Experimental and numerical measurements of wave forces on a 3D offshore stationary OWC wave energy converter
Elhanafi, A and MacFarlane, G and Fleming, A and Leong, Z, Experimental and numerical measurements of wave forces on a 3D offshore stationary OWC wave energy converter, Ocean Engineering, 144 pp. 98-117. ISSN 0029-8018 (2017) [Refereed Article]
In this paper, wave forces on a 1:50 model–scale of an offshore stationary Oscillating Water Column (OWC) device are studied in 3D physical and numerical wave tanks. In total 310 physical experiments including repetition were performed in a wave tank for regular waves of different heights and periods, and several turbine–induced pneumatic damping conditions simulated via orifice plates. A Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) model based on the RANS equations and the VOF surface capturing scheme was constructed and validated against the tank measurements. The validated CFD model was then utilized to investigate the effects of tank sidewalls on the predicted wave forces. It was found that the horizontal wave force acting on the OWC device was always larger than the vertical force. The total horizontal and vertical forces were maximum and minimum, respectively at the intermediate wavelength. In addition, the pneumatic damping had a significant impact on the measured vertical force, whereas negligible effects were observed on the horizontal force. Increasing the wave height increased nonlinear effects on the forces measured, especially the vertical force. It was concluded that a tank width of less than five times the OWC device breadth will likely provide misleading wave forces due to blockage effects.
offshore oscillating water column, OWC, wave forces, physical measurements, 3D numerical wave tank, CFD