ABS, ConocoPhillips, Sovcomflot, and Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) are jointly participating in a study measuring the effect of ice loads on Arctic class shuttle tanker performance.
Owing to the newness of these larger Arctic vessels, even experienced ice navigators can benefit from additional guidance when selecting the desired speed, mode of transit or maneuvering options when on passage in heavy ice. The joint project, understood to be the first of its kind, will provide researchers with important data regarding stresses these vessels experience operating in ice-covered waters.
The study will be conducted on the 70,000 DWT Shturman Albanov, the third in a series of Arctic shuttle tankers scheduled for delivery from SHI in February 2009, during its initial two winter seasons operating in the . A state-of-the-art monitoring system will employ fiber-optic sensors within the ice belt at two locations in the bow and stern quarters to measure and record ice pressures and loads, and compute ice-induced responses of the hull structure at highly loaded locations. A bridge display depicting a color plot of the pressure distribution over each area includes an alarm to alert crews of large impacts.