Structural integrity of wind turbines impacted by tropical cyclones: A case study from China

Xiao Chen, Chuanfeng Li, Jing Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleResearchpeer-review


This study presents a case study on wind turbines impacted by tropical cyclones in China. A quantitative investigation is conducted by integrating aerodynamic, aero-elastic and structural analysis to provide insights into structural integrity of wind turbines under extreme wind conditions. Local mean wind profiles at each turbine site are reconstructed using threedimensional CFD calculation considering terrain topography of the wind farm. Failure modes and failure locations of rotor blades and tubular towers are predicted using finite element analysis. "The lesser of two evils" principle in the turbine design is addressed regarding the criticality of blade fracture and tower collapse. Referring to the current IEC standard for wind turbine design, it is suggested that the partial safety factor associated with failure of turbine tower should be larger than, instead of equal to, the one for the rotor blade to reduce the risk of the total loss of wind turbines in extreme wind conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Book seriesJournal of Physics: Conference Series
Publication statusPublished - 3 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes


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