HOME

TheInfoList




A ship is a large
watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional properties. It may represent human-made or n ...
that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep
waterways A waterway is any navigable body of water. Broad distinctions are useful to avoid ambiguity, and disambiguation will be of varying importance depending on the nuance of the equivalent word in other languages. A first distinction is necessary b ...
, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, and fishing. Ships are generally distinguished from
boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional properties. It m ...

boat
s, based on size, shape, load capacity, and purpose. In the
Age of Sail Age or AGE may refer to: Time and its effects * Age, the amount of time something has been alive Alive may refer to: *Life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities that have biological processes, such as signaling a ...

Age of Sail
a "
ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, and fishing. Ships are generally disti ...
" was a
sailing vessel A sailing ship is a sea-going vessel that uses sails mounted on Mast (sailing), masts to harness the power of wind and propel the vessel. There is a variety of sail plans that propel sailing ships, employing Square rig, square-rigged or Fore-and ...

sailing vessel
defined by its sail plan of at least three
square rig Square rig is a generic type of sail and rigging arrangement in which the primary driving sails are carried on horizontal spars which are perpendicular, or square In Euclidean geometry, a square is a regular polygon, regular quadrilateral, ...
ged masts and a full
bowsprit The bowsprit of a sailing Sailing employs the wind—acting on sails, wingsails or kites—to propel a craft on the surface of the ''water'' (sailing ship, sailboat, Windsurfing, windsurfer, or Kitesurfing, kitesurfer), on ''ice'' (iceboat) ...
. Ships have supported
exploration Exploration is the act of searching for the purpose of discovery Discovery may refer to: * Discovery (observation) Discovery is the act of detecting something new, or something previously unrecognized as meaningful. With reference to scienc ...

exploration
,
trade Trade involves the transfer of goods from one person or entity to another, often in exchange for money. Economists refer to a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of r ...

trade
,
warfare War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (news ...
,
migration Migration, migratory, or migrate may refer to: Human migration * Human migration, physical movement by humans from one region to another ** International migration, when peoples cross state boundaries and stay in the host state for some minimum len ...

migration
,
colonization Colonization, or colonisation refers to large-scale population movements where the migrants maintain strong links with their—or their ancestors'—former country, gaining significant privileges over other inhabitants of the territory by such l ...
, imperialism, and
science Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as facts ( descriptive knowledge), skills (procedural knowledge), or objects ...

science
. After the 15th century, new crops that had come from and to the Americas via the European seafarers significantly contributed to the
world population growth Population growth is the increase in the number of individuals in a population In biology, a population is a number of all the organisms of the same group or species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, ...
.
Ship transport File:Baltic Princess, Västerhamn, 2019 (03).jpg, MS Baltic Princess, MS ''Baltic Princess'' car ferry at the Västerhamn Harbour in Mariehamn, Åland ">Åland.html" ;"title="Mariehamn, Åland">Mariehamn, Åland Maritime transport (or oce ...
is responsible for the largest portion of world commerce. As of 2016, there were more than 49,000
merchant ship A merchant ship, merchant vessel, trading vessel, or merchantman is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical syste ...

merchant ship
s, totaling almost 1.8 billion dead weight tons. Of these 28% were
oil tanker An oil tanker, also known as a petroleum tanker, is a ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, suc ...
s, 43% were
bulk carrier A bulk carrier, bulker is a specially to transport unpackaged , such as grains, coal, ore, steel coils and cement, in its s. Since the first specialized bulk carrier was built in 1852, economic forces have led to continued development of thes ...
s, and 13% were
container ship A container ship (also called boxship or spelled containership) is a cargo ship 300px, The ''Colombo Express'', one of the largest container ships in the world (when it was built in 2005), owned and operated by Hapag-Lloyd of Germany A cargo sh ...

container ship
s.


Nomenclature

Ships are typically larger than boats, but there is no universally accepted distinction between the two. Ships generally can remain at sea for longer periods of time than boats. A legal definition of ship from
India India, officially the Republic of India (: ), is a country in . It is the by area, the country, and the most populous in the world. Bounded by the on the south, the on the southwest, and the on the southeast, it shares land borders wit ...

India
n
case law Case law, also used interchangeably with common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent or judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written ...
is a vessel that carries goods by sea. A common notion is that a ship can carry a boat, but not ''vice versa''. A US Navy rule of thumb is that ships heel towards the ''outside'' of a sharp turn, whereas boats heel towards the ''inside'' because of the relative location of the
center of mass In physics, the center of mass of a distribution of mass Mass is the physical quantity, quantity of ''matter'' in a physical body. It is also a measure (mathematics), measure of the body's ''inertia'', the resistance to acceleration (change ...
versus the . American and British 19th century maritime law distinguished "vessels" from other crafts; ships and boats fall in one legal category, whereas open boats and rafts are not considered vessels. In the
Age of Sail Age or AGE may refer to: Time and its effects * Age, the amount of time something has been alive Alive may refer to: *Life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities that have biological processes, such as signaling a ...

Age of Sail
, a
full-rigged ship A full-rigged ship or fully rigged ship is a sailing ship, sailing vessel's sail plan and her rigging A sail plan is a description of the specific ways that a sailing craft is rigged, as #Types of rig, discussed below. Also, the term “s ...
was a sailing vessel with at least three square-rigged masts and a full
bowsprit The bowsprit of a sailing Sailing employs the wind—acting on sails, wingsails or kites—to propel a craft on the surface of the ''water'' (sailing ship, sailboat, Windsurfing, windsurfer, or Kitesurfing, kitesurfer), on ''ice'' (iceboat) ...
; other were also defined by their
sailplan and her rigging Bermuda rig, Bermuda rigged sloop at Convict Bay, Bermuda, circa 1879 Rigging comprises the system of ropes, cables and chains, which support a sailing ship or sail boat's masts—''standing rigging'', including Shroud (saili ...
, e.g.
barque A barque, barc, or bark is a type of sailing vessel A sailing ship is a sea-going vessel that uses sails mounted on Mast (sailing), masts to harness the power of wind and propel the vessel. There is a variety of sail plans that propel sailin ...

barque
,
brigantine A brigantine is a two-masted sailing vessel with a fully square-rigged foremast and at least two sails on the main mast: a square topsail and a Gaff rig, gaff sail mainsail (behind the mast). The main mast is the second and taller of the two mast ...

brigantine
, etc. A number of large vessels are usually referred to as boats.
Submarine A submarine (or sub) is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional p ...

Submarine
s are a prime example. Other types of large vessels which are traditionally called boats are
Great Lakes freighters Great may refer to: Descriptions or measurements * Great, a relative measurement in physical space, see Size File:Comparison of planets and stars (sheet by sheet) (Oct 2014 update).png, A size comparison illustration comparing the sizes of vario ...
,
riverboat A riverboat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional propertie ...
s, and
ferryboat A ferry is a merchant vessel used to carry passengers, and sometimes vehicles and cargo, across a body of water. A passenger ferry with many stops, such as in Venice, Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, ...

ferryboat
s. Though large enough to carry their own boats and heavy cargoes, these vessels are designed for operation on inland or protected coastal waters. In most maritime traditions ships have individual names, and modern ships may belong to a
ship class A ship class is a group of ships of a similar design. This is distinct from a ship type, which might reflect a similarity of tonnage or intended use. For example, is a nuclear aircraft carrier (ship type) of the (ship class). In the course ...
often named after its first ship.


Pronouns

In the northern parts of Europe and America a ship is traditionally referred to with a female
grammatical gender In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most langua ...
, represented in English with the
pronoun In linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most languag ...

pronoun
"she", even if named after a man. This is not universal usage and some English language journalistic
style guides A style guide or manual of style is a set of standards for the writing, formatting and design of documents. It is often called a style sheet, although that term also has other meanings. The standards can be applied either for general use, or b ...
advise using "it" as referring to ships with female pronouns can be seen as offensive and antiquated. In many documents the ship name is introduced with a
ship prefix A ship prefix is a combination of letters, usually, abbreviations, used in front of the name of a civilian or naval ship A ship is a large watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehi ...
being an abbreviation of the ship class, for example "MS" (motor ship) or "SV" (sailing vessel), making it easier to distinguish a ship name from other individual names in a text.


History


Prehistory and antiquity


Asian developments

The earliest attestations of ships in
maritime transport Maritime transport (or ocean transport) and hydrolyc effluvial transport, or more generally waterborne transport, is the transport of people (passengers) or goods (cargo) via waterways. Freight transport by sea has been widely used througho ...
in
Mesopotamia Mesopotamia ( grc, Μεσοποταμία ''Mesopotamíā''; ar, بِلَاد ٱلرَّافِدَيْن ; syc, ܐܪܡ ܢܗܪ̈ܝܢ, or , ) is a historical region of Western Asia situated within the Tigris–Euphrates river system, in th ...

Mesopotamia
are
model ship Ship models or model ships are scale models of ships. They can range in size from 1/6000 scale wargaming miniatures to large vessels capable of holding people. Ship modeling is a craft as old as shipbuilding itself, stretching back to ancient ti ...
s, which date back to the 4th millennium BC. In archaic texts in
Uruk Uruk, also known as Warka, was an ancient city of (and later of ) situated east of the present bed of the River on the dried-up ancient channel of the Euphrates east of modern , , .Harmansah, 2007 Uruk is the for the . Uruk played a leading ...
,
Sumer Sumer ()The name is from Akkadian language, Akkadian '; Sumerian language, Sumerian ''kig̃ir'', written and ,approximately "land of the civilized kings" or "native land". means "native, local", iĝir NATIVE (7x: Old Babylonian)from ''The ...

Sumer
, the ideogram for "ship" is attested, but in the inscriptions of the kings of
Lagash Lagash (cuneiform: LAGAŠKI; Sumerian: ''Lagaš''), or Shirpurla, was an ancient city state A city-state is an independent sovereign Sovereign is a title which can be applied to the highest leader in various categories. The word is borrowe ...

Lagash
, ships were first mentioned in connection to
maritime trade Maritime history is the study of human interaction with and activity at sea. It covers a broad thematic element of history History (from Greek , ''historia'', meaning "inquiry; knowledge acquired by investigation") is the study of the past. E ...
and
naval warfare Naval warfare is combat Combat (French language, French for ''fight'') is a purposeful violence, violent conflict meant to physically harm or kill the opposition. Combat may be armed (using weapons) or unarmed (Hand-to-hand combat, not using ...
at around 2500-2350 BCE. The first sea-going sailing ships were developed by the
Austronesian peoples The Austronesian peoples, also sometimes referred to as the Austronesian-speaking peoples, are a large group of various peoples in Taiwan Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eas ...
from what is now
Taiwan Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere, Eastern and N ...

Taiwan
. Their invention of
catamaran A Formula 16 beachable catamaran Powered catamaran passenger ferry at Salem, Massachusetts, United States A catamaran () (informally, a "cat") is a multi-hulled watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, a ...

catamaran
s,
outriggers An outrigger is a projecting structure on a boat, with specific meaning depending on types of vessel. Outriggers may also refer to legs on a wheeled vehicle that are folded out when it needs stabilization, for example on a crane (machine), cra ...
, and
crab claw sail The crab claw sail is a fore-and-aft triangular sail with spars along upper and lower edges. The crab claw sail was first developed by the Austronesian peoples some time around 1500 BC. It is used in many traditional Austronesian cultures in Island ...
s enabled their ships to sail for vast distances in open ocean. It led to the
Austronesian Expansion The Austronesian peoples, also sometimes referred to as the Austronesian-speaking peoples, are a large group of various peoples in Taiwan (collectively known as Taiwanese indigenous peoples), Maritime Southeast Asia, Oceania and Madagascar that ...
at around 3000 to 1500 BC. From Taiwan, they rapidly colonized the islands of
Maritime Southeast Asia Maritime Southeast Asia comprises the countries of Brunei, East Timor, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and Singapore. Maritime Southeast Asia is sometimes also referred to as Island Southeast Asia, Insular Southeast Asia ...
, then sailed further onwards to
Micronesia Micronesia (, ; from grc, μικρός ''mikrós'' "small" and ''nêsos'' "island") is a subregion of Oceania, consisting of thousands of small islands in the western Pacific Ocean. It has a close shared cultural history with three other isl ...

Micronesia
,
Island MelanesiaIsland Melanesia is a subregion of Melanesia in Oceania Oceania (, , ) is a geographic region that includes Australasia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia. Spanning the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, Oceania has a land area of and a p ...
,
Polynesia Polynesia (, ; from grc, πολύς "many" and grc, νῆσος "island") ( to, Faka-Polinisia; mi, Porinihia; haw, Polenekia; fj, Kai-Polinesia; sm, Polenisia; rar, Porinetia; ty, Pōrīnetia; tvl, Polenisia; tkl, Polenihia) is a ...

Polynesia
, and
Madagascar Madagascar (; mg, Madagasikara), officially the Republic of Madagascar ( mg, Repoblikan'i Madagasikara, links=no, ; french: République de Madagascar), and previously known as the Malagasy Republic The Malagasy Republic ( mg, Repoblika Mal ...

Madagascar
, eventually colonizing a territory spanning half the globe. Austronesian rigs were distinctive in that they had spars supporting both the upper and lower edges of the sails (and sometimes in between), in contrast to western rigs which only had a spar on the upper edge. The sails were also made from woven leaves, usually from plants. These were complemented by paddlers, who usually positioned themselves on platforms on the
outrigger An outrigger is a projecting structure on a boat, with specific meaning depending on types of vessel. Outriggers may also refer to legs on a wheeled vehicle that are folded out when it needs stabilization, for example on a crane that lifts ...
s in the larger boats. Austronesian ships ranged in complexity from simple
dugout canoe A dugout canoe or simply dugout is a boat made from a hollowed tree. Other names for this type of boat are logboat and monoxylon. ''Monoxylon'' (''μονόξυλον'') (pl: ''monoxyla'') is Greek -- ''mono-'' (single) + ''wikt:ξύλον, ξύλο ...

dugout canoe
s with outriggers or lashed together to large edge-pegged plank-built boats built around a keel made from a dugout canoe. Their designs were unique, evolving from ancient rafts to the characteristic double-hulled, single-outrigger, and double-outrigger designs of Austronesian ships. Early Austronesian sailors influenced the development of sailing technologies in
Sri Lanka Sri Lanka (, ; si, ශ්‍රී ලංකාව, Śrī Laṅkā, translit-std=ISO (); ta, இலங்கை, Ilaṅkai, translit-std=ISO ()), formerly known as Ceylon, and officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, is ...

Sri Lanka
and
Southern India South India is a region consisting of the southern part of India India (Hindi: ), officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, second-most populous ...

Southern India
through the
Austronesian maritime trade network A trade route is a Logistics, logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial transport of cargo. The term can also be used to refer to trade over bodies of water. Allowing Good (economics and accounting ...
of the
Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five ocean The ocean (also the or the world ocean) is the body of that covers approximately 70.8% of the surface of and contains 97% of . Another definition is "any of the large ...

Indian Ocean
, the precursor to the
spice trade The spice trade involved historical civilizations in Asia Asia () is a landmass variously described as part of Eurasia Eurasia () is the largest continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified b ...
route and the
maritime silk road The Maritime Silk Road or Maritime Silk Route refers to the maritime section of the historic Silk Road The Silk Road was and is a network of trade routes connecting the Eastern world, East and Western culture, West, and was central to the eco ...
, which was established at around 1500 BC. Some scholars believe that the triangular Austronesian crab claw sail may have influenced the development of the
lateen A lateen (from French ''latine'', meaning "Latin") or latin-rig is a triangular set on a long mounted at an angle on the , and running in a direction. Dating back to navigation, the lateen became the favorite sail of the Age of European invas ...
sail in western ships due to early contact. The
junk rig The junk rig, also known as the Chinese lugsail or sampan rig, is a type of List of sailing boat types#Types of sailing vessels and rigs, sail rig in which rigid members, called Sail_batten, battens, span the full width of the sail and extend th ...
s of Chinese ships is also believed to be originally Javanese in origin. In the 1st century AD, the people from
Indonesian archipelago The islands of Indonesia, also known as the Indonesian Archipelago or Nusantara ''Nusantara'' is the Indonesian name of Maritime Southeast Asia (or parts of it). It is an Old Javanese Kawi or Old Javanese is the oldest attested phase ...
already made large ships over 50 m long and stood out 4–7 m out of the water. They could carry 700-1000 people and 260 ton cargo. These ships known as ''kunlun bo'' or ''k'unlun po'' (崑崙舶, lit. "ship of the
Kunlun The Kunlun Mountains ( zh, s=昆仑山, t=崑崙山, p=Kūnlún Shān, ; mn, Хөндлөн Уулс, ''Khöndlön Uuls''; ug, كۇئېنلۇن تاغ تىزمىسى) constitute one of the longest mountain chains in Asia, extending for more tha ...
people") by the Chinese and ''kolandiaphonta'' by the Greeks. It has 4-7 masts and able to sail against the wind due to the usage of
tanja sail Tanja sail or tanja rig is a type of sail commonly used by the Moluccans Moluccans are the Austronesian-speaking ethnic groups An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people who identify with each other on the basis of shared attribut ...
s. These ships reaching as far as
Ghana Ghana (), officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country in West Africa West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of . The defines Western Africa as the 17 countries of , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and as well as .Paul R. ...

Ghana
. In China, miniature models of ships that feature steering oars have been dated to the
Warring States period The Warring States period () was an era in ancient Chinese history characterized by warfare, as well as bureaucratic and military reforms and consolidation. It followed the Spring and Autumn period#REDIRECT Spring and Autumn period The Spri ...
(c. 475–221 BC). By the
Han dynasty#REDIRECT Han dynasty The Han dynasty () was the second Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China (202 BC – 220 AD), established by the rebel leader Liu Bang and ruled by the House of Liu. Preceded by the short-lived Qin dynas ...

Han dynasty
, a well kept naval fleet was an integral part of the military. Sternpost-mounted rudders started to appear on Chinese ship models starting in the 1st century AD. However, these early Chinese ships were fluvial (riverine), and were not seaworthy. The Chinese only acquired sea-going ship technologies in the 10th century AD
Song Dynasty The Song dynasty (; ; 960–1279) was an imperial dynasty of China that began in 960 and lasted until 1279. The dynasty was founded by Emperor Taizu of Song Emperor Taizu of Song (21 March 927 – 14 November 976), personal name Zhao Kua ...
after contact with Southeast Asian djong trading ships, leading to the development of the
junks A junk is a type of Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, world's m ...
.


Mediterranean developments

In 3000 BC,
Ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a civilization  A civilization (or civilisation) is a that is characterized by , , a form of government, and systems of communication (such as ). Civilizations are intimately associated with additional char ...

Ancient Egypt
ians learned how to assemble wooden planks into a
hull Hull may refer to: Structures * Chassis, of an armored fighting vehicle * Fuselage, of an aircraft * Hull (botany), the outer covering of seeds * Hull (watercraft), the body or frame of a ship * Submarine hull Mathematics * Affine hull, in affin ...
. They used woven
strap A strap, sometimes also called strop, is an elongated flap Flap may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media * ''Flap'' (film), a 1970 American film * Flap, a boss character in the arcade game ''Gaiapolis'' * Flap, a minor character in the fi ...

strap
s to lash the planks together, and or
grass Poaceae () or Gramineae () is a large and nearly ubiquitous family In , family (from la, familia) is a of people related either by (by recognized birth) or (by marriage or other relationship). The purpose of families is to maintain ...

grass
stuffed between the planks helped to seal the seams. The
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
historian A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the stu ...
and
geographer A geographer is a physical scientist, social scientist or humanist whose area of study is geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of science devoted to the study of the lands, feat ...
Agatharchides Agatharchides or Agatharchus ( grc-gre, Ἀγαθαρχίδης or , ''Agatharchos'') of Cnidus was a ancient Greece, Greek historian and geographer (flourished 2nd century BC). Life Agatharchides is believed to have been born at Cnidus, hence hi ...
had documented ship-faring among the early
Egyptians Egyptians ( arz, المصريين, ; cop, ⲣⲉⲙⲛ̀ⲭⲏⲙⲓ, remenkhēmi) are an ethnic group of people originating from the country of Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a spanning t ...

Egyptians
: ''"During the prosperous period of the
Old Kingdom In ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a civilization of Ancient history, ancient North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile, Nile River, situated in the place that is now the country Egypt. Ancient Egyptian civilization ...
, between the 30th and 25th centuries BC, the
river A river is a natural flowing watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, sea, lake or another river. In some cases, a river flows into the ground and becomes dry at the end of its course without reaching another body of wate ...
-routes were kept in order, and
Egyptian Egyptian describes something of, from, or related to Egypt. Egyptian or Egyptians may refer to: Nations and ethnic groups * Egyptians, a national group in North Africa ** Egyptian culture, a complex and stable culture with thousands of years of r ...

Egyptian
ships sailed the
Red Sea The Red Sea ( ar, البحر الأحمر, translit=al-Baḥr al-ʾAḥmar; or ; Coptic Coptic may refer to: Afro-Asia * Copts, an ethnoreligious group mainly in the area of modern Egypt but also in Sudan and Libya * Coptic language, a North ...

Red Sea
as far as the
myrrh Myrrh (; from Semitic Semitic most commonly refers to the Semitic languages, a name used since the 1770s to refer to the language family currently present in West Asia, North and East Africa, and Malta. Semitic may also refer to: Religion ...
-country."''
Sneferu Sneferu (wikt:snfr-wj, snfr-wj "He has perfected me", from ''Ḥr-nb-mꜣꜥt-snfr-wj'' "Horus, Lord of Maat, has perfected me", also read Snefru or Snofru), well known under his Hellenization, Hellenized name Soris ( grc-koi, Σῶρις by Mane ...
's ancient cedar wood ship Praise of the Two Lands is the first reference recorded (2613 BC) to a ship being referred to by name. The
ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a civilization  A civilization (or civilisation) is a that is characterized by , , a form of government, and systems of communication (such as ). Civilizations are intimately associated with additional char ...

ancient Egypt
ians were perfectly at ease building sailboats. A remarkable example of their
shipbuilding Shipbuilding is the construction Construction is a general term meaning the art and science to form Physical object, objects, systems, or organizations,"Construction" def. 1.a. 1.b. and 1.c. ''Oxford English Dictionary'' Second Edition o ...

shipbuilding
skills was the
Khufu ship The Khufu ship is an intact full-size solar barque from ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt was a of , concentrated along the lower reaches of the , situated in the place that is now the country . Ancient Egyptian civilization followed an ...
, a vessel in length entombed at the foot of the
Great Pyramid of Giza The Great Pyramid of Giza (also known as the Pyramid of Khufu or the Pyramid of Cheops) is the oldest and largest of the Egyptian pyramids, pyramids in the Giza pyramid complex bordering present-day Giza in Greater Cairo, Egypt. It is the olde ...

Great Pyramid of Giza
around 2500 BC and found intact in 1954. The oldest discovered sea faring hulled boat is the
Late Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features of urban civilization. The Bronze Age is the second principal period of the Three-age sys ...
Uluburun The Uluburun Shipwreck is a Late Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features of urban civilization. The Bronze Age is the s ...
shipwreck off the coast of Turkey, dating back to 1300 BC. By 1200 B.C., the
Phoenicia Phoenicia () was an ancient Ancient history is the aggregate of past eventsWordNet Search – 3 ...
ns were building large merchant ships. In world maritime history, declares Richard Woodman, they are recognized as "the first true seafarers, founding the art of pilotage, cabotage, and navigation" and the architects of "the first true ship, built of planks, capable of carrying a deadweight cargo and being sailed and steered."


14th through the 18th centuries


Asian developments

At this time, ships were developing in Asia in much the same way as Europe. Japan used defensive naval techniques in the
Mongol invasions of Japan The , which took place in 1274 and 1281, were major military A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare War is an intense armed conflict betwee ...
in 1281. It is likely that the Mongols of the time took advantage of both European and Asian shipbuilding techniques. During the 15th century, China's
Ming dynasty The Ming dynasty (), officially the Great Ming, was the Dynasties in Chinese history, ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644 following the collapse of the Mongol Empire, Mongol-led Yuan dynasty. The Ming dynasty was the last imperial dynas ...

Ming dynasty
assembled one of the largest and most powerful naval fleets in the world for the diplomatic and power projection voyages of
Zheng He Zheng He (; 1371 – 1433 or 1435) was a Chinese mariner A sailor, seaman, mariner, or seafarer is a person who works aboard a watercraft as part of its crew, and may work in any one of a number of different fields that are related to ...

Zheng He
. Elsewhere in Japan in the 15th century, one of the world's first iron-clads, "Tekkōsen" ( 鉄甲船), literally meaning "iron ships", was also developed. In Japan, during the Sengoku era from the 15th century to 17th century, the great struggle for feudal supremacy was fought, in part, by coastal fleets of several hundred boats, including the . In Korea, in the early 15th century during the
Joseon Joseon (also transcribed as Chosŏn, ko, 대조선국; 大朝鮮國, ) was a Korean dynastic kingdom that lasted for approximately five centuries. It was the last dynastic kingdom of Korea. It was founded by Yi Seong-gye Taejo of Joseon ...
era, " Geobukseon"(거북선), was developed. The "turtle ship", as it was called is recognized as the first armored ship in the world.


European developments

Until the
Renaissance The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. is a period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in ...

Renaissance
, navigation technology remained comparatively primitive compared to Austronesian cultures. This absence of technology did not prevent some civilizations from becoming sea powers. Such examples include the maritime republics of
Genoa Genoa ( ; it, Genova ; locally ; lij, Zêna ; English, historically, and la, Genua) is the capital of the Regions of Italy, Italian region of Liguria and the List of cities in Italy, sixth-largest city in Italy. In 2015, 594,733 people lived ...
and
Venice Venice ( ; it, Venezia ; vec, Venesia or ) is a city in northeastern Italy Italy ( it, Italia ), officially the Italian Republic ( it, Repubblica Italiana, links=no ), is a country consisting of delimited by the and surrounding ...
,
Hanseatic League The Hanseatic League (; gml, Hanse, , ; german: label=Modern German New High German (NHG) is the term used for the most recent period in the history of the German language German (: , ) is a mainly spoken in . It is the most widely ...
, and the
Byzantine navy The Byzantine navy was the navy, naval force of the East Roman or Byzantine Empire. Like the empire it served, it was a direct continuation from its Roman navy, Imperial Roman predecessor, but played a far greater role in the defence and survival o ...
. The
Viking Vikings—"pirate", non, víkingr is the modern name given to seafaring people primarily from Scandinavia Scandinavia; : ''Skadesi-suolu''/''Skađsuâl''. ( ) is a in , with strong historical, cultural, and linguistic ties. In ...

Viking
s used their
knarr A knarr is a type of Norsemen, Norse merchant ship used by the Vikings. The knarr ( non, knǫrr, plural ) was constructed using the same Clinker (boat building), clinker-built method as longships, Karve (ship), karves, and faerings. History ''Kn ...
s to explore
North America North America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continen ...

North America
, trade in the
Baltic Sea The Baltic Sea is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean, enclosed by Denmark Denmark ( da, Danmark, ) is a Nordic country The Nordic countries, or the Nordics, are a geographical and cultural region In geography, regions are areas that a ...

Baltic Sea
and plunder many of the coastal regions of Western Europe. Towards the end of the 14th century, ships like the
carrack 300px, The large carrack, thought to be the '' Santa Catarina do Monte Sinai'', and other Portuguese carracks of various sizes. From painting, attributed to either Gregório Lopes or Cornelis Antoniszoon, showing voyage of the marriage party of ...
began to develop towers on the bow and stern. These towers decreased the vessel's stability, and in the 15th century, the
caravel The caravel (Portuguese Portuguese may refer to: * anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Portugal ** Portuguese cuisine, traditional foods ** Portuguese language, a Romance language *** Portuguese dialects, variants of the ...
, designed by the
Portuguese Portuguese may refer to: * anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Portugal ** Portuguese cuisine, traditional foods ** Portuguese language, a Romance language *** Portuguese dialects, variants of the Portuguese language ** Portug ...

Portuguese
, based on the Arabic ''qarib'' which could sail closer to the wind, became more widely used. The towers were gradually replaced by the
forecastle The forecastle ( ; contracted as fo'c'sle or fo'c's'le) is the upper deck of a sailing ship forward of the foremast, or the forward part of a ship with the sailors' living quarters. Related to the latter meaning is the phrase " before the mast" ...

forecastle
and
stern The stern is the back or aft Aft :''For the acronym, see AFT (disambiguation).'' Aft, in naval A navy, naval force, or maritime force is the branch of a Nation's armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed forces, ...

stern
castle, as in the carrack ''Santa María'' of
Christopher Columbus Christopher Columbus * lij, Cristoffa C(or)ombo * es, Cristóbal Colón * pt, Cristóvão Colombo * ca, Cristòfor (or ) * la, Christophorus Columbus. (; born between 25 August and 31 October 1451, died 20 May 1506) was an Italian ...

Christopher Columbus
. This increased freeboard allowed another innovation: the freeing port, and the artillery associated with it. The
carrack 300px, The large carrack, thought to be the '' Santa Catarina do Monte Sinai'', and other Portuguese carracks of various sizes. From painting, attributed to either Gregório Lopes or Cornelis Antoniszoon, showing voyage of the marriage party of ...
and then the
caravel The caravel (Portuguese Portuguese may refer to: * anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Portugal ** Portuguese cuisine, traditional foods ** Portuguese language, a Romance language *** Portuguese dialects, variants of the ...
were developed in
Portugal Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic ( pt, República Portuguesa, links=yes ), is a country A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who ...

Portugal
. After Columbus, European exploration rapidly accelerated, and many new trade routes were established. In 1498, by reaching India,
Vasco da Gama Vasco da Gama, 1st Count of Vidigueira (, ; ; c. 1460s – 24 December 1524), was a Portugal in the Age of Discovery, Portuguese explorer and the first European to reach India by sea. His initial voyage to India by way of Cape of Good Hope (1 ...

Vasco da Gama
proved that access to the
Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five ocean The ocean (also the or the world ocean) is the body of that covers approximately 70.8% of the surface of and contains 97% of . Another definition is "any of the large ...

Indian Ocean
from the was possible. These explorations in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans were soon followed by
France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses ...

France
,
England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland to its north. The Irish Sea lies northwest of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. E ...

England
and the
Netherlands ) , national_anthem = ( en, "William of Nassau") , image_map = EU-Netherlands.svg , map_caption = , image_map2 = BES islands location map.svg , map_caption2 = , image_map3 ...

Netherlands
, who explored the Portuguese and Spanish trade routes into the
Pacific Ocean The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. ...

Pacific Ocean
, reaching
Australia Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a Sovereign state, sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australia (continent), Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous List of islands of Australia, sma ...

Australia
in 1606 and
New Zealand New Zealand ( mi, Aotearoa ''Aotearoa'' (; commonly pronounced by English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon Engl ...

New Zealand
in 1642.


Specialization and modernization

Parallel to the development of warships, ships in service of marine fishery and trade also developed in the period between antiquity and the Renaissance. Maritime trade was driven by the development of shipping companies with significant financial resources. Canal barges, towed by draft animals on an adjacent
towpath A towpath is a road A road is a wide way leading from one place to another, typically one with a specially prepared surface which vehicles and bikes can use. Roads consist of one or two roadway A carriageway (British English ...
, contended with the
railway Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicle A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine that transports people or cargo. Vehicles include wagons, bicycles, motor veh ...

railway
up to and past the early days of the
industrial revolution The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Great Britain, continental Europe Continental Europe or mainland Europe is the contiguous continent A continent is any of several large landmasse ...
. Flat-bottomed and flexible
scow A scow is a type of flat-bottomed boat, flat-bottomed barge. Some scows are rigged as sailboat, sailing scows. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, scows carried cargo in coastal waters and inland waterways, having an advantage for navigatin ...
boats also became widely used for transporting small cargoes. Mercantile trade went hand-in-hand with exploration, self-financed by the commercial benefits of exploration. During the first half of the 18th century, the
French Navy The French Navy (french: Marine nationale, lit=National Navy), informally , is the maritime arm of the French Armed Forces The French Armed Forces (french: Forces armées françaises) encompass the Army An army (from Latin ''arma'' "ar ...
began to develop a new type of vessel known as a
ship of the line A ship of the line was a type of naval warship A warship or combatant ship is a naval ship that is built and primarily intended for naval warfare. Usually they belong to the armed forces of a state. As well as being armed, warships are des ...
, featuring seventy-four guns. This type of ship became the backbone of all European fighting fleets. These ships were long and their construction required 2,800 oak trees and of rope; they carried a crew of about 800 sailors and soldiers. During the 19th century the
Royal Navy The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare Naval warfare is combat Combat ( French for ''fight'') is a purposeful violent conflict meant to physically harm or kill the opposition. Combat may be armed (using weapon A ...
enforced a ban on the
slave trade Slavery and enslavement are both the state and the condition of being a slave, who is someone forbidden to quit their service for an enslaver, and who is treated by the enslaver as their property Property is a system of rights that give ...

slave trade
, acted to suppress
piracy Piracy is an act of robbery Robbery is the crime In ordinary language, a crime is an unlawful act punishable by a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine publi ...

piracy
, and continued to map the world. A
clipper A clipper was a type of mid-19th-century Merchant ship, merchant Sailing ship, sailing vessel, designed for speed. Clippers were generally narrow for their length, small by later 19th century standards, could carry limited bulk freight, and had ...

clipper
was a very fast sailing ship of the 19th century. The
clipper route The clipper route was the traditional route derived from the Brouwer Route and sailed by clipper, clipper ships between Europe and the Far East, Australia and New Zealand. The route ran from west to east through the Southern Ocean, in order to ma ...
s fell into commercial disuse with the introduction of with better fuel efficiency, and the opening of the
Suez Suez ( ar, السويس '; ) is a Port#Seaport, seaport city (population of about 750,000 ) in north-eastern Egypt, located on the north coast of the Gulf of Suez (a branch of the Red Sea), near the southern terminus of the Suez Canal, having ...
and
Panama Canal The Panama Canal ( es, Canal de Panamá, link=no) is an artificial waterway in Panama Panama ( , ; es, link=no, Panamá ), officially the Republic of Panama ( es, República de Panamá), is a List of transcontinental countries#Nor ...

Panama Canal
s. Ship designs stayed fairly unchanged until the late 19th century. The industrial revolution, new mechanical methods of
propulsion Propulsion is the action or process of pushing or pulling to drive an object forward. The term is derived from two Latin words: '' pro'', meaning'' before'' or ''forward''; and '' pellere'', meaning ''to drive''. A propulsion system consists of ...

propulsion
, and the ability to construct ships from metal triggered an explosion in ship design. Factors including the quest for more efficient ships, the end of long running and wasteful maritime conflicts, and the increased financial capacity of industrial powers created an avalanche of more specialized boats and ships. Ships built for entirely new functions, such as firefighting, rescue, and research, also began to appear.


21st century

In 2019, the world's fleet included 51,684 commercial vessels with
gross tonnage Gross tonnage (GT, G.T. or gt) is a nonlinear measure of a ship's overall internal volume. Gross tonnage is different from gross register tonnage. Neither gross tonnage nor gross register tonnage should be confused with measures of mass or weigh ...
of more than 1,000 tons, totaling 1.96 billion tons. Such ships carried 11 billion tons of cargo in 2018, a sum that grew by 2.7% over the previous year. In terms of tonnage, 29% of ships were
tankers Tanker may refer to: Transportation * Tanker, a tank crewman (US) * Tanker (ship), a ship designed to carry bulk liquids ** Chemical tanker, a type of tanker designed to transport chemicals in bulk ** Oil tanker, also known as a petroleum tanker ...
, 43% are
bulk carrier A bulk carrier, bulker is a specially to transport unpackaged , such as grains, coal, ore, steel coils and cement, in its s. Since the first specialized bulk carrier was built in 1852, economic forces have led to continued development of thes ...
s, 13%
container ship A container ship (also called boxship or spelled containership) is a cargo ship 300px, The ''Colombo Express'', one of the largest container ships in the world (when it was built in 2005), owned and operated by Hapag-Lloyd of Germany A cargo sh ...

container ship
s and 15% were other types. In 2002, there were 1,240
warship A warship or combatant ship is a naval ship that is built and primarily intended for naval warfare. Usually they belong to the armed forces of a state. As well as being armed, warships are designed to withstand damage and are usually faster and ...
s operating in the world, not counting small vessels such as
patrol boat A patrol boat (also referred to as a patrol craft, patrol ship or patrol vessel) is a relatively small naval ship, naval vessel generally designed for Coastal defense and fortification, coastal defence, border protection, immigration law-enforc ...

patrol boat
s. The
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
accounted for 3 million tons worth of these vessels,
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
1.35 million tons, the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
504,660 tons and
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
402,830 tons. The 20th century saw many naval engagements during the two
world war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newsp ...
s, the
Cold War The Cold War was a period of geopolitical Geopolitics (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country loc ...
, and the rise to power of naval forces of the two blocs. The world's major powers have recently used their naval power in cases such as the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
in the
Falkland Islands The Falkland Islands (; es, Islas Malvinas, ) are an archipelago An archipelago ( ), sometimes called an island group or island chain, is a chain, cluster or collection of island An island (or isle) is an isolated piece ...

Falkland Islands
and the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
in
Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْعِرَاق '; ku, کۆماری عێراق, translit=Komarî Êraq), is a country i ...

Iraq
. The size of the world's
fishing fleet A fishing fleet is an aggregate of commercial fishing Ship, vessels. The term may be used of all vessels operating out of a particular port, all vessels engaged in a particular type of fishing (as in the "tuna fishing fleet"), or all fishing vessel ...
is more difficult to estimate. The largest of these are counted as commercial vessels, but the smallest are legion.
Fishing vessel A fishing vessel is a boat or ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, ...

Fishing vessel
s can be found in most seaside villages in the world. As of 2004, the United Nations
Food and Agriculture Organization The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)french: Organisation des Nations unies pour l'alimentation et l'agriculture; it, Organizzazione delle Nazioni Unite per l'Alimentazione e l'Agricoltura is a list of specialized ...
estimated 4 million fishing vessels were operating worldwide. The same study estimated that the world's 29 million fishermen caught of fish and shellfish that year.


Types of ships

Because ships are constructed using the principles of naval architecture that require same structural components, their classification is based on their function such as that suggested by Paulet and Presles, which requires modification of the components. The categories accepted in general by naval architects are: *
High-speed craft 150px, ''HSC Tarifa Jet, Tarifa Jet'', a high-speed wavepiercer catamaran by Incat A high-speed craft (HSC) is a high-speed water Ship, vessel for civilian use, also called a fastcraft or fast ferry. The first high-speed craft were often hydr ...
Multihull A multihull is a or with more than one , whereas a vessel with a single hull is a . Multihull ships can be classified by the number of hulls, by their arrangement and by their shapes and sizes. Multihull history s, double-canoes (s), and ...

Multihull
s including wave piercers,
small-waterplane-area twin hull . The twin hulls (blue) remain completely submerged. A Small Waterplane Area Twin Hull, better known by the acronym SWATH, is a twin-hull ship design that minimizes hull cross section area at the sea's surface. Minimizing the ship's volume near ...
(SWATH),
surface effect ship A Surface Effect Ship (SES) or Sidewall Hovercraft is a watercraft that has both an air cushion, like a hovercraft, and twin hull (watercraft), hulls, like a catamaran. When the air cushion is in use, a small portion of the twin hulls remains in the ...
s and
hovercraft A hovercraft, also known as an air-cushion vehicle or ACV, is an amphibious craft A craft or trade is a pastime or an occupation that requires particular skills and knowledge of skilled work. In a historical sense, particularly the ...

hovercraft
,
hydrofoil A hydrofoil is a lifting surface, or foil (fluid mechanics), foil, that operates in water. They are similar in appearance and purpose to aerofoils used by aeroplanes. Boats that use hydrofoil technology are also simply termed hydrofoils. As a hyd ...

hydrofoil
, wing in ground effect craft (WIG). * Off shore oil vessels –
Platform supply vessel A platform supply vessel (PSV) is a ship specially designed to supply offshore oil and gas platforms. These ships range from in length and accomplish a variety of tasks. The primary function for most of these vessels is logistic support and tra ...
, pipe layers, accommodation and crane
barge A barge is a shoal A tidal sandbar connecting the islands of Waya and Wayasewa of the Yasawa Islands, Fiji In oceanography Oceanography (from the Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language used in a ...

barge
s, non and semi-submersible
drilling rig A drilling rig is an integrated system that Drilling, drills wells, such as oil or water wells, in the earth's subsurface. Drilling rigs can be massive structures housing equipment used to drill water wells, Oil well, oil wells, or natural gas ...

drilling rig
s, ,
floating production storage and offloading Floating may refer to: * a type of dental work performed on horse teeth Horse teeth refers to the dentition of equine species, including horses and donkeys. Equines are both heterodontous and diphyodontous, which means that they have teeth in mor ...
units. *
Fishing vessel A fishing vessel is a boat or ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, ...

Fishing vessel
s : Motorised
fishing trawler A fishing trawler is a commercial fishing vessel A fishing vessel is a boat or ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in supp ...
s, trap setters,
seiners A fishing vessel is a boat or ship used to catch fish in the sea, or on a lake or river. Many different kinds of vessels are used in Commercial fishing, commercial, Artisan fishing, artisanal and recreational fishing. The total number of fishing ...
, longliners, trollers &
factory ship A factory ship, also known as a fish processing vessel, is a large ocean-going vessel with extensive on-board facilities for processing and freezing caught fish or whales. Modern factory ships are automated and enlarged versions of the earlier wha ...
s. : Traditional
sailing Sailing employs the wind—acting on sail A sail is a tensile structure by Vladimir Shukhov (during construction), Nizhny Novgorod, 1895 in Kings Domain, Melbourne A tensile structure is a construction of elements carrying only tension ...

sailing
and rowed fishing vessels and
boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physical system with ordered structural and functional properties. It m ...

boat
s used for
handline fishing Handline fishing, or handlining, is a fishing technique where a single fishing line is held in the hands. It is not to be confused with handfishing. One or more fishing lures or Fish bait, baited Fishing hook, hooks are attached to the line. A hook ...
*
Harbour A harbor (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of variety (linguistics), varieties of the English language native to the United States. C ...

Harbour
work craft :
Cable layer A cable layer or cable ship is a deep-sea ship, vessel designed and used to lay underwater cables for undersea cable, telecommunications, Submarine power cable, electric power transmission, military, or other purposes. Cable ships are distinguished ...
s :
Tugboat A tugboat or tug is a marine vessel Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are Vehicle, vehicles used in and on water, including boats, ships, hovercraft, and submarines. Watercraft usually have a propulsive capabili ...

Tugboat
s,
dredger Dredging is the excavation of material from a water environment. Possible reasons for dredging include improving existing water features; reshaping land and water features to alter drainage Drainage is the natural or artificial removal ...

dredger
s,
salvage Salvage may refer to: * Marine salvage, the process of rescuing a ship, its cargo and sometimes the crew from peril * Water salvage, rescuing people from floods. * Salvage tug, a type of tugboat used to rescue or salvage ships which are in distre ...
vessels, tenders,
Pilot boat A pilot boat is a type of boat used to transport maritime pilots between land and the inbound or outbound ships that they are piloting. History Image:Lizzie May au Brest 2008.jpg, Wooden pilot cutter ''Lizzie May'' under sail in Brest, France ...

Pilot boat
s. : Floating dry docks, floating cranes, lightership. * Dry cargo ships – tramp freighters, bulk carriers, cargo liners, container vessels, barge carriers, Ro-Ro ships, refrigerated cargo ships, timber carriers, livestock & light vehicle carriers. * Liquid cargo ships – Oil tankers, liquefied gas carriers, chemical carriers. * Passenger vessels : Liners, cruise and Special Trade Passenger (STP) ships : Cross-channel, coastal and harbour ferries. : Luxury & cruising yachts : Sail training and multi-masted ships * Recreational boats and craft – rowed, masted and motorised craft * Special-purpose vessels –
weather Weather is the state of the atmosphere An atmosphere (from the greek words ἀτμός ''(atmos)'', meaning 'vapour', and σφαῖρα ''(sphaira)'', meaning 'ball' or 'sphere') is a layer or a set of layers of gases surrounding a p ...
and
research vessel A research vessel (RV or R/V) is a ship or boat designed, modified, or equipped to carry out research Research is "creativity, creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It involves the collection, orga ...
s, deep sea
survey vessel A survey vessel is any type of ship or boat that is used for mapping. It is a type of research vessel A research vessel (RV or R/V) is a ship or boat designed, modified, or equipped to carry out research Research is "creativity, crea ...
s, and
icebreaker An icebreaker is a special-purpose ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, rese ...
s. * Submersibles – industrial exploration, scientific research, tourist and hydrographic survey. *
Warships A warship or combatant ship is a naval ship A naval ship is a military (or sometimes , depending on classification) used by a . Naval ships are differentiated from civilian ships by construction and purpose. Generally, naval ships ar ...
and other surface combatants – aircraft carriers, destroyers, frigates, corvettes, minesweepers, etc. Some of these are discussed in the following sections.


Inland vessels

Freshwater shipping may occur on lakes, rivers and canals. Ships designed for those body of waters may be specially adapted to the widths and depths of specific waterways. Examples of freshwater waterways that are navigable in part by large vessels include the Danube, Mississippi River, Mississippi, Rhine River, Rhine, Yangtze and Amazon River, Amazon Rivers, and the Great Lakes.


Great Lakes

Lake freighters, also called lakers, are cargo vessels that ply the Great Lakes. The most well-known is , the latest major vessel to be wrecked on the Lakes. These vessels are traditionally called boats, not ships. Visiting ocean-going vessels are called "salties". Because of their additional Beam (nautical), beam, very large salties are never seen inland of the Saint Lawrence Seaway. Because the smallest of the Soo Locks is larger than any Seaway lock, salties that can pass through the Seaway may travel anywhere in the Great Lakes. Because of their deeper draft, salties may accept partial loads on the Great Lakes, "topping off" when they have exited the Seaway. Similarly, the largest lakers are confined to the Upper Lakes (Lake Superior, Superior, Lake Michigan, Michigan, Lake Huron, Huron, Lake Erie, Erie) because they are too large to use the Seaway locks, beginning at the Welland Canal that bypasses the Niagara River. Since the freshwater lakes are less corrosive to ships than the Seawater, salt water of the oceans, lakers tend to last much longer than ocean freighters. Lakers older than 50 years are not unusual, and as of 2005, all were over 20 years of age. , built in 1906 as ''William P Snyder'', was the oldest laker still working on the Lakes until its conversion into a barge starting in 2013. Similarly, ''E.M. Ford'', built in 1898 as ''Presque Isle'', was sailing the lakes 98 years later in 1996. As of 2007 ''E.M. Ford'' was still afloat as a stationary transfer vessel at a riverside cement silo in Saginaw, Michigan.


Merchant ship

Merchant ships are ships used for commercial purposes and can be divided into four broad categories: fishing, cargo ships, passenger ships, and special-purpose ships. The UNCTAD review of maritime transport categorizes ships as: oil tankers, bulk (and combination) carriers, general cargo ships, container ships, and "other ships", which includes "liquefied petroleum gas carriers, liquefied natural gas carriers, parcel (chemical) tankers, specialized tankers, reefers, offshore supply, tugs, dredgers, cruise, ferries, other non-cargo". General cargo ships include "multi-purpose and project vessels and roll-on/roll-off cargo". Modern commercial vessels are typically powered by a single propeller driven by a diesel engine, diesel or, less usually, gas turbine engine., but until the mid-19th century they were predominantly square sail rigged. The fastest vessels may use pump-jet engines. Most commercial vessels have full hull-forms to maximize cargo capacity. Hulls are usually made of steel, although aluminum can be used on faster craft, and fiberglass on the smallest service vessels. Commercial vessels generally have a crew headed by a sea captain, with deck officers and engine officers on larger vessels. Special-purpose vessels often have specialized crew if necessary, for example scientists aboard
research vessel A research vessel (RV or R/V) is a ship or boat designed, modified, or equipped to carry out research Research is "creativity, creative and systematic work undertaken to increase the stock of knowledge". It involves the collection, orga ...
s. Fishing boats are generally small, often little more than but up to for a large tuna or whaling ship. Aboard a fish processing vessel, the catch can be made ready for market and sold more quickly once the ship makes port. Special purpose vessels have special gear. For example, trawlers have winches and arms, stern-trawlers have a rear ramp, and tuna seiners have skiffs. In 2004, of fish were caught in the marine capture fishery.UNFAO, 2007, p. 11. Anchoveta represented the largest single catch at . That year, the top ten marine capture species also included Alaska pollock, Blue whiting, Skipjack tuna, Atlantic herring, Chub mackerel, Anchovy, Japanese anchovy, Trachurus, Chilean jack mackerel, Largehead hairtail, and Yellowfin tuna. Other species including salmon, shrimp, lobster, clams, squid and crab, are also commercially fished. Modern commercial fishermen use many methods. One is fishing by Fishing net, nets, such as Seine fishing, purse seine, beach seine, lift nets, gillnets, or entangling nets. Another is trawling, including Bottom trawling, bottom trawl. Fish hook, Hooks and lines are used in methods like long-line fishing and hand-line fishing. Another method is the use of fishing trap. Cargo ships transport dry and liquid cargo. Dry cargo can be transported in bulk by
bulk carrier A bulk carrier, bulker is a specially to transport unpackaged , such as grains, coal, ore, steel coils and cement, in its s. Since the first specialized bulk carrier was built in 1852, economic forces have led to continued development of thes ...
s, packed directly onto a general cargo ship in break-bulk, packed in intermodal containers as aboard a
container ship A container ship (also called boxship or spelled containership) is a cargo ship 300px, The ''Colombo Express'', one of the largest container ships in the world (when it was built in 2005), owned and operated by Hapag-Lloyd of Germany A cargo sh ...

container ship
, or driven aboard as in roll-on roll-off ships. Liquid cargo is generally carried in bulk aboard tankers, such as
oil tanker An oil tanker, also known as a petroleum tanker, is a ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, suc ...
s which may include both crude and finished products of oil, chemical tankers which may also carry vegetable oils other than chemicals and gas carriers, although smaller shipments may be carried on container ships in tank containers. Passenger ships range in size from small river ferries to very large cruise ships. This type of vessel includes ferry, ferries, which move passengers and vehicles on short trips; ocean liners, which carry passengers from one place to another; and cruise ships, which carry passengers on voyages undertaken for pleasure, visiting several places and with leisure activities on board, often returning them to the port of embarkation. Riverboats and ferry boat, inland ferries are specially designed to carry passengers, cargo, or both in the challenging river environment. Rivers present special hazards to vessels. They usually have varying water flows that alternately lead to high speed water flows or protruding rock hazards. Changing siltation patterns may cause the sudden appearance of shoal waters, and often floating or sunken logs and trees (called snags) can endanger the hulls and propulsion of riverboats. Riverboats are generally of shallow draft, being broad of beam and rather square in plan, with a low freeboard and high topsides. Riverboats can survive with this type of configuration as they do not have to withstand the high winds or large waves that are seen on large lakes, seas, or oceans.
Fishing vessel A fishing vessel is a boat or ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, ...

Fishing vessel
s are a subset of commercial vessels, but generally small in size and often subject to different regulations and classification. They can be categorized by several criteria: architecture, the type of fish they catch, the fishing method used, geographical origin, and technical features such as rigging. As of 2004, the world's fishing fleet consisted of some 4 million vessels.UNFAO, 2007, p. 25. Of these, 1.3 million were decked vessels with enclosed areas and the rest were open vessels. Most decked vessels were mechanized, but two-thirds of the open vessels were traditional craft propelled by sails and oars. More than 60% of all existing large fishing vessels were built in Japan, Peru, the Russian Federation, Spain or the United States of America.


Special purpose vessels

A weather ship was a ship stationed in the ocean as a platform for surface and upper air meteorological observations for use in marine weather forecasting. Surface weather observations were taken hourly, and four radiosonde releases occurred daily. It was also meant to aid in search and rescue operations and to support transatlantic flights. Proposed as early as 1927 by the aviation community, the establishment of weather ships proved to be so useful during World War II that the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) established a global network of weather ships in 1948, with 13 to be supplied by the United States. This number was eventually negotiated down to nine. The weather ship crews were normally at sea for three weeks at a time, returning to port for 10-day stretches. Weather ship observations proved to be helpful in wind and wave studies, as they did not avoid weather systems like other ships tended to for safety reasons. They were also helpful in monitoring storms at sea, such as tropical cyclones. The removal of a weather ship became a negative factor in forecasts leading up to the Great Storm of 1987. Beginning in the 1970s, their role became largely superseded by weather buoys due to the ships' significant cost. The agreement of the use of weather ships by the international community ended in 1990. The last weather ship was ''Polarfront'', known as weather station M ("Mike"), which was put out of operation on 1 January 2010. Weather observations from ships continue from a fleet of Voluntary observing ship program, voluntary merchant vessels in routine commercial operation.


Naval vessels

Naval ships are diverse in List of types of naval vessels, types of vessel. They include: List of naval ship classes in service, surface warships, List of submarine classes in service, submarines, and auxiliary ships. Modern warships are generally divided into seven main categories: aircraft carriers, cruisers, destroyers, frigates, corvettes, submarines and amphibious assault ships. The distinctions among cruisers, destroyers, frigates, and corvettes are not codified; the same vessel may be described differently in different navies. Battleships were used during the Second World War and occasionally since then (the last battleships were removed from the U.S. Naval Vessel Register in March 2006), but were made obsolete by the use of carrier-borne aircraft and guided missiles. Most military submarines are either attack submarines or ballistic missile submarines. Until the end of World War II the primary role of the diesel/electric submarine was anti-ship warfare, inserting and removing covert agents and military forces, and intelligence-gathering. With the development of the homing torpedo, better sonar systems, and Nuclear navy, nuclear propulsion, submarines also became able to effectively hunt each other. The development of Submarine-launched ballistic missile, submarine-launched nuclear and cruise missiles gave submarines a substantial and long-ranged ability to attack both land and sea targets with a variety of weapons ranging from cluster munitions to nuclear weapons. Most Navy, navies also include many types of support and auxiliary vessel, such as minesweeper (ship), minesweepers,
patrol boat A patrol boat (also referred to as a patrol craft, patrol ship or patrol vessel) is a relatively small naval ship, naval vessel generally designed for Coastal defense and fortification, coastal defence, border protection, immigration law-enforc ...

patrol boat
s, OPV (naval), offshore patrol vessels, replenishment ships, and hospital ships which are designated healthcare, medical treatment facilities. Fast combat vessels such as cruisers and destroyers usually have fine hulls to maximize speed and maneuverability. They also usually have advanced marine electronics and communication systems, as well as weapons.


Architecture

Some components exist in vessels of any size and purpose. Every vessel has a hull of sorts. Every vessel has some sort of propulsion, whether it's a pole, an ox, or a nuclear reactor. Most vessels have some sort of steering system. Other characteristics are common, but not as universal, such as compartments, holds, a superstructure, and equipment such as anchors and winches.


Hull

For a ship to float, its weight must be less than that of the water displaced by the ship's hull. There are many types of hulls, from logs lashed together to form a raft to the advanced hulls of America's Cup sailboats. A vessel may have a single hull (called a monohull design), two in the case of
catamaran A Formula 16 beachable catamaran Powered catamaran passenger ferry at Salem, Massachusetts, United States A catamaran () (informally, a "cat") is a multi-hulled watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, a ...

catamaran
s, or three in the case of trimarans. Vessels with more than three hulls are rare, but some experiments have been conducted with designs such as pentamarans. Multiple hulls are generally parallel to each other and connected by rigid arms. Hulls have several elements. The bow (ship), bow is the foremost part of the hull. Many ships feature a bulbous bow. The keel is at the very bottom of the hull, extending the entire length of the ship. The rear part of the hull is known as the
stern The stern is the back or aft Aft :''For the acronym, see AFT (disambiguation).'' Aft, in naval A navy, naval force, or maritime force is the branch of a Nation's armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed forces, ...

stern
, and many hulls have a flat back known as a transom (nautical), transom. Common hull appendages include propellers for propulsion, rudders for steering, and Stabilizer (ship), stabilizers to quell a ship's rolling motion. Other hull features can be related to the vessel's work, such as fishing gear and sonar, sonar domes. Hulls are subject to various hydrostatic and hydrodynamic constraints. The key hydrostatic constraint is that it must be able to support the entire weight of the boat, and maintain stability even with often unevenly distributed weight. Hydrodynamic constraints include the ability to withstand shock waves, weather collisions and groundings. Older ships and pleasure craft often have or had wooden hulls. Steel is used for most commercial vessels. Aluminium is frequently used for fast vessels, and composite materials are often found in sailboats and pleasure craft. Some ships have been made with Concrete ship, concrete hulls.


Propulsion systems

Propulsion systems for ships fall into three categories: human propulsion, sailing, and mechanical propulsion. Human propulsion includes Watercraft rowing, rowing, which was used even on large galleys. Propulsion by sail generally consists of a sail hoisted on an erect mast, supported by stays and spars and controlled by ropes. Sail systems were the dominant form of propulsion until the 19th century. They are now generally used for recreation and competition, although experimental sail systems, such as the turbosails, rotorsails, and wingsails have been used on larger modern vessels for fuel savings. Mechanical propulsion systems generally consist of a motor or engine turning a propeller, or less frequently, an impeller or Wave power ship, wave propulsion fins. Steam engines were first used for this purpose, but have mostly been replaced by two-stroke engine, two-stroke or four-stroke engine, four-stroke diesel engines, outboard motors, and gas turbine engines on faster ships. Nuclear marine propulsion, Nuclear reactors producing steam are used to propel
warship A warship or combatant ship is a naval ship that is built and primarily intended for naval warfare. Usually they belong to the armed forces of a state. As well as being armed, warships are designed to withstand damage and are usually faster and ...
s and
icebreaker An icebreaker is a special-purpose ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, rese ...
s, and there have been attempts to utilize them to power commercial vessels (see NS Savannah, NS ''Savannah''). In addition to traditional fixed and controllable pitch propellers there are many specialized variations, such as contra-rotating and nozzle-style propellers. Most vessels have a single propeller, but some large vessels may have up to four propellers supplemented with bow thruster, transverse thrusters for maneuvring at ports. The propeller is connected to the main engine via a propeller shaft and, in case of medium- and high-speed engines, a reduction gearbox. Some modern vessels have a diesel-electric transmission, diesel-electric powertrain in which the propeller is turned by an electric motor powered by the ship's generators.


Steering systems

For ships with independent propulsion systems for each side, such as manual oars or some paddle steamer, paddles, steering systems may not be necessary. In most designs, such as boats propelled by engines or sails, a steering system becomes necessary. The most common is a rudder, a submerged plane located at the rear of the hull. Rudders are rotated to generate a lateral force which turns the boat. Rudders can be rotated by a tiller, manual wheels, or electro-hydraulic systems. Autopilot systems combine mechanical rudders with navigation systems. Ducted propellers are sometimes used for steering. Some propulsion systems are inherently steering systems. Examples include the outboard motor, the bow thruster, and the Z-drive.


Holds, compartments, and the superstructure

Larger boats and ships generally have multiple decks and compartments. Separate berthings and Head (watercraft), heads are found on sailboats over about . Fishing boats and cargo ships typically have one or more cargo holds. Most larger vessels have an engine room, a galley (kitchen), galley, and various compartments for work. Tanks are used to store fuel, engine oil, and fresh water. Ballast tanks are equipped to change a ship's trim and modify its stability. Superstructures are found above the main deck. On sailboats, these are usually very low. On modern cargo ships, they are almost always located near the ship's stern. On passenger ships and warships, the superstructure generally extends far forward.


Equipment

Shipboard equipment varies from ship to ship depending on such factors as the ship's era, design, area of operation, and purpose. Some types of equipment that are widely found include: * Mast (sail), Masts can be the home of antennas, navigation lights, radar transponders, fog signals, and similar devices often required by law. * Ground tackle comprises the anchor, its chain or cable, and connecting fittings. * Cargo equipment such as Crane (machine), cranes and cargo booms may be used to load and unload cargo and ship's stores. * Safety equipment such as Lifeboat (shipboard), lifeboats, liferafts, and survival suits are carried aboard many vessels for emergency use.


Design considerations


Hydrostatics

Ships float in the water at a level where mass of the displaced water equals the mass of the vessel, so that the downwards force of gravity equals the upward force of buoyancy. As a vessel is lowered into the water its weight remains constant but the corresponding weight of water displaced by its hull increases. If the vessel's mass is evenly distributed throughout, it floats evenly along its length and across its Beam (nautical), beam (width). A vessel's stability is considered in both this Initial stability, hydrostatic sense as well as a Ship stability, hydrodynamic sense, when subjected to movement, rolling and pitching, and the action of waves and wind. Stability problems can lead to excessive pitching and rolling, and eventually capsizing and sinking.


Hydrodynamics

The advance of a vessel through water is resisted by the water. This resistance can be broken down into several components, the main ones being the friction of the water on the hull and wave making resistance. To reduce resistance and therefore increase the speed for a given power, it is necessary to reduce the wetted surface and use submerged hull shapes that produce low amplitude waves. To do so, high-speed vessels are often more slender, with fewer or smaller appendages. The friction of the water is also reduced by regular maintenance of the hull to remove the sea creatures and algae that accumulate there. Antifouling paint is commonly used to assist in this. Advanced designs such as the bulbous bow assist in decreasing wave resistance. A simple way of considering wave-making resistance is to look at the hull in relation to its wake. At speeds lower than the wave propagation speed, the wave rapidly dissipates to the sides. As the hull approaches the wave propagation speed, however, the wake at the bow begins to build up faster than it can dissipate, and so it grows in amplitude. Since the water is not able to "get out of the way of the hull fast enough", the hull, in essence, has to climb over or push through the bow wave. This results in an exponential function, exponential increase in resistance with increasing speed. This hull speed is found by the formula: or, in metric system, metric units: where ''L'' is the length of the waterline in feet or meters. When the vessel exceeds a speed/length ratio of 0.94, it starts to outrun most of its bow wave, and the hull actually settles slightly in the water as it is now only supported by two wave peaks. As the vessel exceeds a speed/length ratio of 1.34, the hull speed, the wavelength is now longer than the hull, and the stern is no longer supported by the wake, causing the stern to squat, and the bow rise. The hull is now starting to climb its own bow wave, and resistance begins to increase at a very high rate. While it is possible to drive a displacement hull faster than a speed/length ratio of 1.34, it is prohibitively expensive to do so. Most large vessels operate at speed/length ratios well below that level, at speed/length ratios of under 1.0. For large projects with adequate funding, hydrodynamic resistance can be tested experimentally in a hull testing pool or using tools of computational fluid dynamics. Vessels are also subject to ocean surface waves and sea swell as well as effects of wind and weather. These movements can be stressful for passengers and equipment, and must be controlled if possible. The rolling movement can be controlled, to an extent, by ballasting or by devices such as Stabilizer (ship), fin stabilizers. Pitching movement is more difficult to limit and can be dangerous if the bow submerges in the waves, a phenomenon called pounding. Sometimes, ships must change course or speed to stop violent rolling or pitching.


Lifecycle

A ship will pass through several stages during its career. The first is usually an initial contract to build the ship, the details of which can vary widely based on relationships between the shipowners, operators, naval architect, designers and the shipyard. Then, the design phase carried out by a naval architect. Then the ship is constructed in a shipyard. After construction, the vessel is launched and goes into service. Ships end their careers in a number of ways, ranging from shipwrecks to service as a museum ship to Ship breaking, the scrapyard.


Design

A vessel's design starts with a specification, which a naval architect uses to create a project outline, assess required dimensions, and create a basic layout of spaces and a rough displacement. After this initial rough draft, the architect can create an initial hull design, a general profile and an initial overview of the ship's propulsion. At this stage, the designer can iterate on the ship's design, adding detail and refining the design at each stage. The designer will typically produce an overall plan, a general specification describing the peculiarities of the vessel, and construction blueprints to be used at the building site. Designs for larger or more complex vessels may also include sail plans, electrical schematics, and plumbing and ventilation plans. As environmental laws are becoming more strict, ship designers need to create their design in such a way that the ship, when it nears its end-of-term, can be Ship breaking, disassembled or Ship disposal, disposed easily and that waste is reduced to a minimum.


Construction

Ship construction takes place in a shipyard, and can last from a few months for a unit produced in series, to several years to reconstruct a wooden boat like the frigate ''Hermione'', to more than 10 years for an aircraft carrier. During World War II, the need for cargo ships was so urgent that construction time for Liberty ship, Liberty Ships went from initially eight months or longer, down to weeks or even days. Builders employed production line and prefabrication techniques such as those used in shipyards today. Hull materials and vessel size play a large part in determining the method of construction. The hull of a mass-produced fiberglass sailboat is constructed from a mold, while the steel hull of a cargo ship is made from large sections welded together as they are built. Generally, construction starts with the hull, and on vessels over about , by the laying of the keel. This is done in a drydock or on land. Once the hull is assembled and painted, it is launched. The last stages, such as raising the superstructure and adding equipment and accommodation, can be done after the vessel is afloat. Once completed, the vessel is delivered to the customer. Ship naming and launching, Ship launching is often a ceremony of some significance, and is usually when the vessel is formally named. A typical small rowboat can cost under US$100, $1,000 for a small speedboat, tens of thousands of dollars for a cruising sailboat, and about $2,000,000 for a Vendée Globe class sailboat. A trawler may cost $2.5 million, and a 1,000-person-capacity high-speed passenger ferry can cost in the neighborhood of $50 million. A ship's cost partly depends on its complexity: a small, general cargo ship will cost $20 million, a Panamax-sized
bulk carrier A bulk carrier, bulker is a specially to transport unpackaged , such as grains, coal, ore, steel coils and cement, in its s. Since the first specialized bulk carrier was built in 1852, economic forces have led to continued development of thes ...
around $35 million, a supertanker around $105 million and a large LNG carrier nearly $200 million. The most expensive ships generally are so because of the cost of embedded electronics: a costs around $2 billion, and an aircraft carrier goes for about $3.5 billion.


Repair and conversion

Ships undergo nearly constant maintenance during their career, whether they be underway, pierside, or in some cases, in periods of reduced operating status between charters or shipping seasons. Most ships, however, require trips to special facilities such as a drydock at regular intervals. Tasks often done at drydock include removing biological growths on the hull, sandblasting and repainting the hull, and replacing sacrificial anodes used to protect submerged equipment from corrosion. Major repairs to the propulsion and steering systems as well as major electrical systems are also often performed at dry dock. Some vessels that sustain major damage at sea may be repaired at a facility equipped for major repairs, such as a shipyard. Ships may also be converted for a new purpose:
oil tanker An oil tanker, also known as a petroleum tanker, is a ship A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, suc ...
s are often converted into floating production storage and offloading units.


End of service

Most ocean-going cargo ships have a life expectancy of between 20 and 30 years. A sailboat made of plywood or fiberglass can last between 30 and 40 years. Solid wooden ships can last much longer but require regular maintenance. Carefully maintained steel-hulled yachts can have a lifespan of over 100 years. As ships age, forces such as corrosion, osmosis, and rotting compromise hull strength, and a vessel becomes too dangerous to sail. At this point, it can be scuttling, scuttled at sea or Ship breaking, scrapped by ship breaking, shipbreakers. Ships can also be used as museum ships, or expended to construct Breakwater (structure), breakwaters or artificial reefs. Many ships do not make it to the scrapyard, and are lost in fires, collisions, ship grounding, grounding, or sinking at sea. The Allies lost some 5,150 ships during World War II.


Measuring ships

One can Molded depth, measure ships in terms of length overall, length between perpendiculars, Waterline length, length of the ship at the waterline, Beam (nautical), beam (breadth), depth (distance between the crown of the weather deck and the top of the keelson), Draft (hull), draft (distance between the highest waterline and the bottom of the ship) and tonnage. A number of different tonnage definitions exist and are used when describing merchant ships for the purpose of tolls, taxation, etc. In Britain until Samuel Plimsoll's Merchant Shipping Act of 1876, ship-owners could load their vessels until their decks were almost awash, resulting in a dangerously unstable condition. Anyone who signed on to such a ship for a voyage and, upon realizing the danger, chose to leave the ship, could end up in jail. Plimsoll, a Member of Parliament, realised the problem and engaged some engineers to derive a fairly simple formula to determine the position of a line on the side of any specific ship's hull which, when it reached the surface of the water during loading of cargo, meant the ship had reached its maximum safe loading level. To this day, that mark, called the "waterline, Plimsoll Line", exists on ships' sides, and consists of a circle with a horizontal line through the centre. On the Great Lakes of North America the circle is replaced with a diamond. Because different types of water (summer, fresh, tropical fresh, winter north Atlantic) have different densities, subsequent regulations required painting a group of lines forward of the Plimsoll mark to indicate the safe depth (or freeboard above the surface) to which a specific ship could load in water of various densities. Hence the "ladder" of lines seen forward of the Plimsoll mark to this day. This is called the "freeboard mark" or "waterline#Standard load line marks, load line mark" in the marine industry.


Ship pollution

Ship pollution is the pollution of air and water by shipping. It is a problem that has been accelerating as trade has become increasingly globalized, posing an increasing threat to the world's oceans and waterways as globalization continues. It is expected that "shipping traffic to and from the United States is projected to double by 2020." Because of increased traffic in ocean ports, pollution from ships also directly affects coastal areas. The pollution produced affects biodiversity, climate, food, and human health. However, the degree to which humans are polluting and how it affects the world is highly debated and has been a hot international topic for the past 30 years.


Oil spills

Oil spills have devastating effects on the environment. Crude oil contains polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) which are very difficult to clean up, and last for years in the sediment and marine environment. Marine species constantly exposed to PAHs can exhibit developmental problems, susceptibility to disease, and abnormal reproductive cycles. By the sheer amount of oil carried, modern oil tankers must be considered something of a threat to the environment. An oil tanker can carry of crude oil, or . This is more than six times the amount spilled in the widely known Exxon Valdez oil spill, ''Exxon Valdez'' incident. In this spill, the ship ran aground and dumped of oil into the ocean in March 1989. Despite efforts of scientists, managers, and volunteers, over 400,000 seabirds, about 1,000 sea otters, and immense numbers of fish were killed. The International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation has researched 9,351 accidental spills since 1974. According to this study, most spills result from routine operations such as loading cargo, discharging cargo, and taking on fuel oil. 91% of the operational oil spills were small, resulting in less than 7 tons per spill. Spills resulting from accidents like collisions, groundings, hull failures, and explosions are much larger, with 84% of these involving losses of over 700 tons. Following the ''Exxon Valdez'' spill, the United States passed the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA-90), which included a stipulation that all tankers entering its waters be Double-hulled tanker, double-hulled by 2015. Following the sinkings of ''Erika (tanker), Erika'' (1999) and ''Prestige oil spill, Prestige'' (2002), the European Union passed its own stringent anti-pollution packages (known as Erika I, II, and III), which require all tankers entering its waters to be double-hulled by 2010. The Erika packages are controversial because they introduced the new legal concept of "serious negligence".


Ballast water

When a large vessel such as a
container ship A container ship (also called boxship or spelled containership) is a cargo ship 300px, The ''Colombo Express'', one of the largest container ships in the world (when it was built in 2005), owned and operated by Hapag-Lloyd of Germany A cargo sh ...

container ship
or an oil tanker unloads cargo, seawater is pumped into other compartments in the hull to help stabilize and balance the ship. During loading, this ballast water is pumped out from these compartments. One of the problems with ballast water transfer is the transport of harmful organisms. Meinesz believes that one of the worst cases of a single invasive species causing harm to an ecosystem can be attributed to a seemingly harmless planktonic organism . ''Mnemiopsis leidyi'', a species of comb jelly that inhabits estuaries from the United States to the Valdés peninsula in Argentina along the coast, has caused notable damage in the Black Sea. It was first introduced in 1982, and thought to have been transported to the Black Sea in a ship's ballast water. The population of the comb jelly shot up exponentially and, by 1988, it was wreaking havoc upon the local fishing industry. "The anchovy catch fell from in 1984 to in 1993; sprat from in 1984 to in 1993; horse mackerel (disambiguation), horse mackerel from in 1984 to zero in 1993." Now that the comb jellies have exhausted the zooplankton, including fish larvae, their numbers have fallen dramatically, yet they continue to maintain a stranglehold on the ecosystem. Recently the comb jellies have been discovered in the Caspian Sea. Invasive species can take over once occupied areas, facilitate the spread of new diseases, introduce new Genetics, genetic material, alter landscapes and jeopardize the ability of native species to obtain food. "On land and in the sea, invasive species are responsible for about 137 billion dollars in lost revenue and management costs in the U.S. each year." Ballast and bilge discharge from ships can also spread human pathogens and other harmful diseases and toxins potentially causing health issues for humans and marine life alike. Discharges into coastal waters, along with other sources of marine pollution, have the potential to be toxic to marine plants, animals, and microorganisms, causing alterations such as changes in growth, disruption of hormone cycles, birth defects, suppression of the immune system, and disorders resulting in cancer, tumors, and genetic abnormalities or even death.


Exhaust emissions

exhaust gas, Exhaust emissions from ships are considered to be a significant source of air pollution. "Seagoing vessels are responsible for an estimated 14 percent of emissions of nitrogen from fossil fuels and 16 percent of the emissions of sulfur from petroleum uses into the atmosphere." In Europe ships make up a large percentage of the sulfur introduced to the air, "as much sulfur as all the cars, Truck, lorries and factories in Europe put together". "By 2010, up to 40% of air pollution over land could come from ships." Sulfur in the air creates acid rain which damages crops and buildings. When inhaled, sulfur is known to cause respiratory problems and increase the risk of a myocardial infarction, heart attack.


Ship breaking

Ship breaking or ship demolition is a type of ship disposal involving the breaking up of ships for scrap recycling, with the hulls being discarded in ship graveyards. Most ships have a lifespan of a few decades before there is so much wear that refitting and repair becomes uneconomical. Ship breaking allows materials from the ship, especially steel, to be reused. In addition to steel and other useful materials, however, ships (particularly older vessels) can contain many substances that are banned or considered dangerous in developed countries. Asbestos and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are typical examples. Asbestos was used heavily in ship construction until it was finally banned in most of the developed world in the mid 1980s. Currently, the costs associated with removing asbestos, along with the potentially expensive insurance and health risks, have meant that ship-breaking in most developed countries is no longer economically viable. Removing the metal for scrap can potentially cost more than the scrap value of the metal itself. In most of the developing world, however, shipyards can operate without the risk of Personal injury, personal injury lawsuits or Workers' compensation, workers' health claims, meaning many of these shipyards may operate with high health risks. Furthermore, workers are paid very low rates with no overtime or other allowances. Protective equipment is sometimes absent or inadequate. Dangerous vapors and fumes from burning materials can be inhaled, and dusty asbestos-laden areas around such breakdown locations are commonplace. Aside from the health of the yard workers, in recent years, ship breaking has also become an issue of major environmentalism, environmental concern. Many developing nations, in which ship breaking yards are located, have lax or no environmental law, enabling large quantities of highly toxic materials to escape into the environment and causing serious health problems among ship breakers, the local population and wildlife. Environmental campaign groups such as Greenpeace have made the issue a high priority for their campaigns.


See also

* Admiralty law * Airship * Auxiliary ship * Boat * Chartering (shipping) * Dynamic positioning * Environmental impact of shipping * Factory ship * Ferry * Flag state * Fluyt * Galleon * Galley * Glossary of nautical terms * Marine electronics * Marine fuel management * Maritime history * Mother ship * Naval architecture * Naval ship * Navy * Nuclear marine propulsion * Propulsion * Sailing * Sailing ship * Sailor * Ship burial *
Ship transport File:Baltic Princess, Västerhamn, 2019 (03).jpg, MS Baltic Princess, MS ''Baltic Princess'' car ferry at the Västerhamn Harbour in Mariehamn, Åland ">Åland.html" ;"title="Mariehamn, Åland">Mariehamn, Åland Maritime transport (or oce ...
* Ship watching * Shipwreck * Spacecraft, Spaceship * Train ferry * Vessel safety survey * Warship * Watercraft * Whaler Model ships * Ship model * Ship model basin * Ship replica Lists * List of fictional ships * List of historical ship types * List of Panamax ports * List of largest cruise ships * List of world's largest ships by gross tonnage * List of world's longest ships * Lists of ships * Lists of shipwrecks Ship sizes * Aframax * Capesize * Chinamax * Handymax * Handysize * Maersk Triple E class * Malaccamax * Panamax * Q-Max * Seawaymax * Suezmax * Oil tanker, Ultra Large Crude Carrier * Valemax * Oil tanker, VLCC


Notes


References


Citations


Sources

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


External links


Tanker ships

Ship sizes

Malaccamax

Ship sizes from handymax to ULCC

World ships database
{{Authority control Ships,