Structures offshore and onshore

Many of the oil and gas installations we design will have to survive extremely challenging environments.

The installations themselves are complex, and must retain high integrity throughout their operational life. But the challenges of the environment they are in add more difficulties and increase the risk, whether this is an offshore structure that has to withstand the North Sea, or pipelines in the soft clays of West Africa or the carbonate sands in the Gulf of Mexico.

Deep and solid expertise gained over time - and experience of extreme environments - is needed to design these installations to get the best out of them.

For example, only by applying in-depth knowledge of soil mechanics - the technical knowledge of surface and subsea soils, and the complex issues of pipe/soil and structure/soil interaction - can these installations be designed to minimise risk.

And by identifying the best structural configuration during the early engineering stages, we can help our clients streamline the subsequent design and construction schedules.


Unrivalled experience

We have an enviable track record in civil and structural engineering, and our engineers design a wide range of core structures and the supporting infrastructure needs for both onshore and offshore developments across the world.

Our experience includes:

  • fixed offshore structures:
    • design, fabrication, installation and maintenance - including deep water structures
  • floating offshore structures:
    • developing layouts
    • providing guidance on structural framing concepts
    • support arrangements
    • design of modular accommodation blocks and living quarters
    • installation design
    • mooring analysis
    • riser and piling design
    • jackets
    • assessment of installation methods
  • onshore and infrastructure projects:
    • control rooms
    • construction camps
    • development infrastructure, such as railways, air strips, wharfs and jetties

Our other Structure services include:

  • pipe rack configuration (standalone or interfacing with marine systems) and all necessary follow-on activities, including sea fastening design and hook up support during and after sail away
  • specialist fatigue evaluation packages to identify fatigue life and stress consideration factors, particularly those elements attached to the hull
  • we can prepare FEED design models using SACS (an integrated suite of software that supports the analysis, design and fabrication of offshore structures), which delivers a fully integrated analysis of structures in all conditions, and which can include dynamic response, inertial loading and seismic forces 

Our geotechnical capabilities include:

  • geotechnical survey, and in-situ and lab testing specification
  • ploughing and backfilling assessment
  • review of site/soil conditions, and soil classification for pipeline design
  • foundation feasibility study for subsea structures and wind farm foundations
  • cable burial and protection assessment
  • design of pile foundations
  • finite element analysis for detailed geotechnical designs
  • out-of-straightness analysis, upheaval buckling and uplift resistance in soil
  • seabed mobility and scour assessment
  • submarine slope stability assessment
  • soil liquefaction assessment - induced by earthquake or wave
  • seismic design and stability assessment of pipelines and subsea structures
  • specialist R&D services
    • seismic design verification by dynamic centrifuge testing
    • experimental testing of axial, lateral and uplift resistance of pipelines


World-leading expertise

We use innovative design techniques and 3D software design tools to help us analyse project scenarios to deliver accurate design and material specifications.

We work with state-of-the-art research establishments such as the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, collaborating in R&D projects at the frontier of geotechnical design. For example, we are investigating the interaction of pipes with the soil, which raises complex issues, in particular due to earth movements caused by tectonic plate movement, erosion of soil or the deposition of sediments.


Further information

Contact our marketing team