The structural design of offshore wind turbine support structures is a complex process, which has many challenges. In particular, in the early phase of a project, it is difficult to select the appropriate structural concept and to determine structural masses with reasonable accuracy, without having to go through a time-consuming iterative process. In the more advanced stages, care must be taken that required data for an optimized design has been collected earlier and that the right software tools are available such that all parties involved can execute the design work. In this paper, practical advice is given how this process can be organized and which methods can be used. Furthermore, common mistakes are highlighted, such that those can be avoided.
From the introduction: As projects go through different phases, support structure designs with varying levels of detail are required. In the initial stages, the support structure concept needs to be developed and overall mass is of interest. This is typically achieved with simplified methods and for selected positions of a wind farm only. Towards the final design, the design and masses are refined and transferred to all individual positions. Approaches suitable for each phase, for both monopiles and jackets, are summarized graphically in accompanying illustrations.
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Filed Under: Construction, Offshore wind, Towers