Friday, 14 May 2010

FV Trident Stability - model testing

In a few days time  - more precisely on the 24th of May 2010 - the re-opened formal investigation into the sinking of FV Trident is due to reconvene.
In anticipation of that day we have read through the transcripts of evidence available so far.
In 2002 when the then Secretary of State for Transport, Mr Stephen Byers, ordered the re-opening of the Trident inquiry, we were advised that new and important evidence had been discovered that justified a new investigation into the vessel's loss.

However, after ploughing through more than 7000 pages of recorded oral evidence (from the 40 days of hearings in the Aberdeen Court), we have not been able to locate any new and important evidence!
We were also surprised to learn that, despite the technical expertise that is available to the court, the Advocate General found it necessary to seek external advice on one of the simplest concepts in Naval Architecture concerning ship stability.

AG - "It is true that raising KG is generally detrimental and lowering KG favourable and this applies to all vessels" - Do you agree with this statement Dr Schmitter? [...]
Dr S - Yes in general terms this statement is correct
AG - Right.
(Transcript of evidence of 12 November 2009)

For the benefit of those with an interest in trawler stability, we have prepared a short video clip (see below, split in two parts), which explains the significance of KG (VCG) to transverse stability. [1] [2]


[1] KG is the height of the vertical center of gravity above the keel (also known as VCG)

[2] Unfortunately, on the Trident the VCG position was not accurately known because an inclining experiment had not been carried out.

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