Ultimate load analysis of a 10 MW offshore monopile wind turbine incorporating fully nonlinear irregular wave kinematics

Shaofeng Wang*, Torben Juul Larsen, Henrik Bredmose

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Loads from storm waves can in some cases be dimensioning for offshore wind turbine substructures. Accurate determination of nonlinear wave loads is therefore important for a safe, yet economic design. In this paper, the fully nonlinear waves, realized by a fully nonlinear potential wave solver OceanWave3D, are incorporated into coupled aero-servo-hydro-elastic simulations for a reduced set of wave-sensitive design load cases, in comparison with the widely used linear and constrained waves. The coupled aero-elastic simulations are performed for the DTU 10 MW reference wind turbine on a large monopile at 33 m water depth using the aero-elastic code HAWC2. Effect of the wave nonlinearity is investigated in terms of the ultimate sectional moments at tower bottom and monopile mudline. Higher ultimate moments, 5% at tower bottom and 13% at monopile mudline as maximum, are predicated when the nonlinear waves are used. It could be explained by the fact that the extreme nonlinear waves, that are close to the breaking limit, can induce resonant ringing-type responses, and hereby dominate the ultimate load responses. However, the constrained wave approach shows marginal difference compared to the standard linear wave approach. It can be concluded at least for the present configuration that the industry standard approaches (linear and constrained wave approach) underestimate the ultimate load responses on offshore wind turbines in severe sea states.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102922
JournalMarine Structures
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Ultimate load
  • Fully nonlinear wave kinematics
  • Offshore monopile wind turbine


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