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WIREs Energy Environ.
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Offshore wind turbine environment, loads, simulation, and design

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In the design, certification, and optimization of offshore wind turbines, extensive loads simulation is inevitable to develop reliable and cost‐effective turbines. Description of the marine environment is based on a variety of techniques taking the stochastic nature of both, the wind and the water waves into account. The wind turbine is a highly dynamic system including effects of heavy rotating machinery and other significant nonlinearities leading to static, cyclic, transient, and stochastic loads. Due to the nature of the external loading, the system properties and the turbine design lifetime, offshore wind turbines are prone to fatigue‐driven failure. For loads assessment, aero‐hydro‐servo‐elastic tools are used including the coupled effects of the environment and the turbine to simulate the overall lifetime of the turbine in the harsh marine environment. These tools are constantly further developed and adapted to the needs of a fast‐growing industry and newly arising turbine concepts. Engineering approaches to allow for certification and reliable design are summarized in extensive guidelines and standards supporting engineers in daily design work. This article is categorized under: Wind Power > Science and Materials Wind Power > Systems and Infrastructure
Parts of an offshore wind turbine according to IEC. (Figure 1 of IEC 61400‐3 (edition 2009), licenced by VDE Verband der Elektrotechnik Elektronik Informationstechnik e.V.—Department DKE. Please take care to always use the latest edition you can get at www.vde‐verlag.de and www.iec.ch.)
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Design process for offshore wind turbines. (Figure of IEC 61400‐3 (edition 2009), licenced by VDE Verband der Elektrotechnik Elektronik Informationstechnik e.V.—Department DKE. Please take care to always use the latest edition you can get at www.vde‐verlag.de and www.iec.ch.)
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Part of the design load case table from IEC. (Table from IEC 61400‐3 (edition 2009), licenced by VDE Verband der Elektrotechnik Elektronik Informationstechnik e.V.—Department DKE. Please take care to always use the latest edition you can get at www.vde‐verlag.de and www.iec.ch.)
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Tripod structure and tripod load output positions, legend for the following results and fore‐aft bending moments at positions 1–6 (positions 1–6: top down from left to right).
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Legend for the OC3 Phase II results, Power spectra for fore‐aft monopile shear force and respective monopile bending moment at mudline under combined stochastic wind and wave loading.
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OWT model in a coupled tool with boxes for components and arrows for interactions.
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Calculated coupled vibration mode (strongly exaggerated) including blade bending and support structure modes (global bending and local bending at lowest brace).
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Part of a three‐dimensional wave scatter diagram for a Dutch North Sea Site and a range of wind speeds of (Reproduced with permission from Ref , p. 78. Copyright 2010, SWE.).
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JONSWAP spectra for and with (blue) and (red).
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Logarithmic and power law wind shear profiles for an onshore site and for an offshore site.
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Wind roses for wind speed ranges (bins) of a size of for average wind speeds of at a Dutch North Sea site (Reproduced with permission from Ref . Copyright 2010, SWE.)
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Bar chart of average wind speeds and Weibull fit.
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Wind speed fluctuation spectrum from days to seconds modified from Ref the original published in Ref . (Modified with permission from Ref . Copyright 1957, American Meteorology Society.)
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