Tag: Suez canal

The interesting hydrodynamics of big ships

Bookmarked The bank effect and the big boat blocking the Suez (bag.srkn.org)

Lataire wrote his dissertation on a similar phenomenon as a ship passes close to a bank: the bank effect. The water speeds up, the pressure drops, the stern pulls into the bank and, particularly in shallow water, the bow gets pushed away. Stern one way, bow the other. A boat that had been steaming is suddenly spinning. It’s a well-identified phenomenon; in 2009 Ghent University’s Shallow Water Knowledge Centre put together a whole conference about it. Clever pilots on the Elbe, according to Lataire, will use it to shoot around a bend.

However: the more water a ship displaces, the stronger the effect. And the closer the side of the hull is to the shore, the stronger the effect. The bigger the ship, the faster the bow shoots away from the bank.

A fascinating article that outlines what might have triggered the ‘Ever Given’ to get stuck in the Suez canal.