Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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RMS Empress of Australia

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1922. One of The Oil-Fired Boilers

RMS Empress of Australia was an ocean liner built in 1913-1919 by Vulcan AG shipyard in Stettin, Germany (now Szczecin, Poland) for the Hamburg America Line. She was refitted for Canadian Pacific Steamships; and the ship - the third of three CP vessels to be named Empress of China - was renamed yet again in 1922 as the Empress of Australia. [1]

1922 "This ship, which recently left the Clyde for Vancouver and passed through the Panama Canal early in July, is a vessel the performance of which will be watched with great interest, since she is the first large ocean-going liner to be fitted with Fottinger transformers. The Fottinger transfonner came into prominence at a time when the steam turbine had just achieved its first marine success, and shortly before the war it was looked upon as one of the most important developments in transmission and reduction machinery.

During the war considerable progress was made by the Vulcan Works at Stettin and Hamburg, which not only equipped three torpedo destroyers with two-shaft propelling machinery of 12,500 horse-power per shaft and a small cruiser with similar machinery of 20,000 horse-power per shaft, but also had under construction :10,000 horse-power Fottinger transformer sets for battleships. The machinery of the ex-Tirpitz - now the Empress of Australia - remains at present the only large installation in commercial service, but the results obtained from the transformers already constructed would seem to indicate that in spite of the lower efficiency as compared with toothed gearing, there are compensating advantages, particularly for large outputs, on account of the small size of the transformer, its small weight and its comparatively large astern power. " From The Engineer 1922/07/07

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