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Durham University

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Publication details

Dao, Cuong D., Kazemtabrizi, Behzad & Crabtree, Christopher J. (2019), Impacts of Reliability on Operational Performance and Cost of Energy Evaluation of Multimegawatt, Far-offshore Wind Turbines, Volume 3: Structures, Safety, and Reliability: ASME 38th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore & Arctic Engineering (OMAE) 2019. Glasgow, UK, American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Author(s) from Durham


Wind energy is growing at a fast pace around the world. According to a report published by WindEurope, 55% of total power capacity installations in the EU came from wind in 2017. In this context, offshore wind plays a decisive role, with countries such as the UK leading the development of large-scale offshore wind projects within Europe and around the world. It is essential that the cost of energy from offshore wind remains competitive with other sources of energy to encourage further investment in offshore wind developments. One way to maintain and further reduce the cost of offshore wind energy is to take advantage of economies of scale by increasing the megawatt ratings of offshore wind turbines. On the other hand, the operational expenditure of the turbines could also be reduced significantly. In this paper, we present a new integrated operation simulation framework for performance evaluation of multi-megawatt direct drive wind turbines suitable for use in far offshore wind farms. The operation simulation considers several essential wind turbine data such as component reliability, i.e. failure rates and downtimes per failure, historical wind speed, turbine information, and repair cost per failure to estimate the operational and economic performance of the wind turbine in its entire lifetime. In the proposed operation simulation, component reliability models and a wind power model are coupled together to simulate wind turbine operation over its entire lifetime using a time-sequential Monte Carlo simulation. Since the reliability data for large-scale offshore wind turbines are scarce and/or restricted to only direct stakeholders, a range of operational profiles for the turbines based on different level of reliability are simulated. In addition, the economic performance of the turbine is measured by defining an index for levelised cost of energy as a function of component reliability. In this way, the wind turbine reliability, power output, failure cost and levelised cost of energy are estimated under the variation of input reliability data. The results of this paper can inform wind turbine performance depending on the reliability of its components, and provide useful information for critical components identification and economic assessment of future far offshore wind turbines.