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Hydromechanics Laboratory
Hydromechanics lab

Naval Academy Hydromechanics Laboratory (NAHL)

The Naval Academy Hydromechanics Laboratory (NAHL) began operation in the basement of Rickover Hall in September 1976. The primary mission of NAHL (commonly called the "Hydro Lab") is to directly support/enhance the technical education of midshipmen.  Nearly every midshipman receives instruction in NAHL throughout the course of his/her studies at USNA. Those students who major in Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering (ENM) or Ocean Engineering (EOE) participate in more advanced laboratory work, leveraging the full spectrum of NAHL's exceptional instrumentation and test equipment. Furthermore, midshipmen within these majors often undertake independent research projects, further involving NAHL's incredible staff and facilities.

The secondary mission of NAHL is to support USNA faculty/sponsored research. Faculty within Engineering & Weapons Division, and particularly the Naval Architecture & Ocean Engineering (NAOE) Department, use NAHL for a wide variety of research activities, including the investigation of ship resistance/propulsion, marine vehicle motion in waves (seakeeping), submersible vehicle functionality, basic ocean wave mechanics, wave-structure interactions, and coastal engineering principles/behaviors. The NAHL staff also performs sponsored research tests for a wide variety of organizations, including the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of the Navy (DoN).

The tertiary mission of NAHL is to advance the fields of naval architecture/marine engineering and ocean engineering.  NAHL staff members are committed to generating high-quality technical data and supporting the publication/presentation of such information.  Additionally, NAHL directly supports a variety of technical/STEM outreach and education efforts, encouraging the next generation of ocean-focused scientists and engineers.

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