Dynamic escape routes for Naval ships
Perez Villalonga, Francisco J.
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This thesis addresses the problem of optimal evacuation of a naval ship. We propose the use of a dynamic escape-route system which employs a signaling system to adapt the emergency egress process to the instigating contingency. The evacuation process is represented by a nonlinear network optimization model with an objective function that integrates two conflicting goals: the average evacuation time and the ship's integrity. The nonlinearity in the model results from (a) speed being a nonlinear function of concurrent flow on passageways, and (b) delays caused by opening closures. We also account for counter-flows and passageways used by repair parties. The problem is heuristically solved through an iterative process that updates speeds and delays as it proceeds, and dynamically adds valid inequalities to avoid counter-flows. A bound on the solution quality is obtained by solving the problem under optimistic conditions. Compared to static routes in a modern frigate, model solutions show that dynamic routes can improve the average evacuation time by 20%, reduce the time of the last evacuee by 25%, and improve ship integrity. We also demonstrate that even greater improvements are achievable with minor design changes in the ship.
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