Open main menu

Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/863

This page needs to be proofread.


Protecting Ships from Torpedoes

A U-shaped buffer is provided, in which the hull of the vessel floats

��IS there no defense against the torpedo and the mine? Can nothing be done to protect a Lusitania or a Laconia ?

Xaval architects have succeeded in giv- ing warships some measure of protection by subdividing their hulls into literally hundreds of cells. When the battle- ship Auda- cious struck a mine she stayed afloat for over four hours be- cause of her multi -cellu- lar construc- tion. Why is not the same idea applied to merchant vessels? Sim- ply because it is prohib- itively ex- pen s i v e .

Even so, the Lusitania was built not unlike a warship ; for she had a double hull and was subdivided after a fashion. Because she was not minutely subdivided, like a battleship, she went down in twenty minutes.

Why not use torpedo nets? They have proven of no avail. But the idea of catching a torpedo and stopping it before it ever reaches a ship seems sound. Ac- cordingly, we find that Thomas Thurston, a naval architect connected with one of the large British shipbuilding firms, has in- vented and patented a system for protect- ing ships from the effects of a submarine explosion, which system depends on the principle of providing a buffer for a ship.

As the illustration shows, Thurston's buffer is a U-shaped structure, not unlike a floating dr>'-dock, in which floats the hull of the vessel to be protected. This U- shaped structure comprises side walls con-

���The protecting U-shaped structure is compxised of side walls connected by a bottom beneath the ship's hull. It is a mere shell, as may be seen from the diagrammatic drawing

��nected by a bottom which lies beneath the ship's hull. The U-shaped structure lies at a suitable depth so that the ship to be protected can be floated in and secured to the structure. Since the protecting struc- ture is merely a shell, it offers but little

resistance to the water.

It is evi- dent that if a torpedo or a mine were to explode, the U-shaped protector would be destroyed, but the ship itself would be saved.

Even if the ship were damaged to some extent the injury would prob- ably be slight and could be easily repaired by the ship's mechanic.

��The Perfect Poise — How We Can Attain It

FOR the perfect physical poise we don't need to study pictures in the modern magazines. The ideal form is well expressed in sculpture dating back to 500-600 B. C, when the Spartans were masters of Greece. These ancients carried themselves in such a way that the muscles, organs, circulation and even the brain and nervous system were placed in harmonious relationship. How can we attain the same poise in walk- ing? Briefly, by setting the shoulders back and squaring them evenly, by carrying the chest high and well arched fo^^vard, by keeping the stomach in and the neck per- pendicular, like a column, and by forcing the chin in. Whether sitting, standing or walking, these principles involve a correct and graceful carriage.

��847

�� �