The marine industry requires trustworthy and cost-effective results. In the area of hydro-dynamic (scale) model testing, there is a need for a formal and lasting structure to co-ordinate the definition and introduction of novel measurement, observation and analysis technologies.
HTA has built a network, based on a core of 12 European hydro-dynamic research centres together with 7 universities, to follow a process to match the research needs for industry and the scientific community. The co-ordination of development, the sharing of advanced equipment and the dissemination of knowledge and guidelines aims at a more integrated and efficient use of marine testing capacity within Europe. The Hydro-Testing Alliance will in short term contribute to competitiveness and excellence of the marine industry, and facilitate the continuation of world leadership of the European hydrodynamic testing facilities.
The main interest was the measurement and analysis techniques that are in use for testing ship and offshore structure models in the water basins of the institutes. Various groups of researchers had developed new technologies under the framework of Joint Research Projects (JRPs) of the HTA. For such new technologies, there was also a need for guidelines for measurement and analysis development and procedures for hydrodynamic and related structural testing. This would ensure uniform approach which could be adopted and implemented by the model testing institutions. Several activities within the HTA project were used to raise the awareness of the marine hydro-testing facilities and also to promote the industry to both male and female students and researchers.
The main objective of this alliance was to develop a formal and lasting structure to coordinate the definition and introduction of novel measurement, observation and analysis technologies for hydrodynamic (scale) model testing environments. The coordination of development, the sharing of advanced equipment and the dissemination of knowledge and guidelines aimed at a more integrated and efficient use of marine testing capacity within Europe.
HTA included a 'vertical' work package comprising joint research programmes and three 'horizontal' work programmes addressing broader integration issues.
The joint research programmes leading towards closer integration are:
- PIV (Particle Image velocimetry) operation in hydrodynamic experimental facilities;
- flow data analysis and visualisation;
- 3D wave field measurements;
- POD/dynamic forces;
- wireless data transmission;
- high-speed video recording and analysis;
- intelligent materials and production methods;
- wetted surface;
- free-running model technologies.
The horizontal activities are work packages to establish:
- measurement policies for hydrodynamic and structural testing;
- knowledge management and communication;
- training and dissemination.
Amongst the Network, the co-operation to develop novel measurement technology will create a need to share these results. The Network's legal structures enable this and it is expected that this will lead to more excellent expertise and more efficient use of advanced equipment amongst the partners.
Hydro-Testing Alliance (HTA), a project funded by the European Commission's Sixth Framework Program (FP6), was completed as a European Network of Excellence (NoE). The network aimed to facilitate the continuation of world leadership of the European hydrodynamic testing facilities.
As per the end of the funding period, most of the 17 member organisations had signed the contract of admission to the HTA Forum (www.hta-forum.eu), under which they would have access to Communities of Practice (CoP) on subjects as:
- Particle image velocimetry (PIV) in hydrodynamic laboratories;
- High speed video technologies cavitation noise technologies;
- Podded propulsion modeling technologies.
These subjects are continuations of initiatives existing under the HTA NoE and parties which are interested to qualify for joining such CoP, can apply under certain conditions. The Forum network will organise twice a year a meeting and forum day, in which the CoPs will meet and in which a half day forum will be held on general topics of interest for the international hydrodynamic model testing society. Herein, members can present ideas for joint projects (JIPs, with institutes and industry) on testing technology, e.g. measurement system qualification, analysis tools and methodology, etc. The forum will also provide opportunities to initiate a new CoP on a subject of interest.