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Saturday, August 24, 2019

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  • Maritime Musings (12) (X)

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Picton Castle

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on May 3, 2013

The barque Picton Castle is a commercial sail training vessel homeported in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia and registered in the Cook Islands. It was built in Swansea, Wales in 1928 as a motorized fishing trawler and named for the local Welsh castle.

Salish Sea

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on October 4, 2011

The Salish Sea extends from the southern end of Puget Sound, near Olympia, Washington, north through Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia to Desolation Sound, and west to where the Strait of Juan de Fuca meets the Pacific Ocean. Its name derives…

Barnacle

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on April 23, 2013

The lowly barnacle has intrigued and been detested by mariners from time immemorial. It is a small arthropod with a complex life cycle. Once the fertilized egg is released into the water by the female, it hatches into a nauplius – a one-eyed larva consisting of a head and a tail fan for locomotion.

European discovery of Florida

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on April 2, 2013

On 2 April 1513 (500 years ago, for those who have lost count), a fleet of three Spanish ships commanded by Juan Ponce de León sighted land west of the Bahamas. He believed it to be another island and named it La Florida (the Flowery Isles) in recognition of its verdant landscape.

Belt and suspenders

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on February 1, 2013

Following the grounding of the conical drill unit (CDU) Kulluk on Sitkalidak Island, a number of environmental advocates have called for a ban on oil and gas drilling in Arctic waters. The argument is that such offshore drilling in a harsh environment…

USS Somers

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on September 18, 2012

The brig USS Somers, launched in April 1842, was the second vessel of the United States Navy to bear that name. Like its predecessor, it was named in honor of Lieutenant Richard Somers (1778-1804) who died with his crew when the bomb ketch Intrepid…

Amelia Island

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on June 29, 2012

Amelia Island is the northern-most portion of Florida on the Atlantic coast. Georgia lies just across the St. Marys River. This political separation today is of little significance, but it was highly important in earlier times. Some years after…

Great White Fleet

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on March 30, 2012

Starting in about 1890, the United States Navy began a rebuilding program to replace its antiquated fleet, most of which then dated from the Civil War. It handily won the naval conflicts of the Spanish-American War, but that was against a nation with an even more antiquated fleet.

SS Ideal X

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on March 27, 2012

The ship that became famous as the Ideal X began life as a mass-produced T-2 tanker called the Potrero Hills, launched on December 30, 1944 by the Marinship Corporation of Sausalito, California. It changed ownership and names several times after the conclusion of World War II…

Kort nozzle

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on February 14, 2012

A Kort nozzle is a hydrodynamically-designed shroud that encircles a ship’s propeller just outside the blade tips. The entire assembly of the propeller and the nozzle is referred to as a ducted propeller. The concept of the ducted propeller…

Perihelion

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on January 4, 2011

The whoosh you experienced at about 1900 UTC on Monday, January 3, 2011 was the sun passing by on its closest approach to the Earth – a mere 91,402,505 miles away. This recurs every year, often at night when it can’t be observed. The date and…

Radiation Portal Monitors

Posted to Maritime Musings (by Dennis Bryant) on November 19, 2010

Radiation portal monitors (RPMs) are sophisticated technological devices intended to detect ionizing radiation in containers and other objects. They are commonly used by the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and other governmental organizations…