Geotechnical engineering for offshore wind turbine foundations
Publication Name: Sea Technology
The first step for utilizing soil mechanics in the design and construction of foundations for offshore structures involves characterizing the magnitude and spatial variability of mechanical and hydrologic parameters, a process known as site investigation (SI). The high cost of seabed exploration relative to the total investment for an offshore wind development has the potential to lead to less thorough subsurface SIs and seabed models. The offshore oil and gas industry has developed and used a wide range of foundation concepts. These can generally be separated into fixed or floating structures. Evolution of different foundation concepts and their use is dependent on seabed sediment conditions. Offshore wind SIs and foundation design must go beyond conventional oil and gas practice, as differences in geometry and loading dynamics are significantly more important to design and power production efficiency.