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Ship Structural Reliability

The Ship Structural Reliability program focuses on the development of reliability-based knowledge and tools to improve performance, affordability, resilience, and sustainability of manned and unmanned sea platform hulls throughout their lifecycle. Work in this research area supports the Navy’s interest in advanced sea platform survivability science and technology, and naval engineering.

Research Concentration Areas

  • Improve hull structural capability (capacity and degradation) prediction via high and low-fidelity/reduced-order models accounting for uncertainty
  • Prediction of structural degradation and damage and the impact on operations or need for maintenance/repair with probabilistic, physics-based models and sensed data via Digital Twin techniques
  • Provide novel ship structural design strategies to provide hull fabrication, operation, and repair at greatly reduced time and cost for manned and unmanned platforms

Research Challenges and Opportunities

  • Advance structural capability and degradation models/data across hull systems to enable reliability-based design/analysis regardless of material choice (e.g., aluminum, fiber reinforced plastic, steel) or joining method (e.g. weld, adhesive bond)
  • Evolve structural longevity methodologies to support life-cycle management, service life prediction and assurance, and real-time operational decision-making
  • Numerical modeling and simulation coupled with experimentation to predict damage (through rupture) resulting from sea ice impacting non-ice-strengthened ship hulls

UPDATED: November 2020

How to Submit

For detailed application and submission information for this research topic, please refer to our broad agency announcement (BAA) No. N00014-22-S-B001.

Contracts: All white papers and full proposals for contracts must be submitted through FedConnect; instructions are included in the BAA.

Grants: All white papers for grants must be submitted through FedConnect, and full proposals for grants must be submitted through; instructions are included in the BAA.


Hess, Paul Dr.
Program Officer
Code 331