Current Loads
The average loads due to current are an important design parameter for mooring or for a Dynamic Positioning (DP) system of offshore structures. Traditionally, these loads have been obtained in wind tunnels and/or model tow-tests in the basins. Nowadays, these loads can be obtained using CFD with good accuracy, i.e. within 5 to 10% compared to experiments, at low costs and in acceptable turn-over time. Furthermore, CFD can play an important role in obtaining insight into scale effects.

Other important aspects for current loads that can be investigated with CFD are:

  • Dynamic current loads
  • Shielding effects
  • Shallow water effects
  • Thruster interaction effects
  • Scale effects

Figure 1: Current loads on LNG carrier. Left: flow field around LNG carrier for 140 degree current heading. Right: comparing calculated ReFRESCO results with experimental results.

Figure 2: Top: Flow field visualization for Semi-submersible at 120 degree current heading.Bottom: Calculated current loads with and without thrusters compared with measured results in Offshore Basin and in windtunnel.

Figure 3: dynamic current loads on schematic semi-submersible. The model-scale and full-scale current loads are compared with model-scale experimental results.


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