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A Methodology to Reduce Tank Inspection Frequency for U.S. Navy Surface Ships Open Access

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The United States Navy is, by far, the largest navy in the world. With over 200 vessels that have more than 15,000 shipboard tanks to maintain, an average of nearly 2,000 tank inspections has been conducted annually since 2011 (Csapo, 2019). Twenty-five percent of the annual Navy’s maintenance budget is spent on corrosion (Parsons, 1994). This research effort introduced a novel methodology for analyzing and integrating factors of ultra-high and high solids (UHS/HS) tank coating types, coating age, surface preparation method, ship class, tank type and tank criticality from existing U.S. Navy ship tank inspection databases in order to reduce required tank inspection frequencies by 25-50%. Ways to mitigate model potential overconfidence were explored. It was also demonstrated that significant savings were accrued by a reduction of required tank inspections. The practical applications of this proposed methodology are: 1) tank inspection periodicities will be optimized, 2) unnecessary tank inspections will not be conducted, saving shipyard resources (cost and schedule) and 3) future planning efforts will be adjusted.

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