The emerging global economic needs are driving the designs for the next generation of ocean going vessels. Current ultra-large container carrier (10,000 TEU plus) designs are considerably larger and more complex than any currently in service. Proper and rational classification assessment requires that first principles based direct calculation methods be used to augment the standard classification review. The design philosophy behind the ABS Dynamic Loading Approach enables comprehensive identification of potential failure mechanisms. The scope of the necessary engineering assessment encompass full-ship finite element analysis under non-linear sea loads, spectral fatigue analysis, finite element lashing analysis, free and forced vibration analysis, and transient and impact load analysis. This paper describes key aspects of the DLA design philosophy such as non-linear sea loads, load combinations, various applications derived from full-ship finite element analysis. Several examples are given to highlight some critical failure mechanisms to be considered for ultra-large container carriers.

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