Titanic Mast Head Lamp

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Titanic Mast Head Lamp

The Titanic's mast head lamp.

One of the artefacts photographed during the 1987 Titanic expedition. The lamp was later recovered and can be seen at displays of Titanic artefacts.

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Courtesy of Adam Jahiel (www.adamjahiel.com).

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  1. L. Marmaduke Collins said:

    Samuel Halpern:

  2. avatar

    Samuel Halpern said:

    What I am implying Capt. Collins in my article which can be accessed is that the masthead light of Titanic would be seen as bright as the star Castor in the constellation Gemini if it came above the horizon at a distance of 22 miles from an observer located on the upper bridge of a ship like the Californian. At 17 miles it would appear as bright as the star Spica in Virgo, and at 12 miles it would be a little brighter than the bright star Procyon in Canis minor. If you or anyone else wants to take this further, feel... Read full post

  3. L. Marmaduke Collins said:

    We know, from the evidence, that the masthead light seen by Lord, Groves and Stone was accompanied by starboard and port sidelights. In order for this to occur, the mystery ship had to be much closer than 12 miles.

  4. avatar

    Samuel Halpern said:

    At 12 miles away, Titanic's masthead light would appear as bright as a magnitude 0.25 star, or almost as bright as the star Rigel in Orion, and brighter than the star Procyon in Canis Minor. The rules in effect at the time for steamers required that a white masthead light be seen at a minimum distance of 5 miles to allow for the use of oil lamps. The minimum distance for sidelights were 2 miles. It is obvious that the reduced sidelight distance in the rules was to acknowledge the absorption due to the concentration of dyes used in the glass to get them to appear as red or green and the... Read full post

  5. avatar

    Michael H. Standart said:

    For discussion and debate of

  6. avatar

    Michael H. Standart said:

    Moderator's note: The posts relevant to this discussion have been moved to this new thread. Have fun fellas!

  7. L. Marmaduke Collins said:

    From the evidence it is clear that Californian's Groves, Stone, and Apprentice Gibson flashed numerous Morse lamp signals to the vessel they saw stopped approximately five miles away with all its navigation lights clearly visible. The evidence given into the Titanic disaster was that neither Fleet nor Lee, the lookouts, reported seeing any ship on the horizon while they were in the crow’s nest between the hours of 10 and 12. George Hogg, who relieved them at... Read full post

  8. avatar

    Samuel Halpern said:

    The Californian was swinging slowly to starboard. By the time Stone relieved Groves the ship had swung so the Titanic was direct on the starboard beam. Her head was facing ENE magnetic. Before that, according to Groves, she facing about NE magnetic. When he first saw the lights of the vessel approaching about 11:30 it was more than 2 points abaft the beam. The only navigation light that would have been visible would... Read full post

  9. Darin James Miller said:

    so is there any concrete evidence into the actual separation distance between the two vessels? also, what about the radio calls, it been said that the radio operator was asleep and could not have heard distress calls delivered from Titanic. ANy reference?

  10. avatar

    Samuel Halpern said:

    We cannot, and should not, rely on subjective estimates of distances based on nighttime observations. The only thing that people saw that night were the lights of another ship. From the Titanic they saw lights of steamer that... Read full post

  11. Mila said:

    Hi everybody, Is it know what distance the Titanic's masthead lamp was able to lit up?

  12. avatar

    Jim Currie said:

    Hello Mila. The regulation distance was 5 miles with the naked eye. It was visible around the horizon for 225 degrees...112.5 degrees on either side of right ahead. In practice, it would have been visible a great deal further with binoculars or a telescope. You will see claims on this and other sites that it was seen at distances greater than 12 miles but in practice, even in the best of conditions. that would have been highly unlikely.

  13. Mila said:

    Hello Jim, I probably did not formulate my question correctly. I was asking for how many... Read full post

  14. Aaron_2016 said:

    Not sure if the light could illuminate anything ahead. If it did, then it would hamper the vision of the lookouts which is why the forward deck had to be dark during the night. Regarding the distance that her masthead light could be seen. I have seen ship's lights appear more than 20 miles away when there is refraction. Or is the correct term 'looming'? Lightoller mentioned how lights could be seen 60 miles away when they are looming above the horizon. Q - The man on the look-out is not always standing with the binoculars up to his eyes? A - No, certainly not. Q - They are there for... Read full post

  15. Mila said:

    Hi Aaron, then according to you I should turn off the headlights off my car, when I am driving at night time because they hamper my vision? I don't think so. My vision is hampered not by my headlights, but the headlights of the cars that are moving in opposite direction, towards me. I understand that some other lights could have impacted the vision of the... Read full post

  16. Aaron_2016 said:

    Hi Aaron, then according to you I should turn off the headlights off my car, when I am driving at night time because they hamper my vision? I don't think so. My vision is hampered not by my headlights, but the headlights of the cars that are moving in opposite direction, towards me. I understand that some other lights could have impacted the vision of the lookouts, but the masthead light much above their height would probably have not. I cannot find it now, but I believed somebody from another ship did testify they only were able to see an iceberg,... Read full post

  17. Mila said:

    Headlights are important but the Titanic was not fitted with headlights. Merely navigational lights so that other ships could see her, and were not intended as a means to illuminate the area around the ship. It's like holding very bright torch 145 feet above sea-level. Too high to light up the sea around the ship. If she had a searchlight as bright as a lighthouse then that would be a different matter. The looming or refraction (which was recorded by other steamers) would create the impression the black mass was just a low cloud which... Read full post

  18. avatar

    David G. Brown said:

    One of the classic mistakes in researching Titanic is to take automobile experience to sea. A ship is as different from a car as a rhino is from a clam. But, we have all grown up with cars for transportation while few have had serious "bridge time" at sea. This "car to sea" mistake is not confined to amateurs. When I presented the Grounding White Paper to the Society of Naval Architects, one of the august members described how by turning to the left Titanic had pulled its bow clear and the stern naturally followed. While I'm sure the man knew Froude's Law and how to calculate G-Z, he... Read full post

  19. Mila said:

    Is this your imagination or Fleet said he saw something like that? Why to speculate what Fleet could have seen if IIP clearly states that an iceberg cannot be spotted before it is 1/4 miles away? The Captain of the Carpathia testified they had a few lookouts, and their elevation was lower than the Titanic's lookouts, and they were looking for icebergs all right, but still they were unable to see them closer than "a mile and a half to two miles away", and maybe by that time there... Read full post

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Encyclopedia Titanica (2013) Titanic Mast Head Lamp ( ref: #19432, published 25 April 2013, generated 25th July 2021 11:04:53 AM); URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/titanic-mast-head-lamp.html