Marine Engineers are generally concerned with the design, operation and maintenance of marine vessels. Apart from these tasks they are also involved in diverse research activities related to oceans, inland waters, coastal structures, and marine systems. The marine engineering curriculum at graduate level includes courses such as Fluid dynamics wherein the basic principles of fluid laws, Euler or Bernoulli’s concepts, and conservation principles are generally discussed. Other discussion includes flow theories, amplitudes, and oscillations. Hydromechanics principles are extensively used in marine engineering applications study and analysis. An ocean engineering course curriculum includes concepts related to ships and waves. Typical marine activities like marine depth determination, CB radio usage, or underwater systems study are practiced as a part of the course work. As electives in a marine engineering curriculum, several universities are offering courses related to the study of the effects of waves on coastal regions and offshore structures. As a part of marine engineering, basic mechanical engineering theory and practice are covered in general. The principles of thermodynamics and internal combustion engines’ operational principles are covered extensively as a part of a marine engineering curriculum. Principles of power systems and electrical drives are other important course components.
The critical marine engineering design work includes designing hulls, since they are the most important parts of marine vessels. Designing marine hulls includes assessment of typical issues such as weight bearing capacity of the hulls and water depth at the location. Pressure competency of the underwater vessel and structural design to take up the excess underwater pressure is another important challenge which marine design engineers face. Ocean engineering knowledge is very much important while working for marine structures, vehicles, and equipment design. Standards and codes of Naval architecture are essential given the internationalization of marine engineering design practices. Apart from core disciplinary knowledge and technical skills, managerial courses are often taught at graduate level, keeping in view the demand for on-the-job managerial skills in the profession.
Recent trends in marine engineering include studies related to vessel safety and longevity. Contemporary marine engineers are taking up the challenges of creating engineering designs to meet the stringent financial, legislative, and performance demands. At research level, marine engineering has a large scope for in-depth research; some of the research topics include modeling and simulation of marine systems, optimizing marine systems design, marine corrosion studies, alternative fuels for marine engineering propulsion, or advanced materials for marine structures. Modeling marine systems to meet the severe operating conditions, and simulating and optimizing the design for performance and material utility are research topics for master's and doctoral level.
Graduates with analytical thinking, a challenge-facing attitude, technical and managerial problem solving capabilities, and quick decision making skills are generally in demand in marine engineering professions. Professional licensing is another mandatory requirement for taking up a profession in marine engineering. Licensing examinations include theoretical and practical examinations based on core curricula of marine engineering courses.
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