Standards and Practices

70th Annual International Conference on Mass Properties Engineering
Houston, Texas
May 14-19, 2011
Hilton Houston WestChase Hotel


Alan Titcomb
Standards and Practices Committee Chairman
Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding

The objective of the SAWE’s Standards and Practices Committee, or SPC, is to serve the mass properties profession by providing a non-proprietary, consensus forum for the development of industry products that respond to the needs of our members and their customers. Much of this work centers on Recommended Practices, or RPs, of many types including requirements, best practices, product and process standards. In addition to industry- specific standards, the year will mark our first cross-industry standard, an introduction and overview of mass properties control for commercial and military systems. However, SPC activities are not limited to RPs alone. Just about any activity that serves the society membership in a given industry sector is acceptable. Past examples have included textbooks, handbooks, and industry surveys. An unofficial objective of the SPC is to foster the development of products that make our professional activities more efficient, more consistent, and more valuable for the professionals of today and tomorrow as well as clearer and more understandable to our customers.

Planned SPC Events

The SPC is such an important activity that the SAWE dedicates an entire day to it. That day will feature the following highlights:

Opening Session – A kickoff to the day’s activities at which the year’s progress will be reviewed, our progress towards becoming an official ANSI-recognized Standards Developing Organization will be presented, and future objectives will be discussed.

SPC Luncheon – This popular event will feature a recognized speaker from industry or Government and a topic of interest to all attendees.

SPC Breakout Sessions – During these meetings chaired by industry and government leaders, industry needs and opportunities are reviewed, the year’s activities are presented, and future activities are planned. Present standards are reviewed for currency and new standards are formulated. Specific industry breakout sessions include:

•    Marine •    Military Aircraft
•    Offshore Marine Systems •    Missiles and Space Systems
•    Airline Affairs •    Ground Systems

The SPC welcomes all members and visitors to participate and improve the mass properties profession as it relates to your specific industry. We always welcome new ideas, new participants, and new contributions. Help us improve our profession by participating in SAWE SPC activities.


Standards and Practices Luncheon

William R. Frank

William R. (Bill) Frank
ExxonMobil Development Company

Our speaker is William Frank, Offshore Structures supervisor with ExxonMobil Development Company in Houston, Texas. Bill has Bachelors and Masters degrees in Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. During his graduate work, he specialized in structural dynamics and experimental modal analysis and executed several test programs, including a test to measure the mass properties of the tail control surfaces of a large commercial jet.

Bill joined ExxonMobil's Upstream Research Company in 2001 where he supported a variety of projects with finite element analysis of deepwater riser systems. He also worked with a team conducting research in the area of vortex induced vibration of long tubular structures with a focus on developing improved modeling approaches to predict fatigue damage due to excitation from vortex shedding.

Bill is currently supervisor of the Offshore Structures at ExxonMobil Development Company. The group is composed of structural, geotechnical, and weight engineers and provides engineering support to a worldwide portfolio of projects from concept selection through installation.

Bill will present “An Operator's Perspective on Weight Engineering Challenges in the Upstream Oil and Gas Industry.” His presentation will provide a brief introduction to the scope of projects in the upstream oil and gas industry and will provide an operation company's perspective on why effective management of weight through the full cycle of the project is important to project success. Weight engineering challenges faced in both offshore and onshore projects will be discussed along with ways that the weight engineer can influence a project.