Wind Loading on Cooling Towers

by John Armitt, Research Officer; Central Electricity Research Laboratories, Leatherhead, Surrey, England,

Serial Information: Journal of the Structural Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 3, Pg. 623-641

Document Type: Journal Paper


A wind-tunnel technique for the assessment of wind induced stresses in cooling tower shells has been developed. It includes simulation of the atmospheric wind and aeroelastic models of the towers under test as part of a complete site model. It is shown that the simulation of the steady and fluctuating wind loadings and the dynamic properties of the models are in good agreement with results from full-scale towers. The predictions of wind speeds for failure of the tower shell given by the method are shown to be in good agreement with full-scale evidence. Stresses in cooling tower shells are sensitive to changes in wind loading distribution arising from aerodynamic interactions in complex groups of towers. If the resonant frequencies of the shell are low enough, vibration arising from turbulence produced by the wakes of buildings and other cooling towers can produce significant contributions to the stresses.

Subject Headings: Wind loads | Simulation models | Load factors | Cooling towers | High-rise buildings | Dynamic properties | Agreements and treaties | Wind tunnel

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