National Geographic Endurance

Customer highlight: Model testing and CFD go hand in hand!

When Ulstein designed the newly delivered National Geographic Endurance from Lindblad expeditions, they chose SSPA as the hydrodynamic testing partner. Ulstein ran an extensive model test program in calm water and waves which supported their advanced CFD simulations of this state-of-the art-vessel. Ulstein has now revealed great pictures from the development phase. The renderings they have published illustrates how a thoroughly validated CFD model can capture the flow features in detail, but also how essential it is to run model tests to fully trust the CFD predictions. A meticulously validated CFD model can be used to explore in further details the results from model testing and to gain even more insight in full confidence.

The exploration cruise sector is an expanding market with tough requirements. Together, SSPA and Ulstein Design & Solution developed a testing programme to assess the behaviour of the vessel in the most typical operating conditions. During testing, both the pod design and testing parameters were changed. Our experts supported the Ulstein design team, so they could deliver the best solution for their customer, shipowner Lindblad Expeditions Holdings Inc.

At SSPA, we see a great potential in using CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) and EFD (Experimental Fluid Dynamics, i.e. model testing) in combination. SSPA is leading the ITTC Specialist Committee on Combined CFD/EFD Methods and most of the research activities in this programme are aiming at improving today’s methods by developing different types of combined methods. 

- “CFD offers new possibilities to improve the EFD based predictions for example with new treatment of scale effects. On the other hand, we can still not in general rely purely on CFD for ship hydrodynamic predictions for commercial or legal purposes. By using the best combination of CFD and EFD, rather than viewing them as competing methods, we can deliver even better prediction. New methods based on EFD/CFD combinations need to have the same confidence level as the existing recommended procedures give to the end client today”, says Dr Sofia Werner, Manager Strategic Research Hydrodynamics at SSPA.


Read the full article on SSPA and Ulstein’s cooperation:
Thorough model testing required to make cruising in tough environments sustainable

Illustration on top: Courtesy of Lindblad Expeditions.