domingo, 5 de junio de 2011


Machinery on board ship

The machinery on board a ship can be divided roughly into 2 categories, namely:
  • Machinery for the Main Engine Propulsion
  • Auxiliary Machinery

There are basically 2 types of Main Engines, namely:

  • Diesel Engines
  • Steam Turbines

The nature of the ship will be determined by the main propulsion method in use.

A Motor Ship is one, which is propelled by Diesel Engines, while a Steam Ship is on propelled by steam turbine. The main engines will drive the propeller shaft, either directly or through a reduction gear.

The Main Engine will have many parts, which have to be serviced. For example, for a Diesel Engine, each cylinder, piston, connecting rod, main bearings, con-rod bearings, fuel pump, starting air valve, relief valve, fuel injector, exhaust valve, are large and serviced individually.

The common items of a Diesel Engine like turbochargers, starting air distributor, engine telegraph, thrust bearing, oil mist detector, also need close attention.

For the steam ship, the Main Boilers, the Steam Turbines, and the Reduction Gear make up the Main Engine system.

The Auxiliary Machinery consists of a large group. They includes pumps, purifiers, electrical generators, fresh water generators, heaters, coolers, oily water separator, auxiliary steam boilers, steering gears, air conditioning machines, refrigerator machines, cargo winches, cranes, air compressors, air tanks, oil tanks, water tanks, bow thrusters, stabilizers, fire fighting installations, lifeboat engines, filters, and many others.

These are equipment, which support the systems of the Main Engines. Some are run independently. The electrical generators are an essential item in the list because without electricity, all the machinery cannot be run. The steering gear is also very important, as this is where the ship direction is controlled.

Each auxiliary has its role to play. Refrigeration is needed in the cold stores where food provisions are stored, air conditioning for comfort, oil purifiers for conditioning of the bunker oil, or lubricating oil. The auxiliary boiler is used to heat up fuel oil. This is essential especially during the winter months, when fuel oil can become very viscous

sábado, 4 de junio de 2011


Operating in Reduced Visibility

Boating during the fall can bring special challenges for the mariner. In addition to the need to be aware of reduced temperatures which can lead to hypothermia, you also at times have to deal with reduced visibility.

Fog is the primary cause of reduced visibility, but haze, heavy rain and snow all present problems for mariners. Boating in these conditions presents two hazards, navigational errors and collisions.

Preventing both of these begins with reducing your speed. The old saying, “Be able to stop in half the distance of visibility” doesn’t appear in the Navigation Rules, but it is very good advice; remember slower is better!

A sailboat with an auxiliary engine, if under sail in fog, should have her engine available for immediate use, but you’ll be better able to listen for fog signals and other helpful sounds if you leave the engine off until it’s needed.

Fog signals must be sounded, the time interval specified in the Navigation Rules is the minimum.


Required Sound Signal
Power-driven vessl making way one prolonged blast every two minutes
Power-driven vessel not making way (stopped) two prolonged blast every two minutes with a one second interval between them
Sailing Vessel, vessel not under command, vessel restricted in ability to maneuver, vessel constrained by draft, vessel engaged in fishing and a vessel towing or pushing another vessel. one prolonged blast followed by two short blasts every two minutes

Vary your interval so that there is no possibility of your signals being in step with another vessel’s, thereby preventing you from hearing them. Listening for another vessel’s fog signals is just as important as sounding your own. If you have crew aboard, post a lookout well forward and consider having another person aft if possible. The lookout should listen as well as look. Listen for other vessels, the sound of aids to navigation, breaking surf, and other helpful sounds. Lookouts are especially important if your helm station is inside. Switch bow and stern lookouts occasionally to provide some variety and increase alertness.

If your engines are noisy, periodically shift into idle, or even shut them down for a few minutes to listen for faint fog signals. The transmission of sound in foggy conditions is tricky, if you hear something, don’t jump to a quick conclusion about its direction and distance, listen some more.

If several craft are traveling together, it is advisable that they stay close in a column formation in which closely following vessels aren’t directly behind the leader so they can easily steer clear if the lead vessel stops suddenly. If the fog is so thick that it is hazardous for them to be within sight of each other, each vessel should tow a floating object such as an empty fuel container or a cushion well astern on a line of approximately 150 feet. Then, each vessel can keep its “station” in column by keeping that object in sight, rather than the craft ahead.

May-Day and Pan-Pan Calls

Transmit a May Day
distress call only when imminent danger threatens life or property and immediate assistance is required. Transmit a Pan-Pan ("Pahn Pahn") urgency call when the safety of a person or vessel is in jeopardy, but the danger is not life threatening. Transmission of a Pan Pan follows the same format as given for a May Day below.


  1. Review radio manuals (VHF and SSB) for transmission of distress signals using their GMDSS features.
  2. Tape the instructions beside each radio.
  3. Do a radio check on an appropriate frequency.
  4. Review operation of the EPIRB.
  5. Test the EPIRB.
  6. Charge the hand-held VHF.


  1. Transmit May Day on the SSB and the VHF while you still have power.
  2. Transmit using the emergency buttons of each radio according to the manual instructions.
  3. Transmit May Day on Channel 16 as follows:
    • May Day, May Day, May Day
    • This is 'Vessel Name' repeated three times, followed by Ship Station License callsign
    • May Day
    • 'Vessel Name' is at Position (Lat and Long), or distance and bearing from landmark
    • We are (describe nature of emergency)
    • We require (describe nature of assistance needed)
    • Aboard are (describe number of people, age and condition if relevent)
    • We have (describe safety equipment)
    • 'Vessel Name' is (description: length, sail/power, design type, hull color, trim color)
    • Over
  4. If there is no response after a few moments, repeat the above message.


[If you have transmitted a May Day or Pan Pan, and later find you no longer need assistance, you must cancel it.]

  1. May Day
  2. Hello all stations, hello all stations, hello all stations
  3. This is 'Vessel Name' and callsign
  4. The time is .......
  5. Seelonce Feenee (to cancel May Day) or Cancel Pan Pan
  6. Out


Cargo care at sea

containership underway

A) Lashing check

Condition of Cargo (Container) Securing / Lashing shall be checked at least once daily and tightened as required.

In case of Heavy weather, more frequent lashing checks to be carried out and additional lashing taken as necessary, at masters discretion.

B) Prevent for Wet damage for Cargo

At sea, careful Sounding of Cargo Hold Bilges is paramount to early detection of potential damage to cargo due to ingress of sea water or leakages from water or oil systems on board.

Water accumulated inside Cargo Holds due to rain or other reason shall be removed well before it rises to a level where the lower tier containers are affected and cargo within may be subject to Wet damage.

Bilge sounding shall be carried out at least once a day, In port, cargo hold bilges shall be drained into a holding tank where provided and pumping overboard shall be avoided as far as possible.

Careful checks must be made before pumping Cargo Hold Bilges overboard to ensure no danger of Pollution by Oil or Contaminants.

C) Prevent for Cargo damage

Dangerous goods

Containers are to be visually checked at random to determine if they continue to remain in good condition. D.G containers require special attention and must be checked for Leakages/Damages.

D) Refer containers

All Reefer containers shall be monitored for condition and proper functioning at least Twice daily.

More frequent monitoring will be required in case of special/VIP reefer cargo containers and units giving trouble or suspected to be malfunctioning.

E) Cargo & Hull damage

If despite observing due diligence, damage to cargo or hull has occurred, the master shall take prudent action to minimize such damage and promptly report the facts to the company. The master shall make appropriate entries in the Ships Log Book and also preserve all relevant records including navigation charts, navigational and meteorological equipment records and print outs, weather reports and other related documents. Such documents and records may be required as evidence in case of claims.

The Master shall prepare a Masters Report on the damages sustained and also lodge a Sea Protest at the next port before a notary public and have it notarized.



Damage to cargo is the most frequent type of liability that confronts
a shipowner. Unfortunately, cargo damage is often caused by small
mistakes. In the case of damage to a cargo on board, it is vital that all
the facts are recorded and documented.


Is it damaged?
Inspect cargo as it comes on board. Check for any differences you
may find and record them. Notify the shipper and charterers that you
intend to alter the shipping document to reflect your observations.
Alternatively, reject the cargo

Record inspections
Record in the log book inspections of cargo holds undertaken by the
ship’s officers or crew during the voyage.

Safely stowed
Make sure that cargo is carefully and safely loaded, stowed, separated,
carried and discharged.

Sea- and cargo worthiness
The Master always has the final responsibility for the sea- and cargo
worthiness of the vessel.

Survey the damage
If you suspect that your cargo may have been damaged during the
voyage, inform your owners. They should then request Skuld to
arrange for a surveyor to meet you at your destination. Alternatively,
you may always contact your local Skuld correspondent. They are
instructed to immediately assist you in any way.

Weather reports
In case of heavy weather, keep a copy of any meteorological reports,
or warnings, and properly record the conditions in the ship’s log.
This particularly applies to adverse sea conditions which may cause
damage to the goods on board

Minimise losses
Damage can be reduced by immediate separation of wet cargo (e.g.
wet fertiliser) from the rest of the cargo.

viernes, 11 de marzo de 2011


Abeam- The area at a right angle beside a boat aligned with the center of the boat.

Aboard- When something or someone is on or in a boat.

Above Deck- When someone is on deck and not in a cabin underneath.

Aft- Refers to the back area of a boat.

Aloft- A position high above a boat's deck.

Astern- The area behind a boat.

Bank- An area of shallow water created by a raised portion of the ground.

Barge- An enormous cargo-carrying boat with a flat bottom that transports large pieces of freight, typically accompanied by a tug boat.

Beam- The widest dimension of the hull of a boat.

Bear Away- The act of steering a boat away from the wind.

Below- The area beneath the main deck.

Bend- The act of fastening or securing ropes on a boat.

Bow- The front portion of a boat.

Breaker- A wave that turns to foam as it hits land.

Bridle- A strong connection of cables used for towing ships and boats.

Buoy- A floating marker in the water.

Cable- A heavy length of rope.

Capsize- When a boat turns over in the water.

Careen- When a boat tilts or leans to the side.

Centerline- The center of the boat that spans its full length.

Cleat- A fitting made of metal or other strong material, attached to a boat where a line can be fastened.

Coil- Making loops in a stretch of rope or line in order to properly store it.

Compass- An instrument with a needle that determines direction.

Deck- A floor of a boat.

Dinghy- A small boat carried on board a ship that's used to transport people to and from the craft.

Ebb tide- When the sea's tide is going out.

Elbow- A type of knot that connects two ropes.

Even keel- When a boat is sailing in an upright, balanced position.

Fair wind- A wind that is favorable for a particular sailing direction.

Fid- A tool used for splicing a rope.

Foot- The lower edge of a sail.

Fore- Refers to the front area of a boat.

Frap - The technique of wrapping rope around equipment on a boat to keep it steady and secure.

Furl- The act of securely rolling up a sail.

Galley- The area designated for food preparation on a boat.

Girtline- A rope with a block attached to it that is used to transport supplies to high areas on a boat or ship.

Halyard- A type of line used to help hoist a sail.

Helm- The wheel or tiller of a boat.

Hull- The body of a boat.

Inshore- In the direction of a shoreline.

Jib- The sail at the front of a boat.

Keel- A steel piece at the bottom of a boat that supports its frame.

Knot- A measurement of one nautical mile.

Latitude- Location north or south of the equator that is measured in degrees.

Leeward- Sailing in a downwind direction.

Longitude- Location east or west of the prime meridian that is measured in degrees.

Moor- To secure a boat in place with the help of an anchor or heavy cables.

Mooring Line- A heavy cable that secures a boat to a pier.

Nautical- A term relating to sailors and watercraft.

Offshore wind- Air that is moving away from a shoreline.

Pitch- The rising and falling motion of a boat on rough seas.

Port- The left side of a boat.

Put about- The act of changing the course of a boat.

Put in- To sail into a harbor or other stopping place.

Rigging- The collection of ropes, chains, and other equipment that helps to sail a boat.

Rudder- A steering instrument located at the stern of a boat.

Shoal- A shallow area in a body of water.

Starboard- The right side of a boat.

Stay- Heavy cable that gives support to a ship's mast.

Stern- The back of a boat.

Sternway- The motion of a ship moving backwards.

Stow- To pack or secure equipment on a boat.

Take in- To furl a sail.

Tiller- A metal or wood handle that moves a boat's rudder.

Trim- The act of adjusting the angle of a boat's sails.

Undertow- A current deep in the sea that moves in opposition to the levels of water above it.

Unfurl- To open a rolled up sail.

Veer- When a boat moves its stern to the wind and changes its original direction.

Wake- The trail left behind a boat that is moving through the water.

Waterline- The point where the surface of the water meets the hull of a boat.

Weigh Anchor- To lift a ship's anchor from the bottom of the sea in preparation to sail.

Whitecap- A type of wave that has a foamy, white top.

Windward- Sailing in an upwind direction.

Yard- A pole or rod that gives support to a sail.

Zephyr- A gentle, calm breeze



Different types of knots
: tight interlacing of two ropes. A knot is also a unit of speed in aviation and marine navigation equal to one nautical mile per hour.
Halyard knot: interlacing of ropes used to attach the halyard to a sail.
Reef knot: interlacing of ropes made of two half-knots inverse to each other.
Bowline: interlacing of ropes with a loop that can be used as support.
Two round turns and a half-hitch: interlacing of ropes around an object by making two turns, then a hal-knot.
Two half-hitches: interlacing of ropes around an object by making two half-knots, one after the other.
Double shell bend: double interlacing of ropes, used to attach two ropes together.
Sheet knot: interlacing of ropes used to attach two ropes together.
Figure of eight knot: interlacing of ropes used to finish the end of a rope.
Overhand knot: simple interlacing of a rope.

jueves, 10 de marzo de 2011



1. Lighting: As most of the ship is enclosed, natural light is available only on upper decks exposed to atmosphere. Internal parts of the ship require artificial lighting powered by electricity. Also, navigational lights powered by electricity are provided for safe navigation.
2. Forced Ventilation: Natural ventilation is also not available in the internal parts of the ship, like restricted natural lighting. So forced ventilation is provided by means of supply and exhaust fans or blowers fitted in different parts of the ship which are powered by electricity.
3. Air Conditioning & Refrigeration: Machinery/Engine Control Rooms have mostly electronic equipment. Mariners manning these, also have to be fatigue free. So, air conditioning is a necessity. Also the living spaces or crew accommodation needs air conditioning. As the ships remain at sea for longer duration in weeks and months, food items have to be stocked in cool and cold rooms ie needs refrigeration. Air conditioning and Refrigeration machinery are powered by electricity.
4. Main Engine & Propulsion: Like we have legs to swim, ships have propellers to move. Propellers are powered by main engines which may be diesel engines or by huge electrical motors if it is electrical propulsion. Also, sophisticated electronic, electro hydraulic or pneumatic control systems are associated with this main engine and propulsion system.
5. Engine Room Auxiliaries: To operate the main engine and propulsion system and other utilities onboard pumps, compressors are provided which are powered by electricity.
6. Deck Machinery & Cargo Handling: To raise/ lower ships boats (for life safety and harbour use), winches are provided. To raise/lower ships anchor, capstans or windlass are provided. For cargo handling, cranes are provided. All these equipment are electric or electro hydraulic.
          7. Navigation & Communication: Ship has to navigate through the sea to move from
          one place to other.






For safe navigation, the following equipments are available:
a. Magnetic and Gyro compass, GPS receivers: for position or location finding
b. Echo sounders: for finding the depth below the ship
c. Wind Speed and Direction instruments
d. Electric or Air Siren
e. Speed log: to measure the speed of the ship
f. Navigational radars
         g. Signaling projectors



MARITIME BUOYAGE SYSTEM Until recently, as many as 30 different buoyage systems were in use around the world. In 1982, most of the maritime nations of the world signed an agree- ment sponsored by the International Association of Lighthouse Authorities (IALA). This agreement adopted a system known as the IALA Maritime Buoyage System and provides rules that apply to all fixed and floating marks other than lighthouses, sec- tor lights, range lights, lightships, and large automatic navigational buoys (LANBYs).