Winterization of sea technology

Winterization of ship design, offshore facilities and marine outdoor working environment

The changing arctic climate is characterized by more severe weather and it is necessary to prepare outdoor operations and outdoor activity to the changes to come. The offshore as well as onshore development in Arctic and cold regions is challenged by strong winds, low temperature, icing, drifting snow, precipitation, etc. In such a climate, a strong blizzard is capable of more or less paralyzing a region by blocking most of the traffic and outdoor activity on land, at sea and in the air.

Most critical for the operability and maintainability of ships, offshore facilities and offshore fish farms in the changing arctic climate is the cold environment’s impact on outdoor activity, i.e., health and well-being, outdoor operations, emergency response and evacuation, transportation, etc. Special considerations are often necessary during the design and fabrication of ships and floating structures in cold waters. However, in winterization it is also important to include human factors. Exposure to cold stress and the combined effects of wind, waves, precipitation, icing etc. affect comfort and human health. This includes living and working in dark and remote places.

The basic functionality found in traditional cold climate design and state-of-the-art wind, snow and ice management provide the basis for sustainable winterized offshore solutions. Winterization of ship design, offshore wind turbines, offshore facilities and marine outdoor working environment includes:

  • Impact from a changing arctic climate on metocean conditions
  • Winterization of outdoor working environment
  • Weather protection designs, protection performance & design requirements

The supervisory team for the candidate will be interdisciplinary and include both the design and human factor aspects. With guidance from the supervisors, the PhD candidate will select area of focus/topic for winterization (ships, fishing, offshore facilities or/and offshore farms). The PhD work will evaluate related safety & design standards and in particular the Polar code.   

It is expected that the PhD-candidate participates in field experiments or/and collection of necessary field data. Including engineering the PhD-candidate is encouraged to work transdisciplinary and collaborate with PhD-candidates/projects within disciplines as meteorology, safety, health & human factors etc.

Personal motivation and suitability for the position will be emphasized.

For any questions regarding the position please contact main supervisor

Professor Per-Arne Sundsbø / Email:


Per-Arne Sundsbø (Principal investigator)
Aleksandra Visich (Principal investigator)