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Seabed based geotechnical investigation systems have been widely used in deep water site investigation in the offshore oil and gas industry. Compared to rotary boring systems, seabed based systems are relatively cost effective and minimize the disturbance from typical drilling processes. Piston corer is the most widely used type of equipment to retrieve soil samples in seabed based systems. In this paper, a conceptual design of a low-cost piston corer system named QuickCore is proposed. This system can be efficiently deployed and recovered by standard Anchor Handling Vessels (AHV). A key feature of this proposed piston corer system is a steel frame to cover the piston corer equipment and enable the piston corer to be brought over the stern roller of AHV. In contrast to a typical piston corer system used in offshore geotechnical investigation, the new design will significantly reduce the operational cost by avoiding the use of specialized vessels. Finally, a numerical equation to estimate the required drop weight is proposed.
Date of Conference: 19-22 Sept. 2011