Ship roll motion is critical for offshore operations due to its lack of damping mechanism. This paper demonstrates a dynamic simulation scheme of an active roll reduction system using free-flooding tanks controlled by vacuum pumps. A tank is installed on each side of a catamaran. Both the tank hatches are opened to the sea and the air chambers of both tanks are connected by an air duct. Vacuum pumps and air valve stabilized the wave-induced roll motion by controlling the water levels in the tanks through a feedback controller. The catamaran is a dynamic model with single degree-of-freedom (DOF) in roll, and its hydrodynamic behavior is calculated using potential theory by SHIPX. The air chambers are modeled as isothermal processes of ideal gas. The behavior of the liquid flow in a tank is simulated by incompressible Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes solver with the volume of fluid model, then summarized as a response function for the vessel model. A simplified control plant model for the vacuum pumps is proposed where higher order behaviors are neglected and the external wave-induced load is unknown. A parameter-dependent observer and a backstepping controller are adopted to estimate the external load and to reduce the roll motion. The system stability is proved by Lyapunov's direct method. The performance of the entire system is evaluated in terms of roll reduction capability and power cost. The system is more suitable for roll reduction in low-speed or resting conditions.

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