Structural optimisation framework for onshore wind turbine towers considering multiple design constraints

Shaikha Al-Sanad, Jafarali Parol, Lin Wang, Athanasios Kolios

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)
    62 Downloads (Pure)


    An optimum design of the onshore wind turbine (WT) tower structure is crucial for achieving an economic, efficient and safe design of the entire onshore WT system. In this study, an integrated structural optimisation framework for onshore WT towers is established through combining a parametric finite element analysis (FEA) model with a genetic algorithm (GA). The bottom and top diameters as well as the thickness distribution of the onshore WT tower are considered as design variables. The mass of the onshore WT tower is minimised by the structural optimisation framework under multiple design constraints. The framework has been validated and then applied to the structural optimisation of a representative 2.0 MW onshore WT tower presently installed in a wind farm in Middle East. It is demonstrated that the structural optimisation framework developed in this work can considerably lower the mass of the tower while fulfilling design requirements.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)469-491
    Number of pages23
    JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Energy
    Issue number5
    Early online date15 Jul 2021
    Publication statusPublished - 28 May 2022

    Bibliographical note

    This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the
    Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives
    License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.


    • finite element analysis
    • genetic algorithm
    • Onshore wind turbines
    • structural optimisation framework
    • wind turbine tower

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
    • Fuel Technology
    • Energy(all)
    • Process Chemistry and Technology
    • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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