It has been a general practice to model a very large, mat-like, floating body (such as ice floes and mega-floats) by an elastic thin plate with free edges. However, the classical thin plate (Kirchhoff) theory has a limitation when the wavelengths are less than ten times the body thickness. This is because it neglects the effects of transverse shear deformation and the rotary inertia of the plate. To overcome this drawback, we propose the use of the first-order shear deformable plate (Mindlin) theory to represent floating bodies. In this paper we present the comparison of both plate theories when used to calculate the effect of waves on a large floating body.

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