Monitor JIP Consortium Creating Structural Health Monitoring System for Offshore Wind Farms
Monitor JIP, a consortium consisting of Gemini Windfarm, Van Oord, Keppel Verolme, Mecal, ECN and TNO, is working on developing a solution which would allow monitoring the health of offshore wind support structures.
Many offshore wind stakeholders acknowledge the relevance of monitoring offshore wind support structures, the consortium said. However, a dedicated standard for the design and installation of a monitoring system is still lacking, as well as an effective tool to interpret and assess the collected data.
The main goal of the consortium is to develop and validate a robust and effective offshore wind farm support structure monitoring system, including the underlying methodologies to interpret the collected data.
Such a system will enable a wind farm operator to know the structural health of multiple support structures within an offshore wind farm. This understanding is the basis for asset value quantification and support structure design validation and optimisation.
There are a number of reasons why structural monitoring of steel structures in general – and offshore wind support structures in particular – is a good investment, the consortium said.
Processed monitoring data provide the structural health status of the support structures. With this status, an operator can predict the remaining lifetime of the structures, determine whether lifetime extension is possible, and potentially optimise the inspection and maintenance scheme.
Secondly, monitoring data can be used to validate a specific design. In general, such validation comprises the simulated structural behaviour of the support structure and predicted external conditions.
And finally, monitoring data gathered in a uniform and organised way, on a large scale, provides very powerful evidence for support structure design standard optimisation.