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In this article, we have described the main components of a ship motion-control system and two particular motion-control problems that require wave filtering, namely, dynamic positioning and heading autopilot. Then, we discussed the models commonly used for vessel response and showed how these models are used for Kalman filter design. We also briefly discussed parameter and noise covariance estimation, which are used for filter tuning. To illustrate the performance, a case study based on numerical simulations for a ship autopilot was considered. The material discussed in this article conforms to modern commercially available ship motion-control systems. Most of the vessels operating in the offshore industry worldwide use Kalman filters for velocity estimation and wave filtering. Thus, the article provides an up-to-date tutorial and overview of Kalman-filter-based wave filtering.
Date of Publication: Dec. 2009