waves2Foam – Open-source CFD for offshore and coastal structures

The course waves2Foam gives the participants a general introduction to detailed numerical modelling for offshore and coastal applications. The theoretical background of basic wave theory and its importance for numerical modelling of water waves and fluid structure interaction is covered. The participants get hands-on experience with the numerical models and advanced post processing tools through relevant engineering case studies. All tools and models are open-source and all software is made available to the participants.


  • Basic wave theory
  • Numerical modelling of water waves
    This topic includes discussion on wave generation and absorption and choice of appropriate boundary conditions.
    Furthermore, aspects of accuracy, quality and efficiency will be covered.
  • Detailed fluid-structure interaction
    Modelling of permeable structures and aspects of turbulence modelling for free surface flows.
  • Advanced pre- and post-processing tools
    Run-time extraction of wave properties and their post-processing (in time and frequency domain).

Case studies

Offshore wind
Efficient computations of fully nonlinear wave loads on monopile foundations for offshore wind turbine generators. Detailed modelling of slamming wave loads will be discussed.

Coastal structures
Numerical modelling of the interaction between water waves and a permeable coastal structure. A method to compute the reflection from and transmission through the structure will be presented.

Numerical models

The open-source potential flow solver OceanWave3D is presented and used for wave propagation and fast evaluation of non-linear wave induced forces on offshore structures.
The open-source toolbox waves2Foam for OpenFOAM is presented. Its capabilities within the area of breaking wave impacts on monopiles and permeable coastal structures are presented.

Course material

The participant will receive a digital copy of all slides and case studies on a USB-stick. An operational environment for OpenFOAM, OceanWave3D and waves2Foam will be made available to the participants.

The participants

As participant of this course you are a professional involved in design of coastal and offshore structures such as offshore wind turbine foundations, breakwaters and oil- and gas platforms.
The course will give an overview of the capabilities of the models and help you implement them in your own design routines.

The instructors

Dr. Niels Gjøl Jacobsen has many years of experience with the modelling of free surface waves in OpenFOAM and he is the main author of the waves2Foam toolbox.

Dr. Bo Terp Paulsen has many years of experience in the modelling of extreme loads on offshore structure including slamming and ringing loads.

This course was part of the Delft Software Days – Edition 2017 (DSD-INT).