A ship at sea encounters many types of loads and forces simultaneously, such as wave-induced bending and shear torsion, impact of waves on the sides, deck and bottom, static loads from cargo and the sea, as well as sloshing. Additionally, the ship may be loaded in different ways depending on the trade and some loads may be quite large, stressing the structure near its strength limitations.
- Bending load – An external load that produces bending stresses within a body.
- Buckling load – The load necessary to cause buckling instability of a particular structure.
- Critical load – The load that brings about a change in behaviour of a structure, such as buckling, yielding, fatigue, etc.
- Distributed load – A load that acts over a part or the whole of the surface of the structure.
- Dynamic load – A load that produces significant acceleration of a body.
- Environmental load – A load that acts onto a structure that is the result of environmental conditions (e.g. thermal loads arising from temperature variations etc).
- Static load – A load that results in the development of a stress field within a body without any acceleration of any part of it.