Abstract

The aim of this paper is to study the mooring tension characteristics on a tidal energy converter (TIC) platform considering i) a horizontal and ii) a vertical tidal turbine. The study examines numerically the feasibility of a catenary mooring line for a modular tidal energy platform. A modular platform is designed and modelled with two floating hulls and anchored by studlink catenary mooring chains on the seabed. Vertical and horizontal axis turbines which have similar Cp are selected and modelled separately. The effect of those turbines on the mooring system are compared and the results informs lifetime of the mooring component for each turbine connection. The hydrodynamic model with no turbine is firstly developed and validated against an experiment with 1:12 scale ratio. The starboard fore mooring line tension, platform surge and pitch displacements are validated against the experiment. The model results show identical signal frequency with slightly different magnitude from the experiment. The mooring tension under vertical and horizontal tidal turbine operations in the particular environment is further examined. The result shows that the mooring line using selected vertical axis turbine experiences higher tension. For platform motions, the horizontal turbine generates slightly larger displacement in surge. However the pitch motion record shows equal displacement under both turbine operations. The selected vertical axis tidal turbine also produces longer lifetime mooring components.

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