SwRI adds new capability for deepwater ocean simulation

SwRI adds new capability for deepwater ocean simulation

A new deepwater ocean simulator, capable of modeling depths of more than 13,000 feet, is now available for testing services at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI).

The cylindrical simulator was designed, fabricated and built by SwRI (San Antonio, Texas) in accordance with Section VIII-Division 2 rules of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code. The institute has previously designed similar fixtures under contract to various clients. Measuring 24 feet in length, with a 50-inch diameter and a wall thickness of five inches, the simulator is crafted of HY 100 high– strength steel. The simulator is housed in a test pit, also constructed at the institute. The simulator is rated to 6,000 psig, equivalent to a depth of 13,280 feet.

“We built the new simulator to enhance the many test services we already offer to the offshore oil and gas industry,” said Jessie Ramon, manager of Test and Evaluation in SwRI’s Mechanical and Materials Engineering Division. “Previously, our capabilities were limited to simulation depths up to 9,000 feet,” he added. “This new capability allows us to help our clients in a growing industry address the challenges of operating in a deeper environment.”

According to SwRI, the simulator can be used to test a variety of offshore components, including subsea valves, production control pods, tubular goods, pressure-resistant housings and flotation materials. “The new facility gives us an expanded capability for services to the U.S. Navy and marine industries, as well as our traditional offshore oil and gas clients,” Ramon said.

SwRI has nearly 50 years of experience in offshore and marine technologies. The institute offers research, design, development, prototype construction, testing and field services. For more information, contact Jessie Roman at (210) 522-2441 or jramon@swri.org. /st/

Copyright Compass Publications, Inc. Aug 2001

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