What is the thickness of steel on a ship’s hull?
This is a quite vague question. The range is very big.
In simple terms, it depends on:
1)The ship type: the structural design of an oil tanker is very different compared to a bulk carrier or a container ship.
2) The area in question. The thickness of steel is not uniform all the ship areas. There are areas in which a higher steel thickness is required. This depends on the Class requirements, the fatigue/strength calculations done by the shipbuilder as well as the shipowner’s requirements.
For example, the range of the steel thickness on the hull (side shell) of a modern VLCC is from 19mm up to 24.5 mm. As a rule of thumb, the steel plates closer to the ship’s bottom tend to have a higher thickness compared to those closer to the upper deck because they are subject to higher loads mainly due to the hydrostatic pressure.
3) Type of steel: There is a big variation of steel types with different chemical composition and characteristics. Each type of steel serves a different purpose and hence the thickness of the corresponding steel plates will vary as well.
What is important in this case is not to know what is the thickness of steel on a ship’s hull but where to find this information. The thickness of the ship’s hull (side shell) can be found in the “Shell Expansion” drawing but one must know how to read and understand it!
Thank you @Surcouf_Renard, of course makes sense!