The columnar saline ice is made from thin sodium chloride solution as primary ice material for the newly-constructed small ice tank of China Ship Scientific Research Center (CSSRC). A series of measurements are carried out in the laboratory in order to assess the physical and mechanical properties of the model ice. In this paper, the characteristic of uniaxial compressive strength is experimentally analyzed with a number of samples from three slightly varied ice sheets. The failure modes and fracture behaviors of the model ice are preliminarily investigated as well the compressive strengths changing with a range of load/strain rates. The direction for further promoting such a study on uniaxial compressive strength of model ice is outlined based on comprehensive analysis and evaluation of the testing results.


The model tests for ice-going ships in ice tank should follow necessary criteria to ensure the geometric, kinematic and dynamic similarities to full scale which are far more complicated than those in open water. The model ice should correspondingly fulfill the similitude of physical and mechanical characteristics to prototype to meet the demands for model test, thus, ensure correct simulation of the interaction of the ice and ship and the breaking behavior of the ice itself. Under these requirements, the accurate measurements of model ice properties are essential for the establishment and optimization of ice making technology as well as the quality keeping of model tests in ice tank. Analysis of model ice measurement results can effectively provide feedback to adjustment of procedure and parameter control of ice modelling, furthermore, offer basic information about simulated ice condition to model tests performed in the ice tank.

For the main properties of model ice, the thickness, density and microscale structure, etc., should be similar to full scale, and, the flexural and compressive strengths should also keep the similarity relationship between model ice and prototype. In order to ensure the similarity of mechanical behavior, the ratio of elastic modulus versus flexural strength should be greater than 2000 according to experience from existing ice tanks. It commonly means that the sizes of the broken ice pieces are adequately modeled.

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