The switches which control lighting and other flashing effects of the ship is called marine switch. It finds its usage extensively in ships and are associated with non stop functioning and safety of the ship. Some switches control the functions of convenience lights whereas some others control the intermittent operations and safety mechanisms of the ship. They exist in various forms, sizes and shapes depending on the nature of its operation. Some are simple form like on and off switches, some have three positioned buttons, some are called rocker switches and more. Generally these switches are made of plastic or brass and are vital for the operation of the vessel.
Simple toggle switches
They are commonly used as navigation lights for finding direction of navigation. The switches give out red and green lightings called 'marker lights' to indicate about the location of ship to other boats. It tells more information like how large the vessel is and also indicates the direction of movement. The simple toggle switches have a fuse inside which functions independently so that whenever there is some fault it is easy to find out whether the fault is with the switch or with the light unit.
Three position switches
These switches are used commonly in vessels which are used in searching operation. It has three vertical lights built on a single beam. A red light, a white light and finally a red light all are vertically placed indicating the search or diving work is still in progress. Another red light is located on the sideward and when the toggle is turned down, it lights up the red light on the side also.
This switch resembles a seesaw and is used for operating winches and boat davits. It is used when the cranes function to lower or raise some objects on the side of the ship. When the rocker switch is kept in off position the winch is lowered and it is pressed on the weight is lifted upwards.
This type of marine switch is used for controlling pumps and valves used in liquid cargo. When there is increase in the level of float, the switch is triggered automatically 'on' indicating it raises the float. When the level of liquid is low, the mechanism makes the float drop down and the switch is moved to 'off' position automatically.
Thus these switches are vital in the functioning of the vessel and hence find extensive application in the department of marine industry.