A BIM-based framework for lift planning in topsides disassembly of offshore oil and gas platforms
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© 2017 Elsevier B.V.Offshore oil and gas platforms (OOGPs) usually have a lifetime of 30-40. years. An increasing number of OOGPs across the world will be retired and decommissioned in the coming decade. Therefore, a safe and efficient approach in planning the disassembly of the topsides of OOGPs is required. One commonly applied disassembly method is reverse installation, which moves the OOGP modules from the platform deck to a heavy lift vessel (HLV) in reverse order of their installation. Considering the high risk and cost of working offshore, shortening the lift time is crucial. In contrast to the traditional experience-driven lift operations, this paper describes minimizing the lift path for each OOGP module during disassembly, leveraging building information modeling (BIM) technology and an improved A* algorithm. BIM models provide accurate component-based geometric and semantic information that can be used for planning and optimization. However, there has been no previous study on the use of BIM for offshore disassembly. Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), which is a neutral data model of BIM, is used in this study to represent OOGP models. In particular, the IfcBuildingElementProxy entity is used to represent the OOGP components, and the information in IfcBuildingElementProxy is automatically extracted to obtain the location and dimension information of each OOGP module. Then, for a given layout of modules on the removal vessel, the lift path and removal sequence of different modules, with the shortest lift path distance, are obtained. The lift path distance is calculated using the A* algorithm, which has been widely applied in 2D environments and is modified in this study to suit the 3D environment. Finally, the genetic algorithm (GA) technique is applied to optimize the layout plan on the removal vessel by minimizing the total lift path distance. The developed BIM-based framework is illustrated and evaluated through an illustrative example. The results show that the proposed framework can generate and visualize the shortest lift path for each OOGP module directly and automatically, and significantly improve the efficiency of OOGP disassembly.
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