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A NEW COMBINED SEAKEEPING AND MANOEUVRING BASIN

FOR THE THIRD MILLENNIUM MARITIME RESEARCH


Ir. Frans H.H.A. Quadvlieg, MARIN, Wageningen, The Netherlands1

Paper presented at
the International Conference on Marine Simulation and Ship Maneuvering,
MARSIM 2000,
Orlando, Florida, U.S.A, May 8-12, 2000

Summary
In June 1999, MARIN's Seakeeping and Manoeuvring basin became operational. It is the
first of the three (re)new(ed) basins at the sites of MARIN in Wageningen. This Seakeeping and
Manoeuvring Basin is based on state of the art knowledge, but is constructed to be ready for the
next millennium. The basin has been engineered to fulfil with the technology of today, the
hydrodynamic questions of today and tomorrow. Before the actual design and engineering of the
basins started, MARIN oriented itself on the present and future research questions. Both the market
pull and the technology push have been inventoried. Based on this and the state of the art, the
model basins are designed in good synergy between client questions, technology push and all
MARIN departments.
In this paper, it is described how the financial impulse of 100 million NLG opened the
fantastic opportunity to wonderful new facilities. The functionality, properties, capabilities and
measures of the new basins are described mainly from the manoeuvring point of view.

Introduction
For almost 70 years, MARIN has been actively involved in the field of hydrodynamic
research. In 1997, the Dutch government granted MARIN a subsidy of 100 million Dutch guilders
for major upgrading of their hydrodynamic facilities. This subsidy was granted in relation to the
strengthening of the economic structure of the Dutch maritime industry.
This impulse of 100 MNLG gave an enormous push in the development of the new
hydrodynamic facilities. On the other hand, a group of enthusiastic professionals could at least
define facilities up to 1 billion guilders to satisfy their commercial and scientific needs. An
optimum had to be found between the needs of MARINs areas of expertise:
Hull and propeller optimisation
Cavitation, pressure, noise and vibrations
Steering and manoeuvring
Full-mission bridge simulator training
Ship motion, wave impacts, loads and fatigue
Mooring systems, dynamic positioning, fixed and floating structures
Port and fairway design

1
Maritime Research Institute Netherlands (MARIN)
P.O. Box 28, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
Tel: +31 317 493 911, Fax: +31 317 493 245, e-mail: f.quadvlieg@marin.nl, internet: www.marin.nl
It was decided to perform upgradings in the following five areas:
New Offshore Basin
New Seakeeping & Manoeuvring Basin
Multifunctional Depressurised Towing Tank
Modernisation program for instrumentation
Upgrade IT-structure, process and programs
In this paper, it is described how in the field of the ship dynamics, and particularly ship
manoeuvring, the facilities are renewed and why the course is set into a certain direction. The
MARIN professionals, very enthusiastically, took up the challenge to define their basins that set the
course for the third millennium. Basis is that hydrodynamic facilities are constructed that are ready
for today, but aimed at the future.

Trends in ship dynamics


To be sure that the new facilities are ready for tomorrow, market trends are inventoried.
This is done from a viewpoint of four angles:
Existing and future ship types
Criteria ships have to fulfil and the required model tests in the future
The future of model tests versus calculations is analysed
The client requirements towards model tests: the business demands.
The business demands towards new facilities are very important considerations. This has to
do with how clients want to do model tests now and in the future.

Ship types
The market is asking for more ships with critical and challenging designs. This means that
each new ship will be designed even more towards the edges of the engineering capabilities. Ships
will be designed for dedicated trades having specific demands for, for example, harbour entries and
wave climates. Amongst others, solutions are found in several new propulsion and steering
alternatives. Examples of this are the recent developments in the field of podded propulsors (see
Figure 1), whale tail wheels (see [1] and Figure 2) and ships with multiple azimuthing thrusters (see
[2]). Not only seagoing ships are changing, but also in the field of inland shipping, several high
tech solutions are explored. For inland ships, a very good manoeuvrability is needed to ensure the
safety on the overcrowded inland waterways.

Figure 1: Cruise ship equipped with azipods


Figure 2: Ship equipped with whale tail wheel propulsion and steering unit
The application of the new propulsors leads to changing hull forms. The ever-increasing
fullness of the aft body gives rise to problems related to course stability, not only in calm water, but
also in waves, and particularly stern quartering waves. The course keeping of full block, low speed
ships therefore needs to be verified. The size of the models needs to be sufficiently large to avoid
scale effects.
Furthermore, ship speeds are increasing. Not only the speed attained in calm water is
important, but also the sustained speed in waves and the arrival statistics of ships on a route. Fast
ships often are equipped with water jets, yielding a hull form with a deep forward V from
seakeeping considerations and a flat aft ship for the fitting of the water jets. Examples are given in
Figure 3. These ships have a tendency of having less course keeping ability. Due to their powerful
steering gear, the effect is moderate in calm water but it will manifest itself especially in stern
quartering waves, where the magnitudes of wave excitation forces and steering reaction forces are
not in equilibrium. Typically, the steering and manoeuvring qualities and the seakeeping qualities
then need to be addressed in the same model tests.

Figure 3: Fast ships

Especially for the newly explored ship types, the steering and manoeuvring characteristics
are an important factor, indicating the go or no-go of a concept. The ability to test the proper
combination of steering and manoeuvring in a seagoing environment becomes important. Ship
types that are considered in this range are tugs and high-speed craft with unconventional propulsion
and steering gear. Ferries and cruise ships seem conventional ships, but the liability of owners
becomes much higher with current high demands of passengers and vulnerability of cargo.
Therefore it is worthwhile to consider the motions (and particularly the heel angle) induced by
steering already in the design stage.

Required manoeuvring and controllability qualities


The contract work in the manoeuvring research is not only focussing on the verification of
the inherent steering and manoeuvring characteristics in terms of turning ability and course keeping
ability, although this remains an important part of the work. The testing of manoeuvring
characteristics using standard manoeuvres allows the quantification of the manoeuvring behaviour
in terms that are known in traditional shipbuilding. Also the assessment of the harbour
manoeuvring qualities is a standard (see [3]). However, for many ships, other manoeuvring criteria
are becoming important:
Steering induced heeling and roll angles.
Controllability and course keeping ability in stern waves (see [4]).
Broaching should be mentioned specifically (see Figure 4).
Accident avoidance capability for fast ships.
Manoeuvring capabilities of disabled ships.
Studies towards rudder roll stabilisation systems require an integration of seakeeping
and manoeuvring.
For some ships, not the fulfilment of "standard criteria" is an issue but the ability of the
helmsmen to achieve a certain mission. Escort tugs are an excellent example of this.
Besides the normal manoeuvring criteria, a mathematical model is needed for a
simulator to verify that the tugmaster is able to perform a certain task (see [2]).
Mission related criteria such as dynamic tracking in wind, wave and current.
Many issues that have to be studied ask for an integration of traditional steering and
manoeuvring work with the seakeeping work. Therefore, it is of importance that new seakeeping
facilities combine the possibility to perform arbitrary manoeuvres or that new manoeuvring
facilities have the possibility to perform their tests in waves having arbitrary directions.

Figure 4: Broaching: combination of manoeuvring and seakeeping

Calculations versus model tests


In the eighties, numerical techniques in the field of hydrodynamics gained much interest.
High expectations were indicating that model tests would become obsolete. These high
expectations were not met. For the verification of the manoeuvrability of the design, model tests are
still necessary. Model tests are at the moment still the only reliable source of manoeuvring research
[6]. On the other hand it is seen that a synergy between calculations and model tests is growing.
This can be seen in three fields: the application for mathematical modelling, the verification and
validation of CFD tools and actual free sailing model tests in which the total ship dynamics are
modelled (including all ride control systems).
Computer simulations are used in two ways: in the very early design stage, using estimated
manoeuvring forces, and for the calculation of specific missions of ships that cannot be tested
directly in the model basin. Good examples of this last way are escort tugs or submarines. They
fulfil tasks where the human factor is too important and perform manoeuvres that are difficult to
carry out in the basin. Simulations are used for that. This is called simulation-based design. The
enhanced need for simulation based design puts forward the need for enhanced, high quality
mathematical models. The mathematical models have at least four degrees of freedom, but
preferably six degrees of freedom. The coefficients in these mathematical models are to be derived
by dedicated model tests. These model tests have to be carried out in a captive set-up. A large
stroke PMM or a rotating arm facility is suitable. Even better in a more flexible set-up is a CPMC
(see [5]), able to combine rotating arm and PMM tests. In our opinion, PMMs or CPMCs can only
work in sufficiently large facilities, so that the non-linear coefficients can be determined with
sufficient accuracy. These non-linear terms are especially important to indicate the amount of
course keeping ability (see [5] and [7]). For desktop studies or training studies with full mission
bridge simulators, the possibilities are greatly enhanced by combining experimental facilities,
mathematical modelling and simulation in one hand.

Figure 5: CFD-RANS calculations on a manoeuvring ship Esso Osaka

During the last years, RANS calculations made a big step forward. The application of
viscous flow calculation is showing promising results (see Figure 5). It is expected that in the future
even CFD calculations can be used to calculate force on the bare hull of a vessel. These CFD
calculations do not decrease the need for model tests. In contrary, many advanced tests will be
necessary to verify the CFD tools. This puts forward a large demand towards model tests with
segmented models, flow visualisation tests and pressure measurements on the hull.
Concluding, one might say that model tests will fulfil a great need and that it will be
worthwhile to invest in model testing facilities besides super computers.

Business demands for model tests


The time to build ships is becoming more and more critical. This puts an enormous pressure
on the time available for model testing. The earlier the model tests can be completed, the earlier
detailed engineering can start at the shipyard. Furthermore, model tests should be carried out in
time windows, in which the client and his clients can witness testing. Although these model tests
remain experiments, the planning of the tests should be as accurate as possible, for which reliable
instrumentation and set-up is used. The visiting capability of the model basins is high. For a
company like MARIN with many competitive shipyards within the same building at the same time,
it is of importance that all accesses to all the model basins are completely separated. Clients are just
able to see their own model tests in their own basin, and have no access to other towing tanks. The
confidentiality is then guaranteed.
Significant gains and efficiency profit is obtained when only one model can be used for all
model tests: resistance and propulsion, seakeeping and manoeuvring tests. However, basin
restrictions with respect to the trajectory, possible wave heights, speed restrictions, propeller
diameters and scale effects play a role in this. In addition, when all tests can be carried out in one
basin only, less preparation effort is needed for tests.
Business is also demanding model tests at short notice. This means that flexibility should be
possible and that model test programs should have a short throughput time. The time in the basin
should be as short as possible, which means that as many preparations as possible should be carried
out not in the basin, but in a preparation area.
The recent booming internet possibilities will even have more consequences. In the future
have clients will not have to attend model tests, can check in and follow their model test via internet
in stead of a long stay at a model institute, with many travelling and lodging expenses. The video
equipment of the basin should be very good.

Present and future manoeuvring needs


Summarising, from the currently observed trends in manoeuvring studies, the following
needs are observed, from market pull as well as for technology push viewpoint:
Fast ships
Large full block ships
New and unconventional propulsors
Use of larger ship models
Even more time and cost efficient testing
Captive rotating arm tests or CPMC tests on top of PMM tests
Validation of CFD with flow visualisations of transient conditions
Manoeuvring in waves
Simulation based design studies
Deep and shallow water
Accurate model tracking
Advanced ride control systems

The basins
The above requirements are very wide and could not be solved within one basin only.
Therefore, two basins will be used on top of the existing MARIN model basins. With these two
additional basins, the complete range of possible present and future manoeuvring questions can be
answered. The Seakeeping and Manoeuvring Basin is built for the regular seakeeping and
manoeuvring tests. This is a logical combination as this seakeeping and manoeuvring work is often
carried out in the same time slot. A carriage is present in the basin that can operate in two modes: a
follow-me mode and a pre-defined track mode. The follow-me mode is used for free sailing models
and is used for seakeeping and manoeuvring tests. The pre-defined track mode is used for captive
model testing and opens the possibility for rotating arm tests or PMM tests. The offshore basin has
a movable floor and therefore can be used for turning circle tests in shallow water and allows model
tests in very specific combinations of current, wind and waves. The carriage in the offshore basin
has similar capabilities as the carriage in the SMB. Both basins have very accurate wave generators,
able to generate long and short-crested waves from arbitrary directions. The offshore basin has the
most advanced current generation system in the world. Together, this yields excellent opportunities
for the manoeuvring research.

Basin layout
Two gigantic new facilities are constructed, with dimensions as indicated in Table 1. The
basins are both equipped with highly accurate, computer controlled wave generators (see [8] and
[9]) capable of generating deterministic waves from arbitrary directions. Wave generators are
located on two sides of the basin as indicated in Figure 6 and Figure 7. The wave generators are
equipped with active reflection compensation to absorb waves in the basin that are still reflected by
the beaches or by the floating constructions. This is extensively described by Dallinga [8]. The
wave absorbers along the longitudinal side of the basin can be lowered to perform tests in exact
head waves and following waves. An accurate and detailed description of the current system is
given by Buchner et al. [9].
The dimensions of the basin are derived from the maximum speeds that will be achieved,
combined with the desired measurement time and the required acceleration and deceleration times.
The width of the basin is derived from the required sizes of the models and the possibility to
perform turning circle tests with sufficiently large models (see Figure 7 and Figure 10). The basin is
ready to perform tests with models with a maximum length of 12 m (depending on the tests to be
carried out). This gives the opportunity to use the resistance and powering models for
manoeuvring research as well. For the zigzag tests, the basin is long enough to carry out many
zigzags. For ships with a poor course checking ability, the basin is wide enough to allow the
judgement of very large overshoot angles. To judge the broaching behaviour of ships, large oblique
waves can be generated in which the ship has sufficient space to perform a broach.

Table 1: Basin dimensions


Seakeeping and Manoeuvring Basin Offshore Basin
Length 170.0 m 45.0
Width 40.0 m 36.0
Depth 5.0 m 0.0 to 10.5 m
(pit to 30 m)
Beaches Along two sides, 6 m length Along two sides, 8 m length
Wave generators Along two sides Along two sides
Width of individual 0.6 m 0.4 m
wave generator
Active reflection Yes Yes
compensation
Maximum significant 0.45 m 0.4 m
wave height
Wind Wind beds on carriage Wind beds on telescopic arm
Current None Low turbulent, vertical
adjustable velocity profile

Figure 6: Layout of SMB and OB with wave generators and beaches


Figure 7: Dimensions of SMB and OB with wave generators and beaches and harbours

Carriage capability
The carriage has two modes of operation: a follow-me mode in which a model can be traced
accurately while sailing in calm water or in waves, and a pre-defined track-mode for captive model
tests. It was decided to combine the two requirements into a triple carriage system consisting of a
large main carriage, covering the whole breadth of the basin, a sub-carriage, hanging on this main
carriage and a turning table, connected to the sub-carriage. Additionally, a separate visitor platform
is available for clients to witness the tests. The visitor carriage is connected to the main carriage, as
illustrated in Figure 8. The model will be located between the measurement platform and the visitor
platform. The span of the carriages is immense. However, also a large stiffness is required and a
natural frequency sufficiently high to be free from manoeuvring frequencies. This resulted in a
design in which the total mass of each carriage amounts to 75 ton.

Figure 8: Carriage with measurement platform, captive platform and visitor platform

Figure 9: Free sailing model tests on 6 m model in Seakeeping and Manoeuvring Basin

For both the follow-me mode and the track-mode, high and accurate accelerations and
maximum velocities are required. These values are given in Table 2. With these defined velocities
and accelerations, the range of vessels and operations that can be tested becomes very high. Perhaps
the most demanding test is that of a high speed vessel broaching in stern quartering waves (see
Figure 4). The velocities and accelerations of this test are very demanding on the system. In the
follow-me mode, an optical tracking system will keep track of the model. The optical system
connected to the measurement carriage is tracking a triangular LED system on the model, thus
measuring the motions of the model in six degrees of freedom. The difference measured between
model and carriage is the steering signal for the carriage. The PID steering is so accurate that the
carriage will stay above the model in all conditions. During the tests, the model is self-propelled
and steered. The only connections to the carriage are power cables and measurement wires.
Through these small wires, all control units of the model (rudders, pods and stabilisers) are steered
computerised. The connections are such that these cables do not influence the behaviour of the
model. An example of these free sailing tests is given in Figure 9.
The triple carriage system (X, Y and Psi function) is steered by software. Together, this has
the functionality of a very large plotter. The use of this plotter for captive tests is different from the
working with a rotating arm. The acceleration capability and the maximum speed of main carriage
and sub-carriage determine the maximum turning speed of the system. For a rotating arm, this is
dictated by the maximum speed of the carriage at the end of the arm. This is also one of the reasons
for the high speeds and accelerations of the carriages. Using the plotter, it is possible to perform
arbitrary captive manoeuvres such as sinus hyperbolic or any function based on speed, rotation and
drift. This gives nearly unlimited possibilities. The turning radius that can be tested with models in
a traditional rotating arm basin is limited by the diameter of the basin. In the SMB and OB, it is
possible to perform parts of circles effectively and hence with large models (see Figure 10). This
would mean that captive manoeuvring tests can be carried out with much larger models, decreasing
the problems related to scale effects. The need for the oscillation tests and consequently its more
elaborate analysis is now reduced. Due to the size of the basin, it is possible to achieve a steady
state situation and measure the forces in stationary condition, allowing enough measurement time
to achieve the steady state condition.

Table 2: Carriage capabilities


Seakeeping and Manoeuvring Basin Offshore Basin
Total carriage mass 75 t 75 t
Subcarriage mass 12 t 12 t
Visitor carriage 4t -
Natural frequency 3.5 Hz 3.5 Hz
Maximum speed carriage x 6.0 m/s 3.2 m/s
Maximum speed carriage y 4.0 m/s 3.2 m/s
Maximum speed turning table 0.4 rad/s 0.4 rad/s
Maximum acceleration carriage x 0.8 m/s2 0.8 m/s2
Maximum acceleration carriage y 0.8 m/s2 0.8 m/s2
Maximum acceleration carriage psi 0.08 rad/s2 0.08 rad/s2
Trajectories of manoeuvring model of 5 meter length Captive manoeuvring tests:
Rotating arm trajectories on 30 seconds measurement time
40
Ship model 10 meter, 2 m/s
30
40
20
30
10
20

0 10
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 150 160 170
0

-10
SMB 35 turning circle
-20
20 turning circle 10 turning circle
-30
-40 -30 -20 -10 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 150
10/10 zig zag Workable area

Gamma=-0.2 Gamma=0.0 Gamma=+0.2 Gamma=+0.4


20/20 zig zag Turning circle / Pull-out
Gamma=+0.6 Gamma=+0.8 Basin wall

Figure 10: Trajectories with a ship model during free sailing or captive manoeuvring tests

The fact that arbitrary trajectories can be defined opens even more possibilities. It is
possible to measure more combinations of rate of turn and drift angle during one run. This is an
important achievement for efficiency. With a PMM test procedure, one rate of turn and drift angle
can be obtained per run because at least five oscillations were needed for a proper signal. For the
rotating arm tests, during one run, more measurements can be carried out, as illustrated in Figure
11. Of course care has to be taken to allow for sufficient measurement time and time to allow the
motion to become stationary. Extensive measurements were carried out using a model of a full
block tanker, the well known Esso Osaka (see Figure 12). The purpose was to obtain all properties
of the new facility with respect to the required measurement time, time to wait in between tests,
repeatability of the results, interference effects and the maximum forces that can be withstood by
the measurement set-up. This allowed the sailing of 30 knots with a VLCC without any deficiencies
on the set-up! The results of the rotating arm tests can be compared directly with tests as published
and carried out in MARINs large stroke PMM apparatus (see [10]). The results are only partially
analysed, but already very promising results are obtained. A comparison between drift tests
obtained in PMM apparatus and the CPMC set-up of the SMB is given in Figure 13.

Figure 11: More drift angles measured during one run during captive tests
Figure 12: Rotating arm test on 7 m model of Esso Osaka in new Seakeeping and
Manoeuvring Basin

Comparison PMM / Rotating arm Comparison PMM / Rotating arm

4.E+07 2.5E+09

3.E+07 2.0E+09
1.5E+09
2.E+07
Turning moment (Nm)

1.0E+09
Lateral Force (N)

1.E+07 5.0E+08
PMM proeven PMM proeven
0.E+00 0.0E+00
Rotating arm Rotating arm
-1.E+07 -5.0E+08
-1.0E+09
-2.E+07
-1.5E+09
-3.E+07
-2.0E+09
-4.E+07 -2.5E+09
-40 -20 0 20 40 -40 -20 0 20 40
Drift angle (deg) Drift angle (deg)

Figure 13: Comparison of CPMC / PMM results for Esso Osaka

Cost and time efficient testing


Time and cost effective testing can be gained by performing several actions. The seakeeping
and manoeuvring tests can be combined. This means that less basins and therefore less preparation
time will be used for model testing. Profits are achieved by having less build-around time and
calibration time. By using the same instrumentation techniques for all kinds of tests, standardisation
can be applied in the equipment and steering software. Hence, 80% of all tests can be carried out in
the same set-up and with the same equipment. The efficiency increases for obvious reasons.
Furthermore, a harbour is present in both basins (see Figure 14), allowing for the wet
instrumentation, testing and calibration of models. This harbour is separated from the basin with a
lock. While one model is undergoing model tests, the second model can be prepared in the harbour.

Figure 14: Use of harbour for instrumentation, calibrations and preparations


Conclusions
In this paper, the future in manoeuvring research is described. MARINs New Seakeeping
and Manoeuvring Basin and Offshore Basin are very valuable extensions of its present facilities.
Based on these trends, dictated by both the market research and the fundamental research, the need
for certain experimental facilities are drawn. The specifications of the new basins are shown to
fulfil these needs. The basins have enormous possibilities that are up to now only partially
explored.
Up to now, the basin has worked already in many projects. One might say that the
Seakeeping and Manoeuvring Basin is now fully operational. The commercial demand on the basin
is large and the basin has been working in double shifts due to the many projects carried out. The
throughput time of tank tests is decreased.

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