The University of Western Australia

UWA Staff Profile

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Susan Gourvenec

Professor Susan Gourvenec

Offshore Foundation Systems, Centre for

Contact details
Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems
The University of Western Australia (M470)
35 Stirling Highway

UWA Oceans Institute

Contact details
UWA Oceans Institute
The University of Western Australia (M470)
35 Stirling Highway
+61 8 6488 3995
+61 8 6488 1044
BEng Lond., PhD S'ton
Susan Gourvenec specialises in offshore geotechnical engineering with particular interests in foundation and pipeline solutions for offshore oil and gas developments. Susan joined the Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems (COFS) at UWA in 2001 from Cambridge University following award of her PhD from Southampton University, UK and undergraduate Honours degree from London University, UK.
Susan is the author of more than 70 international scientific papers, has been chair and co-editor of the proceedings of international conferences and is co-author of the recent book “Offshore Geotechnical Engineering”. She leads the delivery of specialist courses on offshore geomechanics as part of the University curriculum and short courses for industry and supervises projects of Honours students, PhD students and research staff. Susan is Leader of the Numerical Modelling Technology Stream within the Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems.
Susan interfaces with industry through research-based collaborations at the Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems, as a part-time Principal Engineer with Perth-based specialist geotechnical consultancy Advanced Geomechanics, and as a member of ISO/API Committee on Offshore Foundations and Chair of the Shallow Foundations Technical Panel.
Key research
Susan's research employs state-of-the-art physical modelling and numerical analysis to address safe and efficient seabed engineering for the offshore oil and gas sector.
The research addresses global challenges, although emphasis is placed on responding to State and national needs as Western Australian offshore oil and gas production continues to grow rapidly. Offshore oil and gas is Australia’s second largest resource sector with sales valued at over $23 bn in 2011 and demand increasing year on year. Currently, over 70 oil and gas fields are operating in Western Australia with new facilities continually under planning or construction. Australia is the second biggest exporter of LNG in world with production predicted to triple by 2015 due to WA’s deepwater megaprojects.
Safe seabed engineering will unlock Australia’s deepwater offshore oil and gas resources securing our domestic energy future and a lucrative export commodity. Research contributes directly by developing solutions to enable efficient field development while education equips the State with a workforce with the necessary skills to supply the industry’s needs.
See link at bottom of page for full record.
Roles, responsibilities and expertise
Offshore shallow foundations
Offshore anchoring systems
Submarine pipelines
Numerical analysis
Centrifuge modeling
Honours and awards
2015 Teaching Excellence – UWA Award.
2014 Vice Chancellor's Mid-Career Research Excellence Award
2013 Member ISO/API Committee on Offshore Foundations.
2013 Member ISOPE Technical Programme Committee.
2010 Teaching Excellence – Postgraduate Research Supervision, UWA Award.
2008 ASCE International Journal of Geomechanics Excellent Paper Award
2005 International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering Young Member Award (Quadrennial award)
2004 Joint Societies Award: Australian and New Zealand Geomechanics Society.
2003 Awarded place to represent Australia at the International Young Geotechnical Professionals Conference, Constantza, Romania.
2002 Baden-Clegg Memorial Lecture Runner-up: Australian Geomechanics Society event.
1997 Cooling Prize Finalist: British Geotechnical Society national paper writing competition.
1997 Awarded place to represent UK at the European Young Geotechnical Professionals Conference, Madrid, Spain. (Paper writing competition).
1994 Thomas Hawkesley Prize: University prize awarded to the top final year undergraduate engineering student.
1994 Institution of Civil Engineers Annual Award: Prize awarded by the British professional institution to the top student in each Engineering department nationwide.
1993 Drapers’ Company Prize: University prize awarded to the top second year undergraduate engineering student.
Offshore Geomechanics (Master of Professional Engineering, CIVL5504)
An Introduction to Offshore Geotechnical Engineering (Short Course for Industry)
Seabed to Surface (Australia-China Natural Gas Fund Training Programme)
Useful links
New and noteworthy
"Offshore Geotechnical Engineering" by Mark Randolph & Susan Gourvenec, (2011), Spon Press/ Taylor & Francis. ISBN: 978-0-415-47744-4.
"Frontiers in Offshore Geotechnics II" Ed. Susan Gourvenec & David White, (2010). CRC Press/Taylor & Francis. ISBN: 978-0-415-58480-7.
"Frontiers in Offshore Geotechnics" Ed. Susan Gourvenec & Mark Cassidy, (2005), Taylor & Francis. ISBN: 041539063X.
“Without James Price Point, what now for Browse Basin gas?”, The Conversation 16 April 2013
“Floating LNG: an alternative future for gas?”, The Conversation 10 December 2012

Current projects
Tolerably mobile subsea foundations
Field testing of shallow foundations
Effect of salinity on soil response
Effect of anisotropy on soil response
Cyclic loading response of skirted foundations
Multi-directional (6 dof) loading of subsea mat foundations
Development of design methodology for novel hybrid subsea foundation (HSF)
Consolidation effects on foundation and anchor performace
Break out resistance of deepwater pipelines
Research profile
Research profile and publications

The University of Western Australia

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Last updated:
Tuesday, 3 November, 2015 2:39 PM