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Finite Element Analysis of the Vasa’s Bottom Structure
University of Skövde, School of Technology and Society.
University of Skövde, School of Technology and Society.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The royal warship Vasa sank on its maiden voyage outside Stockholm and was salvaged more than 300 years later in 1961. Nowadays the vessel lies in its eponymous museum in Stockholm on a dry dock. However, it was determined that the ship cannot handle its own weight in a satisfactory manner with the current support system. Measurements during the past ten years have ascertained that the upper structure components of the hull are slowly deforming, mostly due to creep behavior.


A new support system for the ship needs to be designed in the near future and therefore, the mechanical behavior of its structural members and the stresses they are subjected to have to be determined. Factors that complicate a stress analysis include both inhomogeneity of the oak’s mechanical properties and limited opportunities for experimental testing. Furthermore, contamination, microbial degradation and preservation agents have significantly changed the integrity of the oak.


In this project a section of the Vasa’s bottom structure is studied through Finite Element Analysis in order to determine the stresses and deformations originated by the support system and to have a better understanding of these effects on the ship’s structure. Due to the considerable deterioration of the oak, especially on the external structural members, several assumptions are considered in order to perform analytical calculations to determine appropriate material properties for the FE-Models. 


After performing the computational simulations, the obtained results indicate that the bottom structure exhibits sufficient mechanical integrity to endure the stresses generated by the support system. Even by assuming the possibility of several damaged structural connections, only a minor difference of the effects of the reaction forces on the structure members was determined.


The thesis work ends with further conclusions from the performed analysis and suggested future work.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 36 p.
National Category
Applied Mechanics
URN: urn:nbn:se:his:diva-5663OAI: diva2:512676
Subject / course
Mechanical Engineering
Educational program
Applied Mechanics - Master's Programme
2012-03-26, G207, Högskolevägen 1, Skövde, 16:00 (English)
Available from: 2012-04-02 Created: 2012-03-28 Last updated: 2012-04-02Bibliographically approved

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Dabbagh, ArmanjGarza, Carlos
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