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A bulkhead is a vertical plate partition within a ship. Bulkheads are primary structure members, and the primary structural component responsible for resistance to racking. Bulkheads may run transversely or longitudinally.
Bulkheads are generally described by their location within the vessel. As a steel structure, they afford excellent fire resistance. Funnels, galleys, and other fire hazardous areas which require A-0 or greater protection are often enclosed by bulkheads.
Bulkheads are typically formed of stiffened plate.