World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Ship class

 

Ship class

Two of the three Olympic-class ocean liners that were built; the Olympic (left) and the Titanic (March 1912)

A ship class is a group of ships of a similar design.[1] This is distinct from a ship-type,[1] which might reflect a similarity of tonnage or intended use. For example, the USS Carl Vinson is a nuclear aircraft carrier (ship type) of the Nimitz class (ship class).

In the course of building a class of ships, design changes might be implemented. In such a case, the ships of different design might not be considered of the same class; each variation would either be its own class, or a subclass of the original class (see County-class cruiser for an example). If ships are built of a class whose production had been discontinued, a similar distinction might be made.

Ships in a class often have names linked by a common factor: e.g. Trafalgar-class submarines' names all begin with T (Turbulent, Tireless, Torbay); and Ticonderoga-class cruisers are named after American battles (Yorktown, Bunker Hill, Gettysburg, Anzio). Some are called sister ships.

Contents

  • Naval ship class naming conventions 1
    • Overview 1.1
    • Europe in general 1.2
    • Germany 1.3
    • Indonesia 1.4
    • Russia/Soviet Union 1.5
    • United Kingdom 1.6
    • United States 1.7
  • Merchant vessel class 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Naval ship class naming conventions

Overview

The name of a naval ship class is most commonly the name of the first ship commissioned or built of its design. However, other systems can be used without confusion or conflict.

Europe in general

In European navies a class is named after the first ship commissioned regardless of when she was ordered or laid down. In some cases this has resulted in different class names being used in European and U.S. references; for example, European sources record the Colorado-class battleships of the United States Navy as "Maryland-class", as USS Maryland was commissioned before USS Colorado.

Germany

The West German Navy (Bundesmarine) used a three-digit type number for every class in service or in advanced project state. Modified versions were identified by a single letter suffix. After the reunification of Germany the German Navy (Deutsche Marine) kept the system. Informally, classes are also traditionally named after their lead ships.

Indonesia

The Indonesian Navy has a traditional naming for its ships. Moreover, the ship's type and missions can be identified by the first number on the ship's three-digit hull number, which is placed on the front bows and the back of the stern. The naming convention is such as:

  • Hull number begin by 1 (reserved for aircraft carriers): Great statesmen (Presidents, Vice Presidents, etc.)
  • Hull number begin by 2 (cruisers and destroyers): Indonesia's main islands (for cruisers) and National heroes (for destroyers)
  • Hull number begin by 3 (frigates, ocean escorts, corvettes): National heroes
  • Hull number begin by 4 (submarines, submarine tenders): mythical weapons (for submarines), National heroes (for submarine tenders)
  • Hull number begin by 5 (amphibious ships, LSTs, LPDs, LCUs, command ships): main and strategic bays (for LSTs), big cities (for LPDs), small cities (for LCUs), National heroes (for command ships)
  • Hull number begin by 6 (fast attack ships): mythical weapons (previous names for missile boats), traditional weapons (current names for fast missile boats), wild animals (for fast torpedo boats)
  • Hull number begin by 7 (minesweepers, minehunters, mine countermeasures ships): every island begin with letter "R"
  • Hull number begin by 8 (patrol boats): native fishes and sea creatures, native snakes and wild reptiles, wild insects, geographical places (such as towns, lakes or rivers begin with "si-", like Sikuda, Sigurot, Sibarau)
  • Hull number begin by 9 (supporting ships, oilers, tugs, troops transports, oceanographic research ships, sailing ships, etc.): volcanoes, cities, mythical figures, geographical capes and straits

Russia/Soviet Union

Russian (and Soviet) ship classes are formally named by the numbered project that designed them. That project sometimes, but not always, had a metaphorical name, and almost always had a NATO reporting name. In addition, the ships of the class would be numbered, and that number prefixed by a letter indicating the role of that type of vessel. For example, Project 641 had no other name, though NATO referred to its members as Foxtrot class submarines.

United Kingdom

The British  classAmphion is also known as the A class. Most destroyer classes were known by the initial letter used in naming the vessels, e.g., V and W class destroyers. Classification by letter also helped to conflate similar smaller classes of ships as in the case of the C-class destroyers of 1913 whose names spread across the alphabet. Since the end of the Second World War, Royal Navy ship classes have also been known by their type number (e.g. Type 42 destroyer.)

United States

In the United States Navy, a class is always named after the lead ship, that is, the first ship of the class to be approved by the United States Congress. Due to numbering conventions the lead ship almost always has the lowest hull number of her class. (During World War II, the award of construction contracts was not always congruent with completion, so many ships had higher hull numbers than later-class ships with lower ones.)[2]

Merchant vessel class

Merchant ships are almost always classed by a MARPOL standards. Vessels out of class may be uninsurable and/or not permitted to sail by other agencies.

A vessel's class may include endorsements for the type of cargo such as "oil carrier", "bulk carrier", "mixed carrier" etc. It may also include class notations denoting special abilities of the vessel. Examples of this include an ice class, fire fighting capability, oil recovery capability, automated machinery space capability, or other special ability.

References

  1. ^ a b CDR Salamander. "Spreading ship-naming head scratching". Retrieved 21 March 2010. 
  2. ^ Lenton, H. T. American Submarines and American Fleet and Escort Destroyers (Doubleday, 1973).

External links

  • Naval naming conventions
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.