RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE                                                                                                                                                                                                                       RMS QUEEN MARY 2

Historical Statistics:





Alstom Chantiers de l’Atlantique, St Navaire, France

Yard Number:


Date of Build:


Vessel Name:

RMS Queen Mary 2

Type of Vessel:

Passenger ocean liner

Date Named:

8th January 2004

QEII Terminal, Southampton, England, UK

Named by:

HM Queen Elizabeth II

Maiden Voyage:

12th January 2004

Southampton to Fort Lauderdale, USA via Funchal, Las Palmas and Barbados.  

Maiden Transatlantic Crossings:

16th April 2004

Southampton to New York, USA

25th April 2004

New York, USA to Southampton

Final Commercial Voyage:


Final Voyage:






Port of Registry:

Southampton, England, UK

Original Owners / Operators:

Cunard Line, Southampton, England, UK




Technical Statistics:





1,132 ft / 345 metres


135 ft / 41 metres


32 ft 10 inches / 10 metres

Gross Registered Tonnage:

150,000 tons (as built)


157,000 horsepower, environmentally friendly gas turbine / diesel electric plant


Four pods of 21.5 MW each; 2 fixed and 2 azimuthing


Two sets

Maximum Speed:

30 knots (34.5 mph)

26 knots (30 mph) (Cruising Speed)

Passengers & Crew:

2,620 passengers 1,253 crew



Technical Facts:

Signal Letters: GBQM

IMO Number: 9241061

Cost: £550 million

The overall height of the RMS Queen Mary 2 is limited by the need to pass under New York's Verazzano Narrows Bridge.

In order to propel the RMS Queen Mary 2 at speeds of up to 30 knots (34 miles per hour), a great deal of power and technology is needed. The ship is powered by an advanced environmentally friendly plant with electricity generated by four diesel engines and two gas turbines.

Gas Turbines:

These are situated below and behind the funnel because of their requirement for large air intake. Such a location reduces the need for space being taken up by ducting. The two General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines will generate 25MW of electricity each, which is equivalent to 81,000 shp. They run at 3,600 rpm and turn a generator through a reduction gearbox. The turbines burn marine gas fuel oil and are generally only run when the ship needs to achieve higher speeds.

The gas turbines burn approximately 6 tonnes per hour each of fuel.

ALSTOM (acquired GEC in 1988 to form GEC Alstom, this eventually become just ALSTOM in 1997)

Diesel Engines:

The four diesel engines generate electricity and are located low down in the ship due to their size and weight. Each engine is 12.5 metres long, 4.4 metres wide, 5.5 metres high and weighs 217 tonnes. The diesel engines were built by Wartsila and are V engines with 16 cylinders. They have a bore of 460 mm and a stroke of 560 mm. Each engine runs at 514 rpm and produce 16.8 MW of power. They run on conventional heavy fuel oil. The engines are of the enviroengine design that uses commonrail technology utilising water injection into the chambers to reduce noxious emissions.

The diesel engines burn approximately 3 tonnes per hour each of fuel.


Mermaid Pods:

The RMS Queen Mary 2 features four Mermaid pods built by Rolls Royce owned Kamewa and Alstom Powers Motors. She is the first passenger ship to be driven by four pods. The forward two pods are fixed in place while the aft two are able to turn through 360 degrees to steer and manoeuvre the ship. Each of the pods weighs 250 tons - the largest and most powerful ever made at 21.5 MV each. This gives a total propulsion power of 86 MW. The pods are individually hydrodynamically shaped to help attain the speeds required of the RMS Queen Mary 2. Unusually the propellors themselves are stainless steel and have a highly skewed fixed pitch.

Rolls-Royce PLC (acquired Kamewa in 1999)


The RMS Queen Mary 2 has three thrusters of 3.2 MW each allowing the ship to turn in her own length in port without the use of tugs. These operate with a fingertip touch by an officer on the Bridge. The total plant is capable of producing nearly 118 MW of electricity - that is about twice the power of a 100,000 ton conventional cruise ship.


Her normal cruising speed is between 24 and 26 knots (approximately 30 mph); with the power being obtained from the four diesels. Her maximum speed is approximately 30+ knots (34.5 mph) which is obtained from both the diesels and the gas turbines.


The RMS Queen Mary 2 has four "VM Series" folding fin stabilisers built by Brown Brothers of Edinburgh. There are one piece, passive type design (which means that they don't have flaps) and when combined reduce the ship's roll by 90%.

Each stabiliser:

  • weighs approximately 70 tonnes.
  • is 2.5 metres wide.
  • extends beyond the ship's side by 6.25 metres.
  • has a surface area of 15.63 square metres.
  • provides 1070 kN lift.
  • takes approximately 30 seconds to extend or house.
Rolls-Royce PLC (acquired Brown Brothers in 1999)


There are three 23 tonne anchors provided, two working and one spare - the latter mounted on top of the forward end of the breakwater. The U3 anchor chains are collectively 770 metres long, of 114 mm section 2 weigh 273 tonnes and have a breaking strain of 9300kN.

Dynamic Positioning:

The RMS Queen Mary 2 is the most technically advanced ship with regard to manoeuvre control ever built. She is capable of being manoeuvred by a single joystick on the Bridge that can move the ship sideways or at an angle or even keep station over a fixed point on the earth by use of satellite and wind gauges. The system involves the pods at the rear of the ship and the thrusters at the forward end.

The Bridge:

The Bridge of the RMS Queen Mary 2 is huge and, again, utilises the latest technology. It is almost 50 metres wide with a layout designed to take into account today's philosophy of "Safe Bridge Team Management", but using a new idea of presenting information to Bridge Officers for them to manage the ship's systems. Equipment was provided by Kelvin Hughes. Flat screens are used to show radar, navigation displays, safety management systems, manoeuvring systems, power management displays, water consumption, ballast transfer and weather systems. All the same screens can be interswitched at the operator's discretion. Close circuit camera pictures show in the corner of the screens a picture similar to a picture in picture television that is becoming more common in homes today.

Kelvin Hughes Ltd

Environment and Safety:

The RMS Queen Mary 2's systems set the benchmark for many years to come.


The ship has an extra thick steel hull for strength and stability for Atlantic crossings.

Lifesaving Equipment:

The RMS Queen Mary 2's lifesaving equipment was provided by Schat Harding.

  • 2 fast 6-person rescue boats (up to 25 knots)
  • 14 150-person semi-enclosed lifeboats (6 knots)
  • 8 150-person combinations tender lifeboats
  • These have a capacity of 37 persons each.
Umoe Shat-Harding (Part of the Umoe Group)

The RMS Queen Mary 2's Whistle:

The RMS Queen Mary 2 has two traditional "Typhon" style whistles and these are located at the forward end of the funnel. The starboard side whistle is an original from the RMS Queen Mary which was mounted on that ship's middle funnel. Since the RMS Queen Mary became a museum ship in Long Beach, California the whistle was until recently been stored inside the ship. The whistle was offered on permanent loan to Cunard Line and has been reconditioned by the original manufacturers, Kockums Ab Sweden. A replica of the whistle was ordered as part of the shipbuilding contract and the original and facsimile are now mounted on the funnel on small platforms. The two whistles sound a characteristic deep bass "A" note and are now driven by 30 bar compressed air from the diesel engine start air system rather than by steam. The sound can be heard up to 10 miles away.

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Kockum Sonics


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