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Reporter's Statement of the Case "The addition of bulges was suggested by myself originally for the Edgar class, for which I designed this form of protection in 1914, after considerable adjustments had been made. The results have proved the efficiency of the bulges."
This bulge provision became the general practice in the English Navy for protection from torpedo attack during the Great War. See defendant's exhibit 12, pages 8–13 and 27-28.
The American term "blister," synonymous with “bulge" was used by the Secretary of the Navy before the Appropriation Committee of Congress; Secretary Wilbur in 1926 in his recommendation, speaking on this subject, said:
The treaty for limitations of naval armament specifically provides for the addition of bulges or blisters for protection against torpedo and bomb attack and for increased ship protection against aerial bomb attack.
Plaintiff's exhibit 14, pages 7 and 8. 12. A bulge or blister, in naval parlance, is a means of external protection for a ship from torpedo or mine attack and extends generally along the side of the ship from a point above the water line down to the turn of the bilge or adjacent thereto. It is a hollow metallic outside structure attached to the ordinary hull proper of the ship and is at its bow and stern ends tapered or streamlined into the lines of the hull in order that skin friction or resistance when the vessel is in motion through the water be reduced to a minimum.
Blisters primarily are for protection from the enemy attack by torpedoes, but owing to their shape provide a hollow chamber of great cubic capacity which can be and is utilized as storage space for oil or water, by proper compartmentation.
13. When applied to a vessel, because of the added buoyancy they provide, blisters enable additional armor protection to be used on the decks of the vessel without a consequent increase in the draft. This practice of adding thicker deck armor plating when blisters are supplied to already fabricated hulls is in conformity with the Navy program. 92 C. Cls. Reporter's Statement of the Case of "modernization" of older vessels to present-day requirements. The blisters, of the battleship “Mississippi" and of the other examples of infringement, give an additional 3,000 tons of buoyancy to the vessels.
The evidence is convincing that in attaching blisters to ships in commission, no increase in speed is expected with the same expenditure of horsepower. Defense from attack is the prime purpose and the hull contour or shape of the vessel is disturbed or changed as little as possible.
"THE MISSISSIPPI" 14. Plaintiff relies upon the drawing plaintiff's exhibit No. 8, plans supplied by the Navy Department showing typical sections of the blister construction applied to the hull of the battleship "Mississippi,” as the evidence of infringement. Exhibit 8 shows in Fig. 1 the outboard profile of the ship, and in Fig. 2, a horizontal cross section of the same ship with the blisters applied. Figs. 3, 4, 5, 6, of the exhibit show cross-sections of the hull of the ship at frames 24, 54, 70, and 118, with the blister attached. The frames in a ship are numbered from the bow to the stern in progression, frame No. 1 at the bow and each successive frame toward the stern being of higher numerical designation.
15. As disclosed by the drawings, the “Mississippi,” like ships of her class, has a straight, flat bottom with no continuous rise of bottom from the bow to the stern. The profile of the bottom of the "Mississippi" does not correspond to the profile of the bottom of the vessel of the patent in suit, illustrated and shown in Figs. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, of the Patent Drawings.
16. Where the blister joins the hull of the "Mississippi" a joint results that produces a shallow recess or channel along the entire extent of the blister. The joint or recess at the point of attachment of the blister to the hull is well illustrated in Fig. 4, plaintiff's exhibit 8, frames 54–70, and in defendant's exhibit 17, "the sketch of section of the 'Mississippi."" These angular recesses or channels run the length of the blister where it is applied to the vessel but they are not centrally located in the bottom of the hull as shown in
Reporter's Statement of the Case Figs. 1, 2, 6, 7, 8 of the patent in suit. They are located substantially on each side of the vessel at a point near the turn of the bilge. These channels perform no function in respect to the operation or performance of the ship. The evidence is clear that their presence is merely incidental to the fastening of the blister by appropriate means to the ship's hull.
17. There is not present in the battleship “Mississippi” or vessels of her class, a longitudinally inwardly extending recess centrally located in the bottom as shown, described and claimed in the patent in suit.
18. The blisters applied to the vessel do not surround the hull portion, the cross-section of the "Mississippi” illustrated at frames 24–54, 70–118, Figs. 3, 4, 5, and 6 of plaintiff's exhibit 8, show that only a comparatively limited portion of the side of the hull is covered by the blisters.
The maximum area of the hull covered is at frames 54 and 70 where the top line of the blister begins above the waterline of the vessel and extends downwardly over the side of the hull to a point above the transverse plane of the bottom of the ship. The blisters do not surround or cover the bottom of the vessel in any appreciable degree. At the other frame sections shown, i. e., 24 and 118, the gradually tapering
. form of the blister necessarily covers a much smaller and diminishing area of the side of the ship. The point of attachment at the bottom of the blister from section 70, in a direction toward the stern, to frame 118, follows an upward curve. From section 54 in a direction toward the bow, to the forward end of the blister, the lower line of attachment also follows an upwardly ascending curve. The lower point of attachment of the blister does not cover the bottom of the hull at sections 54 and 70 which is the greatest blister depth. From section 70 aft and from section 54 forward the lower line of attachment retreats increasingly from the transverse plane of the hull bottom or keel. No portion of the bottom of the ship is surrounded by the blister at these points.
19. Claim 1 of the patent in suit is the broad claim of the four claims in issue. A comparison of the elements of claim
92 C. Cls. Reporter's Statement of the Case 1 with the elements found in the "Mississippi" construction is set forth below:
Claim 1 of the patent
(a) A marine vessel com- (a) A hull. prising a hull and
(b) A longitudinal later- (bj Blisters applied to the ally extending bulkhead side only of the hull, not surstructure thereon surround- rounding the bottom of the ing the bottom and part of
hull. the sides of said hull.
(c) Said bulkhead struc- (c) Vo bulkhead structure ture having a bottom rising surrounding the bottom of from its bow end to its stern the hull having a bottom risend.
ing from its bow end to its
stern end. (d) Said bottom being (d) No bulkhead structure shaped to provide a longi- shaped to provide a longitutudinal and inwardly ex- dinal and inwardly extendtending recess.
ing recess in its bottom. Small longitudinal recess on each side of the hull at the point where blister is fastened to the hull.
The last phrase in claim 1, i. e., “Said bottom being shaped to provide a longitudinal and inwardly extending recess," in the light of the specification and drawings defines the position of this recess as central to the bulkhead bottom. This construction is not present in the “Mississippi” or in any of the other ships complained of. The shallow angular recesses formed by the application of the blister to the hull are not the equivalent of the central recess of the plaintiff's patent.
20. The following prior-art patents and publications were available to those skilled in the art prior to the filing of the application which eventuated into the patent in suit.