30 Sep 04
F-5. Summary of Experimental Results.
a. The series of full-scale experiments conducted have been very beneficial in defining the complex
behavior of a barge system during impact. These types of measurements have never been quantified
before and give a better understanding of how the system works so that future modeling efforts can reflect
the actual dynamics of the system.
b. While the data collected from these experiments are extremely valuable, the results do have some
limitations before they can be extracted fully toward design. First, the prototype and full-scale experi-
ments were for lower ranges of approach velocities and angles for barge trains on the inland waterway.
Therefore, these data should not be extrapolated to high-speed impact events such as a loss of power or
control. Second, these experiments were under controlled circumstances and included the preference of
the towboat captain to maintain a safe environment during the experiments. This preference does not
include any unusual approach conditions due to pilot error, currents, or outdrafts that typically occur at
navigation structures. Third, only a limited number of crushing experiments, while designed more for
head-on or side impact with structures, was conducted. This data set is only for typical inland waterway
barges but cannot directly account for variation of the different barge types in service on the inland