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Design of Marine Machinery Foundations




Cashman, ~ Member

The author discusses the various functions that marine machinery foundations may be called upon to perform ,and develops theoretical considerations involved in their design. In addition, specific examples of foundations for the more important ship components are discussed and illustrated. A section on the attachment of components to foundations is included. A bibliography of pertinent material available from other sources is attached.

THIS paper was prompted by an apparent lack of general information on the design of marine machinery foundations in teclhnical literature. Although there are extensive published treat- ments of specific problems in foundation design, no generalized discussion seems to be available. These notes are offered in the hope that they will prove useful in stating typical problems and fur- nishing some clues toward their solution. To this end, all additions and revisions reflecting the experience of others in the field will be most wel- come. In practice, the structural designer is usually presented with a machinery arrangement which shows the plant components floating in space at various locations dictated by the needs of machin- ery contiguity, shaft lines, suction heads, access, piping, and so on. It then becomes his responsi- bility to tie these objects to the nearest suitable structure in such a manner that they will perform their intended functions under all expected operat- ing conditions. History proves a powerful ally in many of these problems. By reference to a previous ship, a solu- tion which worked is adapted to the case in hand and often works again. Where no precedent can be found, a solution is invented. In either case, the trial trip usually furnishes at least a partial proof of the design. If excessive vibra- tion, thermal misalignment or overstressing is observed, revisions are undertaken at post-trial availability. Unfortunately, a single trial may not disclose the effects of fatigue or shock.

Stress Analyst, Antenna Systems, Inc., Manchester, N. H., formerly Assistant Naval Architect (Technical), Hull Engineering Department, Bethlehem Steel Company, Shipbuilding Division, Quincy, Mass.

Presented at the January

1962 meeting of the New

England Section of THE SOCII~TY Ola'Naval ARCHITECTS


Recent years have seen rapid evolution of power plants, with the introduction of entirely new fam- ilies of machinery components requiring new methods of mounting. Increased emphasis has been placed on space and weight saving, to the point of rendering post-trial adjustments to ma- chinery or structure difficult and expensive. There is every expectation that this trend u.ill con- tinue. Also, there is under way at least one pro- posed design basis for components which calls for some knowledge of thefoundation characteristics in advance [1]. 2 Thus it appears that more em- phasis will be placed in the future on a rational or analytical approach to foundation design rather than a comparative or rule-of-thumb treatment. It is proposed to outline first the general and specific requirements of machinery foundations. This will be followed by a discussion of design methods and criteria, from both theoretical and empirical standpoints, to meet these requirements. Some specific structures will be iIlustrated, with comments on their design, to show the application of these principles. Some of the related theory, which may also be found useful in other structural problems, will be found in Appendixes 1 through 4.

Functions of Machinery Foundations

Any structure which supports something has an obvious duty to carry the static load, with some factor of safety taken from experience. In the case of a shoreside installation it is sometimes sufficient to stop there; in mobile platforms such as ships, however, other factors must be con- sidered. If, in addition, the item to be supported provides its own thrust or excitation independ-

2 Numbers










ently of the mobile platform, a further order of difficulty is introduced. For purposes of this discussion, the loads im- pressed on any machinery foundation may be divided into two classes; i.e., dynamic and static. For further simplification, the "static" group will include periodic loadings which can be treated by static theory because their periods are so long that little or no dynamic response will be evoked in the system. This leads to the following sum- mary, in which the term loads may include forces, moments or both :

Factors Causing Dynamic Loads


Vibration of ship structure.


Vibration of mounted unit.


. Variable thrust or torque.



Factors Causing Static Loads


Deadweight of component.


Ship motionsin a seaway.


Gyroscopic reactions of rotating machin- ery.


Thermal deflections.


Steady-state reactions.

Some past practice in foundation design indi- cates that, where design criteria have been used at all, they have been based largely on the static effects, especially in merchant work where classifi- cation society rules contain only brief references to the subject and these are confined largely to main engine and boiler supports. It is understandable that this should be so, since the static approach is simple in concept and in many cases has produced designs which have given no trouble under dy- namic loadings. Furthermore, it has been pos- sible to correct the occasional unsatisfactory de- sign after service experience, and the implication of malfunctions at some later stage of ship life are perhaps less important than they would be in naval service. A more rational approach would be to design first for the dynamic factors involved, since any one of these may surpass the entire list of static factors as a design criterion. Some recognition is given to this thought in naval work [2] where the design is required to be suitable for all of the dynamic aspects mentioned. It will not be con- tended that this approach would eliminate en- tirely the need for post-trial adjustments; how- ever, it should minimize such instances. A further possible div-idend would be the elimination of redundant structure and unnecessary weight from certain foundations formerly drawn up with little or no design analysis. Overall, it is believed that some decrease in the total weight

of foundations would result, other important gains being better protection against casualties and smoother operation of the machinery plant. The subsequent discussion, accordingly, will

take up the dynamic effects first and in the order

of the foregoing listing.

Designing For Dynamic Loading

Vibration of Ship Structure

Practically all of the difficulties in this respect arise from resonance of the foundation-component

system with vibrations impressed upon the ship by the propellers. Since damping in welded structures is very small, it is possible to experience a motion in the mounted component of 20 to 30 times the amplitude of the neighboring hull struc- ture, if a natural frequency of the local system should happen to coincide with the impressed frequency. The situation in its simplest form approaches the resonance diagram for a displace- ment excitation shown in reference [:3] (page 46). Resonance is a very unsatisfactory condition when precise alignment of machinery is essential, and may induce structural failures through fa- tigue, since stress is proportional to the strain amplitude of vibration, in this case the relative motion of the component with respect to the base

of the foundation.

The most common form of propeller-induced vibration occurs at the so-called blade frequency, which is the product of RPM and number of blades. Each blade, as it rotates, passes through

a field of variable wake behind the ship. This

results in variable forces on the blade, the radial components being fed into the ship through the stern bearings or struts and the longitudinal com- ponents through the line shafting and thrust bear- ings. In addition, each blade carries with it a pressure field which impinges upon a given point

of the hull at this same frequency. As would be

expected, the total effect is more pronounced at the immediate stern. However. when the thrust bearing is located on the same foundation as the main propelling unit, as it is in most current practice, part of this excitation is brought into the midst of the machinery plant. The longitudinal pulses are transmitted to the hull through the thrust girders directly but also may appear as

vertical disturbances because of tilting of the foundation under the variable thrust. In addition to the fundamental blade frequency, higher harmonics are sometimes experienced. This is because the wave form of propeller-im- pressed vibration is not a pure sine wave and gives rise to Fourier components [31. These are likely to be more pronounced in single-screw installa-


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

tions, particularly where the propeller works in an enclosed aperture, since the wave form shows max- imum distortion under such conditions. With multiple screws turning in a relatively open field of water flow, irregularities in the wave form are minimized. An occasional case of RPM frequency will occur if a propeller is unbalanced as a result of damage or if a tailshaft is bent. Also, in multiple-screw installations, a "beat" frequency may appear when two shafts are turning at slightly different speeds, this being the difference between the two blade frequencies. Neither RPM nor beat fre- quencies would be expected to give much trouble since each is quite low compared to the natural frequency of most foundation structures, and is therefore well removed from local resonance. However, both can occur in the range of natural modes of the ship girder and are capable of excit- ing "springing" motions of the entire hull and oscillations of slender structures such as masts. Thus to summarize, it is good practice to design foundations clear of resonance with fundamental blade frequencies at full power in all cases. In single-screw plants, it is well to stay away from double or even triple blade frequency, if possible, to avoid the effect of higher harmonics. Funda- mental blade frequencies at full-power operation may vary from three to 30 cps, depending upon ship type. Fortunately, the lower values are associated generally with single screws, so that it is usuaUy possible to keep clear of higher har- monies in these installations with little or no ad- ditional effort as compared to the fundamental frequencies of multiple-screw plants. It is preferable in most cases to design the foundation for a natural frequeney above the full- power exciting frequency; i.e., the tuning ratio (impressed frequency)/(natural frequency) in the resonance diagram should be less than one. If the opposite were true, a transient resonance would be experienced in building up or coming down from full power, and if the ship were re- quired to operate at reduced power for extended periods, the possibility of steady-state resonance would exist. The assignment of a quantitative criterion for any ship is perhaps the most difficult part of the problem. This is due chiefly to the inaccuracies inherent in any calculation of natural frequency of a shipboard installation, which in the last analysis is no better than the assumptions which go into it. The experience of the author in this respect is that assumptions which appear reason- able and even conservative in the beginning may give a calculated frequency higher than the actual by 50 percent or more. It is probable that two












G÷ --)-~-







Typical pedestal foundation



factors are responsible for this situation; the assumed versus the actual stiffness of the ship, and the fact that some of the water outside of the hull moves with the vibrating system and appears to increase its effective mass. In calculating the stiffness of any supporting structure, it is neces- sary to establish some ultimate fixed base, such as a bulkhead or the shell, which can be considered infinitely stiff in the direction of freedom being considered. Any actual movement of this refer- ence member will then decrease the apparent stiff- ness of the system, and it is evident that the "fixed" members of a ship really do move. It can be appreciated that the problem is intensified in very heavy components with extensive support structure, since more of the primary ship structure comes into play and the entrained water mass is larger and less susceptible to analysis. For small components such as pumps, motors, and the like, resembling discrete masses and sup- ported by simple pedestal-type foundations, it is usually adequate to use a single-degree-of-freedom treatment where the natural frequency is,

2rr \ m/



the stiffness constant of the foundation, or the force required to produce unit deflection in the direction of motion being considered, both in









Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


pound-inch-second units. Damping can be ig- nored, since it is slight and its effect on natural frequency is entirely negligible. It is usually ade- quate to limit the investigation to linear modes in the three principal planes; namely, vertical, athwartships, and longitudinal, although rota- tional modes about one or more of these axes are sometimes significant. If the base of the founda- tion is attached to comparatively rigid structure, and no entrained water is assumed, it seems in order to design for a natural frequency of about twice the highest anticipated impressed frequency. Then the calculated frequency can turn out to be some 70 percent greater than the actual and the tuning ratio (impressed frequency)/(natural fre- quency) will be about 0.85, corresponding to a "magnification factor" of two or less in the resonance diagram. This means that the strain amplitude in the foundation will be limited to twice the local amplitude of the ship's structure, and for most cases this will be a satisfactory solu- tion. A type of foundation quite commonly used for supporting small auxiliaries is the built-up tapered pedestal, Fig. 1; it may be instructive to go through a design procedure for this model. Assuming that the bottom structure of the ship is several times as stiff as the pedestal, which is usually the case, the system may be idealized as a simple mass and spri~lg. The mass of the mounted unit should be aug- merited by about one third of the pedestal mass in recognition of the fact that there are no really "weightless" springs. Its location is taken to be the center of gravity of the unit, and the assump.- tion is made that the characteristics of the pedestal extend upward to that point. It then remains to calculate k in each of the principal directions. For the vertical mode, the stiffness constant for the pedestal is that of a tapered column axially loaded. This presents no particular difficulty and is usually of little interest since most structures of this type are amply stiff in the axial direction. In the athwartship and longitudinal modes, however, the deflection of a tapered cantilever under a load at the free end is wanted. The exact solution of this problem can be tedious and is hardly justified by the degree of accuracy needed for this case. Appendix I develops the concept of an equivalent beam of constant section which will have the same end deflection as the tapered beam under the same load. This shows that, for structures of these proportions, the equivalent depth of web or width of flange may be called 0.7D + 0.3d, where D and d are the web depths or flange widths at the built-in and free ends, re- spectively. In the case of built-up sections these

factors may be applied to both webs and flanges and the inertias of these members may be added directly to obtain the inertia of an equivalent section of constant dimensions.

In short, stubby pedestals the lateral deflection due to shear deformation may be an appreciable portion of the total and should be added to the bending deflection. It is sufficient to consider only the material in the plane parallel to the ap- plied load in this calculation, and the same depths obtained for the equivalent beam in bending may be used. Having established k in each direction, it re- mains to verify that the natural frequency in all modes is about twice the blade frequency of the propellers, or to modify the proposed design as necessary. Where heavier and more complex components are to be supported, it may be desirable to con- sider the system as composed of two or more masses for each direction of motion, one being the mass of the component and another the mass of entrained water and ship-bottom structure. If

n discrete masses are assumed, n natural frequen-

cies will result; since the effort still is to get all of these above the known impressed frequency, only the fundamental or lowest mode is significant. Even so, it may prove difficult to get enough stiff- ness into the supporting structure to raise this first-mode frequency to an acceptable value. The usual procedure is to stiffen as much as possible and hope for the best; the excitation delivered to the area in question may be so small that, even with a very large magnification factor, resultant strain amplitudes will still be acceptable. Some ships have operated with large machinery units which are close to or under full-power blade reso- nance, and vibration has not been considered se- rious. Occasionally, however, very large am- plitudes may develop from this cause, requiring

a change of propellers or other costly measures for resolution of the problem.

It would seem advisable, where calculations forecast such a possibility and no further struc- tural reinforcement is feasible, to consider some kind of damping device or undamped absorber as

a cure for the condition. In other applications,

notably electric transmission lines and shafting systems subject to torsional vibrations, suitably designed dampers have long been accepted as a means of smoothing out a resonant condition. Al- though the energy absorption requirements would probably be higher than in most current applica- tions, it should not be too difficult to design a slip-joint or dashpot which would effect a marked reduction in linear amplitudes at resonant fre-



Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

For the more complicated case involving several

degrees of freedom, there is no ready method which will suit all conditions. The underlying theory is available in [3]; the principal difficulty, however, lies in assigning values to the masses and "springs" which make up the system. In con- nection with the mass of entrained water, /4] may be found useful. Incidentally, one should not be surprised at the magnitude of water mass which seems to attach itself to the vibrating sys- tem; where an appreciable area of ship's bottom

is considered to be in motion, 100 tons is not an

exceptional figure. When calculations cannot forecast the natural frequency within desired limits, or become so in- volved as to create manpower problems, it may be preferable to run a "buml)" test or a forced- vibration survey on a particular component. Both procedures have been used with success by the author's company, the former on small con> ponents and the latter on larger and more com- plicated installations. It has been found that a portable-mechanical oscillator, weighing consid- erably less than 1(1(Ilb and driven by a 1-hp motor with variable-speed control, will supply all the excitation that is needed to identify natural fre- quencies of the largest components up to 50 cps. The usual procedure is to ,scan slowly over the speed range of the oscillator, feeding the pickup voltages to tape through suitable amplifiers and filters. Resonant frequencies are imme- diately apparent at the end of each run as salients on the tape record and, if pickups are properly phased at the beginning of the test, 1node shapes can be determined from these records.

Vibration of Mounted Unit

This becomes a problem only where the com- ponent supplies an excitation from its own moving parts, either rotational or translational. Modern balancing techniques dispose of prac-

tically all of the eccentricity in rotating electrical machinery and steam turbines. Where such

a driving unit is coupled to a centrifugal pump,

however, an appreciable excitation may exist because of nonuniform forces on the impeller work- ing in the pumped fluid.

Reciprocating drives of every" kind will bear watching because of the inherent periodic forces and moments which arise from the inertias of the various moving parts and the fluctuations in pressure of the driving medium (steam, air or gas). Also, if a fluid is being pumped by a re- ciprocating piston, fluctuations in both suction and discharge pressure have been known to cause serious vibrations. If the configuration of the piping is such as to magfiify the effect of such










Fig. 2

Typical bonded spool mount

pressure variations ("organ-pipe" resonance) a potentially destructive situation can exist. Un- fortunately, the chances of such local resonance are difficult to assess in adwmee of installation and totally unexpected modes sometimes appear (in one case a fluid system was strongly excited by a three-cylinder redprocating pump at a fre- quency of nine times pump RPM). As in the case of propeller-excited vibrations delivered by the supporting structure, it is de- sirable that the natural frequency of the system be kept away from resonance. In this instance, where the excitation is fed irlto the other end of the system, there is additional incentive to do so. The "translnissibility" of tile foundation should be kept low so that the vibratory forces from the component will not be transmitted, at full value or better, to the surrounding areas. Since the classic method of reducing transmis- sibility is to soften the foundation (which de- creases the natural frequency of the system), and since it is usually desirable to avoid propeller- blade frequency by stiffening the foundation, an impasse may result front trying to satisfy both conditions in the conventional way. A solution which has been adopted, notably in the case of submarines where it is of vital impor- tance to isolate noise-generating equipment from the hull, is the flexible mount. This takes var- ious forms, perhaps the most common being the

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


bonded rubber spool mount illustrated in Fig. 2. These, and other devices of similar effect, are available in a wide range of flexibilities and load capacities. Their common denominator is a low stiffness characteristic (as compared with a steel foundation) which reduces the natural frequency of the system to a very low value. This nmkes the transmissibility of the foundation practically nil, provides good shock resistance, and removes the natural frequency far from blade frequency. Although it has been remarked earlier that blade frequency should be escaped on the high side, the natural frequencies of flexibly mounted equip-

ment can be made

two is improbable at any conceivable propeller RPM in the operating range. Flexible mounts have disadvantages in certain situations, especially where aligmnent of the mounted machinery is critical. Where a driving and driven unit are coupled, as in the case of motor-driven centrifugal pumps, it is usual to provide a common bedplate and insert the flex- ibility between this and the primary ship struc- ture. Also, these mounts are more expensive and may require some added degree of maintenance as compared with conventional structure. Where a serious self-excited vibration is known or sus- pected, however, they may offer an entirely satis- factory solution. When this type of mounting is introduced, the structural portion of the foundation usually has minor influence on the frequency of the system and may be considered a "spring" of infinite stiffness for most practical purposes. The selection of proper mounts to provide a given natural fre- quency, however, is a function of several variai~les and usually requires more than a casual investiga- tion. This is one subject for which specialized theory and criteria have been developed, as exemplified by references [5] and [6].

so low that a meeting of the

Variable Thrustor Torque

This category is intended to include fluctuating loadings impressed upon the mounted component by reason of its physical connection with some separate source through shafting, piping, and so on, as distinct from a self-contained excitation. The outstanding example, of course, occurs in the main thrust-bearing foundation, which in most modern steam plants is an integral part of the reduction gear and turbine supports. Usually in reciprocating drives, and occasionally in steam- turbine practice, the thrust bearing is separately mounted at some distance from the main propul- sion unit. The variable loads are delivered to the thrust bearing by the line shafting and have their origin

in the wake variation at the propeller, previously discussed in connection with vibrations of ship structure. The shafting carries both variable thrust and torque. Where the thrust bearing is isolated on its own support, the thrust variations show up there and the torque variations at the propulsion-unit foundation; in an integral ar- rangement, they are fed into the ship structure at essentially the same location. Torque variations are transmitted to the struc- ture through reactions at the gear and pinion

bearings in geared rotary drives, and through reac- tions at journal and crosshead or piston bearings in reciprocating drives. In the latter, torque variations arising from variable steam or gas pres- sure and the inertia of moving parts are usually

of a much higher order than those induced by wake

variations. Because of the many considerations involved in the design of foundations for main propulsion units, this subject is treated under a separate heading. It may be noted here, however, that the characteristics of such foundations play a

part in determining the response of a rather com- plicated mass-elastic system consisting of propel- ler, line shafting, thrust bearing, main propulsion unit and structure. The effects of longitudinal thrust excitation upon such systems have been treated extensively in [7]; torsional excitation

is similarly well covered in [8].

Another application where variable input load- ings could be a problem is the rudder-support system. Since rudders usually work behind pro- pellers for maximum steering effect, they are sub- ject to large variations in hydrodynamic forces. In single-screw vessels where the rudder is of

necessity directly in line with the propeller shaft, an even number of propeller blades can impress upon the rudder a considerable moment variation in the transverse plane. This occurs at blade frequency and is due to the passage of diametric- ally opposite blades ahead of the rudder at the same instant, the "up" blade throwing water to starboard and the "down" blade to port. With an odd number of propeller blades, only one at a time can be lined up with the rudder. The wake-induced moment variation is less severe in this case, but occurs at twice the blade frequency.

A significant postwar contribution in this area has

been the so-called "clearwater" stern in which the rudder assembly is hung from the stock and the bottom shoe of the stern frame is elim- inated. Since rudderstock bearings are customarily supported by a heavy web structure which is well bedded into the hull, the chances are that the natural frequency of the system is high in corn-


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

parison with the known exciting frequencies. However, it is advisable that a routine check of this aspect be made in the design stage. It is at least conceivable that "roughness" experi- enced at the stern in some vessels, and dismissed as inevitable, may be due in part to local reso- nance of ship structure under this; type of loading. Observation of a peak in roughness at some RPM less than that corresponding to ful! power could be taken as an indication of such a condition. Rudders have been known also to vibrate at frequencies unrelated to shaft ',speeds, and the same presumably could apply to other appendages such as diving planes of submarines or the fins of roll-stabilizing devices. In one case [9] the vibration impressed upon the hull was of such magnitude that an extensive research program was undertaken to determine the cause and cure. These instances fall in the category of self-excited vibrations, where the flowing water supplies the energy to keep the 1notion going, and are less easy to predict than propeller-excited vibrations. They are mentioned here only to ',suggest that part of their solution may lie in analysis of foundation characteristics.


Practically all of the available data on this

subject are of recent vintage, and their application has been confined almost exclusively to naval ves- sels. The problem was first attacked seriously in the early stages of World War II, and research since the end of the war continues to improve knowledge of the subject. While this chapter is far from closed, the present state of the art per- mits some valid conclusions to be drawn. For

a historical sunmmry and a discussion of funda-

mental principles, the reader is referred to the first four chapters of [10]; a later and more de-

tailed treatment of design problems appears in [11]. Both references deal primarily with the effect of shock on machinery components, which

is outside the scope of this paper; however, the

role of the foundation can be recognized and the given data can be interpreted to suit it. The interest of naval activities in shock is of course prompted by the desire to achieve con- tinuous plant operation in vessels of the fleet despite underwater explosions near the hull, and, more recently, nuclear explosions at some dis- tance. As far as is known, there is no organized effort to make shock resistance a criterion for merchant vessels. However, reference [12] dis- cusses possible improvements in merchant hull design and concludes that the need for such meas- ures is equivalent to the need for Civil Defense. Without taking a position in this matter, it is

possible to state that opportunities do exist for providing improved shock resistance in merchant vessels through design, at very little additional cost in construction. This applies to foundations as much as to any other element of ship structure. For purposes of the following discussion, shock is defined as the motion of the shell, bulkhead or other structure to which the foundation is at- tached. This motion can be stated in terms of displacement or either of its two succeeding time derivatives; velocity or acceleration. If any of these three quantities is available as a func- tion of time, the other two can be derived by dif- ferentiation or integration, the latter process be- ing preferred as more accurate. Accelerations have a direct relationship to the forces acting in any system and a shock input expressed in such terms is in useful form for the calculation of stresses and strains. The primary cause of shock excitation is, of course, the underwater explosion previously men- tioned. Other mishaps such as collisions or groundings produce only low-order inputs at points remote from the damage, the. accelerations being of the order of a few gravities at most as compared with 100 g or more from near-miss explosions. Current naval requirements for ma- chinery colnponents [2] relate the shock accelera- tions inversely to the weight of the assembly sup- ported, since theory and practice agree that rela- tively large masses act to reduce the shock motion. The acceleraticn criterion (shock design number) is also a function of the direction of shock motion, recognizing the directional differences in response of a ship hull to a given incident. Testing machines have been devised for subjecting com- ponents to comparable loadings before actual shipboard installation. There are indications that these criteria may be increased as the result of experience from recent nuclear test explosions and in order to promote shock resistance in com- ponents which lnore closely approach the resist- ance of nawd ship hulls. In comlnon with other design standards which seek to establish uniform treatment of nonuniform and sometimes urlpredictable input, loadings, the Navy shock curves share the fate of continual reappraisal. It has been objected that they are too high and too low, too general and too specific, too complex and too simple. They represent but one of several approaches which might be used, the most serious competitor being the cal- culation of actual system response to a given "starting velocity." Also, they make no dis- tinction with respect to location in the ship, whereas units mounted on a platform may "see" only a fraction of the shock input generated at

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


shell and inner-bottom locations. The natural frequency of the shocked system does not appear as a variable; this is a fundamental feature of competitive proposals such as [1] and has much to recommend it. Despite such obvious short- comings, the Navy shock curves do have the virtures of uniformity and ease of application, and if properly applied will provide the foundation designer with some relative measure of the effi- ciency of his foundations. It will be pointed out here that structural foundations should not necessarily be designed to support, within their elastic limit, the full force represented by the product of component weight and shock-design number as read from the Navy curves. In the usual case the ship hull is capable of surviving a relatively high degree of shock without failure; the components are designed or tested to shock accelerations roughly equivalent to those shown on the Navy curves; and the bolting strength at elastic limit is of a similar order. It thus appears proper to provide a foundation which, by entering the plastic range just below the failure point of the component, will act as a me- chanical fuse, absorbing energy and thereby pro- tecting the component. This principle is recog- nized in [2] which implies that foundations should absorb some of the shock energy by buckling or stretching rather than by fully elastic deforma- tion. Thus if the survival limit of a component and its bolting can be stated in terms of a 20-g acceleration, the ideal foundation is one which will reach yield point at a loading; of, say, 19 times the weight of the component and will show a large plastic deformation immediately thereafter. It should be noted also that the yield point in this case is likely to be higher than under static con- ditions; provided brittle failure is not a considera- tion, most structural materials show improvement in this property under impact loading. Of course, if there is good reason to believe that the shock resistance of the component is considerably higher than the Navy curves require, the bolting and foundation strength may be suitably in- creased above the curve value. It may occur to the reader at this point that resistance to vibration and resistance to shock are basically at odds; for the former, it is desired to provide a foundation which is relatively stiff, while the latter requirement places some limita- tion on strength. Although stiffness and strength are related, they are not the same thing. The ability to provide suitable vibration and shock characteristics in the same foundation de- pends upon the shock-design number used and the geometry of the structure. The task is easier when the SDN is high, the required natural fre-

quency is low and the load path through the structure is short; a mounting which takes the load in direct tension or compression is easily handled but a cantilever mounting may be difficult to design for this purpose. Appendix 2 illustrates these principles for a few elementary foundation types and offers some coefficients by which the efficiency of a proposal may be judged in advance of actual design. This is an appropriate place to point out that foundations are scarcely ever built of anything but mild steel. Since the modulus of elasticity is practically independent of composition, there would be no gain in stiffness from using high- tensile materials. And, since the ratio of strength to stiffness in a given geometry varies directly with the yield point, a high-strength steel might actually defeat a suitable compromise between vibration and shock resistance.

Designing for Static Loads

Having assessed the foregoing list of dynamic criteria, or having elected to wait for the trial trip to bring to light any shortcomings which it is capable of disclosing, the designer may turn his attention to static-type loadings which are more certain to occur and easier to predict.

Dead Weight of Component Since gravity is always present,

any component represents a constant reaction on the foundation which supports it. This is axio- matic and hardly needs recording, but should not be overlooked in process of designing for other loadings. Dead weight by itself is a poor criterion for design unless the vessel in question is without propulsive power and is to be moored forever in protected waters.




Ship Motions in a Seaway Inertia forces due to motion in a seaway are certain to occur during the life of the ship and can be evaluated beforehand with reasonable ac- curacy. Sometimes they are dictated by specifi- cations; where they are not, Appendix 3 derives them for the general case and offers some advice on estimation of periods and amplitudes of ship motions. Since a ship is a free body it can experience three angular and three linear modes of motion; but only rolling, pitching and heaving are of any significance to this discussion. It is sufficient for this purpose to assume that each of these is a harmonic motion. Their natural periods are so long, however, that no dynamic response in a machinery-support system is conceivable. Thus the maximum value of the inertia force may be


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

thought of as a static loading on the system. This

maximum occurs always at the time of maximum amplitude of motion and the resulting force is therefore applied in a direction appropriate to the inclined position of the ship. Since roll, pitch and heave may all be in phase, all three forces should be vectored together with the dead weight of the component to obtain the resultant load on the foundation. Rolling and pitching are relatively easy to visualize and deal with, and both usually occur in the natural period of the ship. Heaving, on the other hand, is largely a result of coupling from roll or pitch motions and is greatly influenced by the period of wave encounter. For these reasons

it does not have a well-defined period or amplitude

and inertia forces from this cause are usually assigned somewhat arbitrarily. A "recent design specification called for a value of 30 percent of dead load in a ship of 8000 tons displacement. Only in rare cases will the total inertia force due to ship motion approach the dead weight of a component. Accordingly, if a rough cut is desired for design purposes, the weight may be applied twice; once as a gravity load and once as an inertia load in an appropriate direction, and the resultant applied to the foundation. The working stress to be used may be established by specifica- tion or by the policy of the individual design activity; a common value is half the yield point.

Gyroscopic Reactions from Rotating ,Machinery

When any rotating element is forced to change its plane of rotation, as by rolling or pitching

motions of a ship, it resists the change by exerting

a couple in a plane containing the axis of rotation,

but perpendicular to the plan(: of the forcing couple. This is the familiar characteristic of the gyroscope. The strength of the resisting couple is directly proportional to the angular velocity of the forced motion and is given by

d1~ =



O =



= resisting couple, lb-ft



weight of rotating element, lb


= radius of gyration of rotating element, ft


= speed of rotation, RPM



angular velocity of force([ lnotion, rad/sec


= acceleration of gravity, fl./sec ~

Traditionally, high-speed rotating machinery has been mounted with its axis fore and aft, be- cause the maximum angular velocity of pitch is only a fraction of the maximum roll velocity and the same ratio holds for gyroscopic reactions at

the bearings and bolting pads. However, this

practice may admit of a second look in cases where

a transverse orientation would be preferred for

space saving or other reasons. In high-speed equipment, gyro reactions will generally be larger than inertia reactions due to roll and pitch, but will reach their maximum value when the others are zero and the two will not be additive. Naval shock requirements, however, lead to instan- taneous bearing h)ads many orders of magnitude higher than either, and it is difficult to visualize trouble from gyro reactions on such ruggedly

designed bearings. As an example, consider the case of a large marine geared turbogenerator set recently in-

stalled. For the turbine end, running at 6950

quantity WR 2 was about 300 lb-ft2; for

the low-speed gear and generator, operating at

19,0011 lb-fU. If this

set had been installed with its axis athwartships,

it could have been subjected to a maximum angu-

lar velocity, due to roll, of

see (assuming the severe case of a total roll period of 10 sec and a roll amplitude of 30 deg each side).

The resisting couples would amount to 2260 and 24,700 lb-ft for the turbine and generator ends, respectively, for a total of about 27,000 lb-ft. The bedplate of this unit is mounted on a three- point bolted support, which would be subjected to horizontal shear from the gyro couple induced as just described. The geometry of the bolting pattern is such that the maximum shear load on any one pad would be 2400 lb, hardly a cause for concern. Considering the bearing reactions, also directed horizontally in the case described, the distances between main bearings for the turbine end and the generator end, respectively, are 3.7 and 6.S ft. Thus the gyro reactions would be 610 lb on each turbine bearing and 3630 lb on each generator bearing. The same bearings would be subjected

to vertical forces of 73 lb and 910 lb, respectively,

about }.~ radian per

rpm, the

1200 rpln,

[/VR2 was about

from inertia loading under precisely the same storm conditions, but are supposed to be capable


surviving shock loadings, in the same direction,


510() lb and 64,(/()0 lb. The gyroscopic reactions

which would result from an athwartships mount- ing of this lnachine, therefore, are not the govern- ing consideration.

It is interesting to note that, as far as gyroscopic reactions are concerned, the location of a com- ponent with respect to the ship's axis of roll is immaterial, since the maximum angular velocity

of roll is the same everywhere. Also, mounting on

a vertical axis will result in exactly the same gyro

forces from ship's roll as mounting on a horizontal athwartships axis. In the vertical case, however,

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


an additional component will result from pitching. If it is desired to estimate gyro reactions, Appendix 3 leads to an expression for velocity also. Remembering that the maximum angular velocity in a "vibration" such as rolling or pitch- ing is the single amplitude times the "circular frequency,"




0 ls0/\7/




maximum angular velocity, rad/sec


= maximum assumed inclination of roll or



pitch, measured on one side of vertical, deg period for a complete cycle, see

The other factors in the expression for the gyro couple, given at the beginning of this section, are of course functions of the component in question.

Thermal Deflections

Whenever the operating temperature of a com- ponent is different from the shutdown tempera- ture, the tendency to thermal movement must be dealt with. Solutions of this problem may use any one or a combination of three fundamental principles, as follows :

1 Rigid mounting, resulting in thermal stresses

in the component itself as well as in the founda-


2 Flexible mounting, wherein the unit is es-

sentially free to expand while the foundation deforms, and ;3 Sliding mounts, wherein the unit is es- sentially free to expand without intposing loads on the foundation.

The rigid-mounting concept is feasible only where the temperature difference is small. In the case of mild steel, for example, a bar restrained in a perfectly rigid manner at both ends will reach yield point at an increment of about 1S0 F, so that the use of this solution is just about limited to vessels containing saturated steam or water at atmospheric pressure or less. As between flexible and sliding mounts, the former are gaining favor, partly as a result of the increased use of welding but also because of in- herent advantages. Among these may be men- tioned the minimization of field machining work, elimination of any maintenance except ordinary structural preservation, and freedom from oper- ating problems such as corrosion, galling and seizing of sliding parts. Thus, while the provision of sliding keys or slotted bolt holes is quite simple from the design viewpoint, a few extra hours or days spent on the design of a flexing foundation

should be repaid out of installation and opera- tional savings. The usual method of providing the necessary displacement in a flexing foundation is to take it as a bending deflection, which allows considerable movement without unduly high stress. For such familiar components as turbines and condensers, this is usually accomplished by fixing one end of the unit and supporting the other end on a flat plate, mounted in a plane perpendicular to the direction of principal thermal growth, which bends about an axis at some distance from the point of attachment. Where the depth of the plate is so small as to require no stiffening, stresses at the root may be calculated by simple cantilever theory. In large installations, however, it be- comes necessary to stiffen most of the plate area to provide stability under loading in the plane of the plate. In such cases the bending deflection is confined mostly to a narrow strip at the bottom end. Appendix 4 shows a typical installation of this kind and derives an approximate expression for the maxinmm stress in the bent portion. In merchant work, loading in the plane of the flex plate usually consists of that portion of the dead weight of the component borne by the flexing end of the support, suitably augmented by roll and pitch factors. In naval work shock loading must be considered and here the colunm load will be some multiple of the dead weight. Full-scale and model-scale shock tests conducted against naval vessels in the recent past have led to closer scru- tiny of the flex-plate design. Cylindrical components, which are becoming increasingly common, may be mounted to good advantage on a three-dimensional version of the flex plate. Since such units move equally in all radial directions under temperature differential or internal pressure, the "flex plate" becomes a cylinder or frustum of a cone. The analysis of such support skirts, as they are called, is somewhat more involved than for the flat plate, but various methods are available for solution of stresses. Reference [1:~] derives an approximate expression for stresses in the support-skirt attachment re- sulting from internal pressure, and appears to be suitable for use in obtaining temperature stresses also. An interesting application of the theory of beams on elastic foundations to the case of cylin- drical or slightly conical shells is discussed in reference [14] and is pertinent to this problem. At least one computer program, based on a finite- difference method, is known to be in use by a design activity in this field. Some flex plates are designed for "self-spring- ing" or initially inelastic cycling. If the nominal design stress at full flexure is set at about twice the


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

yield point, then the first warm-up excursion will take place along the stress-strain path OAB in Fig. 3, OP being the strain at full flexure. Return to the cooled-down state will take place along BC













-_sx_ -

Stress-strain paths in "self-springing"

and all later cycles will follow this line. If it is desired to avoid the initial plastic strain repre- sented by AB, the flex plate may be "cold-set" or backed off about half of the given amount in a direction opposite to that of the thermal growth. The first and all subsequent cycles will then follow DOAOD which is elastic all the way. Ordinarily there will be no fatigue problem implied in either case, since the number of hot-cold cycles to be expected over the life of a ship is not large in terms of endurance limit and mild steel is reason- ably ductile. With design stress approaching the yield point, however, one should pay close atten- tion to possible stress concentrations and quality of welding. Flexing supports, whether flat or cylindrical, should of course be checked as circumstances may require for dynamic conditions such as vibration or shock. The flat flex plate, having very little stiffness in the direction of therlnal growth, is usually considered ineffective in this direction, the load being assumed entirely by the fixed end of the foundation. Since the plate is quite stiff in its own plane, however, it is called upon to assume loads so applied. The cylindrical or conical skirt, onthe other hand, may be the sole support of the component and should be able to develop the re- quired strength and stiffness in each plane. In some cases, particularly where it is necessary to locate the skirt near the end of a long cylindrical vessel, it may be difficult to design a skirt with

sufficient resistance to lateral shock loading and pendulmn-type vibration. It has been found expedient in such cases to add an auxiliary sway brace in the form of an axial pin on the free end of the vessel, working in a socket attached to the ship structure or welded to a diaphragm plate perpendicular to the pin. This permits longitu- dinal growth but inhibits lateral motion.

In general, flexibility requirements will dictate light plating because of linfitations on bending stresses or, in the case of delicate components, unwanted "feedback" loading from flexure of the foundation. When it becomes difficult to satisfy both flexure and strength requirements, a system of two or more flexing elements in parallel is some-

times used. For example, a given flat plate if doubled in thickness would feel twice the flexural stress and would be eight times as stiff in flexure but only twice as strong in shear or compression, neglecting buckling tendencies. By dividing the same material between two independent plates, however, a comparable increase in strength will result but the flexnral stress will remain the same and the flexural stiffness will only double. Sliding mounts for small components such as heat exchangers usually take the form of bolts working in slotted holes. For more important equipment such as main propulsion nmehinery and condensers, a system of keys and keyways is usually used to develop the requisite shear strength for expected loadings in directions other than that of the thermal moveme.nt. ~rhile both types of arrangement have given satisfactory service, there is always the possibility that seizing or galling of the moving parts will load the equip- ment or structure in a manner not intended. Ac- cordingly it is important that these connections be so located that they are easily accessible for lubrication and maintenance.

Steady-State Thrust or Torque

A situation arises occasionally where the char- acteristics of a machinery component itself have very little to do with the design of the foundation which supports it. Such is the case when a rela- tively small item, such as a pmnp or valve, is connected to a run of piping subject to thermal stresses. As the size or stiffness of the piping increases, the loads imposed on the foundation through the unit become increasingly large as compared with other criteria. For example, pipe reactions may amount to several times the shock loading. Since it is always better to discover such cases before the plant is put together, a careful check by the foundation designer should include a

piping and its points of

survey of the important attachnlent.

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


Major shipyards now "stress out" the larger sizes of hot piping almost as a matter of course, to arrive at the minimunl use of material within allowable thermal-stress limits for the piping itself. Digital computers have provided the eco- nomic justification for this kind of analysis and machine programs are available which will give stresses at any desired point in the system quickly and with a precision limited only by the accuracy of the input information. These programs also yield, or can be easily modified to yield, the re- actions at points of attachment to various com- ponents considered as "anchors." In the general case, the output for an anchor point consists of a set of six figures, comprising a force in each of three mutually perpendicular directions and a moment about each of these axes. Armed with this information, the structural analyst can deter- mine quickly whether pipe reactions should govern the design of a foundation for a particular com- ponent.

Main Propulsion Unit Foundations

Unfortunately this, one of the most important foundations in the ship, is usually the least ame- nable to theoretical analysis. There are two basic reasons for this: (a) The loads to be imposed upon it are not fully predicfable. (b) It ex- tends over such a large area and is so intimately allied with basic ship structure that its response, even to a known input, can be difficult to deter- mine. As a result of these circumstances an empirical approach, strongly flavored with con- servatism, has prevailed in most designs and is not lightly to be discounted. The arrangement of the main propulsion com- ponents is affected by many considerations, of which the method of structural support is not the least. Among these may be mentioned the power rating, the space available for the main unit, the

number of screws, arrangement of injection and discharge piping, and so on. As in most complex installations, the resulting arrangement is usually

a compromise among several factors. The most

important of these in considering the arrangement

of structure is the condenser orientation.

With a longitudinal condenser, it is usually possible to use extensions of one or more of the longitudinal girders of the reduction-gear founda- tion as supports without seriously restricting ac- cess beneath the condenser. This adds ap- preciably to the longitudinal stiffness of the whole arrangement by providing an additional shear

path for getting thrust loads into the ship's bottom structure. However, this arrangement makes it awkward to use a flexing type of support in the

condenser foundation and just about dictates the use of sliding feet. The condenser and low-pressure turbine easing can stand a certain amount of restraint in the transverse direction, but very little movement of the rotor centerline in this direction can be toler- ated because of ~ear on the flexible couplings. For this reason the support walls are designed for approximately equal transverse stiffness and the bottom of the condenser is sometimes pinned. In the longitudinal direction, however, free thermal expansion is essential to prevent possible "bow- ing" of the turbine casing and consequent internal damage. In this type of arrangement this is achieved by rigidly bolting the after end to the foundation and providing slotted bolt holes and a longitudinal keyway at the forward end. With the axis of the condenser athwartships, it wiU usually be very difficult to provide effective continuations of the longitudinal girders beyond the forward end of tjae reduction-gear table be- cause the condenser with its heads and circulating water piping will occupy much of the needed space. Thus the effective depth of the foundation will be sharply reduced under the condenser, leaving little more than the ship's bottom struc- ture in this area. This condition can lead to un- desirable "rocking" motions of the gear table, as discussed in reference [7], if compensating meas- ures are not taken. The best way out of this situation is to "bed in" the gear table as firmly as possible at the after end, making it in effect a stiff cantilever which will deflect very little under the moment created by the thrust loads, regardless of the relative softness of the bottom structure. To accomplish this end, it is highly desirable to line up the top plate of the gear table with a continuous deck or platform on the other side of the engine room bulkhead if at all possible. If this cannot be achieved within acceptable rearrangements of the ship, the shaft-alley bulkheads often can be lined up with the thrust girders or side girders under the gear table by a minor rearrangement. In mul- tiple-screw installations where engines are well outboard, the possibility of an additional shear tie between the bedplate and the shell or inner bottom should not be overlooked. A favorable aspect of the athwartship condenser arrangement is the ability to anchor the after sup- port flange of the turbine or condenser and mount the forward flange on a flex plate, eliminating the need for a sliding joint. In this arrangement there exists a choice of mounting the turbine directly on the foundation with a "hung" condenser or mounting the con- denser directly with the turbine superimposed.


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

The former alternative is the usual preference of the author's company for the following reasons:

1 Vertical movement of the LP rotor coupling

with respect to its pinion is minimized because the

distance between the rotor centerline and the bolting plane, and the consequent thermal ex-

pansion, is smaller. Also, thermal changes in the condenser do not affect the support.

2 The gear case and LP turbine girders can be

combined into a common structure of great stiff- ness, minimizing relative motion of these elements.

3 The condenser cross section can be widened

in the longitudinal direction and shortened in height, allowing minimum elevation of the turbine and consequently stiffer support.

The location and method of support of the thrust bearing should be considered carefully, since the ship is literally being driven through the structure in this immediate area. Where the bearing is separate from the gear case it is usually elevated above the plane of the gear table and is mounted on vertical extensions of the thrust girders. While structural provisions can be made to suit this condition, a nester and more satis- factory arrangement can be achieved when the bearing is built into the gear case immediately aft of the bull gear. An integral thrust bearing is sometimes found forward of the gear, and while such an arrangement has the advantage of re- ducing the size of the bearing, it is not commonly used in high-powered installations. The reason for this is that the cutouts for the gear well and the condenser leave only an isolated pedestal on which to mount the thrust bearing and the amount of thrust which can be imposed on such a founda- tion is limited.


longitudinal direction influences the natural frequencies of longitudinal vibrations of the main propulsion system. The effect of increasing stiffness is to move resonant frequencies ("criti- cals") to a higher RPM. The aspect of the stiff- ness-critical RPM curve, however, is rather flat, particularly for the fundamental mode. Oc- casionally theory indicates a gain for "softening" the foundation. This can occur where a critical already exists below full-power RPM and it ap- pears advantageous to move the critical still lower. A condition which must be satisfied, of course, is that such action would not have adverse effect on the criticals in other modes of the same system. In spite of such theoretical indications, it has always been the practice in the author's company at least to make main unit foundations as stiff as reasonably possible in all directions, and it is believed that this approach is quite general








throughout the industry. A co~scious effort to soften a foundation system would seem always to be attended by doubts as to the accuracy of the stiffness calculation and the possibility that low- frequency excitations might prove more numerous and more troublesome than the designer would reasonably expect. Reference [7] was perhaps the tirst suggestion that stiffness rates of such foundations could be calculated, if only for the purpose of deciding which of the structural members were meaningful and which redundant. The same paper offered some representative values of the longitudinal stiffness rate for various ship types. On the strength of these suggestions, and in response to a request from shafting designers who needed an estimate of foundation stiffness in order to pre- dict longitudinal criticals, such an estimate was made from preliminary design plans of a recent. main unit foundation.

The first figure obtained from this analysis was'. almost at the upper limit suggested by reference. [7], and was therefore looked upon with some suspicion. A recheck, modifying certain assump- tions in the direction of conservatism, gave a lower figure and though this was ',still considered high, it was released for purposes of shaft critical calculations. When the foundation had been completed and all the machinery in,stalled, the line shafting was uncoupled and the assembly was given a forced-vibration test with. a mechanical oscillator. Knowing the mass of the machinery, it was a simple matter to deternline from the


the tape, the stiffness rate of the foundation. This turned out to be higher than the original estimate. Further verification was obtained on the trial trip, where the longitudinal natural frequencies showed up within one RPM of the values predicted from this experimentally determined stiffness rate. This experience is cited for two purposes:

(a) To record that an attempt tr~ calculate the stiffness properties of a main unit foundation was not an entire waste of time, in thi.s one instance at least; and (b), to show that extra dividends in stiffness can repay a conscious effort to integrate the foundation with every usable element of ship structure in its vicinity.

frequency, which was cle~,My evident on

Attachment of Components to Foundations

Because of the myriad of possible shapes and sizes of components, it would not be practical here to discuss "typical" cases. There are, however, some fundamental characteristics of attachments which may be usefully explored. Some years ago, nearly all components were bolted to their supporting structures. With the

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


widespread use of welding, however, a change to welded attachments has made some headway although their full potentiality is still far from being realized. In view of the savings in weight and installation cost, it seems strange that this method is not more commonly used for certain classes of equipment. Of course, bolting still may have the advantage where precise alignment is a factor or when it is likely that the entire com- ponent will be unshipped and replaced at inter- vals. At this writing, the Navy has under advisement an addition to its General Specifications which will prescribe the character of welded attachments where contractors may elect to use them. Al- though there is nothing in the present specifica- tions to prohibit welding, all of the requirements for attachments are based on bolting. In the design of attachments, whether bolted or welded, it is first necessary to establish the magnitude, direction and points of application of the loading to be transmitted to the foundation. This may seem axiomatic, but occasionally a case arises where an early definition of the problem by the shipbuilder can save some grief by pointing out to the component vendor a design requirement of which he is otherwise unaware, or vice versa. In any case, the design of attachments is an area where both should work closely together. Ordinarily, the foundation attachments will feel some kind of bilateral loading, such as shear due to transverse thrust combined with tension or compression due to overturning moment. Under these conditions it would seem advisable to deter- mine the principal stresses and the maximum shear stresses in bolts from a Mohr's circle analysis, applying a suitable factor of safety on each. Where the moment is large, as in the case of switchboards and other vertical components, it will pay to dispose the bolting (or welding) pattern in such a manner that its section modulus is greatest about the axis of the maximum expected inonlent. The shock requirements associated with naval vessels usually govern the design of attachments in that class of work. If anything fails under shock, it should not be the foundation attachment, since the component could then become a missile capable of inflicting injury on personnel and plant. However, insurance against such a casualty can be bought fairly inexpensively by careful and conservative design, which seems here very much in order. Fortunately, the well-known tendency of ductile materials to show improvement in physical proper- ties under impact loading is a hidden bonus if a

"static" design method is used.

Experiments [15]

with SAE 1020 bolt material under shock indicate

a 30 percent ilnprovement over static yield

strength. It was also a conclusion of this study that long bolts have better shock resistance in tension if the shank portions are turned down approximately to the root diameter of the threads. The reason for this is that plastic yielding is then forced to occur in the long shank section, which by reason of its greater length can supply more strain energy than the threaded portion. Sometimes, as a result of physical limitations on number and size of bolts, it becomes necessary to consider high-strength bolt material. While this

may provide a perfectly good engineering solution, the designer should have in mind the chances of his scheme being aborted in the material control organization and should take corresponding pre- cautions. Also, during the life of the plant, the component in question may be unshipped and re- placed (with standard bolts) a number of times. This is to say that high-strength bolt material should be specified for shipboard use only after the most careful consideration. Where a bolted attachment is likely to be subjected to severe vibration or is designed for a sliding joint as for thermal expansion, it is good practice to provide captive features to prevent loosening. In the past such measures as cotter pins, lock nuts, wires, peened ends and similar mechanical devices have been employed for this purpose. There is now oll the market a viscous fluid which can be applied to the threads of bolts

or studs and which hardens in the absence of air,

providing great resistance to backing off. This is available in several grades of viscosity depending upon the film shear strength desired.


1 "Shock Design of Shipboard Equipment,

Dynamic Design-Analysis Method," NAVSHIPS


2 General Specifications for Building Ships

of the U. S. Navy.

3 Den


"Mechanical Vibrations,"

fourth edition, McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York, N. ¥., 1956.

4 "Hydrodynamic Masses and Hydrody-

namic Moments of Inertia," David Taylor Model

Basin Translation No. 260, July 1956.

5 "A Guide for the Selection and Application

of Resilient 5lounts to Shipboard Equipment,"

David Taylor Model Basin Report 880, 1958.

6 Wright and Hagg, "Practical Calculation

and Control of Vibration Transmission Through Resilient Mounts and Basic Foundation Struc- tures," Bureau of Ships Index No. NS-713-212, December 1959.


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

7 J.R. Kane and R. T. McGoldrick, "Longi-

tudinal Vibrations of Marine Propulsion Shafting Systems," TRANS. SNAME, vol. 57, 1949, pp.


8 Powell and Bassett, "Practical Aspects of

Torsional Vibration in Marine Geared-Turbine Propulsion Units," TRANS. SNAME, 1944.

9 R.T. McGoldriek, "Rudder-Excited Hull

Vibration on USS Forrest Sherman," TRANS.

SNAME, vol. 67, 1959, pp. 341-385.

10 "Mechanical Shock in Naval Vessels,"

NAVSHIPS 250-660-26, 1946.

11 "A Guide for Design of Shock Resistant

Naval Equipment," NAVSHIPS 250-660-30,



Hollyer, "Direct Shock-Wave Damage to

Merchant Ships from Non-contact Underwater Explosions," Hampton Roads Section, SNAME,

April 1959.

13 Wojeieszak, "Stress Analysis of the June-

tion Between a Support Skirt and Pressure Ves-

sel," ASME Nuclear Engineering and Science

Conference, April 1959, published by Engineers' Joint Council, New York, N. Y.

14 Den Hartog, "Advanced Strength of

Materials," McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc.,

New York, N. Y., 1952.

15 Forkois, Conrad, and Vigness, "Properties

of Bolts Under Shock Loading," Society for Ex- perimental Stress Analysis, 1952.

16 A. H. Keil, "The Resi)onse of Ships to

Underwater Explosions," TRANS. SNAME, vol. 69, 1961, pp. 366-410.

Appendix 1

Development of

"Equivalent Beam"




Tapered Cantilever

The essence of tlfis concept is that, for any cantilever beam of tapering section, there can be found a fictitious beam of constant section and equal length which will have the same bending deflection at the free end under the same concen- trated load. For the purpose at handl the fact that the shapes of the two deflection curves are different is immaterial. Since the types of such beams encountered in machinery foundations are usually composite structures consisting of webs and flanges, either or both of which may be tapered, it is convenient to make use of one concept at a time and assemble the results later. Consider first a beam consisting of a platte web only, which is inefficient but conceivable in prac- tice, Fig. 4. Problem: Find A, the depth of a cantilever




Fig. 4

beam of uniform section and of length L, whose

bending deflection at the free end under the load


will be the same as that of the beam illustrated


Fig. 4. Let the depth taper be: designated by

a, so that







d +ax





of the











ax) a~



and the moment at any point,









From (1) and (2) the differential equation for the defected shape is




dx 2



ax) 3


Performing two successive integrations, and solving for the constants of integration by putting dy/dx and y = 0 when x = L, leads to an expres- sion for the deflection y. Putting x = 0 into this, the deflection at the free end under the load

P turns out to be




d) :~








The end deflection of the fictitious beam of con- stant depth & is

(Yl)o -

4PL a



Equating (Y)0 and (Yl)o and solving for &,

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations






















3(D-d)(3D-d)]2D 2


Consider next a cantilever beam, Fig. 5, com- posed only of flanges, of constant area, and tapered in depth in the same manner as in the previous example. The flanges work together by fiat. This of course is an abstraction but it is a useful one for the purpose of this study. Let the (constant) area of one flange be A and let the depth taper be designated by a, so that















By a process exactly similar to that used in the previous example,





Ad, 2


Erx ~,d~

dx 2







dx 2



ax) 2

The bending deflection of the illustrated beam at the free end is




2PL 3



d) a






-4-d) 1


and for the fictitious beam it is










from which

(Yr)o -

2PL 3

3EA A2

Fit. 5)

A =

.3(D +d)(D--


d) -- 6dlog,



Finally, consider a cantilever beam of constant

depth, Fig. 6, composed only of flanges which taper in breadth. This, like the previous exam- ple, has no physical counterpart but is a useful fiction. While the notation is slightly different for this case, the approach is the same. Let the breadth taper be designated by a, so that















Using the same technique as before,










EI~ dx-




dx 2




(l 4)


The bending deflection of the illustrated beam

at the free end is


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations
















~IG. 5,








F~G. 6,

EQ (18)
















Fig. 7

2PL 3

= EtH2(D


d) 3


4- (D--d)(D2





And for the fictitious beam it is

2PL 3 (Yl)o -- 3EtH2A

From which




d) 3


d2 l°g~(d)l



Each of the results (6), (12) and (1S) is plotted in Fig. 7. For tapered cantilevers of all usual proportions, and without violating the limits of accuracy wanted in the solution of the problem at hand, any of these rather cumbersome expressions may be represented by the linear function shown on the diagram, whose equation is





-t- 0.3d







(or flange






cantilever beam











built-in end






of real










is calculated


the fictitious cantilever, of constant section and of length equal to the length of the real beam, it will be substantially the same as the free-end deflection of the real beam under a concentrated load applied at this point.


Relations Between

Design Number for Elementary Foundation Types





OF- $~oc~



Column Mounting (Fig. 8)




weight of mounted unit



shock design number



sectional area of column



length of column as shown in Fig. 8


yield stress of column material



modulus of elasticity


natural frequency of system in direction of shock



stiffness constant of column















where q is slightly greater than uni.ty Also




-~--. ~-



Replacing A in equation (21) by its value from equation (20), the weight drops out and




1 {NEg'y/'



Putting everything into pound-inch-second units and assuming mild steel, the natural frequency in cycles per second is








, approx







Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


intuitive reasoning, which would predict increas- ing difficulty in staying above a given natural frequency with :


Lower shock design numbers.


Longer load paths.

For the case pictured, however, one would seldom expect to be in difficulty; the lowest possible 5DN is 6, and the highest designed natural frequency, following the criterion of the section, "Vibration of Ship Structures," would nearly always be under 50. Equation (2:3) says that even in this extreme combination, foundation lengths up to 20 in. are acceptable. Further, in the event that a columnar support proves too stiff under shock loading, it is theoretically pos- sible to design deliberately for buckling in this condition.

Cantilever Mounting (Fig. 9)


oF snoot


cal section in a form similar to (23)


110 (N)I/: (D) 1/2


Experimenting with different values of D/L (the depth to length ratio of the cantilever) leads to the conclusion that very short, stubby can- tilevers will be necessary to achieve a suitable balance between shock and vibration require- ments at the lower end of the SDN scale: i.e., for heavy components. The D in equation (28) may be taken as the equivalent depth in the case of a tapered cantilever, as developed in Appendix 1.

Beam Mounting

The two cases illustrated will bracket many of the support systems to be found in practice. By similar processes it can be verified that in the case of a component at mid-span of a simply-supported beam of length L,

and at mid-span of a fixed-ended beam,

Fig. 9

In addition to the symbols used previously, let

inertia of cantilever distance from neutral axis to extreme fiber









of the







1 (k'y/'~


1 (3EIw)V2


Replacing I

in equation






(24), the weight again drops out and

F~ = ~ 1 (3NEgc~1/' \~/


and numerically,



156 (No)i~2



From which it is seen that the transverse dimen- sion of the cantilever is also significant.

(27) can be rewritten for a symmetri-


An interesting and convenient property of these relationships is that, provided the beam is symmetrical, the geometry of its cross section does not appear in any of them. Thus, the designer can estimate the suitability of proposed foundations by a quick look at length, transverse dimension, and shock design number only. This entire analysis, of course, rests on the assumption that the foundation is so designed that it will go into yield just before it sees the prescribed value of shock loading, NW. Once this has been done, equations (23), (28), (29) and (30) may limit the ability to achieve at the same time a satisfactory natural frequency. If an impasse is reached, it would seem that the vibration aspect should be given priority over shock requirements for nonvital equipment. For vital equipment, the conventional approach may have to be discarded in favor of unusual measures such as flexible mounts.


Inertia Forces Due to Ship Motions in a Seaway

10, the center of oscillation:

waterline for small angles of roll, approaches cen- ter of gravity of ship for large angles. For pitch- ing, at center of flotation.

At static




Design of Marine Machinery Foundations








/-- 150 L~"



F: !: E bl ~.~.








DI/k G~A~



= rolling period for a complete cycle, port to starboard and back to port again, sec



nmximum inclinationreached by ship, measured on one side of vertical, deg



distance of component off eenterline of ship, ft


= distance of conlpol]ent above or below assumed center of oscillation, ft


= weight of component, lb


= maximum vector inertia force, lb


= maximum horizontal inertia force, lb


= maximum vertical inertia force, lb


= acceleration of gravity, 32.2 feet/see -~

It is convenient for, this case to think of the rolling motion as a vibration whose "circular frequency" is 27r/T~¢. The maxinmm angular acceleration will then be the single amplitude in radians times the square of circular frequency, or




0~ X



IS() Tte2

and J~, the vector inertia force, will be the nmss of

the component times linear acceleration :




lJ~ X

O~ 4~r3 (x'-' + y~.)v

g 180 TR~







Resolving this force into its components parallel to the principal planes of the ship,



0.0214W0ey and






The derivation of inertia forces due to pitching is exactly similar; if T and Op represent, respec- tively, the full period of pitch in seconds and the single amplitude of pitch in degrees,



().l)214WO,y and K =




"F . ~



where y is as before but x now has the meaning of the longitudinal distance from the center of oscil- lation. In this case H is directed longitudinally but V is vertical as before. H will be small except at high elevations (gun directors, masthead radars, and so on) and V will be small except for units at considerable distances from the center of pitching oscillation, which is very near the longitudinal center of flotation in the water plane. Where periods and amplitudes are not specified, the former can be estimated from the geometry and loading condition of the ship but the latter are usually taken arbitrarily. Thirty degrees of roll and five degrees of pitch are commonly as- signed as limiting values on the supposition that the master would be sufficiently concerned by that state of affairs to alter course or take other action to relieve his ship. The fundamental expression for the natural

period of angular motion is


(a.,~i.) v,

where T is the full period in seconds, k is the ra- dius of gyration and GM is metacentric height, both in feet; these quantities relating to rotation about a transverse or longitudinal axis as the case may be. For ships of normal form and proportions the transverse radius of gyration is never far from 40 percent of the beam, so that for rolling motions


(G_/I/I) ,/~ approx

The maximum GA,[ for any of the anticipated load-

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


ing conditions should be used, and this is usually known by the time foundation design is under way. In cargo vessels and tankers maximum Gel,/ usually occurs in light condition, while passenger liners and combatant naval vessels experience higher values with full liquids on board. Because the distribution of load over the length of a ship is subject to somewhat greater variation than over its width, the radius of gyration in this direction is less of a constant. The calculation of this quantity is tedious and will hardly be war- ranted by the needs of foundation design alone. Accordingly, the pitching period is usually de- rived from comparisons with similar ships of known periods, or if a quick and conservative estimate is wanted, one half the rolling period may be taken.


Stiffened Flex Plate

An exact analysis of stresses in the flex plate shown in Fig. 11 would be tedious and would still rest on assumptions such as fit of bolts, degree of rotation of flanges, and so on. The load and deflection diagram idealizes the case for the pur- pose of an approximate solution and makes the following broad assmnptions, which are on oppo- site sides of the truth and so tend to neutralize each other :

(a) All of the bending deflection takes place

in the unstiffened strip at the bottom.

The bolting flange at the top is free to ro-

Since w and e are small compared to h in the diagram, the bending moment in the unstiffened section is virtually constant over the length A/3

and the elastic curve of this section approaches a circular arc, the slope of the tangent at B ap- proaching e/h. if the moment in A B on account

of the deformation e is AJ, then



M-w/EI and 21,/ =


and we have for the bending stress in a unit strip of AI3 on account of the deformation e:


Mc/_,r =





oi1 the

same unit


by the eccentric unit loading, P, is Pe and the

corresponding stress is





The column stress due to P is P/t, and combin- ing all these terms, the maximum stress in the bent portion A B is


-t- dPe

q_ P_




e = total thermalmovement, in.



modulus of elasticity, psi



thickness of flex plate, in.


= width of unstiffened portion, in.


= height of flex plate, in.


= vertical unit loading on flex plate, lb/in.





K. Losee, a Visitor: At the Bureau of Ships we

are currently making an intensive study of foun- dations and how their design influences the re- sistance of a ship to the effects of underwater explosions. Many ship structures can hardly be said to be designed at all. To design against shock, then, requires first the relationships between loads and stresses be determined by some reasonably re- liable analytical procedure. Once stress calcula- tions replace sheer guesswork as a basis for scant- lings, it is relatively easy to proceed from static to dynamic loads. For example, if a step velocity change is used as a measure of the loading, within

a given range of frequencies, the internal and

external energies can be equated. The former,

under elastic conditions, is proportional to stress times strain, and hence to stress squared. It

is necessary, therefore, to know only the distribu-

tion of stresses under loadings in the various direc-

tions. Such a distribution must usually be known

or assumed in order to make the static stress cal-

culation, so this kind of dynamic loading requires

little additional work. Unfortunately, the most elementary stress cal- culation often presents formidable obstacles.

Foundations especially have annoying tendencies

to be unsymmetrical and atypical. Their design

defies attack by handbook formulas and high-

speed computers alike. Possibly the most


a Scientific and Research Section (Code 442), Bureau of Ships, Washington, D. C.





Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

foundation designers' arsenal is limit design. Limit design obviates many of the difficulties

associated with the determination of stresses in

a highly redundant structure. And although

shock loadings may involve reversals of direction

of the inertia forces, the limit loads are probably

better measures of shock resistance than are loads based on purely elastic conditions. Within the limits of shock intensity under which it is feasible to avoid any considerable de- formation of the fotmdation, the designer is con- cerned with making his structure strong enough or resilient enough. (Such limits will be influ- enced greatly by tile need for preserving align- ment of the equipment supported.) Beyond those limits, he is very properly concerned, as the

author indicates, with avoiding excessive strength. Under extreme conditions something has to give.



important that the weakest link in the chain


one which can deform a large amount without

disastrous results. The formation of a plastic hinge in a beam is greatly preferable to reaching

yield stress in a bolt. The beam has a vast re-

serve of plastic

limits the loads on more vulnerable parts. In considering loads from ship motion, the au- thor suggests that the pitching period be taken about half the rolling period. A more rational formula which requires only readily available data


Natural period of pitch (see)

energy. If it is not too strong, it




disolacement (tons) tons per inch innnersion

A more precise formula would include the ratio

of the radii of gyration of mass and water-plane

area, but this is a refinement hardly worth mak- ing, unless by adjusting the coefficient to reflect measured periods on similar ships. In any case, loads based on simple harmonic pitching motion cannot be considered conservative. The pos- sibility of slamming must not be forgotten. In comparison with shock loadings from underwater

explosions, all ship motion forces generally pale into insignificance.

W. I. H. Budd, Member: It is surprising that a general paper on the subject of foundation design, which is important to satisfactory operation of marine power plants, has not been published pre- vious!y. The author's paper is a wLluable con- tribntion to fill this gap. The author's reference to the structural de- signer, who is presented with a machinery arrange- ment that shows the plant components floating in space and the designer faced with the responsi- bility of tying these objects to the most suitable

structure, should not give the reader an impres- sion that machinery location is accomplished with- out consideration of foundation problems. Struc- tural design must receive proper consideration simultaneously with shaft lines, heads, piping, and so on, so that the final arrangement will represent the optinmrn combination and com- promise of all factors. In connection with the use of a variable-fre- quency oscillator to induce vibration, it may be well to caution that 1he point of application of the excitation will affect the performance of complex structures and, therefore, requires considerable thought and judgment to obtain realistic results. The calculation methods referred to in reference [5] of the paper have some limitation in that they assume planes of vibrational sym.metry which do not always exist in actual practice. This assumption has been made in order to perform the calculations manually. Design organizations ac- tive in this field use a more general approach with the aid of electronic computers. The author states that if bearing,; nlust with- stand shock, they will probably not be affected adversely by gyroscopic forces which are usually of lower magnitude. Possibly some consideration should be given to the time intervals involved. Shock loadings are of extremely short duration. They will probably not cause loss of hTdrodynamic film lubrication. The longer loading times as- sociated with gyroscopic forces may result in loss of the oil film for suflhcient time to cause damage or failure in some borderline cases. The author mentions that the aspect of the stiffness-critical RPM curve is rather fiat for the fundamental mode. A recent case showed 10 percent change in critical RPM for a 50 percent change in stiffness. The relationship of spring constants and masses for this particular system appeared to result in a steeper slope than is nor- real. Although in many cases, this steeper slope would not be significant, the subject design was close to the acceptable limit and failure to ac- count properly for the actual sti:einess of the foundation was of concern. The author states that it is not customary to soften a foundation in an effort to reduce the critical frequency. In addition to the reasons mentioned by the author, it will generally be found that an increase in the flexibility of the foundation will result in an increased amplitude of vibration at the main unit. Appendix 4 furnishes information in connection with a stiffened flex-plate arrangement. This arrangement has often been used when the length is large relative to the deflection. In cases where

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


the length is short relative to the deflection, the stiffener has been snipped at the top as well as at the bottom. This arrangement is often used at one end of a high-pressure turbine. The stress for such an arrangement, assuming an unstiffened length w at top and bottom, may be found by multiplying the bending stress of a completely unstiffened plate;


h e

by a factor K having the following values :

















W. E. Pray, Member: The author states that the structural designer is usually presented with an arrangement that has components floating in space. However, the piping designer, who lo- cates the machinery, is concerned with how equip- ment is going to be supported. Many times, when he is making preliminary layouts, he must develop design concepts of the structure that will support .the components. Granted, "rule-of- thumb" methods and experience have been the basis for his designs but, many times, the original configuration, which ties into the existing struc- ture, closely approximates the final foundations. As more emphasis is placed or rational and ana- lytical approaches to foundation design, the pip- ing designer must be more aware of the static and dynamic problems confronting the structural en- gineer and to consider them when locating equip- ment and piping. This paper makes available to the piping designer information developed by structural specialists which will enable him to take a more rational approach. Seeing that the structural design of foundations has been so adequately covered in this paper some of the other aspects of good foundations should be discussed. ~.As the author states, there has been a rapid evolution of power plants and equipment. Equally important are the requirements that go with these power plants. The potential to operate for long periods at full power has em- phasized the importance of reliability. To im- plement this reliability, the maintenance and repair of equipment must also be considered in the design of machinery foundations. They must be designed for accessibility to vital parts of equip- ment and provisions made for the removal of these parts, under all sea conditions, without disturbing

other equipment or piping systems. These requirements will present complex problems if the foundation is designed for dynamic forces and consideration is given to saving of weight and

space. The increased demand for remote operation of valves and equipment has necessitated an in- crease in small regulating equipment, such as, solenoid valves, differential pressure transmitters and water-level indicators. The mounting of these units is as important as the equipment they serve. If these small units are located any dis- tance from the ship's structure and foundations are designed to shock-design numbers, the sup- porting members become heavy and space-con- suming. The author's suggestion of a compro- mise and designing the supports to yield before the units become missiles is well taken. Equip- ment such as pressure transmitters are very sensitive. They should be mounted on rigid machined surfaces so that they are not put out of alignment when bolted-up. Small units such as these deserve more attention from the structural designer.




that nmst be considered

as a structural support is the lifting pad. These

units probably cause more rework than any other item in the ship. They are usually scheduled for installation early in construction because of their location and to allow for the insulation of the underside of decks. As piping, ventilation, and

wireways are installed, direct leads between pad and units are obstructed and the pads have to be relocated. A possible answer to this problem is the development of hanger strips instead of single pads. These strips would provide a series of attachments which would give alternate locations compared to one location with a single pad. They should be designed with large factors of safety and in some eases welds should be non- destructively tested. Supports for small piping and wireways, called "chair hangers," present problems when they have to be installed after insulation is in place. The square "nelson stud" was developed to provide a good welding surface to support pipe and cable hangers under insulated decks. However, orien-

tation of square studs is difl~eult and hanger in- stallations have lost their professional look.

A possible solution is the return to the round stud

and stamping the chair hanger extensions to a semi-circular shape. More consideration should be given to com- bining foundations. From observation, it is apparent that in many instances adjacent foun- dations have been developed as single problems where they could have been combined into one


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations

unit. Foundations that are added late in plan development, such as piping anchor supports, should be factored into existing foundations wherever possible. Granted, this will create structural problems; however, time spent in the design stage will provide savings in weight and space and improve the esthetics of shipboard arrangements.

Structural considerations for the main machin- ery units are very well covered. The piping de- signer, however, has many problems that should be discussed. Here again, space limitations have crowded the lube-oil pumps, the main circulating water pump, and the main machinery units into

a complex that leaves little room for the neces-

sary valves and piping. Cooperation by the structural and piping designers is mandatory to provide adequate foundation strength and the necessary access for installation, operation, and maintenance. Some design activities develop full-size mock-ups in this area to resolve installa- tion problems. Usually, the reduction-gear foundation provides a volume for the lubricating oil. Access into this sump is nlost important for inspection, cleaning, and repairs. Consideration should be given to providing definite flow paths for the oil from the various drain lines to the lube-oil- pump suctions. These paths should be circuitous to increase the "dwell" time and allow any en- trained air to be liberated, thus avoiding cavita- tion in pump suctions. Limber holes should be

provided to allow flow from all points to purifier suction to avoid pockets of emulsified oil. Some consideration should be given to incorporating large drain lines into the basic structure to provide adequate slope under roll conditions and save space, although this might not be possible with an athwartship condenser. Some high pressure-high temperature industrial installations have run oil supply lines under structural drain trunks to save space and to minimize the possibility of spraying oil on hot surfaces. The author points out that the use of digital computers has simplified the analysis of stress

in large piping. This has made available accurate

forces and movements for the design of anchor

supports and sway braces. Critical analysis is also being made of small piping. Supporting

of these lines, which

the installing trades must have the attention of the engineers. Special chair-type hangers ~nust be designed to support the weight of pipe and liquid, to prevent vibration, but to allow limited movement to avoid stress concentrations

From these comments, the structural engineer should be aware that small equipment will need more attention, with emphasis placed on reliabil-

in the past has been left to

ity, ease of operation and maintenance of equip- ment, and the saving of weight and space. To paraphrase an old expression, "satisfactory ship arrangements are only as good as their founda- tion."

B. Siegel, Member: Vibration of ship structure, when it occurs, is sometimes, at first glance, as- signed to unbalance in machinery, or to weakness in machinery scantlings. Therefore, to the machinery designer it appears praiseworthy that

this paper discusses the stiffness of the founda- tion necessary to avoid resonances. It has been demonstrated, and with several assumptions, calculated, that for existing designs, including submarines, the natural frequency of main turbine and gear structures does not exceed 30 cps. It appears that stiffer designs are not ob- tainable or feasible. In fact, the majority of

foundations are resouant

cps. It is then apparent that even the funda- mental of propeller-blade frequency could excite foundations, on some ships. It has been the recommendation of the writer's company for a number of years that propulsion turbine support beams (HP girders or LP turbine beams or condenser.,; which support turbines) should, as a maximmn, deflect no more than 0.0l I) in. under static load. One reason for this criterion is to obtain a reasonably high natural frequency of these units, assuming the foundaLion is also reasonably stiff. The author describes well the advantages of the "hung" condenser over the supported turbine. The writer's company has built many turbines for both arrangements. For most conventional athwartship condenser designs, it reec,mmends the supported turbine. To the writer's knowledge, longitudinal condensers always support the tur- bine. After World War II, it became evident that some difficulties were encountered in service with hung condensers owing to improper setting of the then widely used sway braces and similar devices, it also became apparent tkLat, as larger powers were used, the condenser weights to be c~/rried by turbines would and did increase more quickly than the size (and, therefore, strength) of the turbines since, the latter supported the weight from the simple exhaust flange. The author's and the writer's companies were deeply involved in a design which evolved and resulted in shifting the center of gravity of tile hung con- denser aft closer to the. ship's beams and providing an additional flexible support from the condenser shell to the LP turbine beams. Although this change is a great stride, it did

at less than 20 to 25

Design of Marine Machinery Foundations


not relieve the turbine (a high-efficiency, high- speed, close-clearance machine subject to large thermal swings) from the problem of supporting

a dead load of up to 3 times its own weight nor-

anally and lnuch more during various transients. For instance, it is not uncommon, in present

large ships to encounter 200,()00 lb or heavier

condensers working in conjunction with a 65,000-

lb turbine. It appears quite reasonable to provide

a very large static structure with the relatively

small changes necessary to support a turbine. It is our feeling, borne out by very successful operation of many merchant and Navy ships that the thermal movements mentioned by the author are easily compensated for in alignment and that sufficient stiffness is relatively easily provided in the supported turbine design. Further, the sup- ported condenser design permits lower foundation supports, closer to the vertical center of gravity of the combined turbine-condenser unit. Although it is agreed that the high-strength bolt and structural materials should be used with discretion, it appears that wider use could be made of them since, in many cases, a better design and, sometimes, a reduction in cost could result. The control of replacement bolts for these ap-

plications should be as careful, and should be no more difficult than for high-temperature steam bolting.

Discussion Al:stracts


were submitted in advance and read at the meet- ing, there were several verbal discussions, which are abstracted as follows :

the Bureau of

Ships program for analytical design of foundations under shock loading, noting that the Bureau in- tended to establish a project for extensive study of the subject including full-scale trials. He added that recent studies of discrepancies between actual displacements of ships and estimated weights have indicated that foundations are con- tributing far more to the total weight of the ship than was realized.

In addition

to the foregoing discussions,

C. L. Wright, Member, referred to

H. Galle, 4 Visitor, presented a composite discus- sion representing his comments and those of his associates. While conceding that the analytical approach to foundation design is not only desirable but necessary i.n submarine practice, he pointed out that the designer is oKen so circumscribed, by such factors as potential interferences and lack of suitable primary structure in the immediate vicinity of the foundation, that many compromises

4 Portsmouth






with ideal theory have to be accepted. He en- dorsed the preference stated in the paper for flex plates over sliding mounts in submarines for an additional reason; namely, that sliding con- nections have been known to squeak, which is undesirabIe from the point of view of noise emis- sion. He noted an exception to the rule that foun- dations are hardly ever built of anything but mild steel, stating that high-tensile alloy has been used for certain flexing applications in submarines where thermal stresses are high.

F. W. Wood, Associate Member, added to the list

of static loadings experienced by foundations in submarines the following: (a) Forces due to deformation of the hull under submergence pres-

sure, noting that the transverse bulkheads are about the only elements of submarine structure which retain their shape and location, and (5) axial thrust on the line shafting due to the same

He cautioned against the use of shock

mounts as a cure-all for a potentially resonant condition, noting that in some cases the shock input to the component can conceivably increase over that which would be experienced in a rigid mounting system.


S. Curtis Powell, Member, smnmarized the vari-

ous approaches to the shock problem which are now being studied and emphasized that, regardless of the forms of attack being advanced by the separate activities concerned, all are attempting to describe the same phenomenon. He felt that perhaps the fundamental problem was being mag- nified by such duplication of effort.

E. H. McCallig, Member, deplored the circum-

stances which limited the author to describing certain well-known types of apparatus only as "cylindrical components." He considered this an outstanding example of a policy which, by iso- lating certain activities from our profession, worked to the detriment of all. He noted that digital computers could hardly be justified by the savings in piping length coming from use of a machine program, and considered that the value of such eompnters was being over-rated in some quarters.

Author's Closure

The volume and quality of the discussion has fully justified the hope, expressed early in the paper, that we would hear from others who have had experience in some of the specialized prob- lems which could only be hinted at in a paper of this tyFe. The author's thanks go to each and


Design of Marine Machinery Fcun:lations

every one who took the time to contribute his thoughts. As to the timeliness of this paper, the author was completely and blissfully unaware until a few weeks ago that the Bureau of Ships was mounting a formidable program for improvement of founda- tion criteria, specifically in the area of shock design. Mr. Losee modestly omitted to mention that he has been a heavy contributor to this program. The restllt has been an extremely interesting and informative design data sheet which is now being circulated to ship-design activities for comment. I feel sure that those of us who are concerned with shock design will want to add it to the bibliography. Its title is "Design of Foundations to Regst Shock Loadings," number DDS-9110-7. Along the same lines, Dr. Keil's paper, reference [16] will be found helpful. The press of events diq not permit a careful study of this paper for application to the present one, so a sharp eye will notice that it appears only as the last item in the bibliography. The major part of Mr. Losee's discussiou is concerned with behavior of the foundatiol~ mate- rial beyond the elastic limit, -which is something that most designers ordinarily shy away from if they think of it at all. Nevertheless, if we are going to fulfill the concept of the foundation as a mechanical fuse, we shall have to enter this dark territory, and Mr. Losee's work lights a path. It would appear that the effect of limit design on the cantilever and beam relations developed in Appendix 2 is to make a given beam effectively stronger, but no stiffer, so that all the numerical coet~eients will decrease. On the surface this looks like a further handicap in finding a suitable compromise between shock and vibration re- sistance, but an offsetting advantage is the energy absorption represented by the plastic flow. Mr. Losee's suggested formula for the period of pitch is indeed more rational than the simple approach suggested in the paper, but looks like a heaving period with a nmnerical coefficient which includes a mass of entrained water somewhat greater than the displacement. The point is not worth any further laboring, however, since pitch- ing is unlikely ever to be a problem in foundation work. I answer Mr. Budd and Mr. Pray together. They both make the point that power-plant engineers, as well as structural anal-vsts, cus- tomarily give thought to foundations when arranging machinery and piping. I have known both men for more years than they would wish to have mentioned and am sure that neither of them has ever been personally guilty of ignoring struc- tural problems in the plaeew, ent of components.

My description of machinery "floatirLg in space" was a gravity-defying metaphor, used without qualification to describe an extreme situation which is sometimes faced even in the best-man- aged design oflSces. I agree with all of Mr. Budd's comments and adnfit to some degree of oversimplification of the

section on gyroscopic loading. The intent of this section was merely to suggest that one should not follow blindly any traditional approach if a rational look at the problem offers a chance of im provement. Both of these discussers have helped to fill out the paper from the plant engineer's viewpoint, where it was a little bit light as a result of having been written by a hull man, and their contribu- tions are much apt;reeiated. Mr. Pray reminds us of something too often overlooked; namely, that the mere size of an object is not necessarily a measure of the care that should be taken in its placement and support. The plant may be just as dead, from shock failure

of a little

unit casualty. The subject of pipe hangers is a special case which requires examination both from static (thermal) and dynamic (vibration) loading. The locations and stiffness characteristics of such hangers must nearly always be a compromise between the conflicting requirements of piping flexibility and the suppression of vibration. Another paper could ahnost be written on this subject alone, and it is hoped that this meeting has helped to stinmlate interest in this sometimes neglected area. Mr. Siegel's comments, as do those of Mr. Budd and Mr. Pray, afford a view of the foundation from the machinery designer's eye, which is necessary to complete the picture. The numbers offered by Mr. Siegel for natural frequencies of large masses such as turbines and gears on their support structures, are in complete a~eement with the author's experience. This much is conceded in the paper, with the suggestion that some means of damping be cousidered for the purpose of reducing resonant amplitudes. In the case of one heavy mass recently installed in a large vessel, the low-frequency problem was recognized at an early stage of the de.qgn, but the assembly defied all efforts to raise the fundamental frequency above 2II cps. A damping device was considered, but was not used because time did not allow a developmental program. The criterion of I)./)lt3 in. maximum allowable static deflection for turbine and cortdenser sup- ports seems reasonable in light of the fact that this can be translated into a natural frequency of 1S811

black box, as from a mait:c propulsion

Design of Marine MachineryFoundations


cpm or about 31.3 cps, which should be proof against most propeller-excited vibrations. The brief review of this discusser's position on LP turbine and condenser support is interesting and merits consideration. When the paper was being prepared, the author and others who helped him were fully aware that this was a controversial topic. The variety of opinions held on this subject almost indicates that a colloquium, including machinery and structural representatives from various activities, would be a useful means of defining objectives and solutions in this area. Mr. Wright's reinforcement of Mr. Losee's interest, and that of the Bureau of Ships, on the subject of foundation design is encouraging to the author. Perhaps the discovery of a weight prob- lem associated with foundations was in part responsible for the attempt to refine their design. There is little doubt that closer attention to design would produce weight-saving dividends in this area as it has in many others. Mr. Galle's and Mr. Wood's discussions are valuable additions in that they reveal some of the specialized problems encountered in submarine practice. This is an area where the author had little but hearsay evidence to work on, and such contributions are appreciated in view of the fact

that the author's company is now embarked upon

a submarine building job which will require an

extensive learning process. Mr. Powell's comments on any paper are always illuminating and these were no exception. The author recognizes and agrees that the separate paths being followed by shock analysts lead, or should lead, to similar design concepts. This is not to say, however, that the value of any given approach should be discounted. It is quite probable that we shall hear more, rather than less, of shock design in future naval applications, as evidenced by the Navy's current policy of conducting full-scale shock trials on new vessels at considerable expense. Mr. McCallig points the finger at a situation which is a source of distress to many in the engi- neering professions. While admitting the need for certain security restrictions, one can still see

many areas where a free exchange of information and ideas would be an advantage far outweighing the real or fancied risk of disclosure to unau- thorized persons. As to digital computers, the author's reference

to their use in piping design problems presupposed

that they would already be available in a large

design activity for other reasons.


Design of Marine Machinery Foundations