Man, Machine, Nature

Some of the research for my post yesterday naturally diversified into the building of the Titanic. As stated in one of my first posts Domestic Sub-Mariner, my first working backgrounds were in engine-based careers; creating with metal also providing a sculptural interest later on when I learned how to weld by arc and mig. The following links then are a spattering of those interests and ones which I wished to share in my research journal.

One fact that interested me was the amount of coal needed to fire the 29 boilers on the Titanic (around 650 tons per day), and the amount of waste that this would incur (100 tone of ash). This was a fact that I'd not really thought about, even though I had lived for years in houses heated only by solid fuel fires that needed cleaned every day; but as I found out, the engine room dealt with this problem in the form of Ash Ejectors.

'The device employed was the Ash Ejector. There were two in each large boiler room, recessed into the coal bunkers at various locations. To dispose of the ash raked from the furnace, a trimmer would fill a barrow and wheel it over to the nearest ash ejector, which consisted of a large grating over a hopper that was slightly above the level of the stokehold floor. The ashes were discharged by shoveling them into the hopper, where they then were drawn down by the rush of air to a water jet which was being discharged through a long inclined pipe, at a pressure of about 150 lb., being maintained by a large duplex feed pump. The water jet carried the ashes up the inclined pipe till, at the upper bend they were deflected and discharged well clear of the ship's side above the water line.' (taken from above link)

Although there is a wealth of photographs and information regarding the Titanic on the internet, I've listed below another few links to diagrams and to the research site that currently investigates the wreck. One of the really interesting links however is the Encyclopedia Titanica. This has comprehensive lists of all passengers and crew on board. This is extremely well researched and has an individual biography for each person, providing a really lovely intimate narrative of the hopes, dreams and lives of the individual, some of whom were locked into the depths of the ship to allow more room for the richer passengers in the lifeboats. Also of interest therefore are the facts and figures of Titanic, which includes a list of all the food taken on the journey and the price of a ticket.