Open-Loop Control of Adjustable Tuned Mass Dampers for Floating Wind Turbine Platforms: Preprint

Daniel Zalkind, Matt Shields, Eben Lenfest, Andrew Goupee, Christopher Allen

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Floating offshore wind turbines have several advantages over their land-based counterparts, including access to stronger, more consistent winds and proximity to population centers. However, increased costs from the platform have been a challenge inhibiting their widespread adoption. New damping technologies with tunable target frequencies and damping ratios promise a greater degree of control over platform motions, allowing hulls to be designed smaller and reducing the overall cost of the turbines. In this work, a control strategy is proposed for these adjustable tuned mass dampers (TMDs). A frequency-domain model of the system is developed, from which response amplitude operators (RAOs) for the platform's rigid-body modes can be obtained for different natural frequencies and damping ratios of the dampers. Using these RAOs, and JONSWAP spectrums of operational and extreme sea states, the performance of the various damper settings are compared by evaluating the standard deviation of a rigid-body motion of interest (platform pitch or heave). By finding the optimal damper setting for a range of representative design load cases (DLCs), a lookup function is made to return the damper target frequency given the peak period of the sea state. To determine the current sea state, we propose a simple estimator that uses wave measurements (e.g., from a measurement buoy) to determine the peak period and significant wave height. The significant wave height is determined using the statistics of the past 100 seconds of wave elevation information and the peak period is computed using a frequency locked loop. Initial results show that we can use these estimated values to control the TMD natural frequency with an open loop controller. The controlled system is tested in a range of environmental conditions determined by the International Electrotechnical Commission design load cases (DLCs), which include normal and extreme wind and wave models. In these tests, we compare the performance of 4 cases: (1) no TMD, (2) a constant TMD based on the worst case DLC, (3) a controlled TMD based on known wind and wave environments, and (4) a real-time controlled TMD using estimated wind and wave environments. The effect of hull-based TMD control is also compared to changes in traditional wind turbine control via blade pitch.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages9
StatePublished - 2021
Event31st International Ocean and Polar Engineering Conference -
Duration: 20 Jun 202125 Jun 2021


Conference31st International Ocean and Polar Engineering Conference

Bibliographical note

See NREL/CP-5000-81109 for paper as published in proceedings

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-5000-78839


  • control
  • floating
  • offshore
  • tuned mass damper
  • turbines
  • wind


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