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Marine engineers are specialized engineers who help design, construct, and maintain ships, boats, and other surface and subsurface water vessels and structures, including the steering, propulsion, and other systems of ships. They also design equipment that is used in ocean research. Marine engineering is actually an interdisciplinary combination of many engineering specialties (including acoustical, chemical, civil, electrical, electronics, hardware, marine, materials, mechanical, and software engineering) and marine science principles, physics, and mathematics. Approximately 6,640 marine engineers are employed in the United States. Marine engineers are also called naval engineers, naval architects, and ocean engineers.