It has been shown that the presence of marine fouling, even as a light slime, will cause a detrimental effect on the powering or speed of a full-scale ship. Studies from as early as the late 19th century have attempted to quantify the increase in power or decrease in speed imposed on a ship from the presence of hull roughness. The accurate quantification is limited and often difficult and expensive to obtain. The present study aims to develop an instrument that will remove some ambiguity by directly measuring the frictional drag of a ship in situ. Results from experimental testing of a prototype in the lab are presented and used to identify the channel length, height, and accuracy limitations of a field deployable prototype.

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