Water Pressure Against the Hull


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boilers could not explode ayway because their steam pressure allowed only pumps and dynamo running..
there was not strong eoungh pressure for cold water to cause boilers to explode,howewer we did not explore the boiler room3 , we dont know if WTD between br 3 and 2 was closed,there was probably found wall of rust so same between engine and turbine room - no passage. access to escape ladders is also impossible because of collapsed decks,we cannot explore boiler rooms, only one attempt was made to explore boiler room 5 or 6 but it was shortly aborted because of damage threat because of sharp rusticles.simply too dangerous to explore them... and there is o shell plating breach to look into boiler rooms either,all we can observe is boiler room 2 and remains of boiler room 1,only boiler room 2 boilers show damage by implosion,on the boilers from nr1 there is very little damage,maybe attempt to hot-start them was attemtped (pouring hot water into boilers and shoveling burning coal from another boiler)

tthe explosions would be more caused by breaking apart decks,also wood can give sometimes "shooting" sound when breaking,. sparks might be caused by electricity failing? steam clouds would happen if links between boilers and engines were shattered. first steam line to get hit by ship breakup was emergency one,main steam pipe was bit lower

britannic was upgraded and his hull was better quality and could withstand damage of mine or torpedo,loss even of six compartments was not giving lethal wound
(only opened iluminators caused britannic to sink as bulkheads were holding water back but water coming throught iluminators could flood all spaces so this is why britannic was doomed)

also when britannic had six flooded his rudder and propellers would rise out of water,propellers partilly while rudder would be entirely out of it,we know that britannic had rudder malfunction at end of sinking when engines were used for last time,steering with propellers was done but results were very litle.
 

Aaron_2016

Former Member
What would be your best guess as to the cause of this explosion?

A number of scenarios, but without investigating the interior it would be difficult to determine exactly what caused the incredible explosion that survivors witnessed. Everything seemed to focus on number 2 funnel, possibly number 3 as well, with heavy smoke bursting out, and coal which ejected out with such force that it landed near lifeboat 2.

It reminds me of the SS Norway disaster which killed 8 people. A summary from wiki says:

"The Norway was seriously damaged by a boiler explosion at 6:37 a.m. that killed eight crew members, and injured seventeen, as superheated steam flooded the boiler room, and blasted into crew quarters above through ruptured decking. None of the passengers were injured. The National Transportation Safety Board determined that "the probable cause of the boiler rupture on the Norway was the deficient boiler operation, maintenance, and inspection practices."

RIP to the 8 victims



Titanic's explosions were far more powerful as Mr. Wennerstrom was blown into the air. Mr. Weikman was also blown across and said - "I think the boilers blew up about in the middle of the ship. The explosion blew me along with a wall of water.....There was a great number of people killed by the explosion." Mr. Hyman gave a more gruesome account. "There came a terrible explosion, and I could see men, women and pieces of the ship blown into the air from the after deck. Later I saw bodies partly blown to pieces floating around, and I am sure more than a hundred persons were blown off into the sea by that explosion. A terrible hissing of steam began and the awful cry went on. I tried to close my ears, but there was some mysterious attraction and I had to hear that cry. The hissing and screaming kept up, and finally the ship seemed to right itself."

It certainly doesn't sound like a gradual bending and buckling of her steel. It reminds me of the big explosion that occurred on the Lusitania and possibly blew the Titanic's second funnel off by the force of the explosion which created the impression to some survivors that she had broken in two near the 2nd funnel.


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Let me reiterate what my late sailor friend Dennis Hale said. He was the sole survivor of a steel ship built in Titanic's era that broke apart and sank here on the Great Lakes. I asked him the sound and appearance of the hull being torn in two. "They were explosions," was his response, "real explosions with flashes of light." He described the sound as deafening despite storm winds blowing in his ears.

Theories be damned, that was the experience of a many who survived a breakup not too much different from what Titanic encountered. "They were explosions."

-- David G. Brown
 
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we all know double bottom area between engine room and boiler room 1 was constructed with some flaw...

What flaw would that be? There was a discontinuity in the keel where it was 6 feet deep instead of 5 but that was to provide some extra support for the engines. Absent the collision with the iceberg and uncontrollable ingress of seawater into the hull, it just wouldn't have been a factor in anything. It certainly caused no trouble for the Olympic during her career.
 

Kyle Naber

Member
There’s nothing illogical about something failing as a result of unsupported weight. The Britannic, while similar in design, cannot be used as a direct comparison due to flooding discrepancies and list measurements.
 
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Rancor

Member
I would think if a boiler explosion was to occur due to flooding it would have been during the rapid inundation of boiler room 6 while the boilers were at full pressure. I haven't read anything about such an explosion being reported. Once the boilers in the precceding boiler rooms had their fires drawn and pressure released I would think such an explosion would be even less likely.
 
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well none of ships that had boilers similar to titanic had boilers exploding caused by flooding,there was 1 more ship other than titanic that got boiler room under pressure flooded but it did not explode
 

Aaron_2016

Former Member
I would think if a boiler explosion was to occur due to flooding it would have been during the rapid inundation of boiler room 6 while the boilers were at full pressure. I haven't read anything about such an explosion being reported. Once the boilers in the precceding boiler rooms had their fires drawn and pressure released I would think such an explosion would be even less likely.

I believe there was a great amount of steam inside the vessel when she exploded and broke apart. Wireless operator Harold Cottam said - "I was helping the Titanic to communicate.....He said he could not read signals because of the escape of steam and the air through the expansion joint, so I helped him with the communications.....The water rushing into the hollow of the ship was driving the air through the expansion joint....It would not be the noise only; it would be the trembling of the ship."

Harold Bride said - "The noise of escaping steam directly over our cabin caused a deal of trouble to Mr. Phillips in reading the replies to our distress call, and this I also reported to Captain Smith, who by some means managed to get it abated."

We don't know what the Captain did, but the steam might have been redirected using valves and pipes or allowed to build up in some other part of the vessel until it burst out, or possibly vented out by other means. Possibly a mechanical or human error caused a catastrophe inside.

In the final moments of the disaster the steam was still venting out / bursting out. Jack Thayer said - "The exhaust steam was still roaring. The lights were still strong. The band, with life preservers on, was still playing.......It was now about 2:15 am. We could see the water creeping up the deck, as the ship was going down by the head at a pretty fast rate. The water was right up to the bridge. There must have been over 60 feet of it on top of the bow. As the water gained headway along the deck, the crowd gradually moved with it, always pushing toward the floating stern and keeping in from the rail of the ship as far as they could. We were a mass of hopeless, dazed humanity, attempting, as the Almighty and Nature made us, to keep our final breath until the last possible moment. The roaring of the exhaust steam suddenly stopped, making a great quietness, in spite of many mixed noises of hurrying human effort and anguish. As I recall it, the lights were still on, even then. There seemed to be quite a ruddy glare, but it was a murky light, with distant people and objects vaguely outlined. The stars were brilliant and the water oily. Occasionally there had been a muffled thud or deadened explosion within the ship. Now, without warning, she seemed to start forward, moving forward and into the water at an angle of about 15 degrees. This movement, with the water rushing up toward us was accompanied by a rumbling roar, mixed with more muffled explosions."


When the explosive sound was heard it was mixed with the sounds of steam exploding out.

Frank Osman said - "After she got to a certain angle she exploded, broke in halves, the after part came up right again....You could see the explosions by the smoke coming right up the funnels....It was all black; looked like as if it was lumps of coal, and all that. Pretty big lumps. Just after the explosion. Through the funnels. Steam and very black smoke."

Jack Thayer saw the 2nd funnel fall over - "with a mass of sparks and steam coming out of it. I saw the ship in a sort of a red glare, and it seemed to me that she broke in two just in front of the third funnel."

Mr. Hyman heard the hissing of steam as she exploded and broke apart. "There came a terrible explosion, and I could see men, women and pieces of the ship blown into the air from the after deck. Later I saw bodies partly blown to pieces floating around, and I am sure more than a hundred persons were blown off into the sea by that explosion. A terrible hissing of steam began and the awful cry went on. I tried to close my ears, but there was some mysterious attraction and I had to hear that cry. The hissing and screaming kept up, and finally the ship seemed to right itself."


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Aaron_2016

Former Member
well none of ships that had boilers similar to titanic had boilers exploding caused by flooding,there was 1 more ship other than titanic that got boiler room under pressure flooded but it did not explode


Many ships were reported to have sunk or suffered serious damage owing to boiler explosions between 1900 - 1914. Even the Empress of Ireland was reported to have sunk and almost broke in two because of exploding boilers e.g.


Sinking of the Empress of Ireland.

empress.png


Aboard the Titanic a number of survivors believed the terrific explosion and breaking of the vessel was caused by her boilers e.g. 2nd officer Lightoller - "Certainly, I think it was the boilers exploded."


boilers1aa.png



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Aaron_2016

Former Member
There’s nothing illogical about something failing as a result of unsupported weight. The Britannic, while similar in design, cannot be used as a direct comparison due to flooding discrepancies and list measurements.

The bending theory I understand focuses entirely on how much weight was suspended in the air. Since the Britannic had her enormous stern suspended in the air for a considerable time and yet she did not bend or break, not to mention a large number of other large vessels that had their bows and stern suspended in the air and did not bend or break, I find it very unlikely that the Titanic broke because of her suspended stern, especially since a number of survivors put the timing of the break when the sea was approaching the first funnel. She then exploded and her bow lurched violently and went dark. At that moment everyone who was not facing the Titanic in the lifeboats would turn and see just her stern with lights illuminating everything aft of her fourth funnel as it broke off and rose up and settled back.

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Kyle Naber

Member
Yes, but there have been studies by reputable naval architects who have studied down to the plate density, material, thickness, and state that Titanic, in a perfect world, would have broken apart at a time when the ship was at roughly a 23 degree angle of slope. They would have reached that conclusion without survivor accounts.
 

Aaron_2016

Former Member
Thanks, but did they do the same tests with other large ships like the Britannic which did not bend or break to see if their thesis was right or wrong by comparison? The Titanic listed heavily to port which would put enormous weight on one side and allow her to break at a much shallower angle. Did they include the strong list to port? If they assumed she was on a level keel then already their conclusions on the angle of her break would be incorrect.

Two famous quotes that come to mind:

Carl Sagan (1980)
“Science is a self-correcting process. To be accepted, new ideas must survive the most rigorous standards of evidence and scrutiny.”

Lewis Thomas (1980)
“Science is founded on uncertainty. Each time we learn something new and surprising, the astonishment comes with the realization that we were wrong before. In truth, whenever we discover a new fact it involves the elimination of old ones.”


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Rob Lawes

Member
Aaron_2016 (2018)

"The testimony of a dazed and shocked survivor recorded a while after the event and viewed through the prism of sensationalist newspaper reports designed to sell copy to the masses, should always be viewed with a greater degree of accuracy than hard scientific research that draws upon all aspects to form an educated conclusion"

;)
 
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