Virtual prototyping system for maritime crane design and operation based on functional mock-up interface
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This paper presents the framework of a virtual prototyping system for the design and simulation of maritime crane operations. By combining the rapid-prototyping approach with the concept of interchangeable interfaces, different demanding operation scenarios can be simulated including models of the corresponding physical systems, the vessel and the surrounding environment. Multiple tradeoffs and alternative solutions can be evaluated during the design phase. This process can be achieved within a short time period, allowing for the reduction of lead-times as well as for the abatement of mistakes or system failures that may otherwise cause fatal accidents in real tests. In addition, the virtual simulator can also be used for training purposes allowing for a substantial improvement in working efficiency and operation safety. The software architecture of the proposed framework is based on the application of the Functional Mock-up Interface standard. This utilizes the current available modelling tools and allows for the exchange of dynamic models and for co-simulation of different models according to the current designing needs. The development of the framework and involved modules of maritime crane systems are described. Preliminary simulations are presented to show the effectiveness and flexibility of the proposed framework.