Intervention and workover operations can significantly affect the structural integrity of subsea-wellhead systems with regard to their fatigue life. The increasing frequency of these operations has called for a renewed focus on the fatigue capacity of subsea wells, which has greatly improved the overall methodology used for wellhead-fatigue analysis. However, thermal effects along the well have yet to be incorporated. This paper analyzes wellhead-fatigue damage during a workover operation considering the thermal effects.
The goal of the present study is to investigate the effects of the temperature variation along the well on wellhead-fatigue-damage rates by incorporating the temperature profiles of casing strings and cement into the fatigue-damage assessment of a particular wellhead system during a workover operation.
In this study, a decoupled approach is proposed. The temperatures of riser, wellhead, and well components are calculated for different instants during the workover operation using a finite-difference method. Then, the temperature profiles for a given moment during the operation are incorporated into a 3D finite-element model (FEM) of the wellhead system.
A structural analysis with focus on stresses at the fatigue hot spots is performed. Subsequently, a dynamic analysis of the riser provides the loading time history to which the wellhead is subjected; finally, combining the results of the structural analysis and the riser-response analysis enables the fatigue damage during the simulated operation to be estimated.
The well adopted in this study follows a conventional subsea-completion program on the Norwegian continental shelf, with four casing strings and a production liner....
Thermal Effects on Subsea-Wellhead Fatigue During Workover Operations
01 August 2016