This work deals with a numerical simulation developed to predict the characteristic cooling times of a low-thermal diffusivity fuel-oil confined in the tanks of a wrecked ship. A typical scenario has been introduced, through the definition of tanks geometries, physical boundary conditions (deep sea temperatures) and reological properties of the fuel-oil. The fluidynamic behaviour of the oil (forced convection) inside the tanks, as well as the heat exchange with surrounding sea water has been simulated throughout a commercial code, FLUENT, that solves directly the Navier-Stokes set of equations, including energy one. The purpose is focused on the prediction of both spatial and temporal evolution of the fuel-oil characteristic temperature inside the tanks. The final objective is placed on the determination of the deadline in which asymptotic temperature curve of the fuel-oil converges to deep sea thermal conditions. Inspectional analysis is also outlined, as a powerful tool to predict an order of magnitude in the cooling process.

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