Concept study for cost and weight reduction of a barge container sized module

University essay from KTH/Lättkonstruktioner

Abstract: The intention of this thesis is to develop, evaluate new concepts and look over the current design for a container sized barge module. By request of Group Ocean, a cost and weight reduction is the main improvement criteria along with keeping the strength of the module.Five concepts are developed, analyzed and discussed with the supervisor at Group Ocean, where three are decided to be presented here. The other two are left out, since they are considered way too expensive without giving a satisfying result. The three concepts that are developed throughout this thesis are; changing to high strength steel, changing to sandwich panels and increasing stiffeners with smaller dimensions.A structural optimization is made in the software MATLAB to find out the best dimension to use for the sandwich panels. To determine the local stresses, the finite element method is used in Inventor Professional. It is also where the design and CAD modules are built in, so for simplifications it is used for FEA (Finite Element Analysis) as well. To reduce the amount of elements and nodes, shell elements and other structural constraints are used in the FEA. All the concepts are modelled with the same structural constraints so a practical comparison study can be made.The final designs resulted in a total weight reduction up to 40% with a material cost reduction of 12%. Based on what type of material is chosen, the material cost reduction range is between 3-12% and the weight reduction range is between 13-40%.

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