An increasing number of platforms in the Norwegian continental shelf are reaching their design life. For various reasons these platforms will require an assessment of their structural integrity. When performing these assessments the engineer is faced with tasks where little guidance is found in design standards, for several reasons. The two most important being: 1) The analyses that is performed in a typical assessment of existing structure is often applying very advanced techniques and methodology that seldom is used in design of new structures, as the cost of doing advanced analysis is relatively low compared to replacement of an existing structure, but relatively high compared to moderate additions of e.g. steel in the design of a new structure. 2) Design standards are based on theories, methods and experience for structures in a given design life (e.g. fatigue design and corrosion protection design). When this design life is extended, sound methods for ensuring that the structures are still sufficient safe is needed. Such methods will normally be “condition based design”, where inspection, maintenance and repairs are included in the assessment in integrated way. Such methods are not given in normal design standards. For these reasons a new NORSOK standard is developed that gives recommendation on how to deal with the specific aspects that engineers meet when performing assessments of structures in general, but also specifically for assessment for life extension. The standard is named “Standard for Assessment of Structural Integrity for Existing Load-bearing Structures” and is issued as a NORSOK standard and given the number N-006 [1]. The topics that are covered in the standard include: Shut down and unmanning criteria for platforms not meeting ordinary requirements, specific issues for determination of ultimate capacities by use of non-linear methods, cyclic capacity checks, fatigue life extension, requirements to in-service inspection etc. The paper describes the background and the content of the new standard and it presents examples of recommendations given. The role of the new standard in the Norwegian regulatory system is shown.

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