Extreme Loads on Arctic Structures Laboratory (ELAS)

About | People | Equipment | Location


The Extreme Loads on Arctic Structures Lab (ELAS) investigates the response of ship structures subject to ice impact: including icebreakers, ice-strengthened ships, and non-ice class ships and naval surface vessels. We use a combination of quasi-static and impact laboratory apparatus (some with full-scale ship structures); sliding impact apparatus; advanced material characterization; and finite element modelling using a 272 core high-performance computer. We develop related engineering tools for ship owners, designers, operators, regulators and classification societies.

The research activities at ELAS Lab include:

  • Capabilities of low and non-ice class vessels in ice
  • Effects of moving ice loads on damage to hull structures
  • Advanced FEA of trawl gear interaction with subsea pipelines
  • Kulluk Steel project


  • Dr. Bruce Quinton
    • Arctic ships and structures
    • Extreme and accidental loads
    • Marine structures and materials
    • Arctic offshore and marine safety
    • HPC and parallel processing architecture and applications
  • Dr. Claude Daley
    • Ship structures
    • Ship / Ice Interaction
    • Ice cover mechanics and simulation
    • Discrete mechanics and chaos
    • Solid destruction mechanics
    • Design/Regulation rule development
  • Dr. Stephen Bruneau
    • Ice loads on structures
    • Wind Engineering
    • Energy Policy
    • Industrial Outreach
  • Dr. Rocky Taylor
    • Ice-engineering problems, particularly those related to ice-load estimation for the design of offshore structures and the mechanics of compressive ice failure


Large Double Pendulum Apparatus

Located in FEAS Structure Lab

  • Full-scale medium-energy impacts between ship hull grillages and ice or rigid indenters.
  • Relative impact speed: 7.5 m/s (~15 knots)
  • Total impact energy: 67.3 kJ (~50,000 lbf-ft)
  • Ship grillage area: 2.032 m x 1.36 m (80 in. x 53.5 in.)
  • Tests conducted at ambient temperature
  • High-speed 3D Digital Image Correlation

Moving/Sliding Load Apparatus

Located in FEAS Thermal Lab inside Cooler 1

  • Applies moving/sliding loads on long plates or long stiffened plates
  • Computer-controlled bi-axial hydraulic actuation of indenter
  • Load capacity normal to plating: 500 kN (110 kip)
  • Load capacity tangential to plating (sliding force): 250 kN (50 kip)
  • Ice or rigid indenters
  • Tests conducted in an environmental chamber at -30°C to ambient temperature

3D Digital Image Correlation and Advanced Material Characterisation

Mobile – specialized 3D DIC equipment is mobile to take advantage of the various FEAS material characterization apparatus (e.g., the Instron and Charpy notch toughness machines in the mechatronics lab; the Tinius-Olsen machine in the Structures Lab, and the MTS machine in Cooler 1 in the Thermal Lab)

  • Two systems are in use:
    • Hi-resolution 3D Digital Image Correlation
    • Hi-speed 3D Digital Image Correlation
  • This equipment is primarily used for advanced material characterization
    • Lode Parameter and Triaxiality-based fracture characterization.
    • Static to medium strain rate capabilities

Located in FEAS 3rd Floor server room


Equipments are located across the four labs below:

Structures Lab, Thermal Lab, Mechatronics Lab, Server Room (3rd Floor)
Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John's, NL