Dynamic positioning (DP) of ships has a 55 years industrial history, and in 2015 it was awarded by the readers of “Teknisk Ukeblad” as the most significant engineering achievement in Norway after World War 2. The origin of this industrial adventure in Norway is from NTNU. In the DP-Lab the students design and test their own DP control systems.
Teknisk Ukeblad: Norges største ingeniørbragd – disse to fikk desidert flest stemmer
Professor Jens Glad Balchen at the Department of Engineering Cybernetics started an academic study on the topic. Throughout the later decades there have been several PhD theses produced on different aspects of DP. In the Marine Cybernetics Laboratory (MC-Lab) at the Marine Technology Centre, students in the course ‘Marine Control Systems II’ demonstrate their learning in marine control theory through lab experiments on DP for a model vessel.
Teknisk Ukeblad: Systemet skal muliggjøre kompliserte operasjoner i is og ekstremvær
The MC-Lab is an advanced control systems lab with numerous model vehicles (both surface and underwater). This, along with a camera position reference system, a wave maker, a towing carriage, and other instrumentation equipment, makes it a great lab to test new control systems and see theory in practice. By implementing their control systems on the models, the students get experience in model-scale testing, debugging, as well as motivation to design and build more advanced control systems.
Film from Marine Cybernetics Lab
More film clips from MC-Lab:
Oculus Rift ship Control
Autonomous exploration by the use of lidar on a marine surface vessel
In the course TMR4243 Marine Control Systems II, the students use the C/S Enterprise model ship (C/S = CyberShip) to implement and test different parts of a DP control system. The students have then already done the necessary control theoretic development, tested their solutions in computer simulations, and have here in the lab the chance to finally test them in practice on the model ship.