Design tools available for monopile engineering

Paul Doherty, Luke Prendergast, Gerry Murphy, Kenneth Gavin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Monopiles have been by far the most common support structure used for offshore turbines, with approximately 75% of existing wind farms founded on these large diameter steel tubes EWEA(2014). However, despite the widespread prevalence of monopiles across the wind sector, the design tools commonly used by industry have typically evolved from those developed by the oil and gas sector, which apply to significantly different design conditions. This paper introduces some of the design approaches available in practice and identifies some of the limitations of current offshore codes. Finite Element Methods (FEM) are suggested as a means of more accurately considering offshore soil behaviour, although the importance of accurate calibration of these models against real data (lab and/or field data) is stressed. Novel means of determining the in-situ frequency response are also discussed and the potential implications for monopile design at different sites. Finally, some design aspects of XL monopiles are considered that suggest monopiles may be pushed into ever increasing water depths.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEuropean Wind Energy Association Conference and Exhibition 2014, EWEA 2014
PublisherEuropean wind energy association
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
EventEuropean Wind Energy Association Conference and Exhibition 2014 - Brussels, Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 10 Mar 201413 Mar 2014


ConferenceEuropean Wind Energy Association Conference and Exhibition 2014
Abbreviated titleEWEA 2014


  • Dynamic response
  • Foundation design
  • Modelling


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