Dynamic response of an offshore structure interacting with an ice floe failing in crushing

Hayo Hendrikse*, Torodd S. Nord

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)
29 Downloads (Pure)


Interaction of sea or lake ice with vertically sided offshore structures may result in severe structural vibrations commonly referred to as ice-induced vibrations. With the surge in offshore wind developments in sub-arctic regions this problem has received increased attention over the last decade, whereas traditionally the topic has been mainly associated with lighthouses and structures for hydrocarbon extraction. It is important for the safe design of these offshore structures to have the ability to predict the interaction between ice and structure in an expected scenario. A model for simulation of the interaction between a drifting ice floe and a vertically sided offshore structure is presented. The nonlinear speed dependent ductile and brittle deformation and local crushing of ice are considered phenomenologically. A one-dimensional sea ice dynamics model is applied to incorporate the effects of floe size, wind and current. The structure is modelled by incorporating its modal properties obtained from a general-purpose finite element software package. Alternatively, the model can be coupled to in-house design software for fully coupled simulations. Examples of application of the model to simulate dynamic ice-structure interaction are provided. Simulation results are validated with public data from forced vibration experiments, small-scale intermittent crushing and frequency lock-in, and full-scale interaction with the Norströmsgrund lighthouse. Effects of floe size and environmental driving forces on the development of ice-induced vibrations in full-scale are studied. It is shown that sustained frequency lock-in vibrations of the structure can only develop for very specific combinations of environmental driving forces and ice floe size. In all other cases, the ice floe slows down and comes to a stop, or accelerates to a drift speed which exceeds the range where frequency lock-in develops. This results in only a few cycles of vibration per interaction event, such as observed for the Norströmsgrund lighthouse in the Baltic Sea.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-290
Number of pages20
JournalMarine Structures
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project https://www.openaccess.nl/en/you-share-we-take-care
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Continuous brittle crushing
  • Frequency lock-in
  • Ice engineering
  • Ice-induced vibrations
  • Intermittent crushing


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