Did Titanic experience any angular shift when it turned hard to starboard/port?


chrismireya

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Did Titanic experience any roll/loll when it turned hard to starboard/port?

If Titanic was at or near top velocity prior to sighting of the iceberg, is it possible that it experience any yawning or rolling during the emergency "hard to starboard" maneuver? The reason that I ask is that so many illustrations, videos and, of course, movies depict the ship as striking the iceberg on an even keel.

Given the ship technology at the time and velocity of Titanic, is it possible that a sudden turn "hard to starboard" would have lifted the starboard side (and dipped the port) at the moment of collision? Even a few degrees shift in the vertical angle could make a forensic difference in terms of how Titanic struck the iceberg.
 
Mar 22, 2003
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Senator FLETCHER. Did it strike the bow or just back of the bow?
Mr. FLEET. Just about in front of the foremast.
Senator FLETCHER. Did it tilt the ship to any extent?
Mr. FLEET. She listed to port right afterwards.
Senator FLETCHER. To what extent?
Mr. FLEET. I could not say; a slight list.
Senator FLETCHER. Just immediately on striking the berg?
Mr. FLEET. Just afterwards.
Senator FLETCHER. Did it seem that the blow came beneath the surface of the water and caused her to shift?
Mr. FLEET. Yes, sir.
 
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chrismireya

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Senator FLETCHER. Did it strike the bow or just back of the bow?
Mr. FLEET. Just about in front of the foremast.
Senator FLETCHER. Did it tilt the ship to any extent?
Mr. FLEET. She listed to port right afterwards.
Senator FLETCHER. To what extent?
Mr. FLEET. I could not say; a slight list.
Senator FLETCHER. Just immediately on striking the berg?
Mr. FLEET. Just afterwards.
Senator FLETCHER. Did it seem that the blow came beneath the surface of the water and caused her to shift?
Mr. FLEET. Yes, sir.
Thanks.

I've aware of the testimony about a list to port immediately after the collision. My question mostly pertains to whether a list could be best explained as the turn ("hard a-starboard" and later "hard a-port") in regard to Murdoch's attempt to get avoid the iceberg. Many people seem to assume that the list to port is due to sudden water ingestion as a result of the collision.

So, I'm supposing the possibility of a list just before Titanic struck and an opposite list after it struck -- due to the attempt to avoid the berg. I realize that Fleet had a "bird's eye" view. However, if I were Frederick Fleet watching the rapidly-approaching iceberg from the crow's nest, I probably wouldn't notice anything until immediately after the collision either.

Are there any individuals knowledgeable to early-20th Century ocean liners regarding how noticeable such a hard turn would be? Would those turns "hard a-starboard" and "hard a-port" have shifted the axis of the ship to the point that the starboard may have lowered and risen a few feet as it attempted to avoid the collision?

Here's a video of a carrier during a full-speed rudder test:

I understand that the carrier uses modern technology for sharper turns and to minimize the dangers of sudden listing. However, I don't know how such a turn affected Titanic in terms of the center of gravity and any potential list to port and list to starboard as it tried to go around the iceberg.
 

Tim Gerard

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All boats and ships, when turning, will experience some sort of a heeling moment toward the outside of the turn. The force trying to heel the ship over is the centrifugal force (Fc), and as according to "Applied Naval Architecture" by Robert Zubaly, is a function of the ship's mass, forward velocity, and the turn radius. The centrifugal force acts in a tangential direction to the curvature of the turn at any particular moment. The angle the ship would heel during a turn is a function of the centrifugal force, the ship's displacement, draft, and center of gravity. I'll spare you the math but I can post it if you're interested.

I don't know the exact numbers in the Titanic's situation but my understanding is the Olympic Class ships had a fairly large turn radius when at normal cruising speed, which would result in a low centrifugal force, and that would result in a low, very likely not noticeable, turning heel angle.

I'm sure there are others on this forum who are more knowledgeable than I am regarding particulars with the Titanic, such as center of gravity or exact turn radius.
 
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Mar 22, 2003
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I looked at the heel during a turn question for an Olympic class ship, along with other turning parameters, some time ago. (The mathematics for the heel angle during a turn is covered in App. B.) It is covered in my article here: http://www.titanicology.com/Titanica/Two-Points-in-Thirty-Seven-Seconds.pdf.
By the way, the analysis assumed the ship carried a 0° list when not in a turn, which may not have been the case with Titanic on her last day due to an emptied starboard side coal bunker.
 
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Aly Jones

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Would those turns "hard a-starboard" and "hard a-port" have shifted the axis of the ship to the point that the starboard may have lowered and risen a few feet as it attempted to avoid the collision?
I know what you mean. As like in a car doing a two wheeler? SAM H mentioned about the starboard side *not having coal left on Starboard side* meaning that their was no counter balancing on that side of the ship.
Passengers were either awaken or lost their balance after the collision with berg, so they claim, but what if they were awaken or lost their balance before the collision and it was due to the sharp turn with a list? My last sentence question is speculation only.
Moderator's note: Edited to correct formatting. MAB
 
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Jim Currie

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Of course...a fast moving ship will noticeably heel to the outside of the turn. However, the extent to which such a heel is noticeable depend also on the Metacentric height...i.e.. in simple terms... whether or not she is a bit "wobbly".
A big merchant vessel at 22 knots would not start heeling immediately as with a vessel such with a fast torpedo boat does. In the case of Titanic, there was no time for such a heel to take place before impact. After impact...unlike the situation with the turning test done on Olympic... the dynamics of the situation completely changed.

As for lookouts in the nest ... they would not notice such a heel unless it was large. However, at the moment of impact, they did not experience anything. In fact, they thought they had just missed the thing.
 
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Rennette Marston

Rennette Marston
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Since the iceberg was almost off the Titanic's starboard side when she struck the berg and since the Titanic turned to port when the iceberg was near the midsection of the Titanic, I believe the angular shift to starboard (assuming there even was one) would've been hardly noticeable. Lookout Fleet said to Senator Fletcher in front of the U.S. Inquiry into the disaster that it was "a slight list," indicating that there was no angular shift or sharp change of course made by the Titanic. But I could be wrong.
 
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