Larger MW-class floater designs without upscaling? A direct optimization approach

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book

6 Citations (Scopus)
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The trend towards larger offshore wind turbines (WTs) implies the need for bigger support structures. These are commonly derived from existing structures through upscaling and subsequent optimization. To reduce the number of design steps, this work proposes a direct optimization approach, by which means a support structure for a larger WT is obtained through an automated optimization procedure based on a smaller existing system. Due to the suitability of floating platforms for large MW-class WTs, this study is based on the OC3 spar-buoy designed for the NREL 5 MW WT. Using a Python-Modelica framework, developed at Fraunhofer IWES, the spar-buoy geometry is adjusted through iterative optimization steps to finally support a 7.5 MW WT. The optimization procedure focuses on the global system performance in a design-relevant load case. This study shows that larger support structures, appropriate to meet the objective of the hydrodynamic system behavior, can be obtained through automated optimization of existing designs without the intermediate step of upscaling.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationASME 2019 38th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering
Subtitle of host publicationOffshore Technology; Offshore Geotechnics
Place of PublicationNew York, NY
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9780791858769
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jun 2019
Event38th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore & Arctic Engineering - Scottish Event Campus, Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 9 Jun 201914 Jun 2019
Conference number: 2019


Conference38th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore & Arctic Engineering
Abbreviated titleOMAE
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • upscaling
  • automated design optimization
  • floating platforms
  • offshore wind turbines


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