On Evaluation and Modelling of Human Exposure to Vibration and Shock on Planing High-Speed Craft

Abstract: High speed in waves, necessary in for instance rescue or military operations, often result in severe loading on both the craft and the crew. To maximize the performance of the high-speed craft (HSC) system that the craft and crew constitute, balance between these loads is essential. There should be no overload or underuse of crew, craft or equipment. For small high-speed craft systems, man is often the weakest link. The human exposure to vibration and shock results in injuries and other adverse health effects, which increase the risks for non-safe operations and performance degradation of the crew and craft system. To achieve a system in balance, the human acceleration exposure must be considered early in ship design. It must also be considered in duty planning and in design and selection of vibration mitigation systems.The thesis presents a simulation-based method for prediction and evaluation of the acceleration exposure of the crew on small HSC. A numerical seat model, validated with experimental full-scale data, is used to determine the crew's acceleration exposure. The input to the model is the boat acceleration expressed in the time domain (simulated or measured), the total mass of the seated human, and seat specific parameters such as mass, spring stiffness and damping coefficients and the seat's longitudinal position in the craft. The model generates seat response time series that are evaluated using available methods for evaluation of whole-body vibration (ISO 2631-1 \& ISO 2631-5) and statistical methods for calculation of extreme values.The presented simulation scheme enables evaluation of human exposure to vibration and shock at an early stage in the design process. It can also be used as a tool in duty planning, requirements specification or for design of appropriate vibration mitigation systems. Further studies is proposed within three areas: investigation of the actual operational profiles of HSC, further development of seat models and investigation of the prevailing injuries and health problems among the crew of HSC.