M/S Selandia a first step to globalisation


Once again Scandinavian Society Siam had invited to an event with historical content. A Sunday film afternoon showing  “The Ship that changed the World” about M/S Selandia, which was built at Burmeister and Wain in Copenhagen for East Asiatic Company and had her maiden voyage to Bangkok in 1912.

The introduction of the diesel engines revolutionized shipping and made globalisation possible. The steam ships which had handled cargo prior used up to 30 percent of their deadweight tonnage on coal. By using diesel engines the fuel weight was reduced with 80 percent.

Even M/S Selandia wasn’t the first diesel engined ocean going ship as the film falsely claim (get the facts right here), she truly changed the world of shipping being almost twice as big as the second largest diesel engined ships at the time. Her size and stunning new design made East Asiatic Company world famous and she did set the pace for large marine diesel engines and made Burmeister and Wain the leading company in Marine diesel engines.

20 people had decided to spend their Sunday at the Admiral’s pub to see the film and most of them used the opportunity to have the restaurant’s brunch before the film.

As always when gathering in Scandinavian Society Siam a few singalong songs lifted the spirit as did the event’s host Flemming Winther Nielsen by performing “When I was a lad”  from HMS Pinafore in Danish (Admiralens vise).

If you would like to know more about Selandia the Danish association of Engineers has publicised their two original articles on Selandia from 1912 in celebration of the 100 years anniversary.

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