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Efficient propulsion of a container ship using the "inclined keel" concept

Lookup NU author(s): KC Seo, Professor Mehmet Atlar, Professor Ehsan Mesbahi


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The gain in propulsive efficiency using a large diameter propeller rotating slowly is perhaps the simplest and most robust way of improving the fuel economy of a ship. In order to take the advantage of this approach small workboats (e.g. tug boats, fishing vessels etc.) operate in service with a significant increase of aft draught and hence resulting "inclined keel" configuration can be observed. Although large vessels sometimes operate with stem trim to improve their propulsive performance, it is rare to see a such vessel purposely built with an inclined keel feature to fit a large diameter propeller for power saving. This paper explores the application of the inclined keel configuration to a 3600TEU container vessel. The aim of the research is to fit an 11% larger diameter propeller (and hence resulting 17.5% lower rpm) to gain further power saving over the similar size basis container ship with conventional "level keel" configuration. The paper also investigates the knock-on effects of the inclined configuration on the other hydrodynamic performances including cavitation, hull vibration, seakeeping and manoeuvring of the vessel in a comparative manner.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Seo KC, Atlar M, Mesbahi E

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Design and Operation of Container Ships 2006

Year of Conference: 2006

Pages: 141-150

Publisher: Royal Institution of Naval Architects.

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 1905040296