Report on Attendance at ICCAS 2017 in Singapore

By Nikolaos Kouriampalis, PhD Candidate, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University College London, September 2017


The 18th ICCAS conference was held from 26thto 28thSeptember in Singapore at Holliday Inn Orchard Centre. On 29th, there was a visit to Keppel Shipyard. The conference was very well organised by RINA and the conference venue and hospitality was high quality. The conference was attended by approximately 170 delegates from 24 countries and a total of 72 papers were presented on the practical applications of computer applications on ship design and construction. The conference covered a full range of topics including but not limited to engineering analysis, data modelling, CAD, integrated systems, knowledge management, systems engineering, simulation and visualisation. Singapore is an island southern of Malaysia, with a tropical climate and multicultural population of 5.5 million. It is a global commerce, finance and harbour hub.

Summary of Papers Attended or Read

The conference consisted of three parallel tracks, so limiting the total percentage of papers that could be attended and the lack of switchover time between tracks meant the start of presentations were sometimes missed. Summarised here are the papers attended in person or reviewed after the conference.


  • Cyber Physical System in Shipbuilding Toward Realise Smart Shpyard: Integration of Monitoring System and Shipyard Simulation System. Kazuhiro Aoyama, Mayuna Hoshi, Yusei Hiro, Ryo Kitamura, Kazuya Oizumi. The University of Tokyo. Japan.

Creating a smart shipyard is desirable in shipbuilding in order to improve productivity. This paper proposes that it can be achieved by using a Cyber Physical System (CPS), where CPS is a cyber world that is linked to the physical world through information technology. This can be achieved by integrating a monitoring system with a simulation system of the shipyard. According to the paper, the shipyard simulating system is able to identify specific improvement points for the ship construction. Monitored data obtained from previously developed monitoring system are used as input data to the simulation. This allows the comparison between the actual production processes with an ideal process, enabling the generation of improvement. Functions that can detect progress in real time, construction delays in real time and delays as they occur can be implemented in the CPS. Sample results from a shipyard simulation have been presented to demonstrate the tool capabilities. However, the model is not excessively detailed, so features of real operations in shipbuilding need to be checked. The authors consider this necessitates new monitoring methods to collect detailed operation data.

  • Driving Transformation in the Age of Experience. A Tew Kai. Dassault Systemes. France.

In today’s Maritime industry, staying profitable, competitive and relevant means being responsive to big changes. Stake-holders around the world are rethinking the way they design, manufacture and operate. There is a clear need to be smart and connected at all levels of the value creation chain, taking advantage of technologies such as the internet, robotics, automation, big data and virtual reality. The paper proposes that companies must bring their different departments together in a holistic manner to drive their innovation in products. Thus, according to the presentation, they need to improve and connect processes across main functions, feed them with meaningful data analytics and ensure the automatic propagation of changes across all functions. Dassault Systemes 3D EXPERIENCE platform is said to be an enabler in carrying out such digital transformation. It provides a single, real-time source of data throughput the entire ship’s lifecycle from concept design to engineering design, manufacturing, operation and maintenance. The authors claim that 3D EXPERIENCE is designed to bring different disciplines together, from design, simulation and manufacturing to marketing and sales, using meaningful data. It is concluded by the authors that this platform facilitates connection across disciplines, such as planning and management.

Early Ship Design

  • A Case Study in Optimising 3D Early Design for Shipbuilding. JS Cheong, J Baumer, HW Lee, SH Ha, JM Hong. Intergraph Marine Centre. South Korea.

Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) has utilised a 2D drawing-based design process to produce early stage design options and plan and classification drawings for approval. However, this process is considered inefficient, as it is error prone and a time-consuming process was unavoidable, with 3D modelling only to take place after early design stage (after contract award). Thus, this results duplication in 3D modelling activities in the transition to detail and production design. However, the use of an early 3D model in the ship design process allows the elimination of duplicating activities necessary for early stage assessment (e.g. Finite Element Analysis). Also, the same 3D model can be taken forward into the detailed and production design phases. Moreover, the early stage 3D modelling, such as that proposed by SHI, namely Advance Hull Design (AHD), enables better and more consistent design information to be available earlier, thus streamlining the entire design process, saving both man-hours and time. The authors conclude that such an approach allows a better modelling relevant to all the design disciplines, which can take place concurrently.

  • A Framework for Assessing the Effects of Bias in Early-Stage Ship Design. M J Sypniewski, D J Singer. Department of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering. The University of Michigan. USA.

Bias can influence the design process by influencing the design decisions that are made throughout it. In some cases, bias negatively affects the design process, which can then cause complete design failure. The paper presents a framework for studying the effects of bias by investigating the structure of the temporal design data. Biased and non-biased datasets have been generated using genetic algorithms. The authors suggest that datasets can be presented in network space that allows the analysis of design relationships. An example is presented (Sen Bulker ship model) and the authors conclude that Network metrics can successfully allow the differentiation between biased and non-biased datasets.

  • An Enterprise Modelling Approach for the Early Ship Design. W Jabary, Tischrin University. Syria. R Bronsart, University of Rostock, Germany.

Based on the paper, the Enterprise Modelling approach has been adopted to support the early ship design phase. Enterprise modelling describes the principles, methods and goals of a collection of organisations by providing coherent models in order to externalise the knowledge of the enterprise. The main objective is seen as modelling an enterprise to help people to communicate, understand, and develop efficient solutions for their businesses. Relevant issues are stated to be information (data used and obtained), functions (operations though the enterprise), resources (required resources for the operations) and organisation (responsibilities, authorisations and associations through it).

CAD in Ship Industry

  • Intent-Driven CAD VS. Mechanical CAD in Shipbuilding – A Review and Solution Outline. T Dusch, B Franke, M Grau, C Zerbst. PROSTEP. Germany.

CAD tools used in shipbuilding industry can be grouped in intent-driven and mechanical (physical represented) CAD-based. Intent-driven systems carry rich primary information that can be used to generate 3D models, 2D drawings and topological relationships. Such information can be fed into mechanically CAD-based systems. However, the reverse information direction is harder to achieve, due to weaker semantics of information on the source side, as in mechanically CAD-based systems the information is built in the 3D model. An intent-driven CAD approach would not retain explicit part geometry, but rather the “recipe” and the “ingredients” that would create a geometrical model should this be needed. The recipe is stored as a script and recreates the geometry when needed, instead of storing the more demanding explicit geometry information, such as in mechanical CAD-based systems. The mechanical CAD-based approach, on the other hand, uses numerical methods, such as Bezier splines, to define geometries evolved as design progressing. The authors assessed the conversion from CATIA to AVEVA Marine Hull, CADMATIC Outfitting and claim that conversion between the two approaches (geometric description and intent information) can be achieved successfully.

  • Ship Concept Design Based on a 3D-CAD-System Including a Requirement Verification. H Linder, R Bronsart. University of Rostock. German.

The authors assert that ship design can be completely performed with the help of a 3D CAD system. However, the early ship design, especially in the pre-contractual stage, is often still developed and documented on 2D drawing tools, because modelling and modification of a 3D model is too complex and time consuming process, particularly for commercial ship acquisition process. This paper proposes an efficient 3D CAD system in combination with a Product Management System (PMD). The system’s infrastructure has been designed to suit fast and flexible 3D modelling, information handling, data sharing between all parties working on parallel tasks and requirement tracking that is important with the increasing complexity of the design. The paper presents a system infrastructure, in which a general purpose 3D modelling tool is linked with an external PMD system. The PMD is the core component of the infrastructure and acts as information hub for tasks. The geometry resides in the CAD system and is linked to the PMD system via a bidirectional interface for synchronisation of data. Geometrical information is calculated and saved in the database. The author claims that together with additional data, the product knowledge is increased which can reduce the risks in the design.  The authors conclude that the integration of this software reduces the risks of errors during manual data-transfer, accelerating the model creation.

Virtual Reality in Ship Building

  • The Virtual Ship: From Designing to Training. M. Peverero, D. Tozzi, A. Zini. CETENA S.p.A. Italy

Simulation has been employed in shipbuilding industry in order to demonstrate and verify the feasibility of potential choices. Virtual reality has been used extensively during recent years to produce what it is called virtual prototype of a ship, which is an interactive real-time simulation of the ship being designed (virtual ship). Virtual ship is a trend that tend to mitigate the need for physical mock-ups, which normally are time-consuming and costly. Besides shipbuilding, virtual reality is also used in for training purposes, such as in the ship control centre, bridge and operations centre. According to the authors, this should lead to  better and more cost efficient ships, since several problems ca be taken into account in the early stage of ship design, avoiding expensive and time consuming modifications in the later design stages. CETENA has developed the VISLab, which is a virtual reality software with ship industry applications. Finally, the authors suggest that it seems to be a plausible way to modelling the interaction of a ship in an unstable environment like the sea.

  • Minimising the Designer/End User Knowledge Gap Using Virtual Reality. W Pynn. Marine Institute of Memorial University. Canada.

Virtual reality can be used to improve the designer’s skillset as well as the design process using digital versions of mock-ups. The later allows the incorporation of feedback from professional mariners at various points throughout the design process, as knowledge is transferred and the design can be improved. The paper includes a survey of professional mariners on the quality of bridge and machinery space design, which have been tested in the virtual reality environment (IrisVR). Thus, creating a virtual mock-up of key areas of the vessel, for evaluation and input from the end users, earlier in the design process should benefit the design. The author claimed that virtual reality can be easily implemented, as existing commercial VR packages can generate virtual environment for a given ship already being designed in CAD. 

  • Virtual Reality Empowered Design. A Cebollero, L Sanchez. Sener Ingenieria y Sistemas S.A. Spain.

According to the paper, virtual Reality can be used to improve the design and planning in an interactive collaborative environment, providing an understanding of the product in a 3D environment. The authors suggest that it can be used in different stages of a ship project, from the initial stages of engineering (i.e. concept design) to the maintenance phase when the ship is in service. The authors claim that virtual Reality allows the designers to identify mistakes easily and apply any necessary modifications to the digital ship. A VR software, namely FORAN, and its applications in shipbuilding industry were presented by the authors.

  • Holistic Ship Design – How to Utilise a Digital Twin in Concept Design Through Basic and Detailed Design. T-H Stachowski, Digitread. H Kjeilen, Siemens.

The authors suggest that a digital twin is a virtual image of a ship, maintained throughout the lifecycle and needs to be easily accessible at any time. The digital twin, Siemens PLM Software, integrates information from many different software products (e.g. CAD, CFD, structural strength, major equipment) and handles them in a managed environment throughout the whole lifecycle. The authors claim that it enhances information management, understanding and collaboration to prevent costly mistakes and reworks. According to the paper presented, the digital twin replicates what is actually happening on the factory floor in near real time, giving the opportunity to make production related decisions early in the design process. Thus, the paper concludes that a Digital Twin can hold all the necessary information on the ship allowing the design team to have transparency of the ship design process and ultimately a better product.

Computational Fluid Dynamics

  • Variation of Asymmetric Side Hull of Pentamaran Hull Resistance by Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). Z Zikrina, Yanuar, F A Nugroho. Universitas Indonesia. Indonesia.

Designing a fast vessel is challenging, as it requires the creation of a hull model with the reduced resistance in order to reduce fuel consumption. A pentamaran is proposed in the paper in order to reduce fuel consumption. The hull configuration of a Pentamaran vessel is varied based on two parameters, namely the ratio of the distance between the hull transversely to the length of the main hull or the so called separation and the distance between the hulls longitudinally to the length of the main hull or so called stagger. Both parameters can be varied to produce both maximum and minimum resistance at a given high speed. Computational Fluid Dynamics software package (Ansys – Fluent) has been selected to conduct the modelling of a given pentamaran. The paper presents variation of pentamaran hull configuration by varying the asymmetric hull arrangement (5 hull arrangements) and calculating the resistance by employing this commercial package, thus showing which arrangement results in the less amount of resistance and consequently the option with the less fuel consumption.

  • Towards a Marine Digital Twin, Predictive Engineering analytics for Ship Design. S W Ferguson. Siemens PLM Software. UK.

Towing tanks have provided naval architects with a reliable method of predicting the performance of a ship at a given sea state. Towing tanks have been used for both resistance and propulsion tests. The performance of a vessel depends on the hydrodynamic interaction between the hull, its propulsion system and rudder, which all combine to interact with the environmental conditions. This is a very complex engineering problem that involves the tightly coupled dynamic interaction between many disparate physical phenomena, spread across a wide range of engineering disciplines. It is certainly that possible to obtain useful design information from experiments or simulations that investigate these systems individually, in order to predict the at sea performance of a vessel with an acceptable degree of accuracy. However, it is preferable to include all systems in a single model. Thus, the paper proposes the combination of a number of computer aided engineering simulation tools (CFD STAR-CCM+) into a single one, the so called Performance Digital Twin, which can be used to predict the actual performance of a ship under a range of operating conditions in the early stage of ship design process.

Launch and Recovery

  • All Weather Ship Operational Prediction Using Simulation – Technology Developments and Results from a Dedicated Royal Navy and Related Sea Trial. B Ferrier, Hoffman Engineering, Dynamic Interface Laboratory, USA. J Duncan, DE&S, MOD, UK. M. R. Belmont, J. T. Christmas, Exeter University, UK. J. Duncan, DE&S, MOD, UK.

The operational capability of naval vessels is limited due to the effects of the maritime environment. Excessive motions and motion related phenomena in bad weather increases the length of time to undertake a particular task or indeed prevent the task from being undertaken at all. Technologies capable of extending the operational envelope of operations of naval vessels should be very valuable. Two factors limiting air/sea operations are wave induced deck motions and airflow over the deck. The authors present a new Integrated Marine Environment approach that combines recent advances in using Doppler LIDAR (laser radar) for airflow with a new ability to predict quiescent periods that are known that to exist in high sea state. This then offers a promise of operational enhancement. An on-board Quiescent Period Prediction and Air Wake Profile System have been developed by the authors. The combined modelling tool can predict ship environment behaviour, the mapping of shedding air vortices and ship’s wave driven motions. According tot the paper, this allows both the modifications to a ship’s design and provide methods to enhance various operations.   

  • Improving Launch and Recovery operations Through Quiescent Period Prediction from Radar. M. Al-Ani, J. Christmas, M. R. Belmont, Exeter University, UK. J M Duncan, J Duncan, DE&S, MOD, UK. B Ferrier, Hoffman Engineering, Dynamic Interface Laboratory, USA.

Maritime industry is interested in how to improve the safety of a wide range of launch and recovery operations or to increase the sea state under which they can be safely undertaken. While the overall execution of such tasks may take a significant amount of time, the key sub tasks wave-height critical and so limit the sea states under which they can be carried out, is short, typically less than 1 minute. Thus prediction of quiescent periods will enable key sub-tasks to be scheduled to be safely undertaken in sea states that would normally prohibit them. This requires the prediction of the actual shape of the sea surface and its short-term temporal evolution. The paper describes a method for short-term wave prediction based on radar observations of sea surface profiles and presents results from trials off the Western coast of Scotland. A fundamental property of most sea conditions that are of relevance to launch and recovery is that sets of large waves alternate with sets of smaller waves which are of lower heights than the standard sea statistics for existing sets of sea statistics. The intervals of during which these lower amplitude wave occur are referred as quiescent periods. If these periods can be predicted then safety critical sub tasks can be planned such that the overall maritime operation could be safely undertaken under conditions that would normally prohibit its execution. Future work would involve probability prediction of the frequency of quiescent periods for a given sea state.

Other Topics:

  • The Implications of Uninhabited Vehicle Technology on Naval Fleet Structures and Naval Ship Design. Kouriampalis, R. J. Pawling, D. J. Andrews. University College London, UK

Uninhabited vehicles (UXVs) are becoming an important tool in naval warfare. Such a technology has provided an entirely new capability for a navy. By projecting power in an affordable way through the use of UXVs, the exposure of human life to military threats can be significantly reduced. The Royal Navy is exploring the employment of UXVs for a variety of applications. However, the concept of a fleet of such vehicles operating together from a mothership that hosts them and supports their overall operations during a mission scenario, is a challenge. This paper describes ongoing work at University College London (UCL) Design Research Centre (DRC) to develop an analysis tool. This is intended to provide ship designers with a framework for early stage assessment of the impact on the capability of a UXV mothership of the various facilities to host and support a fleet of UXVs.

  • Real-Time Ship Air-Wake and Free Steam Measurement Using Doppler
    . M R Belmont, J Christmas, Exeter University, UK. J M Duncan, J Duncan, DE&S, MOD, UK. B Ferrier, Hoffman Engineering, Dynamic Interface Laboratory, USA. R Potts, BAE Systems, UK.

The air-wake around a ship is of vital importance for safe air operations. While CFD is being used, its computational complexity restricts the number of conditions that can be simulated. Anemometers permanently installed on a ship are commonly used to measure the free stream and the air-wake formation. However, anemometers usually give erroneous information due to physical limitations regarding their position on-board. As an alternative, the authors suggest that Laser Doppler can be used to fully three-dimensional vector flow data in real time, as well as results from trials are presented in the paper, showing deviation compared to those obtained using an anemometer.

  • Investigating the Impact of Distributed System Routing Densities on Vessel Operability. C. J. Goodrum, C. P. F. Shields, D. J. Singer. The University of Michigan. USA.

Modern naval ships are getting increasingly complex due to the rise in the number of distributed systems on-board. The number of components required by each system is also increasing, resulting in interconnected components, and hence to increased distribution system routings throughout the ship. As a result, the vessel’s operability is dependent on the interdependencies between the various systems and components, such that a small amount of damage in one system will cause wide spread failures. Such system interactions present sources of vulnerabilities and need to be identified early in the design process, which the authors believe that it is possible using network analyses and an architectural framework. A ship’s distributed system design can be described by the Physical Architecture (spatial environment in which the system exists), Logical Architecture (interactions of components and systems to produce a given system functionality) and Operational Architecture (the way which systems are used through time to achieve a system functionality for a given scenario). The approach presented is restricted to Physical and Logical Architecture creating the Physical System Solution. The paper provides an example investigation on how the network routing densities and the resultant operability are correlated due to damage being inflicted. The authors conclude that Logical Architecture provides valuable information regarding the system and components interdependencies, but it is not sufficient on its own to quantify the vessel’s operability, thus effort should now be placed to develop such metrics.

  • Performance Verification of the Air-Conditioning System in a Submarine. Jan D. Wilgenhof. MecDes, the Netherlands. Jesus Molina Toledo. Navantia, Spain.

Air-conditioning system in a submarine removes a large part of the equipment waste heat, as well as metabolic heat and water vapour produced by the crew. It also reduces the humidity of the air, as air temperatures and humidity in the compartments are important with regards to crew endurance and equipment limits. Initially, air-conditioning cooling power is estimated, but in the subsequent detailed design stage the performance capability needs to be quantified with the extra data available at this stage. Moreover, temperature in the compartments at various operating conditions need to be known. This is not feasible using a conventional heat balance and thus a dynamic air energy balance is proposed by the authors. The software tool presented allows the simulation of the heat transfer within the submarine environment and the heat transfer between the spaces in the submarine, as well as the thermal contribution of the ventilation flow. Thus, the authors conclude that the tool allows fast and efficient analysis of cooling power margin, consumption and future growth margin, as well as compartments’ temperatures to compare these to the maximum allowed.

  • Integrated Development Environment of Autonomic Software FOR USV (Unmanned Surface Vehicle) Based on ROS (Robot Operating System). H W Lee, M I Roh, L Zhao, S H Ham, N Kim. Seoul National University, Republic of Korea. C W Yu. Agency for Defence Development, Republic of Korea.

USVs are being used for mine detection, surveillance and reconnaissance. In order to carry out such tasks, the authors suggest that an autonomic software can be mounted on the USV and take charge of detection, decision and command procedure. The software presented includes control algorithms regarding motion analysis, subsea image composition (mine detection) and position estimation. Since verification and validation is necessary, the prototype can be used to verify the control algorithms. The paper provides verification of such algorithms by using a virtual prototype of USV and a Robot Operating System (ROS). The ROS, a robot software platform, has been used to integrate hardware and software interfaces through wide network communication.

  • Optimal Arrangement Method for Naval Surface Ship Considering the Stability, operability, and Survivability. S K Jung, M I Roh, S M Lee, K S Kim. Seoul National University. Republic of Korea.

Since many compartments and equipment need to be placed in a limited space in the case of a naval ship, many design alternatives ought to be considered. Throughout these alternatives many things should be accounted, but among them the most important factors are stability, operability and survivability. Thus, such things ought to be taken into account in the early stages of ship design. However, at present there is no way to quantitatively evaluate such issues. The presented optimal arrangement method can be used to evaluate the performance of a ship, or even find an arrangement that has a desired level of performance. According to the authors, such an approach to ship internal arrangement can be formulated in two stages. The first stage the main watertight bulkheads are arranged and then the spaces are arranged. This arrangement problem has many design variables, objective functions and restrictions, and so it is proposed in the paper that it can be modelled by using genetic algorithms. To confirm the effectiveness and usefulness of the proposed method the authors claim that a prototype program was developed. Also, a 7000 ton destroyer was applied to the program.

  • A Study on Decision Support Methodology for Evaluating IOT Technology Using Systems Approach. K Hiekata, T Mitsuyuki, R Ueno, R Wada, B Moser. University of Tokyo. Tokyo.

From the developments in information and communication technology, large amount of data about marine equipment can be transmitted to shipping company during a ship’s voyage. Analyzing such data can facilitate more improved ship operation and maintenance. The paper’s objective is to address improvements in decision-making by introducing IoT technologies in the maritime industry. The authors propose a method for comparing and evaluating the effects of various IoT technologies that can be introduced into the marine industry. According to the paper, the evaluation functions used to assess the introduction of IoT technologies was selected to undertake a system analysis of the maritime industry and ship operations. Based on this analysis, a ship operation simulator could simulate one container ship’s lifecycle, including operation, docking and loading. Twenty five diverse IoT performance metrics have been selected and evaluated (including main engine error rate, navigation error rate, cargo handling cost) from the viewpoint of quality (accident), cost (profit) and delivery (delay), as a means of evaluating ship’s operations.

Visit to the Keppel Shipyard

On Friday the 29th of September, the delegates were given the opportunity to visit the Keppel shipyard. Founded in 1968, the name of the company was derived from a British ship captain, Captain Henry Keppel, who discovered a natural, deep-water harbour in 1848. The shipyard is one of the world’s leading in:

  • Conversion of Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) / Floating Storage and Offloading (FSO) vessels, Floating Storage and Re-gasification Units (FSRU) and drill ships;
  • Repair of all types of marine vessels including tankers, containerships, bulkers and LNG carriers;
  • Upgrading and life extension of vessels;

The visit was restricted to a bus tour inside the shipyard, due to safety and concerns and photos were not allowed. It began with a bus tour showing the shipyard premises, i.e. dry docks, mechanical and electrical workshops, piping areas, as well as meeting offices and workers’ rest areas. The delegates were then taken to the Safety and Precautions Building, which contained training mock-ups and representations, as well as individual IT screens, where shipyard workers are given training sessions regarding safety. Since most of the workers, who mostly come from Philippines and Bangladesh, are not from the shipbuilding industry, they first have to get trained for safety before positioned in the working area. Finally, a 10 minute presentation was given on safety training.

Although it was an interesting tour inside the shipyard, especially to those ones who have not ever been in a shipyard in the past, I believe that most of us were expecting a more technical presentation of processes taking place in a shipyard, allowing us to see more and thus get familiar with the shipbuilding industry.

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