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e-CFR data is current as of August 5, 2020

Title 30Chapter IISubchapter BPart 250Subpart I → Subject Group


Title 30: Mineral Resources
PART 250—OIL AND GAS AND SULPHUR OPERATIONS IN THE OUTER CONTINENTAL SHELF
Subpart I—Platforms and Structures


Platform Approval Program

§250.904   What is the Platform Approval Program?

(a) The Platform Approval Program is the BSEE basic approval process for platforms on the OCS. The requirements of the Platform Approval Program are described in §§250.904 through 250.908 of this subpart. Completing these requirements will satisfy BSEE criteria for approval of fixed platforms of a proven design that will be placed in the shallow water areas (≤400 ft.) of the Gulf of Mexico OCS.

(b) The requirements of the Platform Approval Program must be met by all platforms on the OCS. Additionally, if you want approval for a floating platform; a platform of unique design; or a platform being installed in deepwater (> 400 ft.) or a frontier area, you must also meet the requirements of the Platform Verification Program. The requirements of the Platform Verification Program are described in §§250.909 through 250.918 of this subpart.

§250.905   How do I get approval for the installation, modification, or repair of my platform?

The Platform Approval Program requires that you submit the information, documents, and fee listed in the following table for your proposed project. In lieu of submitting the paper copies specified in the table, you may submit your application electronically in accordance with 30 CFR 250.186(a)(3).

Required submittalRequired contentsOther requirements
(a) Application cover letterProposed structure designation, lease number, area, name, and block number, and the type of facility your facility (e.g., drilling, production, quarters). The structure designation must be unique for the field (some fields are made up of several blocks); i.e. once a platform “A” has been used in the field there should never be another platform “A” even if the old platform “A” has been removed. Single well free standing caissons should be given the same designation as the well. All other structures are to be designated by letter designationsYou must submit three copies. If, your facility is subject to the Platform Verification Program (PVP), you must submit four copies.
(b) Location platLatitude and longitude coordinates, Universal Mercator grid-system coordinates, state plane coordinates in the Lambert or Transverse Mercator Projection System, and distances in feet from the nearest block lines. These coordinates must be based on the NAD (North American Datum) 27 datum plane coordinate systemYour plat must be drawn to a scale of 1 inch equals 2,000 feet and include the coordinates of the lease block boundary lines. You must submit three copies.
(c) Front, Side, and Plan View drawingsPlatform dimensions and orientation, elevations relative to M.L.L.W. (Mean Lower Low Water), and pile sizes and penetrationYour drawing sizes must not exceed 11 × 17. You must submit three copies (four copies for PVP applications).
(d) Complete set of structural drawingsThe approved for construction fabrication drawings should be submitted including; e.g., cathodic protection systems; jacket design; pile foundations; drilling, production, and pipeline risers and riser tensioning systems; turrets and turret-and-hull interfaces; mooring and tethering systems; foundations and anchoring systemsYour drawing sizes must not exceed 11 × 17. You must submit one copy.
(e) Summary of environmental dataA summary of the environmental data described in the applicable standards referenced under §250.901(a) of this subpart and in §250.198 of Subpart A, where the data is used in the design or analysis of the platform. Examples of relevant data include information on waves, wind, current, tides, temperature, snow and ice effects, marine growth, and water depthYou must submit one copy.
(f) Summary of the engineering design dataLoading information (e.g., live, dead, environmental), structural information (e.g., design-life; material types; cathodic protection systems; design criteria; fatigue life; jacket design; deck design; production component design; pile foundations; drilling, production, and pipeline risers and riser tensioning systems; turrets and turret-and-hull interfaces; foundations, foundation pilings and templates, and anchoring systems; mooring or tethering systems; fabrication and installation guidelines), and foundation information (e.g., soil stability, design criteria)You must submit one copy.
(g) Project-specific studies used in the platform design or installationAll studies pertinent to platform design or installation, e.g., oceanographic and/or soil reports including the overall site investigative report required in §250.906You must submit one copy of each study.
(h) Description of the loads imposed on the facilityLoads imposed by jacket; decks; production components; drilling, production, and pipeline risers, and riser tensioning systems; turrets and turret-and-hull interfaces; foundations, foundation pilings and templates, and anchoring systems; and mooring or tethering systemsYou must submit one copy.
(i) Summary of safety factors utilizedA summary of pertinent derived factors of safety against failure for major structural members, e.g., unity check ratios exceeding 0.85 for steel-jacket platform members, indicated on “line” sketches of jacket sectionsYou must submit one copy.
(j) A copy of the in-service inspection planThis plan is described in §250.919You must submit one copy.
(k) Certification statementThe following statement: “The design of this structure has been certified by a recognized classification society, or a registered civil or structural engineer or equivalent, or a naval architect or marine engineer or equivalent, specializing in the design of offshore structures. The certified design and as-built plans and specifications will be on file at (give location)”An authorized company representative must sign the statement. You must submit one copy.
(l) Payment of the service fee listed in §250.125.

§250.906   What must I do to obtain approval for the proposed site of my platform?

(a) Shallow hazards surveys. You must perform a high-resolution or acoustic-profiling survey to obtain information on the conditions existing at and near the surface of the seafloor. You must collect information through this survey sufficient to determine the presence of the following features and their likely effects on your proposed platform:

(1) Shallow faults;

(2) Gas seeps or shallow gas;

(3) Slump blocks or slump sediments;

(4) Shallow water flows;

(5) Hydrates; or

(6) Ice scour of seafloor sediments.

(b) Geologic surveys. You must perform a geological survey relevant to the design and siting of your platform. Your geological survey must assess:

(1) Seismic activity at your proposed site;

(2) Fault zones, the extent and geometry of faulting, and attenuation effects of geologic conditions near your site; and

(3) For platforms located in producing areas, the possibility and effects of seafloor subsidence.

(c) Subsurface surveys. Depending upon the design and location of your proposed platform and the results of the shallow hazard and geologic surveys, the Regional Supervisor may require you to perform a subsurface survey. This survey will include a testing program for investigating the stratigraphic and engineering properties of the soil that may affect the foundations or anchoring systems for your facility. The testing program must include adequate in situ testing, boring, and sampling to examine all important soil and rock strata to determine its strength classification, deformation properties, and dynamic characteristics. If required to perform a subsurface survey, you must prepare and submit to the Regional Supervisor a summary report to briefly describe the results of your soil testing program, the various field and laboratory test methods employed, and the applicability of these methods as they pertain to the quality of the samples, the type of soil, and the anticipated design application. You must explain how the engineering properties of each soil stratum affect the design of your platform. In your explanation you must describe the uncertainties inherent in your overall testing program, and the reliability and applicability of each test method.

(d) Overall site investigation report. You must prepare and submit to the Regional Supervisor an overall site investigation report for your platform that integrates the findings of your shallow hazards surveys and geologic surveys, and, if required, your subsurface surveys. Your overall site investigation report must include analyses of the potential for:

(1) Scouring of the seafloor;

(2) Hydraulic instability;

(3) The occurrence of sand waves;

(4) Instability of slopes at the platform location;

(5) Liquefaction, or possible reduction of soil strength due to increased pore pressures;

(6) Degradation of subsea permafrost layers;

(7) Cyclic loading;

(8) Lateral loading;

(9) Dynamic loading;

(10) Settlements and displacements;

(11) Plastic deformation and formation collapse mechanisms; and

(12) Soil reactions on the platform foundations or anchoring systems.

§250.907   Where must I locate foundation boreholes?

(a) For fixed or bottom-founded platforms and tension leg platforms, your maximum distance from any foundation pile to a soil boring must not exceed 500 feet.

(b) For deepwater floating platforms which utilize catenary or taut-leg moorings, you must take borings at the most heavily loaded anchor location, at the anchor points approximately 120 and 240 degrees around the anchor pattern from that boring, and, as necessary, other points throughout the anchor pattern to establish the soil profile suitable for foundation design purposes.

§250.908   What are the minimum structural fatigue design requirements?

(a) API RP 2A-WSD, Recommended Practice for Planning, Designing and Constructing Fixed Offshore Platforms (as incorporated by reference in §250.198), requires that the design fatigue life of each joint and member be twice the intended service life of the structure. When designing your platform, the following table provides minimum fatigue life safety factors for critical structural members and joints.

If .  .  .Then .  .  .
(1) There is sufficient structural redundancy to prevent catastrophic failure of the platform or structure under consideration,The results of the fatigue analysis must indicate a minimum calculated life of twice the design life of the platform.
(2) There is not sufficient structural redundancy to prevent catastrophic failure of the platform or structure,The results of a fatigue analysis must indicate a minimum calculated life or three times the design life of the platform.
(3) The desirable degree of redundancy is significantly reduced as a result of fatigue damage,The results of a fatigue analysis must indicate a minimum calculated life of three times the design life of the platform.

(b) The documents incorporated by reference in §250.901 may require larger safety factors than indicated in paragraph (a) of this section for some key components. When the documents incorporated by reference require a larger safety factor than the chart in paragraph (a) of this section, the requirements of the incorporated document will prevail.

[76 FR 64462, Oct. 18, 2011, as amended at 81 FR 36150, June 6, 2016]

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