Design of Offshore Wind Turbine Support Structures: Selected topics in the field ofgeotechnical engineering

  • Bakmar, Christian LeBlanc, (Project Participant)
  • Ibsen, Lars Bo (Project Manager)


Breaking the dependence on fossil fuels offers many opportunities for strengthened competitiveness, technological development and progress. Today, wind energy offers the most competitive production prices for renewable energy. Limitations on suitable locations on land, due to dense populations and existing developments, enforce the development of offshore wind farms. Offshore wind energy has a promising future, as the population centres around the world are located near or along coastlines, close to offshore wind resources.

The offshore wind energy industry has not developed as rapidly as was expected a few years ago, despite strong political and industrial forces. An important factor for this is the high costs of offshore wind turbine support structures which constitute a significant proportion of the total cost for an offshore wind farm, about 25-30%. Large economic benefits can accrue by reducing the costs and risks associated with support structures. Thus, low-cost and low-risk concepts need to be developed in order to make future offshore wind farms economically more feasible.

The aims of the research work is to provide novel design guidance for offshore wind turbine support structures in order to reduce the risks and costs associated with future support structures, in particular the monopile and the bucket foundation concepts. The work is divided in four selected research topics in the field of geotechnical engineering which are not directly inter-related. Each research topic is targeted on either assessing risks of failure, improving the current design guidelines or enabling the use of innovative concepts for future support structures. Overall, the outcome of the research work may reduce risks and costs related to future support structures and thereby make future offshore wind farms more economically feasible.

Effective start/end date01/12/200529/05/2009


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Offshore wind turbines
Offshore wind farms
Wind power
Geotechnical engineering
Fossil fuels


  • 2009 DCE Ph.d projects
  • Offshore Wind Farms
  • Offshore Environment
  • Soil Conditions
  • Wind Turbine
  • Geotechnical
  • Buckling Loads
  • Piezocones