The Electric Ship Research and Development Consortium (ESRDC) was tasked by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) with using the Smart Ship Systems Design (S3D) software to develop and compare several ship system designs demonstrating key elements of a 100 MW Medium Voltage Direct Current (MVDC) electric power distribution architecture suitable for integration into a future 10,000 ton surface combatant. The goals of this exercise were twofold: first, perform a study of several ship system variants and quantify the differences between the variants; and second, provide user evaluation of the S3D design environment, user-driven refinement of the environment, and improved understanding of the design processes it enables. The team developed a notional “Baseline Design” with an array of mission loads for a 10,000 ton surface combatant using 10kV dc distribution and conventional silicon-based solid state power conversion. Then, several design variants were developed to explore the impact of alternative topologies and advanced materials. These included:
- High speed power generation
- Advanced materials for solid-state power conversion
- Alternative power system topologies
- Mechanical/electrical hybrid (developed but not evaluated)
Designs were compared for changes in weight, volume, number of components, and range. Additionally, a notional time-based mission consisting of three mission segments was developed to compare the performance of each design variant against an operational vignette; selected results are presented in the report. In addition to developing notional designs for the 10,000 ton surface combatant, the ship design project provided important feedback to the S3D software development team. The project led to several enhancements of the design tool including new equipment library components, e.g., bus nodes and IPNCs, as well as new functionality, e.g. the mission alignment comparison tool. Recommendations for future enhancements to S3D as a result of this exercise include semi-automated design assistance; review of the role of margins, allowances, uncertainty and risk, treatment of aggregated loads and assemblies; verification and validation of models and an expanded model library; expansion of the catalog of scalable models; inclusion of high-level controls for mission analysis; and improvements to the individual discipline-specific design tools.