09 Nov 2018

New partnership takes next step in floating wind turbine development

A joint project between DTU-Wind, DHI, Siemens-Gamesa Renewable Energy A/S, Stiesdal Offshore Technologies, STROMNING and University of Western Australia is setting the stage for developing new technologies in floating offshore wind.

With a total budget of 2.9 million EUR – including a 2.1 million EUR funding from the Danish Innovation Fund – the course is set for the new research project FloatStep to achieve industry breakthroughs in the design of future floating offshore wind turbines.  

The goal of the project is to develop methods and technologies for the optimisation of floating foundations and tower designs, improve current engineering tools and devise guidelines for de-risking the installation process. This involves numerical model developments, physical model tests and full-scale offshore testing.

A four-year project from 2018 to 2022

Together with STROMNING, DHI will develop a coupling between our new MIKE 3 Wave FM model and the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model OpenFOAM®. This model integration will enable an efficient evaluation of a floater design exposed to complex sea states. MIKE 21 MA, a model that simulates the response of moored floating structures, will be a part of the model developments. 

The design tools will be validated against physical scale model tests and full-scale prototype data. The physical model tests will be performed in the DHI deep water wave basin at the headquarters in Hørsholm, Denmark by DHI, together with DTU-Wind. The prototype data will be acquired from the TetraSpar foundation developed by Stiesdal Offshore Technologies and installed with a wind turbine from Siemens-Gamesa.

The project will run over the coming four years starting December 2018. By the end of the project in 2022, the project partners will have optimised existing tools and developed new design models, giving the industry access to leading expertise and state-of-art design tools for floating offshore wind turbines.

The TetraSpar foundation during testing in the DHI deep water wave basin. © DHI

The MIKE 3 Wave FM model will be integrated with the OpenFoam CFD model to provide a strong design tool for floating foundations. © DHI