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Taiwan breaks ground on national testing facility for ship models

05/16/2024 07:55 PM
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President Tsai Ing-wen (second right). CNA photo May 16, 2024
President Tsai Ing-wen (second right). CNA photo May 16, 2024

Kaohsiung, May 16 (CNA) A groundbreaking ceremony was held Thursday in Kaohsiung for the construction of a national testing facility for ship models, with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) touting it as a boost to Taiwan's domestic shipbuilding capabilities.

The facility, which will be located at Xingda Harbor, is expected to be operational in 2027, according to Tsai.

Although there are already four universities in Taiwan that are able to carry out hydrodynamic tests on ship models, the president said none of them are able to test for ocean-resistance, maneuverability and other related elements.

Once completed, the national testing facility will make up for those shortcomings by handling experiments that have typically been outsourced to testing facilities overseas, Tsai explained.

The Kaohsiung site will also help minimize production delays and security risk associated with Taiwan's new ship developments, she said, indicating that model testing is an extremely important part of indigenous shipbuilding.

By integrating the testing capabilities of the universities, the national facility will in the future be able to provide everything needed to boost Taiwan's shipbuilding capability, she added.

In a news release, the National Academy of Marine Research (NAMR) said the site is designed to enhance the independent research and development capacity of the domestic shipbuilding industry.

According to the NAMR, the project is a collaborative effort between the Ship and Ocean Industries R&D Center and various experts and teams from Taiwan and abroad.

The facility will house an ocean-resistant test basin about half the size of a football field measuring 80 meters long and 40 meters wide with a depth of 5.5 meters, it said, adding that it will also be equipped with the most advanced wave-making system to test a ship's real-life ocean-going behavior.

(By Hung Hsueh-kuan and Ko Lin)

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