Crest of the Royal National Institution of Naval Architects - Click to return to the homepage


MarintechChina Until June 2022

Hybrid Expo

SMM May_June 2022


International Registries May 2022

Air Products May 2022

IJME 492

Paper Title: Insights into the Flow Within the Well Dock of a Mothership During Feeder Vessel Docking Manoeuvres



N T M Johnson, Australian Maritime College, University of Tasmania, Australia

G J Macfarlane, Australian Maritime College, University of Tasmania, Australia

J T Duffy, Australian Maritime College, University of Tasmania, Australia

I Penesis, Australian Maritime College, University of Tasmania, Australia

R J Ballantyne, Sea Transport Corporation, Runaway Bay, Australia


An experimental campaign has been undertaken to explore the flow around a feeder vessel as it manoeuvres in and out of the well dock of a mothership. The parent hulls for this study are drawn from the floating harbour transhipper concept created by Sea Transport Corporation. Laser measurement techniques have been employed to analyse the flow field within the well dock while the feeder vessel both enters and departs. For the Master of the feeder vessel to safely perform these manoeuvres, the complex flows resulting from the highly confined nature of the well dock concept need to be understood and potentially mitigated. It is shown that the inclusion of vents in the well dock can significantly influence the flow and that their effectiveness is determined by the size of the vents. This study further progresses the authors’ recent work on the same novel concept where the confined water effect of the well dock and inclusion of vents is quantified for both the seakeeping behaviour and the docking/departure performance. It is concluded that the use of vents is very beneficial when a feeder vessel docks or departs the well dock, however a compromise on the vent size must be reached in order to reduce adverse effects on feeder vessel motions when docked and exposed to a seaway. It is likely that the optimum solution, that covers all operational parameters, only requires the inclusion of relatively small vents.



Transactions RINA, Vol 162, Part A1, International Journal Maritime Engineering, Jan - Mar 2020 

DOI Number

DOI No: 10.3940/rina.ijme.2020.a1.492

Search and Order IJME papers

All International Journal of Maritime Engineering (IJME) papers are listed in the RINA Publications Database. You can search the database by author name and paper title. Publications may be ordered and paid for online. Other publications are also listed, some of which may be downloaded free of charge. Follow the link to Search Publications & Order.

RINA membership

Cyber Security On Demand Button


Teinbridge Propeller

Euronaval Apr - Oct 2022

Uni Stratchclyde June 2021

Metstrade May 2022