IFPEN has been carrying out research in the field of floating wind turbines for a number of years, developing, for this purpose, the DeepLines WindTM simulation tool, in partnership with Principia(1). The software enables the coupled calculation of hydrodynamic loads on the floating support and its mooring systems as well as the aerodynamic stresses exerted on the blades. The latter are estimated via the Wind module, recently developed by IFPEN and added to the initial DeepLines software.

The majority of aerodynamic dimensioning methods for wind turbines use analytical approaches based on the Blade Element Momentuma method. To validate these approaches, a vortex-type Lagrangian method was developed(2). For this, it is necessary to solve a system of equations (N-body problemb), which mobilizes virtually all of the global calculation time. To reduce it, the “critical” part of the calculation was transferred to the GPUs (Graphical Processing Units) using the specific CUDAc language. This substantially reduced calculation times — one or two-fold — thereby rendering the code operational on a daily basis.

To pursue this optimization avenue, Fast Multipole Method-type solutions may deliver additional calculation costs savings (one-fold reduction).

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Configuration of a wind turbine on the IFPEN/SBM Offshore floater for simulations with DeepLines WindTM.


a - Method based on the actuator disk law and a “blade element” approach enabling the load forces of wind turbine blades to be calculated.
b - Problem consisting in solving the interactions between N-bodies interacting according to a physical law.
c - Compute Unified Device Architecture.

(1) C. Le Cunff et al., 32nd International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering, Nantes, France, 2013.

(2) F. Blondel et al., Congrès français de mécanique, Lille, France, 2017.

Scientific contact: frederic.blondel@ifpen.fr