Our Three Step Process to Efficient Ship Conversion

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Pre-Concept Design

Houlder’s Pre-Concept Design phase covers the range of activities it is sensible to do in assessing initial feasibility. At the end of this phase you’ll have the high level answers to the ‘what?’ What does the vessel need to do? What’s the business case? For ship conversions the art of the possible holds sway. The constraints of the object vessel actually stimulate creativity. Effectively, we work closely with you to establish the basis of design.

There’s no end of things we could do at this stage? The key is knowing what we should do and recommending that programme in your best interest.

Concept Design

As the question shifts from ‘what?’ to ‘how?, our design process moves to the Concept phase. How does everything fit in the space available? How do we deal with the consequences of change? Which innovations should we consider to improve efficiency?

Remember the boundary between concept and pre-concept is porous. Some activities can be brought forward or delayed to suit the circumstances.

We start the concept design knowing the vessel we want to end up with. We end it knowing that it will work with sufficient confidence to commit to the Basic Design.

Basic Design

In this phase we get the design tender-ready. That means having sufficient detail in all that areas required to enable shipyards to quote on building the vessel.

Why the traditional design process needs a rethink

The classic design sequence took a set of requirements through a design spiral confirming sequentially and iteratively each design parameter, eventually leading to a compliant design.

This rigid approach deploys compartmentalised expertise dealing with discrete aspects such as hull design, propulsion and interior outfit. In such a process, there is no real certainty that an optimum design has been established. Due to the time taken and inflexibility of the process, any change to the requirements during the design results in costly and time-consuming diversions. Such changes often occur as limitations or full capabilities became apparent once design matures. Factor in the uncertainties inherent with decarbonisation and efficiency technology and the challenges are accentuated.

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