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Steel and Composite Structures
  Volume 4, Number 2, April 2004 , pages 149-167

Reserve capacity of fatigue damaged internally ring stiffened tubular joints
T. S. Thandavamoorthy

    Offshore platforms have to serve in harsh environments and hence are likely to be damaged due to wave induced fatigue and environmental corrosion. Welded tubular joints in offshore platforms are most vulnerable to fatigue damage. Such damages endanger the integrity of the structure. Therefore it is all the more essential to assess the capacity of damaged structure from the point of view of its safety. Eight internally ring stiffened fatigue damaged tubular joints with nominal chord and brace diameter of 324 mm and 219 mm respectively and thickness 12 mm and 8 mm respectively were tested under axial brace compression loading to evaluate the reserve capacity of the joints. These joints had earlier been tested under fatigue loading under corrosive environments of synthetic sea water and hence they have been cracked. The extent of the damage varied from 35 to 50 per cent. One stiffened joint was also tested under axial brace tension loading. The residual strength of fatigue damaged stiffened joint tested under tension loading was observed to be less than one fourth of that tested under compression loading. It was observed in this experimental investigation that in the damaged condition, the joints possessed an in-built load-transfer mechanism. A bi-linear stress-strain model was developed in this investigation to predict the reserve capacity of the joint. This model considered the strain hardening effect. Close agreement was observed between the experimental and predicted results. The paper presents in detail the experimental investigation and the development of the analytical model to predict the reserve capacity of internally ring stiffened joints.
Key Words
    offshore platforms; internally ring stiffened joins; cracked; reserve capacity; experimental; analytical; bi-linear constitutive model.
Shock and Vibration Laboratory, Structural Engineering Research Centre,rnCSIR Campus, Taramani, Chennai 600 113, Tamil Nadu, India

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