In general, two main concepts can be applied to estimate the on-site directional wave spectrum on the basis of ship response measurements: 1) a parametric method which assumes the wave spectrum to be composed by parameterised wave spectra, or 2) a non-parametric method where the directional wave spectrum is found directly as the values in a completely discretised frequency-directional domain without a priori assumptions on the spectrum. The paper outlines the theory of these two concepts, and it is shown how to deal with the speed-of-advance problem for operating ships. In addition, the methods include an quivalence of energy in the governing equations and, as regards the parametric concept, a frequency dependent spreading of the waves is introduced. The paper includes an extensive analysis of full-scale measurements for which the directional wave spectra are estimated by the two ship response based methods. Hence, comparisons are made between these estimates and, moreover, the agreement with the corresponding directional wave spectra produced by the wave radar system WAVEX is studied. The agreement between the two methods is reasonable, as well is the agreement between the results of these methods and those of WAVEX. It is difficult to propose one of the ship response based methods in favour of the other, since they perform equally well.
Marine Structures, 2006, Vol 19, Issue 1, p. 33-69