Influence of earthquake ground motion modelling on the dynamic responses of offshore wind turbines

Haoran Zuo, Kaiming Bi, Hong Hao, Chao Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Offshore wind turbines (OWTs) are more and more widely used to produce electrical energy nowadays. Besides the constant wind and wave loads, earthquake excitation can be another important vibration source to the OWTs since many OWTs have been/will be constructed in the seismic prone areas. Extensive research works have been carried out to understand the dynamic behaviours of OWTs when they are subjected to multi-hazards (e.g. the simultaneous wind, wave and/or earthquake loadings). However, when seismic excitations are considered, the onshore earthquake records are normally used as inputs in the analyses due to the lack of offshore data and the difficulty in synthesizing the offshore seismic motions. This practice may lead to inaccurate structural response estimations since it is well known that the seawater can significantly suppress the seafloor vertical motions near the P wave resonant frequencies of the seawater layer, which in turn results in the different characteristics of onshore and offshore earthquake recordings. Moreover, the earthquake motions along the pile of OWTs are different from those at the ground surface, i.e. the earthquake motions vary with the soil depth. Recently, a method to stochastically simulate the earthquake ground motions on the offshore site was proposed, in which the influence of seawater layer was considered and the earthquake motions at any soil depth could be obtained. This paper carries out numerical simulations on the dynamic behaviours of OWTs subjected to the combined wind, wave and earthquake loadings, and the depth-varying offshore seismic motions are used as inputs in the analyses. The seismic responses of OWTs obtained from the onshore and offshore earthquake motions are calculated and compared. The influence of depth-varying ground motions on the dynamic responses of OWTs is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)151-167
Number of pages17
JournalSoil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Depth-varying earthquake motions
  • Offshore seismic motions
  • Offshore wind turbines
  • Onshore seismic motions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Soil Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Influence of earthquake ground motion modelling on the dynamic responses of offshore wind turbines'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this