Boundary-Element Methods and Wave Loading on Ships

Panagiotis D. Kaklis, Costas Politis, K.A. Belibassakis, A.I. Ginnis, Konstantinos Kostas, Th.P. Gerostathis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The hydrodynamic problem of a ship moving with constant forward speed while undergoing small-amplitude oscillatory motions about its mean steady-state position is modeled as a boundary-integral equation (BIE) involving surface distributions of the fundamental solution of Laplace's equation and its derivatives and alternative Green functions. The chapter reviews the various low-order and higher order boundary-element methods (BEMs) developed for the numerical solution of these BIEs via collocation or Galerkin techniques involving finite-dimensional bases for representing the involved geometric configuration and approximating the unknown physical quantities. Then, we focus on presenting and discussing recent experience gained from embedding BEMs into isogeometric analysis (IGA) for the linear wave-resistance problem. Two IGA-BEM solvers, based on nonuniform rational B-spline (NURBS) and T-spline representations of the ship hull, are presented and compared for the so-called Neumann–Kelvin formulation of this problem. The local refinement capabilities of the adopted T-spline representation of the ship geometry leads to a solver with higher accuracy and efficiency as compared to the corresponding NURBS-based solver. Furthermore, the developed hydrodynamic solvers, along with the corresponding ship-parametric models, are integrated within an optimization environment, which is tested in two optimization problems. The first problem, of local optimization character, focuses on the optimization of the bulbous shape of a container ship against the criterion of minimum wave resistance. The second case performs a global hull-shape optimization of a container ship targeting the minimization of both the total resistance and the deviation from a target deadweight. The chapter ends with a brief discussion for further research toward broadening the coverage of IGA-BEM methods in application areas related to ship wave loads.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Computational Mechanics, 2nd edition
Subtitle of host publicationPart 2 - Fluids
EditorsErwin Stein, René de Borst, Thomas J.R. Hughes
Number of pages55
ISBN (Electronic)9781119176817
Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2018


  • boundary-element method
  • isogeometric analysis
  • boundary-integral equations
  • ship loads
  • optimization of ship hull


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