A new operability and predictability enhanced riser control system for deepwater marine operation: an integrated riser hybrid tensioning system

Wu, Yin, 1980-
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This dissertation presents a novel riser hybrid tensioning system by integrating an electrically powered riser tensioning system into existing hydro-pneumatic tensioners. Compared to current passive hydro-pneumatic tensioners, this new riser hybrid tensioning system provides the capability of dynamically controlling the tension in the riser string. This feature opens a wide horizon of different active riser control strategies to achieve the systematic riser control solution. The objective of this study is to increase the predictability and safety of the whole riser system, and to extend the operability of the riser tensioning system into other operations. An overall structure framework of this novel hybrid riser tensioning system is proposed, comprising a direct driven electrical tensioners, hydro-pneumatic tensioners, a super-capacitor based energy storage system, power dissipaters, an overall tension controller and a power management controller. Hardware configurations are suggested. A riser data logging system is introduced, providing more comprehensive riser status data. A power management control strategy and overall coordination architecture to integrate the whole system are proposed. As the main functionality of the riser tensioning system, a new active heave compensation control strategy is analyzed in detail, by using this new riser hybrid tensioning system. A LQG controller and a H [subscript infinity symbol] controller are designed. The position chasing technique produces predictive and accurate tension commands for the electrical tensioners. Both Matlab simulation and hardware implementation confirm the feasibility of this concept, and further verifies that a more accurate control performance could be achieved by the electrical tensioners 180° compensating the tension fluctuation caused by the hydro-pneumatic tensioners. A novel testability and predictability enhanced anti-recoil control algorithm is implemented in the electrical tensioners. A position control strategy is proposed with the objective of moving the riser body to a desired elevation height in a predictive manner. A system model and a Kalman estimator are built, and a LQG controller is designed. The simulation demonstrates that the riser lifting height can adjust to any reasonable value for different test environment. This anti-recoil control concept reduces the risk of catastrophic damage, and allows us to perform maintenance tests much more frequently to bring back operator’s confidence. During harsh sea state, the VIV can be suppressed by using the dynamic control of the hybrid tensioning system, at frequencies and magnitudes made available by the electrical tensioning system. The objective is to achieve the VIV suppression by avoiding the excitation of the oscillation locking into the resonance conditions, and by reducing oscillation energy to be built in riser. A modal analysis of a tensioned Euler-Bernoulli beam is studied. Two control methods are proposed. Simulations results demonstrate that the oscillation is effectively reduced at the dominant lock-in frequency. Finally, this riser hybrid tensioning system opens the possibility to extend the tensioning system operability into other drilling operations. A motion stabilizer supporting the heave compensation of the drill pipes and the DST tools can be eliminated by connecting the drill pipes onto the telescopic joint. Another application would be that the electrical tensioners can run under position control mode after the riser is recoiled and soft hang-off on tensioners. The riser string position with respect to the seabed can still be controlled, during the vessel moving among different well heads.