As ship systems become increasingly complex, system commissioning must evolve to maintain the confidence of all stakeholders, including shipyards, prospective owners, crew, classification societies, underwriters and others. Traditional commissioning activities rely on physical functional tests and/or cause and effect requirements that can fail to detect certain system level malfunctions. Specifically, malfunctions that require system conditions that may be difficult, dangerous, or costly to recreate in a physical environment can expose the weakness of traditional commissioning. Complex system modeling and simulation for virtual commissioning allows for more in-depth testing of physical systems. Through virtual commissioning, simulated tests can be conducted with no threat to equipment or personnel and can be performed quickly and more cost effectively. This paper discusses ABS’ efforts to facilitate virtual commissioning of complex systems. The paper addresses traditional commissioning and how virtual commissioning with simulation models minimizes the risk to equipment and personnel. We believe the Classification process will change, and this paper discusses the role of class societies and the benefits related to virtual commissioning.

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