Torque in mooring chain. Part 1: Background and theory
Hobbs, R. E. and Ridge, I. M. L. (2005) Torque in mooring chain. Part 1: Background and theory. Journal of Strain Analysis for Engineering Design, 40 (7). pp. 703-713. ISSN 0309-3247
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To link to this item DOI: 10.1243/030932405x30867
Chain in both its forms - common (or stud-less) and stud-link - has many engineering applications. It is widely used as a component in the moorings of offshore floating systems, where its ruggedness and corrosion resistance make it an attractive choice. Chain exhibits some interesting behaviour in that when straight and subject to an axial load it does not twist or generate any torque, but if twisted or loaded when in a twisted condition it behaves in a highly non-linear manner, with the torque dependent upon the level of twist and axial load. Clearly an understanding of the way in which chains may behave and interact with other mooring components (such as wire rope, which also exhibits coupling between axial load and generated torque) when they are in service is essential. However, the sizes of chain that are in use in offshore moorings (typical bar diameters are 75 mm and greater) are too large to allow easy testing. This paper, which is in two parts, aims to address the issues and considerations relevant to torque in mooring chain. The first part introduces a frictionless theory that predicts the resultant torques and 'lift' in the links as non-dimensionalized functions of the angle of twist. Fortran code is presented in an Appendix, which allows the reader to make use of the analysis. The second part of the paper presents results from experimental work on both stud-less (41 mm) and stud-link (20.5 and 56 mm) chains. Torsional data are presented in both 'constant twist' and 'constant load' forms, as well as considering the lift between the links.