Determination of p-y Curves for Bucket Foundations in Sand Using Finite Element Modeling

Bjørn S. Knudsen, Martin Underlin Østergaard, Lars Bo Ibsen, Johan Clausen

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Cylindrical offshore wind turbine foundations, such as bucket foundations and monopiles, have up till now been designed using analytical methods based on experiments done with piles much more slender than the ones used in today’s industry. Compared to the widely used monopile foundation, the suction bucket has a much smaller ratio between length and diameter, and the suction buckets will thus act more as a rigid object during rotation in the soil. To improve the design of suction buckets through analytical methods, the soil pressure needs to be calculated more precisely since currently available p􀀀y curves, linking displacement and soil pressure, are based on more slender cylindrical structures. Using finite element methods, the p􀀀y curves for suction buckets will be determined as a function of the internal angle of friction of the soil, the diameter and the skirt length of the suction buckets, which can in turn be applied in determination of soil pressures for analytical design methods of suction bucket foundations.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAalborg
PublisherDepartment of Civil Engineering, Aalborg University
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 2013
SeriesDCE Technical Memorandum


  • Foundations
  • Offshore wind turbine
  • Bucket foundations
  • Monopiles


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