Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.

Trumbull, CT, United States

Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.

Trumbull, CT, United States
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Ludwig M.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Clarke D.,U.S. Army
Coastal Engineering Practice - Proceedings of the 2011 Conference on Coastal Engineering Practice | Year: 2011

This paper discusses innovative environmental compensation used in port development. Sustainable development can be complicated by costly regulatory requirements. These requirements stem from the National Environmental Policy (NEPA) and Clean Water Acts (CWA). Federal and state NEPA and CWA versions require identification and evaluation of adverse impacts and methods to avoid, minimize or mitigate them. While some projects find political support helpful in addressing environmental and social conflicts more frequently, designs are used that are environmentally compatible but may limit development. Environmental issues are routinely related to physical attributes that control a site's ecological importance and sensitivity. Taking advantage of local physical attributes to re-nature sites and avoiding maintenance often provides missing but significantly important ecological functions and values with wide ranging benefits. Using natural conditions in designs that create maintenance free habitats that otherwise do not exist, can generate significant benefits. Good projects are environmentally compatible, great ones are beneficial. © 2011 ASCE.

Baxter C.D.P.,University of Rhode Island | Sharma M.S.R.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.
Geotechnical Special Publication | Year: 2012

There is increasing use of small strain shear modulus, calculated from the shear wave velocity (vs), in geotechnical site characterization, analysis and design. Shear wave velocity is significantly influenced by stress state of the soil among many other parameters. In this paper the effect of shear stress on shear wave velocity of weakly cemented sands during drained and undrained triaxial compression is evaluated. The results showed that shear wave velocity during drained shear is dependent on σ'1 and during undrained shear it is dependent on σ'3. During drained compression, vs increased with σ'1 up to a principal stress ratio of 6-12, depending on the level of cementation and beyond this stress ratio vs decreased significantly even as σ'1 continued to increase up to failure. It is hypothesized that the observed behavior of vs during shear could be used as a precursor to failure for projects involving sensitive or structured soils. © 2012 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Hensel J.,TU Braunschweig | Sharma M.S.R.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Baxter C.D.P.,University of Rhode Island | Hu S.-L.J.,University of Rhode Island
Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy | Year: 2012

A marine spatial planning approach was used to locate possible sites for offshore wind development in Rhode Island. In connection with the Rhode Island ocean special area management plan, a technology development index was developed by Spaulding et al. (2010) to quantify the technical challenges of a particular site relative to its potential power production. A component of this index is the technology type (TT) factor, which quantifies the relative cost of a structure/foundation system as a function of environmental loading, water depth, and soil conditions. This paper presents the development of TT factors for jacket type support structures that is proposed for supporting the offshore wind turbines in Rhode Island Sound. TT factors were calculated by the total weight of the jacket and piles for a given water depth and soil conditions normalized by the weight of a reference structure. Jacket structure weights were determined by a frequency driven finite element analysis using the program ANSYS. The structure was subjected to hydrodynamic and quasi-static turbine loads from 50-year extreme wind and the 100-year extreme wave loading in Rhode Island Sound to determine the ultimate stresses in the structural members. Pile foundation weights were determined from an analysis of the axial capacity and the lateral capacity using commercially available pile design software. Jacket and foundation weights were calculated for water depth ranging from 30m to 60m and for three representative soil types. These analyses resulted in a Technology Type factor that varies with water depth according to a 2nd order polynomial, and also with soil type. The results were compared to the weights of two existing jacket structures in Europe and found to be in agreement with the upper bound estimate derived from this study. The Technology Type factor derived in this study was also in good agreement with the published actual cost (normalized) of jacket type foundations used in the United Kingdom. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.

Sharma R.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Baxter C.,University of Rhode Island | Jander M.,University of Rhode Island
Soils and Foundations | Year: 2011

Small strain shear modulus (G max) has been a parameter of choice used to assess the strength and deformation behavior of cemented and other sensitive soils. The influence of density, effective confining stress, stress anisotropy, and cement content on shear wave velocity (v s)/shear modulus has been studied extensively and published. There are, however, very few studies on the effects of cement/strength degradation during shear on the shear wave velocity/shear modulus, which may be important for reliable and accurate prediction of mechanical behavior of cemented sands. The objective of this study is to evaluate the effect of cement degradation on shear wave velocity/shear modulus by measuring continuously the shear wave velocity during shear. A laboratory testing program was performed using samples of silty sand artificially cemented with Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC). Shear wave velocity was measured continuously within the triaxial cell during the shear phase using torsional ring transducers. G max was calculated using the shear wave velocity and the corresponding density during shear. Results from this study suggest that G max reaches a peak value before σ 1 reaches a failure stress and this behavior is believed to be an indicator of bond breakage or destructuring. G max calculated at various stages during shear showed that the cement and modulus degradation can be represented by a simple index using G max. The results of this study suggest that there may be a unique relationship between small strain shear modulus and effective stresses at failure for dilative soils implying that in situ shear wave velocity measurements may be used to estimate effective stress strength parameters or as a precursor to failure in weakly cemented soils.

Ravi Sharma M.S.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Baxter C.D.P.,University of Rhode Island | Moran K.,University of Rhode Island | Vaziri H.,British Petroleum | Narayanasamy R.,BP Exploration Operating Company Ltd
Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering | Year: 2012

Characterizing the strength of weakly cemented and sensitive soils in the laboratory is difficult because of the difficulty in obtaining high-quality replicate samples necessary for defining the failure envelope. Multistage triaxial tests have long been used to reduce the variability caused by testing multiple samples; however, traditional criteria used for transitioning from one loading stage to another often lead to destructuring or failure in sensitive or structured soils. The objective of this paper is to present a methodology for conducting multistage drained triaxial tests on weakly cemented sands and estimating the resulting shear strength parameters. Both multistage and single-stage drained triaxial tests were performed on artificially cemented samples of a silty sand at two levels of densities and cementation. The use of dεv/dεa=0 as a termination criterion to move on to the next stage of loading and εv=0 as the failure criterion for the final stage of the shear resulted in an average error of 6% and 5% in c' and φ', respectively, for the stress range considered in this study when compared with parameters obtained from the single-stage drained triaxial tests. Continuous shear wave velocity (Vs) measurements during shear showed that destructuring of the cemented samples did not occur by using the proposed termination criterion. The proposed method has the potential to be a cost-effective alternative to the testing of multiple samples for the characterization of the strength of weakly cemented and sensitive soils. © 2011 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Bryant J.T.,South Carolina State Ports Authority | White S.M.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Ludwig F.M.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.
Ports 2013: Success Through Diversification - Proceedings of the 13th Triennial International Conference | Year: 2013

The ongoing, worldwide, economic downturn that began in 2008 will have a long-lasting, negative impact on the ability to properly maintain our port facilities and, in particular, perform necessary dredging within federal projects. This is exacerbating the federal government's current political atmosphere or inability to meet the navigation needs of our ports for many decades. The US Congress Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) is the legislation that authorizes federal cost-sharing participation in maintenance and deepening of federally designated channels. The cost-sharing partner must be a governmental entity. Congress has been reducing or diverting funding designated for maintenance dredging projects from federal navigation channels. This problem is being aggravated by the on-going and proposed channel-deepening to service newer generations of ships. These improvements are necessary to receive vessels currently transiting the Suez Canal and those that will take advantage of the Panama Canal expansion. Federal navigation channels are typically the foundation of our ports. Port authorities and private terminal operators want to take advantage of larger vessels and the cargoes they contain for economic and environmental reasons. Similarly, shippers seek the most economical cargo routing to maintain their efficiency. Many public port facilities and private terminal operators have embarked on aggressive plans to modernize and expand their shoreside infrastructure to meet these objectives. The ultimate beneficiary of these "America's Marine Highway Corridors, Connectors and Crossings" program efforts is the nation as a whole since the cost of moving goods decreases (exports and imports), ocean transit becomes more efficient and environmental impacts are lessened. This should lead the Congress to support the Corps of Engineers' maintenance dredging program. Unfortunately, even though the Corps of Engineers performs benefit/cost analyses, projects determined to be in the national economic interest are not always authorized or adequately funded. This paper will explore the issues concerning the actions, pitfalls, and consequences of paying for work that the federal government determines to be in the nation's economic interest, but is unable to perform. © 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Jones B.N.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Shaffer J.M.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Morgan B.J.,South Carolina State Ports Authority
Ports 2013: Success Through Diversification - Proceedings of the 13th Triennial International Conference | Year: 2013

This paper will present a case study for the analysis, design and construction of a modern fender system for the South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) at its Veterans Terminal - Pier M facility. The project was initiated in February 2012, and included an inspection of the pier structure and fender system by engineer-divers, and an assessment of the design criteria to meet SCSPA's needs for the fender system upgrades. The assessment included consideration of project budget, berthing and reaction load requirements, constructability, anticipated maintenance costs, offset distance between the vessel hull and the pier, and avoiding structural modification of the existing pier structure. Three design alternatives were developed, including an analysis of the SCSPA "standard" continuous fender detail that is used at its other terminals. The final design selected met the requirements for larger cargo vessels and consisted of a series of independent, pile-supported fender units, each capable of taking the full berthing energy of the vessel without transferring the reaction forces to the pier. It is anticipated that construction will begin in early 2013. © 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Cooper B.D.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Marrone J.F.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.
Ports 2013: Success Through Diversification - Proceedings of the 13th Triennial International Conference | Year: 2013

Europe is currently the leader in offshore wind (OSW) energy with over 4.3 gigawatts (GW) of installed capacity, 13 offshore wind farms currently under construction, and significant ongoing plans for future growth and development of the industry [EWEA, 2012]. Europe's established port facilities offer guidance, demonstrating current infrastructure requirements and projecting future needs of the industry as U.S. ports begin to prepare for the offshore wind industry. This paper considers select examples of existing European offshore wind staging and installation ports that support offshore wind projects in European waters. This paper presents a brief comparison of traditional ports as opposed to offshore wind ports, followed by discussion of critical criteria for a successful staging and installation port. These criteria include: upland area, wharf length, deck live load capacity, navigable depth, and air draft restrictions. Understanding the requirements of an effective staging and installation port, this paper includes recommendations on how existing North American ports can meet the minimum port capability for offshore wind development. © 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Weggel J.R.,Drexel University | Dortch J.,Drexel University | Gaffney D.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc.
Geotextiles and Geomembranes | Year: 2011

In order to investigate the use of geotextile bags for dewatering slurries, an analytical model for a fluid draining from a hanging geotextile bag is derived and presented in dimensionless form. A data analysis procedure is proposed. Experimental results using water as the fluid with specially constructed geotextile bags are compared with the model and show excellent agreement. The model is applied to data for slurry-filled bags and used to determine the overall permittivity of a hanging bag dewatering system and the fraction of the bag's volume drained as fluid. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Jones B.N.,Ocean and Coastal Consultants Inc. | Decas K.,06 Co Op Wharf
Ports 2010: Building on the Past, Respecting the Future - Proceedings of the 12th Triannual International Conference | Year: 2010

Once the world's most famous whaling-era seaport, New Bedford now stands as the number one fishing port in the nation based on total value of catch. With a fleet of over 470 commercial fishing vessels and only 160 public berths, New Bedford is challenged with increasing demand for adequate space to safely accommodate the fleet. Overcrowding of commercial fishing vessels at the docks is common, and captains will often raft their vessels together up to six (or more) abreast at the piers during storms. Not only does overcrowding of the facilities pose obvious threats to the safety of vessels and crew; but also the associated pier structures, which were not designed to handle the berthing loads to which they are currently subjected. In 2007, the City explored engineering alternatives to relieve the congestion at its five public commercial docking facilities. The study analyzed the current berthing situation and provided a cost-effective engineering "action plan" that would provide additional berths for the fleet within the next three to five years. Establishing these alternatives was accomplished through both correspondence with members of the fishing community, city officials and industry stakeholders and the analysis of the current berthing situation. The proposed alternatives were a result of the evaluation of various layouts, including (1) the construction of new facilities, (2) establishment of mooring fields, (3) floating dock systems and (4) fixed pier expansion. The final recommendation from the study included the installation of a concrete floating dock extension to one of the existing piers, in conjunction with a partial de-authorization of an obsolete maneuvering area within the harbor's US Army Corps Federal Navigation Project to accomodate the expansion. © 2010 ASCE.

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