersection of two sections the VIV
diameter of the following section is used. The VIV Diameter can be set to '~', which is taken to mean 'same as the
section outer diameter'.
Stroubal Type, Stroubal Number
The Strouhal type and number defines the relationship of flow velocity and cylinder diameter to the local vortex
shedding frequency. Strouhal Type can be Rougb Cylinder or User Specified. Rough Cylinder corresponds to the
SHEAR7 Strouhal code 200. If User Specified is chosen then you must also specify a Strouhal Number.
Lift Coefficient Table, Lift Coefficient Factor
Lift Coefficient Table specifies which table is used from the common.cl file.
Lift Coefficient Factor corresponds to the SHEAR7 data item called Lift Coefficient Reduction Factor.
Reduced Velocity Damping Coefficients
Damping Coefficients for still water, low and high reduced velocity are specified.
SHEAR7 structural zones
When OrcaFlex generates the SHEAR7 data file it assumes a one-to-one mapping between OrcaFlex sections and
SHEAR7 structural zones. This has some implications for how you create your OrcaFlex model. Essentially,
anywhere on your line where you need SHEAR7 structural zone data to change you must ensure that there is an
OrcaFlex section boundary.
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SHEAR7 structural zone data comprises the following:
- Hydrodynamic and strength diameters.
- Added mass coefficient, lift coefficient and Strouhal number.
- Area moment of inertia, mass per unit length and tension variation.
- Hydrodynamic damping coefficients.
Since most of these properties are constant within an OrcaFlex section you will naturally introduce section
boundaries at the locations where they change. However, there are a few exceptions.
Lift coefficient, Strouhal number and hydrodynamic damping coefficients are SHEAR7 specific data which are
specified in OrcaFlex on the Section Data page of the SHEAR7 data form. You may need to introduce OrcaFlex section
boundaries which coincide with the locations where these properties change.
Area moment of inertia and tension variation are used by SHEAR7 to calculate modal frequencies. Typically these
parameters would not be used since OrcaFlex produces a modes file which is more accurate than the internal
SHEAR7 modal calculations.
The mass per unit length is also used by SHEAR7 to calculate modal frequencies and again this aspect of the SHEAR7
calculation would be bypassed when using a modes file produced by OrcaFlex. However, the mass per unit length is
used by SHEAR7 to compute damping ratio. For almost all situations in OrcaFlex the mass per unit length is constant
along a section.
One exception to this is a free-flooding line with sections that cross the water surface. Because SHEAR7 has a single
mass parameter for a structural zone this means that the mass is effectively smeared across the zone. A free-
flooding line has greater mass below the water surface because it is full of water. Quite often this issue is of little
significance but if you wish you can also change your OrcaFlex model to arrange that there is a section boundary at
the water surface. Similar issues arise when the slug flow contents method is specified.
The other modelling choice in OrcaFlex that leads to properties varying along the length of a section is when profiled
line types (e.g. stress joints) are used. Although it may be tempting to use many structural zones to represent the
variation of properties the SHEAR7 manual strongly recommends not doing so. Accordingly OrcaFlex outputs a
single structural zone for a profiled line type section which has the effect of smearing properties and we believe that
this is the correct approach to take in the vast majority of cases.
SHEAR7 Mds file
The SHEAR7 Mds file export facility is provided on the Modal Analysis form. To use it:
- You will need to create a SHEAR7 data file. The simplest way to do this is to use the built-in facility to export
SHEAR7 data files.
- Calculate the static position of the model.
- On the Results menu select the Modal Analysis.
- Do the modal analysis for the line you want to analyse. You must include calculation of the mode shapes and
include all modes that might to be needed by SHEAR7.
- Select the VIV page. For each mode, the VIV page reports the extent to which the mode is transverse (i.e. in the
VIV direction), inline (i.e. in the normal drag direction), axial, or some mixture. This helps you decide which
modes to export to SHEAR7. See Mode Selection Table below for details.
- The final column of the table shows which modes are currently selected to be exported to the .Mds file.
Whenever you calculate the modes OrcaFlex ticks just the Transverse and Mostly Transverse modes, but you
can then change the selection as required.
- Use the Export SHEAR7 Mds File button. A SHEAR7 .Mds file is generated for those modes that are currently
ticked for export. You are asked where to save the file. See Values Exported for details.
Warning: OrcaFlex does not calculate the mode slope; in its place OrcaFlex outputs zero. See Values Exported
for details.
Exporting from Batcb Script
The SHEAR7 Mds file can be exported from an OrcaFlex batch script using the SHEAR7MdsFile command.
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Mode Selection Table
VIV excitation occurs in the transverse direction. In SHEAR7 mode shapes are 1D since it assumes that all the modes
in the .Mds file are purely in that transverse direction. The OrcaFlex modal analysis is fully 3D, so in principle you
should therefore only export modes that are purely transverse.
In practice the natural modes do not always neatly divide into the transverse, inline and axial directions, so you will
sometimes have to export the modes that are nearest to being transverse. OrcaFlex therefore provides the mode
selection table to help you decide which modes should be exported to SHEAR7.
The table includes the following columns:
- Uffset Distribution displays a measure of how inline, transverse and axial the mode is. For details see Offset
Distribution.
- Mode Type classifies each mode according to the offset distribution. Transverse means that the transverse
component is more than 90% of the total, Mostly Transverse means that it is between 50% and 90%, and
similarly for Inline, Mostly Inline, Axial and Mostly Axial. Mixed means that none of the components are more
than 50% of the total.
- Export to SHEAR7 Mds File determines which modes will be exported to SHEAR7. When you calculate (or
recalculate) the modes OrcaFlex ticks just the Transverse and Mostly Transverse modes, but you can then
change the selection as required. See Discussion and Examples.
Values Exported
The first line in the .Mds file contains the number of selected modes and the number of nodes in the line. Then
follows a section giving the angular frequencies of the selected modes, in radians per second. Finally there follows a
section for each selected mode, giving the Mode Offset, Mode Slope and Mode Curvature.
Warning: OrcaFlex does not calculate the mode slope; in its place OrcaFlex outputs zero. The mode slope is
only used in SHEAR7 to correct the predicted RMS acceleration for a vertical riser, in the special
case where one is trying to model the gravitational contamination from tilt that a transversely
mounted accelerometer would measure. See the SHEAR7 documentation for details. The RMS
acceleration is listed in the SHEAR7 .plt plotting files.
Exported Mode Uffset and Mode Curvature
The OrcaFlex modal analysis gives vector values, but SHEAR7 requires scalar values. These are calculated as follows.
Let:
V = the mode shape vector calculated by OrcaFlex at a given node,
Vi Vt and Va = V's inline, transverse and axial component vectors, respectively,
VL = lateral component vector of V, given by VL = Vi + Vt (vector sum),
m = maximum value of |VL| for any node,
C = curvature vector at the node, for the mean position (this is a vector in the direction normal to the plane
of curvature),
dC/dm = linear rate of change of C per unit maximum lateral mode offset. This rate of change (a vector)
equals the change in curvature vector at the node caused by applying the mode offsets V to all the nodes and
then dividing by m.
Then the scalar Mode Offset and Mode Curvature values exported by OrcaFlex to the Mds file are
Mode Offset = Sign(Vt).|VL| / m
Mode Curvature = Sign(inline component of dC/dm).|dC/dm|
The reasoning behind these formulae is as follows:
- SHEAR7 assumes that the exported mode offset is in the transverse direction. This assumption applies to the
power-in zone, since in this zone SHEAR7 assumes that the mode offset is in the direction of VIV excitation.
However SHEAR7's power-out calculation will still be valid providing the mode offset is lateral (i.e. no axial
component), since fluid drag and damping occur in any lateral direction.
- OrcaFlex should therefore ideally export the transverse component of mode offset for the power-in zone and
the lateral offset for the power-out zone. However OrcaFlex does not know the power-in and power-out zones,
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The Creation Clearance can also be set to '~', in which case the new vortices are placed using the same algorithm
as in model 1. This sets the factor λ to the value that results in the tangential velocity contribution of the new vortex
at the separation point just cancelling out the previous tangential velocity at that point.
Coalesce Same, Coalesce Upposite
These are non-dimensional thresholds that are only used for coalescing in model 2. They control how close to each
other two vortices have to be before they are allowed to be coalesced into one combined vortex. For details, see
Coalescing.
There are separate threshold values depending on whether the two vortices have equal or opposite signs of
vorticity. So if one of the two vortices is clockwise and the other is anti-clockwise then the opposite sign threshold
will be used, whereas if they are both clockwise or both anti-clockwise then the same sign threshold will be used.
Reducing the thresholds makes the model coalesce vortices less often, so the model will have to keep track of more
vortices and the simulation will therefore be slower. Conversely, increasing the thresholds makes the model
coalesce more readily, so fewer vortices need to be tracked and the simulation is faster, but less accurate.
Our experience so far is that the default values of 0.04 for both thresholds gives a reasonable balance between
performance and accuracy. If the mass ratio (= mass of line / mass of water displaced) is low then the fluid forces
are more significant, and in these cases lower coalescing thresholds may be needed so that the fluid behaviour is
more accurately modelled.
Vortex Decay Constant, Vortex Decay Tbresbold 1, Vortex Decay Tbresbold 2
These data items set the rate of vortex strength decay in both vortex tracking models. The decay model is described
below. It is as in Sarpkaya and Shoaff's report (page 79) and the default values for this data are as given in that
report. We therefore recommend that the default values be used unless you wish to experiment with other values,
for example to calibrate the model.
Vortices are created at the separation points, with an initial vortex strength determined by the tangential velocity at
the separation point. The strength of each vortex then decays at a rate that depends on how far the vortex is away
from the centre of the disc, in the relative flow direction.
Let R be the disc radius (= half the line outer diameter) and D be the distance, measured in the relative flow
direction from the centre of the line to the vortex. In model 1, at each variable time step the vortex strength is scaled
by a factor λ that depends on D as follows:
- If D ≤ DecayThreshold1*R then λ = (1-DecayConstant)
- If D ≥ DecayThreshold2*R then λ = 1
- If DecayThreshold1*R < D < DecayThreshold2*R then λ varies linearly with D, from (1-DecayConstant) to 1.
The effect of this is that while the vortex is less than DecayThreshold1 radii downstream then the vortex loses
DecayConstant of its strength (e.g. DecayConstant=0.01 means 1% decay) per variable time step. While the vortex is
between DecayThreshold1 and DecayThreshold2 radii downstream its rate of decay falls linearly (as a function of
D) to zero. And when the vortex is more than DecayThreshold2 radii downstream then there is no decay.
Clearly DecayConstant must be in the range 0 to 1, and DecayThreshold1 must be less than DecayThreshold2. Note
that DecayThreshold1 and DecayThreshold2 can be set to Infinity. If either of them is Infinity then λ = 1-
DecayConstant always, so the vortices always lose DecayConstant of their strength per variable time step.
The same decay model is used in model 2, except that the factor λ is adjusted to allow for the fact that model 2 uses
the outer time step instead of the variable time step used in model 1. The adjustment results in the same rate of
decay per unit time.
Drag Coefficients
The vortex tracking model includes the drag effects in both the transverse and inline directions, but not in the axial
direction. When the vortex tracking model is used, OrcaFlex therefore suppresses the components of the usual
Morison drag force in the transverse and inline directions, but includes the component in the axial direction. The
drag coefficients for the normal directions are therefore not used, but the axial drag coefficient is used.
Results
The Vortex Force is available as line force results variables. This reports the total lift and drag force. Note that this is
the sum of the force generated by the vortex tracking model, which is in the inline and transverse directions and
already includes the drag force in those directions, plus the standard Morison drag force in the axial direction.
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VIV Toolbox, Time Domain Models
429
The stagnation and separation points are available as line angle results variables.
Transverse VIV Offset is also available as a line position results variable.
9.2.3 VIV Drawing
With the time-domain VIV models you can control how various aspects of VIV are drawn on the 3D view, by setting
data on the VIV Drawing page on the line data form.
Arc Lengtb Intervals
You can control which nodes have VIV detail drawn, by specifying one or more Arc Lengtb Intervals. An arc length
interval specifies a contiguous length of line From one specified arc length To another. The VIV details are drawn
for all nodes whose arc lengths fall in any one of the specified intervals. For convenience '~' in the From column
means End A of the line, and '~' in the To column means End B.
For example, to view the detail for one node only, specify 1 arc length interval and set both its From and To values
equal to the arc length of that node. Whereas to view the detail for the whole line specify 1 arc length interval and
set both its From and To values equal to '~'.
Wbat is Drawn
The following VIV details are drawn for all nodes whose arc lengths fall in any one of the specified arc length
intervals.
For all the time domain VIV models, the vortex force is drawn as a line radiating from the disc centre in the direction
of the vortex force. The line length is scaled so that a vortex force equal to the standard Morison drag force with
Cd=1 in a relative velocity of 1m/s, is represented by a line 1 disc radius long (i.e. just reaching the edge of the disc).
For the vortex tracking models only, and only if the maximum number of vortices logged is set greater than zero,
then the following extra details are drawn.
- The node is drawn as a disc (even if you have not specified nodes drawn as discs) and the stagnation and
separation points are drawn on the edge of the disc.
- The positive and negative vortices are drawn as circles whose areas are proportional to the vortex strengths.
The constant of proportionality can be controlled by setting Area per Unit Strengtb.
- The centre-lines of the positive and negative vortex sheets, and the wake line are drawn.
Note: The vortices and sheet centre-lines drawn are limited by the specified maximum number of vortices
logged.
For all these items you can control the pen used for drawing. With the vortex tracking models, for example, this
allows you to suppress (by setting the pen style to null) or downplay (by choosing a suitable colour) individual
aspects of the detail.

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CONTENTS 1 INTRODUCTION
1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 Installing OrcaFlex Running OrcaFlex Parallel Processing Distributed OrcaFlex Orcina Licence Monitor Demonstration Version OrcaFlex Examples Validation and QA Orcina References and Links

Contents

11
11 13 14 15 15 15 15 16 16 16

2 TUTORIAL
2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 2.10 Getting Started Building a Simple System Adding a Line Adjusting the View Static Analysis Dynamic Analysis Multiple Views Looking at Results Getting Output Input Data

21
21 21 21 22 22 23 23 24 24 24

3 USER INTERFACE
3.1 Introduction
3.1.1 3.1.2 3.1.3 3.1.4 3.1.5 3.1.6 Program Windows The Model Model States Toolbar Status Bar Mouse and Keyboard Actions Data Files Text Data Files Simulation Files Model Browser Views Move Selected Objects Wizard

25
25
25 25 26 27 28 28

3.2

OrcaFlex Model Files
3.2.1 3.2.2 3.2.3

31
31 32 36

3.3

Model Browser
3.3.1 3.3.2

37
39 39

3

Contents

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Libraries
3.4.1 3.4.2 Using Libraries Building a Library File Menu Edit Menu Model Menu Calculation Menu View Menu Replay Menu Graph Menu Results Menu Tools Menu Workspace Menu Window Menu Help Menu View Parameters View Control Navigating in 3D Views Shaded Graphics How Objects are Drawn Selecting Objects Creating and Destroying Objects Dragging Objects Connecting Objects Printing, Copying and Exporting Views Replay Parameters Replay Control Custom Replays Custom Replay Wizard Superimpose Times Data Fields Data Form Editing Producing Results Selecting Variables Summary and Full Results Statistics Linked Statistics Offset Tables Line Clashing Report Time History and XY Graphs Range Graphs Offset Graphs Spectral Response Graphs

3.4 3.5

40
40 43

Menus
3.5.1 3.5.2 3.5.3 3.5.4 3.5.5 3.5.6 3.5.7 3.5.8 3.5.9 3.5.10 3.5.11 3.5.12

44
44 45 46 47 48 49 49 50 50 50 51 51

3.6

3D Views
3.6.1 3.6.2 3.6.3 3.6.4 3.6.5 3.6.6 3.6.7 3.6.8 3.6.9 3.6.10

52
53 53 54 55 56 58 58 58 58 59

3.7

Replays
3.7.1 3.7.2 3.7.3 3.7.4 3.7.5

59
60 60 61 61 63

3.8 3.9

Data Forms
3.8.1 3.8.2

63
64 64

Results
3.9.1 3.9.2 3.9.3 3.9.4 3.9.5 3.9.6 3.9.7 3.9.8 3.9.9 3.9.10 3.9.11

65
65 67 67 68 68 69 69 70 71 72 72

4

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3.9.12 3.9.13 Extreme Statistics Results Presenting OrcaFlex Results Modifying Graphs

Contents

72 75

3.10 Graphs
3.10.1

76
77

3.11 3.12 3.13 3.14 3.15 3.16

Spreadsheets Text Windows Workspaces Comparing Data Preferences Printing and Exporting

78 78 78 79 80 82

4 AUTOMATION
4.1 4.2 Introduction Batch Processing
4.2.1 4.2.2 4.2.3 4.2.4 4.2.5 4.2.6 4.2.7 4.2.8 4.2.9 Introduction Script Files Script Syntax Script Commands Examples of setting data Handling Script Errors Obtaining Variable Names Automating Script Generation Automating Text Data File Generation Introduction OrcaFlex Spreadsheet Instruction Format Pre-defined commands Basic commands Time History and related commands Range Graph commands Data commands Instructions Wizard Duplicate Instructions

83
83 83
83 85 85 85 88 93 93 93 96

4.3

Post-processing
4.3.1 4.3.2 4.3.3 4.3.4 4.3.5 4.3.6 4.3.7 4.3.8 4.3.9 4.3.10

97
97 98 100 101 102 103 103 104 105 107

5 THEORY
5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Coordinate Systems Direction Conventions Object Connections Interpolation Methods Static Analysis
5.5.1 5.5.2 5.5.3 Line Statics Buoy and Vessel Statics Vessel Multiple Statics

111
111 112 113 113 115
115 119 119

5.6

Dynamic Analysis

120

5

Contents

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5.6.1 5.6.2 Calculation Method Ramping 121 123

5.7 5.8 5.9 5.10

Friction Theory Spectral Response Analysis Extreme Statistics Theory Environment Theory
5.10.1 5.10.2 5.10.3 5.10.4 5.10.5 5.10.6 5.11.1 5.11.2 5.11.3 5.11.4 5.11.5 5.11.6 5.11.7 5.12.1 5.12.2 5.12.3 5.12.4 5.12.5 5.12.6 5.12.7 5.12.8 5.12.9 5.12.10 5.12.11 5.12.12 5.12.13 5.12.14 5.12.15 5.12.16 5.12.17 5.12.18 5.12.19 5.12.20 5.12.21 5.13.1 5.13.2 5.13.3 5.13.4 5.13.5 Buoyancy Variation with Depth Current Theory Seabed Theory Seabed Non-Linear Soil Model Theory Morison's Equation Waves Vessel Rotations RAOs and Phases RAO Quality Checks Hydrodynamic and Wind Damping Stiffness, Added Mass and Damping Impulse Response and Convolution Wave Drift Loads Overview Structural Model Details Calculation Stages Calculation Stage 1 Tension Forces Calculation Stage 2 Bend Moments Calculation Stage 3 Shear Forces Calculation Stage 4 Torsion Moments Calculation Stage 5 Total Load Line End Orientation Line Local Orientation Treatment of Compression Contents Flow Effects Line Pressure Effects Pipe Stress Calculation Pipe Stress Matrix Hydrodynamic and Aerodynamic Loads Drag Chains Line End Conditions Interaction with the Sea Surface Interaction with Seabed and Shapes Clashing Overview Lumped Buoy Added Mass, Damping and Drag Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Added Mass and Damping Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drag Contact Forces

123 126 127 129
129 129 130 131 137 138

5.11 Vessel Theory

145
145 146 147 149 151 152 153

5.12 Line Theory

155
155 156 157 158 159 161 161 162 162 163 164 164 166 167 168 169 172 173 173 174 175

5.13 6D Buoy Theory

177
177 179 180 182 184

6

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5.14 3D Buoy Theory 5.15 Winch Theory 5.16 Shape Theory

Contents

185 186 187

6 SYSTEM MODELLING: DATA AND RESULTS
6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Modelling Introduction Data in Time History Files Variable Data
6.3.1 6.4.1 6.4.2 6.4.3 6.4.4 6.4.5 6.4.6 6.4.7 6.4.8 6.4.9 6.4.10 External Functions Statics Dynamics Integration & Time Steps Explicit Integration Implicit Integration Numerical Damping Response Calculation Properties Report Drawing Results Sea Data Sea Density Data Seabed Data Wave Data Data for Regular Waves Data for Random Waves Data for JONSWAP and ISSC Spectra Data for Ochi-Hubble Spectrum Data for Torsethaugen Spectrum Data for Gaussian Swell Spectrum Data for User Defined Spectrum Data for Time History Waves Data for User Specified Components Data for Response Calculation Waves Preview Modelling Design Waves Setting up a Random Sea Current Data Wind Data Drawing Data External Functions Results Wave Scatter Conversion

189
189 190 192
193

General Data

194
195 197 197 198 199 200 201 201 201 202

6.5

Environment
6.5.1 6.5.2 6.5.3 6.5.4 6.5.5 6.5.6 6.5.7 6.5.8 6.5.9 6.5.10 6.5.11 6.5.12 6.5.13 6.5.14 6.5.15 6.5.16 6.5.17 6.5.18 6.5.19 6.5.20 6.5.21 6.5.22 6.5.23

202
202 203 204 207 209 209 210 211 212 212 212 213 214 214 214 215 217 219 221 222 223 223 224

6.6 6.7

Solid Friction Coefficients Data Vessels
6.7.1 Vessel Data

228 229
230

7

Contents

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6.7.2 6.7.3 6.7.4 6.7.5 Vessel Types Modelling Vessel Slow Drift Vessel Response Reports Vessel Results Line Data Line Types Attachments Rayleigh Damping Line Results Drag Chain Results Flex Joint Results Line Setup Wizard Line Type Wizard Chain Rope/Wire Line with Floats Homogeneous Pipe Hoses and Umbilicals Modelling Stress Joints Modelling Bend Restrictors Modelling non-linear homogeneous pipes Line Ends Modelling Compression in Flexibles Wings Common Data Applied Loads Wing Data Wing Type Data Lumped Buoy Properties Lumped Buoy Drawing Data Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Properties Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Added Mass and Damping Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drag Spar Buoy and Towed Fish Drawing Shaded Drawing Other uses External Functions Properties Report Results Buoy Hydrodynamics Hydrodynamic Properties of a Rectangular Box Modelling a Surface-Piercing Buoy Data Properties Report Results 239 263 265 267

6.8

Lines
6.8.1 6.8.2 6.8.3 6.8.4 6.8.5 6.8.6 6.8.7 6.8.8 6.8.9 6.8.10 6.8.11 6.8.12 6.8.13 6.8.14 6.8.15 6.8.16 6.8.17 6.8.18 6.8.19

269
271 286 296 300 303 314 315 315 316 317 322 325 329 331 333 335 337 339 342

6.9

6D Buoys
6.9.1 6.9.2 6.9.3 6.9.4 6.9.5 6.9.6 6.9.7 6.9.8 6.9.9 6.9.10 6.9.11 6.9.12 6.9.13 6.9.14 6.9.15 6.9.16 6.9.17 6.9.18 6.9.19 6.10.1 6.10.2 6.10.3

343
344 345 347 347 348 350 351 352 354 355 356 356 358 358 358 359 361 362 364

6.10 3D Buoys

367
368 369 369

6.11 Winches
8

370

2 VIVA SHEAR7 405 405 405 410 Time Domain Models 417 9 .11 8.11.12.8 8.1 6.1.13.1.2 8.13.3 6.10 8.1 Modal Analysis Theory 387 388 8 FATIGUE ANALYSIS 8.11.11.7 6.11.3 8.5 8.13.14 All Objects Data Form 383 7 MODAL ANALYSIS 7.5 6.13.w 6.1 9.5 6.7 8.11.4 6.1 9.2 6.13.12.13 Shapes 6.9 8.6 6.3 6.4 6.13.12 8.13.4 8.11.2 Frequency Domain Models 9.1 6.8 Data Wire Properties Control Control by Stage Control by Whole Simulation Drive Unit External Functions Results Data Results Data Blocks Cylinders Curved Plates Planes Drawing Results Contents 371 371 372 372 373 373 374 374 6.1 8.6 8.2 6.2 375 375 377 6.6 6.11.12 Links 6.13 Commands Data Load Cases Data for Regular Analysis Load Cases Data for Rainflow Analysis Load Cases Data for Spectral Analysis Load Cases Data for SHEAR7 Components Data Analysis Data S-N and T-N Curves Integration Parameters Results Fatigue Points How Damage is Calculated 391 392 393 394 394 395 397 397 398 399 400 400 401 401 9 VIV TOOLBOX 9.11.1 6.7 377 378 379 380 381 382 382 383 6.

3 Wake Oscillator Models Vortex Tracking Models VIV Drawing 420 423 429 10 .2.1 9.2.2 9.Contents w 9.2.

installation and towed systems. A powerful processor with fast floating point and memory performance. Oceanography and Renewable energy sectors. This is less important than processor performance but some aspects of OrcaFlex do perform better when more memory is available. regular and random waves. global analysis. and indeed other programs. 1. However. If you have a multi-core system with a 64 bit version of Windows then you may benefit from fitting even more memory. A screen resolution of 1280×1024 or greater with 32 bit colour. In addition we have found the 64 bit versions of Windows to be more effective at multi-threaded calculations. Results output includes animated replay plus full graphical and numerical presentation. This is the most important factor since OrcaFlex is a computation-intensive program and simulation run times can be long for complex models. Installing OrcaFlex Welcome to OrcaFlex (version 9. This can benefit OrcaFlex. In addition to the time domain features.4a). 1987-2010. As much disk space as you require to store simulation files. including all types of marine risers (rigid and flexible). especially on multi-core systems. For these reasons we currently recommend 64 bit Vista/7 as the best platforms for running OrcaFlex. If you are using large fonts (120dpi) the screen resolution must be at least 1280×1024. Both 32 bit and 64 bit versions of Windows are supported. please contact Orcina or your Orcina agent. For further details of OrcaFlex and our other software. If you are using small fonts (96dpi) the screen resolution must be at least 1024×768.1 INSTALLING ORCAFLEX Hardware Requirements OrcaFlex can be installed and run on any computer that has:   Windows XP. but can be 100's of megabytes each for complex models. A multi-core system to take advantage of OrcaFlex's multi-threading capabilities. Most notably the 64 bit versions of Windows are able to make use of larger amounts of memory. etc. line dynamics after release. Inputs include ship motions. Microsoft Excel (Excel 2000. OrcaFlex is a powerful package and to get the best results we would recommend:        11 . Note: Although OrcaFlex is a 32 bit program.w 1 INTRODUCTION Introduction. OrcaFlex is fully 3D and can handle multi-line systems. This requires the 32 bit version of Excel. the 64 bit versions of Windows run 32 bit programs very efficiently and have certain advantages over 32 bit versions of Windows. Simulation files vary in size. modal analysis can be performed for individual lines and RAOs can be calculated for any results variable using the Spectral Response Analysis feature. All rights reserved. moorings. or later) in order to use the OrcaFlex automation facilities. At least 2GB of memory. The program can be operated in batch mode for routine analysis work and there are also special facilities for post-processing your results including fully integrated fatigue analysis capabilities. OrcaFlex makes extensive use of graphics to assist understanding. Copyright notice Copyright Orcina Ltd. Windows Vista or Windows 7. floating lines. OrcaFlex is a fully 3D non-linear time domain finite element program capable of dealing with arbitrarily large deflections of the flexible from the initial configuration. A DirectX 9 compatible graphics card with at least 256MB memory for the most effective use of the shaded graphics facility. OrcaFlex provides fast and accurate analysis of catenary systems such as flexible risers and umbilical cables under wave and current loads and externally imposed motions. a marine dynamics program developed by Orcina for static and dynamic analysis of a wide range of offshore systems. OrcaFlex is also used for applications in the Defence. If you are new to OrcaFlex then please see the tutorial and examples. A lumped mass element is used which greatly simplifies the mathematical formulation and allows quick and efficient development of the program to include additional force terms and constraints on the system in response to new engineering requirements.

click on Read Me on the Autorun menu or open the file Installation Guide. Note: The dongle is effectively your licence to run one copy (or more. Installing the Dongle OrcaFlex is supplied with a dongle. Also on our website.dat and . For details see the OrcaDongle help file. with OrcaFlex. You can then open an OrcaFlex file by simply double-clicking the filename in Explorer. including information on network and silent installation. Warning: Dongles labelled 'Hxxx' (where xxx is the dongle number) must be plugged into the machine on which OrcaFlex is run. In the latter case the dongle should be installed by your network administrator. and it should be treated with appropriate care and security. Then run the extracted file Setup.orcina. Dongle Troubleshooting We supply. what you have purchased or leased. If you have received OrcaFlex by e-mail or from the web you will have a zip file. if the dongle is enabled for more copies) of OrcaFlex. The OrcaDongle program is included on the OrcaFlex CD. In general. allowing the program to be shared by multiple users. are all the licences in use? The Orcina Licence Monitor may be of use in determining this.  For further details. USB dongles are preferred. Orcina Shell Extension When you install OrcaFlex the Orcina Shell Extension is also installed.pdf on the CD. In any case. It is. since they seem to be more reliable.exe. such as which version of OrcaFlex wrote the file and the Comments text for the model in the file. Extract the files from the zip file to some temporary location. but they can also be used over a network. It is also available for download from www.sim) with OrcaFlex. w If installing from CD.htm on the OrcaFlex CD. The shell extension also provides file properties information.Introduction. and associates the data and simulation file types (. For details see the file CD:\OrcShlEx\ReadMe. If you have any difficulty installing OrcaFlex please contact Orcina or your Orcina agent. Then click on 'Install OrcaFlex'. Diagnostics If OrcaFlex fails to start. Orcina can normally resupply disks or manuals (a charge being made to cover costs) if they are lost or damaged. and possibly a number of licence files (. See below for details. This application keeps track of the number of OrcaFlex licences claimed on a network at any time. If they are.com/Support/Dongle. 12 . a small hardware device that must be attached to the machine or to the network to which the machine is attached.lic). Types of Dongle Dongles are available for either parallel or USB ports. a dongle utility program called OrcaDongle. then please check the following. with the error that it can't obtain a licence. instructions can be found in the Dongle directory on the OrcaFlex CD. and you may choose to install it from the Autorun menu in the same way as OrcaFlex. You will also need to install the OrcaFlex dongle supplied by Orcina. parallel ports are becoming less common on new machines. Dongles labelled 'Nxxx' can be used in the same way as 'Hxxx' dongles.  If you are using a network dongle. But we can only supply a new dongle in the case where the old dongle is returned to us. If you lose your dongle you cannot run OrcaFlex. 'N' dongles