Key Contributors to Lifetime Accumulated Fatigue Damage in an Offshore Wind Turbine Support Structure
Chapter, Peer reviewed
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A simulation study is performed to identify the key contributors to lifetime accumulated fatigue damage in the support-structure of a 10 MW offshore wind turbine placed on a monopile foundation in 30 m water depth. The relative contributions to fatigue damage from wind loads, wave loads, and wind/wave misalignment are investigated through time-domain analysis combined with long-term variations in environmental conditions. Results show that wave loads are the dominating cause of fatigue damage in the support structure, and that environmental condtions associated with misalignment angle > 45° are insignificant with regard to the lifetime accumulated fatigue damage. Further, the results are used to investigate the potential of event-based use of control strategies developed to reduce fatigue loads through active load mitigation. Investigations show that a large reduction in lifetime accumulated fatigue damage is possible, enabling load mitigation only in certain situations, thus limiting collateral effects such as increased power fluctuations, and wear and tear of pitch actuators and drive-train components.