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(naval architecture)
The outline of a ship, either as projected onto one of three perpendicular planes or as viewed visually. Also known as ship's lines.





the contours of the outer surface of a vessel’s hull. They are depicted graphically by the lines drawing plan of the vessel. The shape of the lines affects the water resistance to the vessel’s motion, the operating conditions of the engines, the vessel’s ability to mount waves, its icebreaking performance and seaworthiness, and other service characteristics. The lines of water-displacing vessels show the shape of the bow and stern frames (U-shaped and V-shaped), and the sharpness of the lines indicates the block coefficient (the ratio of the submerged volume of the vessel’s hull to the volume of a parallelepiped having the same overall dimensions). The optimum lines are determined by model tests of a vessel in an experimental pool. Slow-speed vessels and those that are not self-propelled can have bluff lines (simplified lines formed by flat surfaces).

References in classic literature ?
Put these men and girls in line, march them ten abreast, and six hours would pass before the last company would arrive at the reviewing stand.
The reader will observe that the writer has been unable to keep the women out of an interpolation consisting only of four lines.
Farther up the line a man, standing behind a tree, had had his knee joint splintered by a ball.
Headquarters of the Second Rhodesians occupied a sheltered position far enough back of the lines to be comparatively safe from enemy observation.
Because no sturgeon can pass through a Chinese line, the device is called a trap in the fish laws; and because it bids fair to exterminate the sturgeon, it is branded by the fish laws as illegal.
All faces turned in the direction of the familiar voice; the two men between whom in the order of stature Greene had commonly stood in line turned and squarely confronted each other.
The investigator will encounter nothing less than a line of battle; there is no need of pickets, videttes, skirmishers, to give warning of our approach; our attacking lines will be visible, conspicuous, exposed to an artillery fire that will shave the ground the moment they break from cover, and for half the distance to a sheet of rifle bullets in which nothing can live.
Layamon wrote his Brut more than a hundred years after the coming of the Normans, and although his poem is in the main alliterative, sometimes he has rhyming lines such as "mochel dal heo iwesten: mid harmen pen mesten," that is:--
SOCRATES: And might there not be another square twice as large as this, and having like this the lines equal?
The intervals between the horizontal lines in the diagram, may represent each a thousand generations; but it would have been better if each had represented ten thousand generations.
May it not be caused by a tendency in each stone to arrange itself in some particular position, with respect to the lines of vibration, -- in a manner somewhat similar to pins on a sheet of paper when shaken?
Early in the morning, while all things are crisp with frost, men come with fishing-reels and slender lunch, and let down their fine lines through the snowy field to take pickerel and perch; wild men, who instinctively follow other fashions and trust other authorities than their townsmen, and by their goings and comings stitch towns together in parts where else they would be ripped.