Feeds

BBC: Monster cargo ship delivers '863 million tins of baked beans'

New behemoth carrier hewn from 'eight Eiffel Towers'

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

The BBC has sensationally quantified the cargo capacity of a new behemoth container ship as "863 million tins of baked beans".

Auntie's penchant for describing very big, heavy, strong or long things in terms mere mortals can get their heads round is well known to Reg regulars. Last year, it described the constricting force of a prehistoric monster snake as "the equivalent of lying under the weight of one-and-a-half times the Brooklyn Bridge", while back in 2010 readers were treated to the idea that the $1.1bn in dollar coins lying in US government depositories would, if stacked up, extend "almost seven times higher than the International Space Station".

Well, the corporation has outdone itself in this report on the forthcoming "Triple E" class of seagoing delivery van. The Beeb reporter explained: "Each will contain as much steel as eight Eiffel Towers and have a capacity equivalent to 18,000 20-foot containers (TEU*).

"If those containers were placed in Times Square in New York, they would rise above billboards, streetlights and some buildings.

"Or, to put it another way, they would fill more than 30 trains, each a mile long and stacked two containers high. Inside those containers, you could fit 36,000 cars or 863 million tins of baked beans."

The mind boggles, although we're disappointed that the Beeb has omitted the traditional "average family-size" qualifier from its "36,000 cars", and has dismally failed to calculate how far the containers would extend towards the space station were they formed into one mighty tower.

The answer is 46,620 metres, which by our reckoning represents 13.32 per cent of the orbiting outpost's average height of 350km above terra firma. ®

* The standard "twenty-foot equivalent unit", measuring 6.1m long, 2.44m wide and 2.59m high.

Thanks to the various readers who flagged this one up.

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces
How much of the world's oldest computer can they find?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.