Hamburgische Schiffbau Versuchsanstalt / the Hamburg Ship Model Basin (HSVA) is a private, self-supporting, not-for-profit organisation providing research and consultancy services to the worldwide maritime industry.

With its sophisticated experimental research facilities HSVA has been among the world’s leading ship model basins since its foundation in 1913. Based on pioneering contributions from scientists and engineers, HSVA developed an intricate understanding of all problems in ship and offshore hydrodynamics, aerodynamics and arctic technology.

With its laboratories HSVA offers a large range of experimental investigations covering resistance and propulsion tests, seakeeping-, manoeuvring- and cavitation experiments for ships and “anything that floats”. The main facilities available at HSVA include the large hydrodynamics and cavitation tunnel (HYKAT), the large towing tank (300m x 18m x 6m) also featuring a side-wave generator for multi-directional wave making capabilities and the unique large ice model basin. Discover our range of services in the specific sections.

In addition to its experimental facilities HSVA has pioneered maritime CFD development and applications for a long time. Today, a range of numerical services matching ship model basin standards are offered.

Research plays an important role for the model basin. HSVA constantly invests in the development of new technologies and the research in maritime hydrodynamics. More information is provided on the research pages.

HSVA has run a working quality management system for many years. Focussing on accuracy and correctness and continuously developing our skills further is an integral part of the researchers’ DNA of the people working at HSVA. Since July 2020 HSVA’s quality management system is certified by Lloyd’s Register according to the latest ISO 9001:2015 standard.



  • We are a research-based service provider for the maritime industry.
  • We aim to make the technical use of the oceans safer, more efficient and more resource-efficient by applying our knowledge, skills, facilities and creativity.
  • We develop innovative, individually designed solutions for our customers by constantly combining our skills in new ways.


  • Excellence
  • Customer orientation
  • Flexibility
  • Sustainability
  • Reliability
  • Independence
  • Fairness