Feature-based estimation of preliminary costs in shipbuilding

Cheng Kuan Lin, Heiu Jou Shaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Accurate cost estimation is crucial for obtaining ship owners’ orders in shipyards. The classic preliminary estimation methods of ship costs provide only rough estimates of the labor, materials, and equipment based on the overall ship parameters and do not reflect further specifications. This study develops an innovative cost estimation method called the feature-based estimation method that is based on the preliminary specifications to estimate ship costs, including the steel, other main materials, engine, power generator, other core equipment, and labor hours. The method mainly establishes the topology of the relationships between the features by linking the general dimensional parameters and detailed features of the specifications of the designs and cost information to estimate the main cost items of the ship. The features are extracted and transformed into a quantifiable structure. The definitions of the features contains the core context using a small amount of information for the preliminary estimation. Empirical formulas are derived based on the configured cost items in the preliminary design stage. The errors of the estimated total costs are less than ±7%. Hence, the estimation model is suitable for modern ships. The applications of the model may be more robust for new ships in a future study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-319
Number of pages15
JournalOcean Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Nov 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering


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