Archive through February 2009

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From The Shipping Times:

Cunard owners sue Rolls Royce over Mermaid pods

Carnival Corp are suing Rolls Royce over problems with the Mermaid propulsion system fitted to the QUEEN MARY 2

The owners of Cunard Line are demanding more than $100 million from the British engineering firm for what they allege is a defective and unproven system which they claim Rolls Royce "defrauded and deceived" them into buying.
More at
>>$100M sounds like they want to put new pods on her.<<

The lines would be happy if they would work as advertised and do so reliably. That's the problem: They don't.

Joe Russo

>>>That's the problem: They don't.<<

Does this go for all pods, or just the RR ones?
Is a mermaid pod a certain kind of pod or just a trademark name?
>>Is a mermaid pod a certain kind of pod or just a trademark name?<<

A trademark. Similar versions have been known as Azipods. Don't get Captain Erik started on the problems he's had with these things. In principle they're a good idea. You can turn the ship on a dime and that comes in real handy if you're trying to get a very large ship into a small or restricted port like Acapulco, (I've been there) and have no tugboats to give you a hand. You can bring the ship alongside, or warp away from the quaywall without assistance.

The problem is that these beasts have been cranky and prone to breakdown and this hasn't endeared them to the people who have to deal with it when one or more of them grind up a bearing, blow a seal, strip some gears or otherwise go kaput on you.
From The Travel News Gazette:

Cunard’s Storied Transatlantic Crossings to Feature Literary Luminaries

2009, guests sailing a Transatlantic Crossing aboard Cunard’s flagship ocean liner Queen Mary 2 will have an opportunity to meet and mingle with some of the literary world’s most fascinating personalities. Among the best-selling authors and playwrights scheduled to sail are E.L. Doctorow, Erica Jong, Amy Bloom, John Guare and Susan Cheever. They are among several celebrated, award-winning authors who are set to infuse Cunard Insights, the line’s top-rated onboard enrichment programme, with a dose of literary lore from April through September, 2009. Guests can look forward to engaging Q&A discussions, lectures, book signings and readings with select titles to be featured in the Cunard Book Club.
Details at,english/
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