Marine engineering includes the engineering of boats, ships, oil rigs
and any other marine vessel or structure, as well as oceanographic
engineering. Specifically, marine engineering is the discipline of
applying engineering sciences, including mechanical engineering,
electrical engineering, electronic engineering, and computer science,
to the development, design, operation and maintenance of watercraft
propulsion and on-board systems and oceanographic technology. It
includes but is not limited to power and propulsion plants, machinery,
piping, automation and control systems for marine vehicles of any
kind, such as surface ships and submarines.
Marine engineering specialties
2.1 Naval architect
2.2 Mechanical engineering
2.3 Oceanographic engineering
2.4 Offshore engineering
3 Challenges specific to marine engineering
3.1 Hydrodynamic loading
4.2 Professional Institutions
5 See also
Archimedes is traditionally regarded as the first marine engineer,
having developed a number of marine engineering systems in antiquity.
Modern marine engineering dates back to the beginning of the
Industrial Revolution (early 1700s). In 1712 Thomas Newcomen, a
blacksmith, created a steam powered engine to pump water out of mines.
Robert Fulton successfully used a steam engine to propel a
vessel through the water. Fulton's ship used the engine to power a
small wooden paddle wheel as its propulsion system. The integration of
steam engines into ships was the start of the marine engineering
Paddle wheel ships were the front runner of the industry for the next
thirty years till the next type of propulsion came around. Only twelve
years after Fulton’s Clermont had her first voyage, the Savannah
marked the first sea voyage from America to Europe. Around 50 years
later the steam powered paddle wheels had a peak with the creation of
the Great Eastern, which was as big as one of the cargo ships of
today, 700 feet in length, weighing 22,000 tons. The Great Eastern was
said to be ahead of its time and was destined for failure. Since the
1800s there have been many improvements to the design of engines and
propellers. The maritime industry holds 90% of all international
Marine engineers work on more than just engines in ships. Marine
engineers are also responsible for building and maintaining offshore
oil rigs. These oil rigs were first made by Henry L. Williams in
Marine engineering specialties
Naval architects are concerned with the overall design of the ship and
its propulsion through the water.
Mechanical engineers design the main propulsion plant, the powering
and mechanization aspects of the ship functions such as steering,
anchoring, cargo handling, heating, ventilation, air conditioning
interior and exterior communication, and other related requirements.
Electrical power generation
Electrical power generation and electrical power distribution systems
are typically designed by their suppliers; only installation is the
design responsibility of the marine engineer.
Oceanographic engineering is concerned with mechanical, electrical,
and electronic, and computing technology deployed to support
oceanography, and also falls under the umbrella of marine engineering,
especially in Britain, where it is covered by the same professional
organisation, the IMarEST.
Civil engineering for an offshore environment, the design and
construction of fixed and floating marine structures, such as oil
platforms and offshore wind farms is generally called offshore
Challenges specific to marine engineering
In the same way that civil engineers design to accommodate wind loads
on building and bridges, maritime engineers design to accommodate a
ship being flexed or a platform being struck by waves millions of
times in its life.
A naval architect, like an airplane designer, is concerned with
stability. The naval architect's job is different, insofar as a ship
operates in two fluids simultaneously: water and air.
The chemical environment faced by ships and offshore structures is far
harsher than most anywhere on land, save chemical plants. Marine
engineers are concerned with surface protection and preventing
galvanic corrosion in every project.
In 2012, the average annual earnings for marine engineers in the U.S.
were $96,140 with average hourly earnings of $46.22.
Maritime universities are dedicated to teaching and training students
in maritime professions. Marine engineers generally have a bachelor's
degree in marine engineering, marine engineering technology, or marine
systems engineering. Practical training is valued by employers
alongside the bachelor's degree.
Society for Underwater Technology
Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers
Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers (SNAME) is a
worldwide society that is focused on the advancement of the maritime
industry. SNAME was founded in 1893.
American Society of Naval Engineers
American Society of Naval Engineers (ASNE)
Engineering officer (ship)
^ Kane, J.R. (1971). Marine Engineering. New York: SNAME(page 2-3)
^ Bruce A. Wells, (2003) Offshore Petroleum History, American Oil and
Gas Historical Society. Retrieved 4/10/14
^ Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. (January 8,
2014) Marine Engineers and Naval Architects, Bureau of Labor
Statistics. Retrieved April 2, 2014
^ Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers(2013) About SNAME,
Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers. Retrieved April 2,
Electrical and electronics engineering
List of engineering branches
Annapolis Royal Generating Station
Marine current power
Ocean thermal energy conversion
Pelamis wave energy converter
SDE Sea Waves Power Plant
Wind power (offshore)