Tag: marine engineering

Last year I was contacted by the Philadelphia Section papers chairman of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, who asked if I could make a presentation at a joint ASME, SNAME, SAME section meeting in Philadelphia on January 24, 2017.

 

I told him that, in principle, I would love to do that, but wondered what subject he was interested in. He thought that a presentation on cruise ship power plants might be of interest to the membership of the various societies that might be attending.

 

In our quick discussion I mentioned that this subject is a book size subject and what part of it would be of interest, and he indicated that a more general discussion would be fun. Without thinking about it much further I agreed, but after putting down the phone I became a little worried. read more »

The most fascinating aspect of the marine industry is the fact that it is nothing but a more technologically aggressive version of what takes place ashore. The world ashore changes and the world at sea changes just as fast. However, shore based technological concepts are all divided along the various technological stove pipes, while, at sea, technological aspects flow into the same pool of naval architects and marine engineers all day and somehow they have to deal with them and focus more tightly on efficiencies at the same time.

 

That means we get to be jacks of all trades (and, as some may argue; masters of none), but our much sharper drive to efficiency at sea often provides additional insights.

 

I just came across one of those issues in an article in Maritime Reporter. In the printed article (the printed article is better than the link I provided) Mr. Pospiech provides a very concise overview of Methane Slip.

 

Methane slip is methane that is not used as a fuel in an engine and basically escapes into the atmosphere. read more »

The SNAME annual meeting is a high speed knowledge exchange fest and the last annual meeting in Seattle may quite possibly have been the best one yet.

 

I always get the printed version of the proceedings and leaf through the papers on the flight home. My proceedings need to be the printed versions because I read them with a pen and add comments in the margins to warn the next person in the office who gets to look through them. Most papers are quite good, although occasionally there is a paper that must have slipped through our peer review process, and contains untruths, is overly commercial, or is just a “duh” paper (and generally if it contains one of these flaws, it contains all three). But the best part is finding a paper that gets one’s engineering juices flowing.

 

In this year’s proceedings one of my favorites was “Zonal Distribution Cuts Cabling Cost” by John Hensler of STX Marine.

 

During the conference the paper did not catch my eye and therefore I did not attend the presentation, but reading it in the airplane it sure made a lot of sense to me. While the execution of the concept in the paper can very be complex, the application is something everybody should take a closer look at.

 

This is a representation of a conventional power distribution in a vessel. This is the way large commercial ships including large passenger ships have been wired for over one 100 years. (I quickly copied the figures from the paper, contact SNAME for the full paper.)

This arrangement is thought to be the least expensive way to wire a ship even if there are bulkheads through which the cables have to be pulled and potted, but that may not be true.

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Holiday gift giving is always difficult, but you know what they say, it is not the size of the gift, it is the thought that counts. 

 

What to give to those who love maritime, and that can be given to all our many friends anywhere around the world?

Books are nice, but they need to be shipped and that would be a lot of books to a lot of friends. Technology helps us, since somehow it must be possible to upload a list of recipients to the Amazon account and then to push a button and all these books will be sent out all over the world. But what book to send? My friend Arthur Mournian once sent me a photocopy of what he considered the best maritime story ever. It is called "Bread upon the Waters" by Rudyard Kipling. And it is nothing like what one would expect, but anybody who has dealt with H&M claims, salvage, general average, marine engineering or maritime law will love it.

 

It is not even available on Amazon, but it is off copyright and available on Gutenberg.

 

So here is our Holiday present, Bread Upon the Water" from The Day's Work by Rudyard Kipling. read more »

The title of this story has a purpose. On an ironic level, web search engines may regard it as a rare combination of terms (Wall Street and Efficiency). But, actually, it is a story about the maritime industry's efforts to fight for real efficiencies.

 

Seastreak is the ferry service between our part of New Jersey and New York City. This ferry service took its first feeble steps in the early eighties and today is an integral part of the quality of life of Monmouth County. M&O has shared many of the adventures and stumbling blocks with the progression of Owners that eventually resulted in the present service (which, by the way, is a true commercial venture and does not rely on subsidies). Once it became apparent that the service was viable in the late 1990's, Seastreak purchased four new catamaran ferries from Gladding Hearn.  

 

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