Digital twin to model floating wind foundation demonstrator

June 28, 2021
Shell and RWE have commissioned Akselos to apply its structural simulation software Integra to model the TetraSpar floating foundation demonstrator.

Offshore staff

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – Shell and RWE have commissioned Akselos to apply its structural simulation software Integra to model the TetraSpar floating foundation demonstrator.

This is due to be installed in 200 m (656 ft) water depth, 10 km (6.2 mi) from the coast at the Marine Energy Test Centre, near Stavanger.

The ‘Digital TetraSpar’ will interface with sensors on the structure and serve as a detailed structural model of the demonstrator.

Akselos claims that the speed and scale of its software allows the behavior of the entire structure to be analyzed in near real time.

This should provide insights for improvements in the design and operation of the concept, leading to lower cost, optimized maintenance, and inspection workflows.

Akselos previously supplied a structural digital twin for deployment on the WindFloat Atlantic project as part of a US Department of Energy grant.

Steven Zijp, project engineer Offshore Wind at Shell, said: “The partnership between Akselos, TetraSpar, RWE and Shell enables us to further scale and manage floating offshore wind turbines, making them safer and more cost efficient, while allowing developers access to deeper and more challenging waters around the world.”

The TetraSpar floating wind foundation was developed by Stiesdal Offshore Technologies, which is working on the demo project – claimed to be the world’s first full-scale demonstration of an industrialized offshore foundation – with TEPCO Renewable Power, Shell, and RWE.

The foundation is a tetrahedral structure assembled from tubular steel components.

A 3.6-MW wind turbine supplied by Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy will be mounted on the foundation at the quayside using a land-based crane.

From there, the assembled structure will be towed to the offshore test site, moored with three anchor lines and connected to the electrical grid.