Sailing Ships / See Types of Ships

In this post “Ship Reviews/ Assessment”, you’ll get to know different types Of ships, advantages and disadvantages of ships and lots more.

In contrast to a boat, which is typically a relatively small craft, a ship is any large floating vessel capable of traversing wide waters. The phrase was once used to describe sailing vessels with 3 or more masts; today, it typically refers to a vessel with a displacement of more than 500 tons. Irrespective of size, submersible ships are typically referred to as boats.

Classes of Ships

Cargo carriers, passenger carriers, industrial ships, service vessels, and noncommercial assorted make up the vast bulk of ships that are neither yachts nor military boats. Each classification can be further broken down, with the first classification having by far the most subdivisions.

The majority of service ships are tugs or towing boats whose main job it is to give other boats propulsion. Since the majority of them operate in harbors and inland waters and only have to transport a propulsion system and a modest amount of fuel, they are typically small in size. Oceangoing tugs and towboats are few in number and small in size compared to the vastly more countless cargo ships, however the towing of massive drilling rigs for the petroleum industry and an incidental ocean salvage operation (such as towing a disabled ship) require craft bigger and more maneuverable than the quite prevalent inshore service vessels.

Commercial vessels

Ships classified as industrial are designed to conduct an industrial activity at sea. An illustration would be a mother ship for a fishing fleet that produces fish into fillets, canned fish, or fish meal. Some floating oil production or drilling rigs are designed like ships. Additionally, some dangerous industrial pollutants are burned off on ships equipped with the required incinerators and auxiliary machinery far out at sea. Industrial ships can frequently be identified by the buildings required for their specific functions. For instance, the incinerators and discharge stacks on incinerator ships make them easy to spot.

Passenger carriers

The 2 kinds of passenger ships that are most common are cruise ships and ferries.

Cruise liners

Cruise ships are evolved from transatlantic ocean liners, whose services have been replaced by jet aircraft since the middle of the 20th century. Even in the 1990s, there were still some liners from the 1950s and 1960s that had undergone only minor modifications to make them suitable for tropical cruising, such as the inclusion of swimming pools and other facilities to fit warm-latitude cruising regions.

Nevertheless, the majority of cruise ships currently in operation were constructed after 1970 with the cruise sector in mind. They are distinguished by huge superstructures with numerous decks because the majority of them are built to carry enormous numbers of people ((possibly several thousand), and because their main courses are in warm waters, they are frequently completely painted white. They have a “wedding cake” look that can be seen from a long distance because to these two traits.

A deeper inspection typically indicates that there are many motor launches on board that are used to transport passengers ashore. In order to expedite the transfer of passengers to the launches and act as docking amenities for small sporting boats, several cruise ships incorporate stern ramps similar to those found on cargo-carrying roll-on/roll-off ships.

The cruise ship designer’s main objective is to provide the optimum level of safety, convenience, and enjoyment for the passengers, which is presented by the aforementioned aspects.

Therefore, it is crucial to isolate machinery noise and vibration. Even more crucial is reducing the hull’s rolling and pitching motions because no amount of grandeur can make up for a mild attack of seasickness. Propulsive power is often significantly lower than that seen in the ancient ocean liners because cruising is a low-speed operation. The need for electrical power, on the other side, is typically substantially higher, mostly due to the needs of air-conditioning plants in tropical waters.

A “central station” electric plant, or an array of 4 or more similar medium-speed diesel engines powering 60-hertz alternating-current electrical generators, provides electricity to the majority of large cruise ships built since 1990. Every power requirement on board the ship is met by this electrical plant, such as propulsion. Because there is only one supplier of electricity, propulsion power may easily be switched to handle increased air-conditioning demands whilst the ship is in port.


Ferries are boats of any dimensions that travel defined routes over brief cross-water passages carrying passengers and (in several circumstances) their automobiles. Numerous ferry services have been excluded by the construction of enormous bridges and tunnels, however they are still acceptable where the waters are too dangerous for fixed crossings. The size and level of lodging on board differ significantly among vessels. Some on longer routes provide cabins for the night and even come close to matching the caliber of living arrangements found on cruise ships.

All ships usually use low-level side doors or stern or bow ramps similar to those found on roll-on/roll-off cargo ships to load vehicles onto one or more decks.

The “double-ender” is a unique type of ferry designed specifically for navigating harbour waters. The typical vessel has loading ramps, control stations, rudders, and propellers on both ends. It can typically support 4 lanes of traffic traveling side by side and up to 100 four-wheeled vehicles. A ferry system of this kind always includes special docks that are designed to match the edges of the ferry and equipped with movable ramps to accommodate fluctuations in water thresholds.

Another unique kind of ferry is a fast boat, which frequently has a catamaran (twin-hulled) design. Usually discovered on short runs in shielded waters where the carriage of vehicles is not necessary, this type is noticed there. Catamaran hulls can be thin and shaped like a knife, which enables them to move at high speed-to-length ratios without using too much propellant power. But while turbine engines have been installed in a few cases, the engines are typically highspeed diesels.

Carriers of cargo

The kind of cargo a ship carries can be used to identify it, particularly as the equipment used to handle the cargo is frequently very obvious. The tendency in this area is toward specialty, as mentioned below. The growth of different cargo vessel models is one effect. The current discourse is restricted to a handful categories that are visually unique and are illustrated by numerous ships.


Ships that transport liquid cargo in mass (typically petroleum and its products) can be identified by their lack of cargo hatches and external handling equipment.
They can as well be easily distinguished when completely filled by their scant freeboard, a situation that is acceptable since the upper section is not compromised by hatches.

The tanker is essentially a floating collection of tanks housed inside a ship-shaped hull that is propelled by a solitary machinery plant at the stern. Throughout the entire length of the ship, every tank is essentially the same as the one before it. To make pumping easier during cold weather, the tanks are equipped with heating coils. The major, or high-suction, pipes are located inside the tanks and extend many feet from the floor in order to avert sludge.

The minimum level of liquid in the tank is removed below them by low-suction piping, also known as stripping lines.

Either through open trunks extending from the weather deck or from the suction lines with the pumps in the reversed position, tanks are filled. Tankers, with the exception of military supply types, typically transport cargo from the point of origin to a refinery or other terminal with few maneuvers along the way.

As a result, the machinery plant is only required to generate the cruise power for the ship at a stable speed; as a result, extensive use of automatic controls is feasible, resulting in a crew that is as small as feasible. The tanker lends itself to mass production probably more than any other ship category because of the interior’s straightforwardness.

The tanker has paved the way for the swift increase in ship size thanks to the low cost per ton for interim building and outfitting as well as the confined crew prerequisites. Following the 1979 oil crisis, crude oil prices fell, which in turn caused tanker sizes to shrink. However, at the moment, a few ships had already approached 1,300 feet (400 meters) in length, 80 feet in loaded draft, and a displacement of 500,000 tons.

Ship containers

Similar to tankers, container ships lack cargo handling equipment. This is because it is customary to place the container-handling cranes at shore terminals instead of on board the ship. Unlike tankers, container ships need big hatches in the deck to store their cargo, which is made up of uniform containers that are typically 20 or 40 feet long.

A cellular grid of compartments opening to the weather deck is installed below decks on the ship.

These are intended to collect the containers and keep it in position until offloading is viable at the delivery point. Containers are put onto the hatch coverings on deck in 1 or 2 layers, based on the size and stability of the ship, and the ship is stocked with cargo to the level of the deck.

One drawback is that because containers take up space and, due to their square shape, can not completely fill the crevices caused by a ship-shaped hull form, each ship cannot carry as much total volume of goods with containers as it can with ordinary bulk stowage. In addition, if the entire potential savings are to be achieved, the ports that receive or send aboard container ship must make a pretty significant financial investment in port facilities, like special berths, weight-handling machinery, storage rooms, and links to road transport.

Moderate-sized merchant ships designed for speeds more than 20 knots are called container ships. To increase container space, tiny, efficient diesel power plants are frequently used. A symmetrical loading or unloading without an extreme amount of list or trim is made possible by sophisticated equipment like mooring winches that ensure proper placement of the ship under cranes in port.

The following are the benefits and drawbacks of water transportation (ships):


Lower Cost of Maintenance:

Road and rail transportation have quite significant maintenance costs, however water transportation has relatively low maintenance costs.


Compared to rail and road transportation, the transit mode is relatively inexpensive.

Effective for Bulky Wares

Water transportation makes it simple and inexpensive to move hefty and large items.

Beneficial in Natural Disasters

When rail and road transportation is halted by natural disasters like floods and rain, water transport can be used to carry out relief efforts.

Effective in Defense:

Additionally, the nation’s defense depends on the development of shipping. Second line of defense is another name for it.

Vital to International Trade

In international trade, water transportation is vital. The majority of India’s exports are transported by water.

Negative aspects of water transportation

The below are drawbacks of water transportation (ships):

Slow Pace

A slow mode of transportation. The rivers’ water levels drop when the monsoon fails, making passage challenging.

More Perilous

Given that there is usually a chance that ships or boats will capsize, using the water for transportation is riskier than using other methods.

Leave a Comment