Department of Ocean Engineering

Ocean Engineering

Ocean engineering is the application of basic engineering principles to the analysis, design, construction, and management of systems that operate in the ocean environment or near shore. Typical ocean engineering application areas include: beach protection and nourishment, coastal structures and erosion, wave and current structure interaction, development of ocean energy resources, instrumentation for coastal and offshore measurements, marine dredging and dredged material placement, moored and towed systems, ocean mining, offshore petroleum recovery, offshore structures and vessels, hydrodynamics, instrumentation for ocean measurements, marine dredging, marine risers, moored and towed systems, numerical and physical modeling, ocean mining, offshore petroleum recovery, offshore structures, ports and harbors, remotely operated and autonomous underwater vehicles, renewable ocean energy systems, search and salvage, suspended and dissolved constituent transport, subsea pipelines and cables, submersible vehicles, sustainable and resilient ocean systems, and underwater acoustics. Employment opportunities exist with private industry, defense contractors, consulting firms, and government agencies. Ocean engineering students are encouraged to pursue summer internships and may participate in the University cooperative education program, and the study abroad program. The undergraduate program in ocean engineering in Department of Ocean Engineering at Texas A&M University is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET,

The mission of the Ocean Engineering Program is to conduct research, serve the public, and educate students in a broad program of instruction encompassing traditional and emerging areas of ocean engineering. Graduates are prepared for entering engineering practice, continuing onto graduate study, life-long learning and professional development. Students develop a sense of professionalism and an appreciation for the obligations of a professional engineer. The Program offers ocean engineering continuing education activities for the people and marine industry of the state, nation and international community. The Program serves the public and engineering profession in Texas and the nation through participation of faculty and students in public and professional activities. Applied and fundamental research is conducted that contributes to the better understanding of ocean engineering and supports student educational development.

The program educational objectives of the Ocean Engineering Program are;

  1. Graduates contribute to the ocean engineering profession and society.
  2. Graduates gain employment in ocean engineering and related engineering fields with private and government organizations.
  3. Graduates advance to positions of increased responsibility and develop professionally through training, technical conferences, and continuing education activities.
  4. Some graduates become professional engineers and members of ocean engineering related professional societies.
  5. Some graduates pursue graduate studies in ocean engineering and related fields and receive post baccalaureate degrees.

The Department of Ocean Engineering is a two-campus department with campuses located in College Station and Galveston, Texas. The laboratory facilities accessible to the Department of Ocean Engineering are among the most comprehensive in the nation for testing offshore, dredging and coastal systems. The College Station facilities are located in the Reta and Bill Haynes ’46 Coastal Engineering Laboratory, the Offshore Technology Research Center and the Civil Engineering Laboratory Building. These facilities include a large deep water wave basin, a towing tank and model dredge, a wave channel, a shallow water wave basin and data acquisition systems. The facilities in Galveston provide access to the Gulf of Mexico, and small boats and research vessels are available for education and research. Additional information is available on the Department of Ocean Engineering website:

Before commencing course work in the major, students must be admitted to the major or have the approval of the department.

OCEN 201 Introduction to Ocean Engineering

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Survey of ocean engineering; concepts and theories of wave-structure interaction; sources of technical information; coastal and ocean structures, moorings, laboratory models; underwater systems; naval architecture; ocean instrumentation; materials and corrosion; hydrographic surveying and positioning, recent developments in ocean engineering.
Prerequisite: CVEN 221 or registration therein.

OCEN 300 Ocean Engineering Wave Mechanics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Physical and mathematical fundamentals of ocean wave behavior; mechanics of wave motion; use of statistics and probability to develop design wave criteria.
Prerequisite: CVEN 311, OCEN 201 or registration therein.

OCEN 336 Fluid Dynamics Laboratory

Credit 1. 2 Lab Hours.

Introduction to laboratory techniques, calibration principles, reports and fluid measurements; determination of fluid properties; visualization of types of flow; experiments in closed conduit flow of air, water and oil; fluid drag and turbomachinery tests; open channel and gravity wave demonstrations.
Prerequisite: CVEN 311 or registration therein.

OCEN 362 Hydromechanics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Kinematics of fluids; differential analysis of fluid flow; incompressible, irrotational and turbulent flow; Navier-Stokes equations; flow of viscous fluids; open-channel flow.
Prerequisites: CVEN 311; MATH 308; junior or senior classification.

OCEN 400 Basic Coastal Engineering

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Mechanics of wave motion; wave refraction, diffraction and reflection; wave forecasting; shore processes; planning of coastal engineering projects; design of seawalls, breakwaters, beach nourishment, and fixed and floating installations; dredging; risk analysis.
Prerequisites: OCEN 300 or approval of instructor; CVEN 311; junior or senior classification.

OCEN 401 Underwater Acoustics for Ocean Engineers

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Fundamentals of underwater acoustics, SONAR equations, propagation of underwater sound, acoustic transducers and arrays, noise in the ocean environment, design and prediction of SONAR systems, ocean engineering applications of underwater sound.
Prerequisite: CVEN 311.

OCEN 402 Principles of Naval Architecture

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Elementary principles of naval architecture; ship geometry and hydrostatics; load line and classification regulations; concept of intact and damaged stability; resistance and propulsion of water-borne vehicles; applications to the design consideration of semi-submersibles, catamarans and drilling rigs.
Prerequisite: CVEN 311.

OCEN 403 Dynamics of Offshore Structures

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Prediction of loads due to wind, current and waves; introduction to concepts of linear structural dynamics and to the design of ocean structures; mooring and towing analysis; fluid-structure interactions; vibration of submerged structures; offshore pipelines; introduction to risk analysis.
Prerequisites: OCEN 300 or approval of instructor; CVEN 345, CVEN 363 or registration therein.

OCEN 407 Design of Ocean Engineering Facilities

Credits 4. 1 Lecture Hour. 6 Lab Hours.

Design of structures, equipment and systems for the ocean; environmental, logistical and reliability requirements; complete design process followed through group design project; delineation of alternatives, constraints, economics and environmental consequences included to strengthen real-life problem solving skills.
Prerequisites: OCEN 400, OCEN 402, OCEN 403 or approval of instructor.

OCEN 408 Underwater and Moored System Design

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Basic principles of thermodynamics, fluid dynamics and human respiration physiology applied to design of underwater habitats, submersibles and diving bells; breathing gas supply for diving systems; heat transfer for underwater systems; pressure vessel design; remotely operated vehicles; subsea flowlines and manifold systems; and design of towed and moored systems.
Prerequisites: CVEN 311; MEEN 315 or approval of instructor.

OCEN 410 Ocean Engineering Laboratory

Credit 1. 3 Lab Hours.

Fundamental techniques and instrumentation for field and laboratory measurements pertaining to ocean engineering experiment planning; data analysis and data presentation; written reports describing planning, analysis and results of experiments.
Prerequisites: OCEN 400, OCEN 402, OCEN 403; junior or senior classification.

OCEN 475 Environmental Fluid Mechanics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Examines fluid and mass transport in naturally occurring flows; topics include molecular and turbulent diffusion; dispersion; river, estuary, and ocean mixing; dissolution boundary layers; tidal mixing; offshore wastewater outfalls; introduction to environmental quality numerical modeling.
Prerequisite: CVEN 311.

OCEN 481 Seminar

Credit 1. 1 Lecture Hour.

Responsibilities and obligations of new ocean engineers; professional ethics, membership in professional societies and professional registrations; case studies and lectures presented by staff and practicing engineers. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.
Prerequisite: OCEN 300.

OCEN 485 Directed Studies

Credits 1 to 6. 1 to 6 Other Hours.

Special problems in various areas of ocean engineering assigned to individual students or to groups; readings and assignments given and frequent consultations held.
Prerequisite: Approval of program head.

OCEN 489 Special Topics in...

Credits 1 to 4. 1 to 4 Lecture Hours.

Selected topics in an identified field of ocean engineering. May be repeated for credit.
Prerequisite: Approval of instructor.

OCEN 491 Research

Credits 1 to 4. 1 to 4 Other Hours.

Research conducted under the direction of faculty member in ocean engineering. May be repeated 2 times for credit. Registration in multiple sections of this course is possible within a given semester provided that the per semester credit hour limit is not exceeded.
Prerequisites: Junior or senior classification and approval of instructor.