Current Profile Energy and Ocean Moorings

[+] Author and Article Information
P. J. Hartman, C. D. Nash

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, R. I.

J. Eng. Ind 98(2), 558-562 (May 01, 1976) (5 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3438937 History: Received July 31, 1975; Online July 15, 2010


Thirty-five deep ocean current profiles obtained by direct current meter measurements have been studied to determine their influence on buoy mooring systems. The total kinetic energy of each current profile has been calculated and the observed maximum determined to be 1 075 200 joules (1075.2 kJ) as contained in the Gulf Stream Current profile at 37 deg 12 min N, 67 deg W. A single graph is presented which delineates the observed natural bounds on shape, kinetic energy, and current speed of these profiles. Single point nylon moorings in 3000 meters of water are shown to be nearly insensitive to current profile shape when the total kinetic energy is concentrated in the upper 1/6 of the water column. Well developed, high energy profiles do exhibit this concentration. As a result, mooring analysis in the survival environment can be greatly simplified. Comparisons between real and idealized current profiles are provided to demonstrate this phenomenon.

Copyright © 1976 by ASME
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