Hydrodynamic hull form optimization of fast catamarans using surrogate models

Malte Mittendorf, Apostolos D. Papanikolaou*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This paper demonstrates the practical benefit of using efficient computational methods to optimize fast catamarans hydrodynamically. The development of a simplified panel method, which is based on thin ship theory, and the validation of the associated code for the prediction of the calm water resistance of twin-hull vessels is presented. The method was applied in the multi-objective optimization of a fast, zero-emission, battery-driven catamaran by a genetic algorithm, while considering the ensuing design constraints. Results of the study were compared with resistance predictions from a non-linear Rankine panel method and a viscous CFD solver. Moreover, surrogate models were implemented to speed up the optimization process involving several hundred parametrically generated designs. The proposed simplified panel method in connection with a empirical correction for the stern flow proved very valuable in the resistance prediction and hull form optimization of fast catamarans and of slender hulls in general.

Original languageEnglish
JournalShip Technology Research
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)14-26
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Fast zero-Emission catamarans
  • Genetic algorithm
  • Hydrodynamic optimization
  • Surrogate modelling
  • Thin ship theory panel method


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