During extreme sea states so called impact events can be observed on the wave energy converter Oyster. In small scale experimental tests these impact events cause high frequency signals in the measured load which decrease confidence in the data obtained. These loads depend on the structural dynamics of the model. Amplification of the loads can occur and is transferred through the structure from the point of impact to the load cell located in the foundation. Since the determination of design data and load cases for Wave Energy Converters originate from scale experiments, this lack of confidence has a direct effect on the development.
Numerical vibration analysis is a valuable tool in the research of the structural load response of Oyster to impact events, but must take into account the effect of the surrounding water. This can be done efficiently by adding an added mass distribution, computed with a linearised potential boundary element method. This paper presents the development and validation of a numerical procedure, which couples the OpenSource boundary element code NEMOH with the Finite Element Analysis tool CodeAster. Numerical results of the natural frequencies and mode shapes of the structure under the influence of added mass due to specific structural modes are compared with experimental results.