Offshore Technology Research Center


OTRC Project Summary

Project Title:

Horizontal Capacity of Suction Caissons in Normally Consolidated Kaolinite

Prinicipal Investigators:

Roy Olson and Alan Rauch


Minerals Management Service and Industry Consortium

Completion Date:

December, 2003

Final Report ID#

B122(Click to view final report abstract)

Note: This study was part of a broader project Suction Caissons: Model Tests (MMS Project #362)

The research described in this thesis concentrates on the horizontal capacity of suction caissons in normally consolidated soil. This work is part of a larger research project underway at the University of Texas at Austin to measure the behavior of laboratory-scale suction caissons. Tests are conducted using an instrumented model caisson that is installed, using suction, in tanks of normally consolidated clay. El-Gharbawy (1998) studied the behavior of caissons with the load applied at the top center, Pedersen (2001) studied the properties of the test bed soil, Mecham (2001) designed and built the apparatus used to conduct the tests, and Luke (2002) studied caisson behavior during axial insertion and extraction. In this thesis, the behavior and capacity of the model caisson is studied with horizontal loads applied at different depths below the mudline. These tests were conducted at 1-g with a sealed top cap, under rapid loading conditions. Described herein are the laboratory equipment and soil deposit used for lateral loading of the prototype suction caisson.

Related Publications: Coffman, R. A., R. M. El-Sherbiny, A. F. Rauch, and R. E. Olson (2004), “Measured Horizontal Capacity of Suction Caissons”, Proc., Offshore Tech. Conf., Houston, Paper 16161

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