Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Trips to the seas and oceans have always been unpredictable. When the ship strayed off course, and its crew no longer hoped to see the ground, suddenly the distant lights of the lighthouse appeared.

The first lighthouses were the huge bonfires that were built on the high bank, and the most famous lighthouse in history is the Lighthouse of Alexandria - one of the wonders of the world.

Today we will talk about lighthouses - guiding lights for ships.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

The very first lighthouses were fires, divorced on the banks. They Greeks and Phoenicians designated dangerous passages.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Later, coal, rapeseed oil or kerosene was used as a source of light.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

At the dawn of navigation, when there were very few lighthouses and they were the most primitive, a lot of ships went down. It happened that the ships managed to cross the oceans and strong storms, but they died at the entrance to the ports.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

The most famous lighthouse is consideredAlexandrian lighthouse- one of the 7 wonders of the world. He was still in the III century BC. in the Egyptian city of Alexandria, so that the ships could safely pass the reefs.

Picture of the Lighthouse of Alexandria, 1909:

Alexandrian lighthouse

The total height of the magnificent building was 120-140 meters, and its light was visible at a distance of 60 km. More precisely, at night the ships were helped by the reflection of tongues of flame, and by day - a column of smoke. In the 14th century, the lighthouse was completely destroyed by an earthquake, having existed for about 1,600 years.

Alexandrian lighthouse

In some countries, lighthouses could conceal a danger to seafarers: pirates often lit false fires, directing ships to the rocks for the purpose of robbery.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

One of the most important stages in the development of lighthouses was an invention in 1820.Fresnel lenses, which allowed to significantly increase the power of light - up to 80,000 candles, while the light source was just a burning wick! This is approximately equal to the power of the headlights of a modern car.

Fresnel lenses at the National Maritime Museum in Paris:

Fresnel lenses

At the beginning of the 20th century, burners were invented in which the oil was supplied under pressure, and soon Fresnel’s lenses could produce up to 1,000,000 candles.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

In the 1920s, the familiar electric incandescent bulbs became popular. They are now the main means of lighting. In combination with a light bulb of only 250 watts, the Fresnel lens can produce several hundred thousand candles.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Currently, the most powerful lighthouse in the world, located in France, pierces the night sky with a blinding beam of 500 million candles.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

The very first lighthouse on the territory of Russia is considered to be the Dagerort Lighthouse (Kõpu), built in 1531. In general, the boom in the construction of lighthouses in Russia is associated with the development of the fleet under Peter I.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses are divided into large and small, and those, in turn, into

  • coastal - set ashore;
  • sea ​​- beacons, installed on ships. They are used away from the coast and at the entrances to the port.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Large lighthouses are high towers.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

The first modern sea lighthouse was launched in 1732 at the mouth of the River Thames near London. Although in recent years, sea lighthouses have given way to automatic buoys.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

On large sea (floating) lighthouses the crew is usually always present. Also, they require high costs for construction and operation.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

If you take the most famous monuments, the Statue of Liberty in New York from 1886 to 1902 was used as a beacon.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Currently, these romantic buildings - lighthouses - are becoming a thing of the past. They are replaced by satellite navigation devices, radio beacons and other cheaper and more accurate devices.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

The profession of "lighthouse keeper" is also a thing of the past, because all processes in these structures have long been automated.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Many of the lighthouses have become just monuments, but still attracting tourists and photographers with their beauty.

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

In some countries, lighthouses are even protected by the state and are unique monuments that carry a long history of navigation.

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  • Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships


    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships

    Lighthouses - guiding lights for ships