Optimization of a Lightweight Floating Offshore Wind Turbine with Water Ballast Motion Mitigation Technology (2)
Publication Name: MDPI
Publication URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2674-032X/2/3/29
Floating offshore wind turbines are a promising technology for addressing energy needs by utilizing wind resources offshore. The current state of the art is based on heavy, expensive platforms to survive the ocean environment. Typical design techniques do not involve optimization because of the computationally expensive time domain solvers used to model motions and loads in the ocean environment. However, this design uses an efficient frequency domain solver with a genetic algorithm to rapidly optimize the design of a novel floating wind turbine concept. The concept utilizes a liquid ballast mass to mitigate motions on a lightweight post-tensioned concrete platform. The simple cruciform-shaped design of the platform made of post-tensioned concrete is less expensive than steel, reducing the raw material and manufacturing cost. The use of ballast water to behave as a tuned mass damper allows a smaller platform to achieve the same motions as a much larger platform, thus reducing the mass and cost. The optimization techniques applied with these design innovations resulted in a design with a levelized cost of energy of USD 0.0753/kWh, roughly half the cost of the current state of the art.