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Running shipwreck simulations backwards helps identify dangerous waves
Date:10/1/2007

have a rare response, but when we looked at just the wave heights that caused that response, we found they're not so rare," Alford said. "This is about operational conditions and what you can be safely sailing in. The safe wave height might be lower than we thought."

This new method is much faster than current simulations. Computational fluid dynamics modeling in use now works by subjecting the virtual ship to random waves. This method is extremely computationally intensive and a ship designer would have to go through months of data to pinpoint the worst case scenario.

Alford and Troesch's program and method of analysis takes about an hour. And it gives multiple possible wave configurations that could have statistically caused the end result.

There's an outcry in the shipping industry for advanced ship concepts, including designs with more than one hull, Troesch said. But because ships are so large and expensive to build, prototypes are uncommon. This new method is meant to be used in the early stages of design to rule out problematic architectures. And it is expected to help spur innovation.

A majority of international goods are still transported by ship, Troesch said.

The paper is called "A Methodology for Creating Design Ship Responses."


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Contact: Nicole Casal Moore
ncmoore@umich.edu
734-647-1838
University of Michigan
Source:Eurekalert

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