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Design, build and test of an adaptable, deformable bow for ship model testing
Group Members
Charlotte Dodge, Elliot Jones, Cillian McGreer, Jonathan Snow, Nadir Wahab, Nathaniel Warren, Gilberto Zambrini
Professor Dominic Hudson, Dr Stephen Boyd
Hull form is an important consideration in optimisation of ship performance and efficiency, which are driving factors in ship design. Vessels are typically optimised for one operating condition, however they often operate in varying off-design conditions, typically due to economic factors such as fuel prices. Therefore, the ability to adapt a hull form to maximise performance for different operating conditions could be a very attractive concept.

Using an existing modular tanker model, the concept was proved through the design, build and testing of two adaptable bows. These demonstrated both local and global changes to the bulbous and adaptive bow respectively, which were predicted using a numerical model. This incorporated concept design, materials testing and self-propelled model testing.

The hydrodynamic performance of the bows was validated using self-propelled tank tests. The results were compared to theoretical predictions from Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and empirical approximations. In addition, a full scale study assessed the economic and sustainable benefits of the adaptable vessel concept using real operating conditions.

Two adaptable bow models have been developed in this project, demonstrating a relative change in resistance between shape variations. This highlighted the potential sustainability and Performance benefits in adaptable design, hence the feasibility of this concept at full-scale was considered.
Prototype bow structure
Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) analysis of presures exerted on bow
Exploded view of computational model
Prototype tank testing
Prototype of adaptable bulbous bow -self-propelled tank testing