2.019 | Spring 2011 | Undergraduate

Design of Ocean Systems


Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Labs: 1 session / week, 3 hours / session


Mechanics and Materials I (2.001), Dynamics and Control I (2.003J), Thermal-Fluids Engineering I (2.005) or Hydrodynamics (2.016).

Learning Objectives

The main learning objectives of the course are:

  • Understanding and application of basic principles in hydrodynamics, dynamics, and structural mechanics in the design of ships and offshore structures
  • Understanding the design spiral for ships and offshore structures
  • Becoming familiar with the use of key design tools in naval architecture and marine engineering
  • Understanding the key issues and trade-off principles
  • Understanding sea-keeping characteristics and implications
  • Understanding issues in station keeping and mooring line design
  • Becoming familiar with general procedures and issues in fabrication, manufacture, and installation
  • Developing effective communication and presentation skills for the final report


There is no required textbook for this class, but several references are recommended. Lecture notes also provide the key reading material. The readings were supplemented by select articles on specific topics, especially on the design of floating offshore structures.

The following three texts are particularly suggested as references:

  1. Lewis, E. V., ed. Principles of Naval Architecture. Jersey City, NJ: Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers, 1988. ISBN: 9789991181417.

This reference provides general information on naval architecture.

  1. Paik, Jeom Kee, and Anil Kumar. Ship-shaped Offshore Installations: Design, Building, and Operation. Cambridge University Press, 2007. ISBN: 9780521859219.

This reference gives some basic information on the design of special marine structures (i.e. FPSOs).

  1. Faltinsen, O. M. Sea Loads on Ships and Offshore Structures. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1993. ISBN: 9780521458702.

This reference helps with understanding of sea-keeping analysis and mooring-system design.

The following resources may also be helpful:

Gillmer, T. C., and Bruce Johnson. Introduction to Naval Architecture. Naval Institute Press, 1982. ISBN: 9780870213182.

Lamb, Thomas. Chapter 30 in Ship Design and Construction Vol. 1. 1st Impression Publishing, 2003. ISBN: 9780939773404.

Terpstra, T., B. B. d’Hautefeuille, and A. A. MacMillan. “FPSO Design and Conversion: A Designer’s Approach.” Offshore Technology Conference, 2001.


Coursework consists primarily of a three-part term-length Design Project and three homework assignments, all designed to help students better comprehend the basic concepts taught in class. The goal is also to prepare the students for the use of the various pieces of software needed for the Design Project. The Design Project is to be completed in team with each individual responsible for the report and discussion of a separate subject; homework is to be done individually.


In the first homework, the students conceptualize their design by doing preliminary calculations and drawing sketches of different ship views and internal subdivisions. For example, they calculate the positions of the collision bulkheads, the size of the tanks, the height of the double bottom, etc. Next, they realize this concept in the PARAMARINE™ environment, calculating major geometric particulars such as coefficients of form and preliminary hydrostatic characteristics.

The second homework is a structural analysis of a generic ship. From the framework of building a ship that can withstand the maximum allowable working stress, students calculate the total load on the ship, shear forces, bending moments, plate thickness, and the dimensions of the midship section structural elements.

The third homework is an introduction to the panel method of sea-keeping analysis. The students use WAMIT® to calculate the added mass and wave damping coefficients as well as wave excitation and RAOs for a floating vertical circular cylinder. The purpose of this homework is to become familiar with the use of WAMIT for sea-keeping analysis.


Design project 80%
Homework 20%


1 Introduction Work on design 1  
2 Ship Design Tool: PARAMARINE Design 1 (ship sizing and hydrostatics) out; HW 1 out
3 Ship Hydrostatics and Structures  
4 Ship Hydrostatics and Structures (cont.) HW 1 due
5 Seakeeping  
6 Seakeeping (cont.)  
7 Seakeeping (cont.)  
8 Seakeeping (cont.) Design 1 due; HW 2 out
9 Drift Loads/Motions Work on design 2 Design 1 feedback; Design 2 (seakeeping analysis) out
10 Slowly-Varying Loads/Motions HW 2 due
11 Slowly-Varying Loads/Motions (cont.)  
12 Ocean Environment  
13 Ocean Environment (cont.)  
14 Mooring Dynamics Design 2 due; HW 3 out
15 Mooring Dynamics (cont.) Work on design 3  
16 Mooring Design HW 3 due; Design 3 out
17 Manufacturing/Fabrication  
18 Manufacturing/Fabrication (cont.)  
19 Ship Resistance  
20 Ship Resistance (cont.) Design 3 due
21 Ship Slamming Integrate final report and prepare for final presentation Design 3 feedback; practice presentation
22 Roll Control  
23 Propulsion  
24 Advanced Topics Final presentations Final presentation due
25 Advanced Topics (cont.) Work on final report  
26 Summary and Conclusion Final report due