Texas Wind Power
Simulating Sustainable Wind Generation with Texas Wind Tower
Texas Wind Tower, a startup pioneering the development of floating wind tower technology, worked with Altair to develop an advanced workflow for the design, validation, and optimization of floating wind tower structures using their best-in-class optimization solution and naval architecture software. To perform topology optimization during the concept development stage, Texas Wind Tower used Altair OptiStruct alongside with MAESTRO by MAESTRO Marine, which is available through the Altair Partner Alliance (APA).
Floating Platform Development
Together, Altair and Texas Wind Tower developed the floating wind structure’s design targets, including height and footprint dimensions, mass, center of gravity, waterline, ballast volume, and stability. The team used these targets to develop the initial wind simulation. Details, design targets, and dimensions were also derived from a technical report.
Using MAESTRO for hydrostatic loading and static wind loading data sourced from a technical report on the design of concrete offshore platforms, loading conditions along with boundary conditions were established from the teams’ research.
Figure 1: Initial Platform Mockup
Using an approach with topology optimization in mind, the team was able to find the primary load paths to support the different load cases, while maximizing stiffness and meeting design constraints.
Running through different optimization setups with these tools, the team generated concept iterations for testing. After multiple design iterations, the team designed the structure to be more buoyant, more manufacturable, and they added additional columns to improve stability on the water.
Fig 2: Optimization Results
Thanks to their collaboration, Texas Wind Tower was able to create a fully developed, advanced workflow for floating wind turbines. They created a streamlined and semi-automated process for optimizing, designing, and analyzing these massive floating structures.
Fig 3: The latest iteration of the offshore wind tower floater concept.
Altair's simulation and optimization technologies support the increasing development of renewable energy technology. Fast solver speed and efficiency allows users to study and model the energy industry’s most advanced multiphysics problems. Altair’s technology in this area covers some of the renewable energy industry’s most vital needs, including turbine vortex simulation and prediction, acoustic interpretation and assessment, wind farm siting, composite blade analysis and optimization, and transmission dynamics simulation and optimization.
Left: The Design Space created for topology optimization. Right The initial floating wind tower design.