How happy the beginning was! A passenger liner that its owner, company White Star, declared unsinkable was floated out on May 31, 1911 in Belfast. Nobody doubted about it being unsinkable. The vessel featured the tonnage of over 46,000 tons, length of about 270 meters, width of about 30 meters, height of an eleven-storied building, double bottom, maximum speed of 26 knots, and 50,000 horsepower engines. What about entertainment? The ship could boast of having a music salon, barbershop, water pool, small gulf course, tennis court, several bars, restaurant, and orchestra of its own. The advertisement called upon the public to make a pleasant and safe voyage. Many people could not resist the temptation. On April 10, 1912 Titanic pulled off from the landing pier of Southampton having avoided the collision with an American liner by a finger’s breadth. After that, the vessel took passengers on board in the French port of Cherbourg and Irish one of Queenstown, and made for the open sea, where the ship met with an iceberg. Those eyewitnesses who remained alive recalled later that complete silence frightened them, all machines stopped at once. The radio equipment produced by Marconi was functioning properly, but SOS signal would not go on air. Marconi recommended using different signal to the clients. The vessel received a fatal hull breach and started submerging. There were over 2,200 passengers and crew members on board, while the boats could house less than 1,200 people. In practice, not all of the seats in the boats were occupied – only 704 people attained salvation. They gathered annually on April 15 for many years and each time fewer people would come. The last person alive who remembered the wreckage of Titanic was American Lillian Gertrud Asplund, who had been 5 during the catastrophe. Famous scientist and shipbuilder Krylov said commenting on the tragedy: “The greatest ship in the world died, like ancient Babylon due to excessive luxury.” As for French scientist Paul Langevin, he started developing sound locator after the crash.
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