Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems

Postgraduate research profiles

Contact

Diego Gomez

Phone: (+61 4) 3104 9905


Start date

Sep 2014

Submission date

Sep 2017

Diego Gomez

Diego Gomez profile photo

Thesis

Development of a design framework for shared anchoring systems for floating renewable energy devices.

Summary

In an era of escalating energy demand and climate change, securing the supply of clean energy is one of the major challenges of our generation. The world’s oceans offer a largely untapped resource, with enormous potential for renewable energy solutions. This project aims to establish a geotechnical design framework for shared anchoring systems subjected to multidirectional alternate cyclic loading. This will enable the design of large arrays or farms of floating wind turbines and floating wave energy converters, generating radical cost savings particularly in deep offshore renewable energy structures. The objective will be achieved through a blend of state-of-the-art centrifuge modelling techniques and numerical modelling using a tractable and advanced energy-based approach. This project anticipates the future of offshore renewable energy technology, bypassing fixed structures founded directly on the seabed, to develop the knowledge required to safely and efficiently anchor floating devices.

Why my research is important

Renewable energy generation from floating systems has been proven in shallow and more recently in deeper waters. These single devices have demonstrated concept feasibility. However, commercial exploitation of offshore renewable energy will require a large number of devices, and attention therefore must turn towards reduction of foundations and installation costs, especially for deep offshore designs. A breakthrough in cost reduction can be achieved by setting out devices in array configurations and mooring multiple devices to a single anchor.

This research project is important because it aims to develop the fundamental science required to make the paradigm shift to the design and use of floating arrays of ocean energy devices -including wind turbines and wave power machines- and therefore to unlock the promising offshore renewable energy resources and market potential in Australia and worldwide.

Funding

  • IPRS
  • APA
  • UWA Safety Net Top-Up
  • COFS Top-Up