The Caravel and the Impact of New Technologies on Transportation Systems

A Caravel

Transportation systems have evolved since ancient time. This continual transformation of the ways in which humans travel and transport goods is often closely tied to technological advances in the field of transportation. In many ways, the culture of a civilization is heavily influenced by the transportation technologies available to it. However, the relationship goes the other way as well. The transportation technologies present in a society are also often determined by the culture of that society.

In the 15th and 16th centuries, an iconic ship known as the Caravel largely dominated the sea-faring industries of Southwestern Europe. Although the exact origin of this ship is still debated, it had been used as an offshore fishing vessel by the peoples of the Iberian Peninsula since at least the 1200’s. The ship featured a strong Moorish influence, and its design, at least in part, may have been passed from the Islamic body of knowledge to the Western Christian societies of Spain and Portugal. This is quite possible because, as one author points out (see links below), Medieval Islamic society contributed many advances to the fields of geography, mathematics, astronomy, and medicine. These important theoretical discoveries would later contribute to the success of European seafaring by forming the foundation of cutting-edge navigational techniques and other technologies.

The Caravel was a relatively small ship, especially by modern standards. The bottom of the ship protruded below the surface of the water by only a small distance, making it an extremely maneuverable watercraft. For much of its life, the Caravel featured triangular “lateen” sails that, combined with its eminent maneuverability, allowed it to sail into the wind using a zigzagging technique known as “beating to windward.” The Spanish and Portuguese soon recognized the potential of this ship, and transformed it from a simple offshore fishing vessel to the backbone of the European Age of Exploration. With the addition of square sails (to provide increased power when sailing with the wind) and other minor changes, the Caravel soon became the ship of choice for many explorers. It has been suggested that two of Columbus’s ships, the Niña and the Pinta, were Caravels optimized for transatlantic exploration.

Clearly, the Caravel revolutionized European transportation. This technology made it possible for European explorers, fishermen, and merchants to “expand their horizons,” by providing the ability to travel further, faster. One could argue that it played a major role in the rapid colonization of the New World.

However, the inverse is also true. To a large extent, the success of the Caravel was due to navigational techniques brought to the Iberian Peninsula by the Moors, combined with the European desire for political, economic, religious, and scientific expansion.

This dichotomy holds true for many transportation-related technologies. Railroads are built to service existing towns, but the route itself often determines the development of future towns. Military conflict has served as a catalyst for the development of many advances in aviation technology that have later spilled over into the public sector. It is clear that a society’s culture and its transportation technologies are very much linked. Engineers must keep this in mind when developing new technologies for transportation systems. When designing part of a transportation system, it is important both to take inspiration from society and to recognize the changes that that technology will have upon society.

 

———————————————————————————————————————

 

http://nautarch.tamu.edu/shiplab/01George/caravela/htmls/Caravel%20History.htm

http://nautarch.tamu.edu/shiplab/01George/index.htm

http://www.enchantedlearning.com/inventors/page/c/caravel.shtml

 

 

8,292 thoughts on “The Caravel and the Impact of New Technologies on Transportation Systems

  1. Hello every one this is Hendrix thank you for your this useful information. It was going very interesting. I saw usually your blog it was going amazing. I’m relly impressed your blog. I’m waiting for your next blog thank you.

  2. Thank you for providing the information….R WorkSquare provides a fully furnished Office on lease at a reasonable cost. It is Bhopal’s largest co-working space, located in the heart of the city MP Nagar with services like Team Office, Conference Room, Manager Cabin, Private Office,Dedicated Desk, Executive Cabin, Built to Suite and many other services.R WorkSquare

  3. Thanks for sharing such an article with us. It was informative and helpful for us. Please keep sharing like this. Are you looking to relax on your couch, stroll through nature and mediate? Or you’re seeking an alternative remedy for any other conditions? Then here, we have products exactly to suit you. CBDHempflower, it’s committed to bringing people CBD products that are the purest and highest quality. We are really proud of offering you organic, natural, lab-tested CBD flowers and extracts. Visit us to find CBD flower UK,  wholesale CBD Europe, wholesale hemp buds, or to order 1 lb hemp flower online at a cheap price.

  4. taruhan online terpercaya dengan permainan yang menarik membuat anda menjadi jauh lebih leluasa dalam mempertimbangkan cara main yang lainnya. situs yang memiliki kualitas terbaik di kalangannya

  5. ریزش مو از مسائل مهمی است که امروزه زنان و مردان بسیاری از آن شکایت دارند. این مشکل می‌تواند موروثی باشد و یا در اثر سوء تغذیه و مصرف برخی داروها و یا کمبود ویتامین‌های بدن باشد. برای درمان ریزش مو داروهای مختلفی وجود دارد، قرص فولیکوژن یکی از این داروهاست.

    https://tebna.ir/health/قرص-فولیکوژن-و-تاثیر-آن-در-درمان-ریزش-مو/

  6. لیبل ترانسپارنت ، لیبل شفاف یا لیبل شیشه ای (Transparent Label) همانطور که از نامش پیداست، بی رنگ و شفاف بوده که همین خاصیت شفافیت ، باعث میشود از هر دو طرف قابل رویت و دیدن باشد. لیبل شیشه ای (لیبل ترنسپرنت) قابلیت چاپ پذیری بالایی دارد و همچنین این نوع لیبل شفاف قابلیت ضد آبی دارد و از مقاومت بالایی در برابر کشیدگی و رطوبت و… برخوردار است.

  7. Microsoft Azure certification
    shows that you are keeping at pace with today’s technical roles and requirements. With this certification course, you can prove yourself and explore your expertise to the employers and peers and get recognition in your present company or can get better opportunities in different companies.

  8. WordPress Can Help You Create a Beautiful How To make Website in 10 Minutes

    The design and development tools available for WordPress are more advanced and easy to use than those found on other platforms. You can create complex multi-column layouts and hundreds of background colors and themes for your site. If you are just starting out, just write your site’s URL on a piece of paper and call it a WordPress site.

  9. Why Need Good digital Marketing For Your Business?

    Digital marketing is an integral part of any business. These days, people cannot survive without the internet. Therefore, it should use the wonders of the internet and digital marketing for a company to be successful.

    Moreover, digital marketing brings about some fantastic benefits to a business. And today, we will see why the Digital Marketing Service in Surat has to be used for your business.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *