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Hulk (ship type)

Ship that is afloat, but not seagoing / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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A hulk is a ship that is afloat, but incapable of going to sea. Hulk may be used to describe a ship that has been launched but not completed, an abandoned wreck or shell, or to refer to a ship whose propulsion system is no longer maintained, or has been removed altogether. The word hulk also may be used as a verb: a ship is "hulked" to convert it to a hulk. The verb was also applied to crews of Royal Navy ships in dock, who were sent to the receiving ship for accommodation, or "hulked".[1] Hulks have a variety of uses such as housing, prisons, salvage pontoons, gambling sites, naval training, or cargo storage.

A hulk moored in Toulon harbour

In the age of sail, many hulls served longer as hulks than they did as functional ships. Wooden ships were often hulked when the hull structure became too old and weak to withstand the stresses of sailing.

More recently, ships have been hulked when they become obsolete or when they become uneconomical to operate.

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