Friday, June 06, 2008

20,000 Pixels Under The Sea.

The neatest thing I've seen on the interwebz in a while: Detailed sonar pics of shipwrecks in Scapa Flow.

One of the more interesting things there is image of the wreck site of SMS Bayern. Note her gunhouses all lined up in a neat row on the sea bed. I remember being surprised the first time I read of a battleship's turrets falling out as she capsized, then realizing that you really don't need anything other than gravity to keep a 2000 ton turret stuck to the ship as long as it remains right side up. (And if it's no longer right side up, who cares if the turrets stay attached, really?)


Anathema said...

To this day, modern warships (at least the ones in the US Navy) continue this. Most of the large (HEAVY) items on the deck of a ship are attached with shear-bolts, designed to allow the item (like a 5-inch gun mount on a destroyer or cruiser) to slide off the deck if the ship lists past about 45 degrees. This is to reduce the top weight of the ship, and hopefully prevent it from turning completely over in extremely heavy seas.

Anonymous said...

Utterly off-topic: WHAT DID YOU DO TO YOUR HAIR? --Er, template.

And just in case it's not universally visible, I'm in Opera, and the text background looks like a flamestitch couch cover had backseat sex with a test pattern and nine months later output this tiled background.


Anonymous said...

OK. That's weird. Now it's gone.


Now to go check and see if Roberta's BG has magically fixed itself.


Anonymous said...

Ditto on what Anathema says, there is more than gravity but gravity is certainly enough.

the pawnbroker said...

wow...three lessons in one...

a history of naval war vessels...

the amazing technical ability to see what is there and what was there...

and underlying all of that...heh...
that beautiful machinery and engineering...and used as ballast no


Anonymous said...

We shoot these type of surveys all the time in the oil industry. This morning I was on the phone arranging a multi-beam survey for oyster reefs prior to a drilling program. It is a normal part of well site or pipeline work. The problem is that few outside the industry ever see the data we collect.

Do a search on shallow hazards surveys and you will find a ton of information about multi-beam, SSS and other techniques we use like boomers and pingers.

We have found old wells, drill rigs, ships, drill pipes, derricks, subs (surprising number of those down in the gulf of mexico), cruisers and battleships (North Sea etc.) It never ceases to amazing me how much junk is on the bottom of the ocean.

Anonymous said...

There's a song by the Australian Eric Bogle about his country's World War 1 vets. It's a few years old now and worth a listen if you get the chance. Anyway, there's some really good lines in it and one came to mind as I was looking at the linked sonar pics.

'Proud old heroes from a forgotten war.'

Don't know why, just did.

Sendarius said...


For the uninformed:

Australia has a long Irish tradition: I guess the British sent a lot of Irish convicts half-way around the world to get rid of them. Don't let Eric's accent fool you into thinking that this isn't Australian.

"Waltzing Matilda" is NOT our national anthem although many Australians would prefer it over "Advance Australia Fair" (the official anthem).

In the song, Matilda is a "swag" or bedroll, and Waltzing Matilda is living off the land, carrying all your possessions rolled into your swag - often while looking for work. I guess the same sort of thing went on in the US during the Depression.

Have a listen - it'll bring a lump to the throat of many.

Sendarius said...

Well that'll larn me!!

Eric Bogle is of course SCOTTISH.

I have no idea quite what made me type "Irish".

That buzzing sound you hear is my paternal great-grandfather from Glasgow spinning in his grave.