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Fastener acceptance tool: a knowledge integration approach

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Narasi Sridhar, DNV GL Narasi Sridhar
Program Director, Materials Technology Development Section

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Flow chart of the fabrication process - coatings - operational factory

Challenge

Recent offshore fastener failures and near-misses have raised awareness for tighter specifications and quality control. 

Legacy ageing systems and long supply chains increase uncertainties of fastener quality. 

There is a need for a systematic acceptance method to reduce future fastener failures. 

Solution

This project aims to develop a flexible, transparent and easy-to-use reliability analysis tool. The tool will combine laboratory data, failure analyses, a fracture mechanics model, field operational data, and fastener material data to rapidly assess acceptability of fasteners. 

Benefits

  • Improved decision making under uncertainty
  • Reduced risk
  • Ability to prioritize resources
  • Flexibility in incorporating new fastener technology.

Value

  • The 2012 bolt failure in BOP/LMRP stack resulted in drilling fluid loss
  • If the failure had occurred during production, the resulting oil leak would have cost billions of dollars
  • GE recalled 10,000 bolts because of the failure. In the Gulf of Mexico alone there are more than 60,000 bolts.