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German submarine U-268

History
Nazi Germany
Name: U-268
Ordered: 20 January 1941
Builder: Bremer Vulkan, Bremen-Vegesack
Yard number: 33
Laid down: 4 September 1941
Launched: 9 June 1942
Commissioned: 29 July 1942
Fate: Sunk by a British aircraft, February 1943
General characteristics
Class and type: Type VIIC submarine
Displacement:
  • 769 tonnes (757 long tons) surfaced
  • 871 t (857 long tons) submerged
Length:
Beam:
  • 6.20 m (20 ft 4 in) o/a
  • 4.70 m (15 ft 5 in) pressure hull
Height: 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in)
Draught: 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)
Installed power:
  • 2,800–3,200 PS (2,100–2,400 kW; 2,800–3,200 bhp) (diesels)
  • 750 PS (550 kW; 740 shp) (electric)
Propulsion:
Speed:
  • 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) surfaced
  • 7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph) submerged
Range:
  • 8,500 nmi (15,700 km; 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) surfaced
  • 80 nmi (150 km; 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph) submerged
Test depth:
  • 230 m (750 ft)
  • Crush depth: 250–295 m (820–968 ft)
Complement: 4 officers, 40–56 enlisted
Armament:
Service record[1][2]
Part of:
Commanders:
  • Oblt.z.S. Ernst Heydemann
  • 29 July 1942 – 19 February 1943
Operations: one patrol: 10 January – 19 February 1943
Victories:
  • One commercial ship sunk (14,547 GRT)
  • Three warships sunk (lost aboard transport ship) (873 GRT)

German submarine U-268 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II.

Commissioned on 29 July 1942, she served with the 8th U-boat Flotilla for training and later served with the 1st U-boat Flotilla from 1 to 19 February 1943.

Design

German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-268 had a displacement of 769 tonnes (757 long tons) when at the surface and 871 tonnes (857 long tons) while submerged.[3] She had a total length of 67.10 m (220 ft 2 in), a pressure hull length of 50.50 m (165 ft 8 in), a beam of 6.20 m (20 ft 4 in), a height of 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in), and a draught of 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in). The submarine was powered by two Germaniawerft F46 four-stroke, six-cylinder supercharged diesel engines producing a total of 2,800 to 3,200 metric horsepower (2,060 to 2,350 kW; 2,760 to 3,160 shp) for use while surfaced, two AEG GU 460/8–27 double-acting electric motors producing a total of 750 metric horsepower (550 kW; 740 shp) for use while submerged. She had two shafts and two 1.23 m (4 ft) propellers. The boat was capable of operating at depths of up to 230 metres (750 ft).[3]

The submarine had a maximum surface speed of 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) and a maximum submerged speed of 7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph).[3] When submerged, the boat could operate for 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph); when surfaced, she could travel 8,500 nautical miles (15,700 km; 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph). U-268 was fitted with five 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (four fitted at the bow and one at the stern), fourteen torpedoes, one 8.8 cm (3.46 in) SK C/35 naval gun, 220 rounds, and two twin 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft guns. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.[3]

Service history

U-268 departed Bergen on 10 January 1943 on her first and only patrol. She sank the 14,547 GRT ship Vestfold, which was laden with 17,386 tons of fuel oil, and three British landing craft - HMS LCT-2239, LCT-2267 and LCT-2344 (each 291 tons) - as deck cargo. Before sinking, Vestfold, which had been abandoned with her engines still running, steamed in circles, almost colliding with another ship.[4]

U-268 was sunk with all 44 hands on 19 February 1943 in the Bay of Biscay, west of Nantes, at position 47°03′N 05°56′W / 47.050°N 5.933°W / 47.050; -5.933 by depth charges dropped from a Vickers Wellington bomber of No.172 Squadron RAF.[1]

Wolfpacks

U-268 took part in five wolfpacks, namely.

  • Habicht (10–15 January 1943)
  • Falke (15–19 January 1943)
  • Haudegen (19 January - 2 February 1943)
  • Nordsturm (2–9 February 1943)
  • Haudegen (9–10 February 1943)

Summary of raiding history

Date Ship Name Nationality Tonnage[Note 1] Fate[5]
17 January 1943 HMS LCT-2239  Royal Navy 291 Sunk*
17 January 1943 HMS LCT-2267  Royal Navy 291 Sunk*
17 January 1943 HMS LCT-2244  Royal Navy 291 Sunk*
17 January 1943 Vestfold  Panama 14,547 Sunk

* Being carried aboard the Vestfold

References

Notes

  1. ^ Merchant ship tonnages are in gross register tons. Military vessels are listed by tons displacement.

Citations

  1. ^ a b Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-268". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 2009-12-30.
  2. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "War Patrols by German U-boat U-268". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 2009-12-30.
  3. ^ a b c d Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.
  4. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "Vestfold (Whale factory ship)". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 2009-12-30.
  5. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U-268". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 26 December 2014.

Bibliography

  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II : a biographical dictionary. Translated by Brooks, Geoffrey. London, Annapolis, Md: Greenhill Books, Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-186-6.
  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999). Deutsche U-Boot-Verluste von September 1939 bis Mai 1945 [German U-boat losses from September 1939 to May 1945]. Der U-Boot-Krieg (in German). IV. Hamburg, Berlin, Bonn: Mittler. ISBN 3-8132-0514-2.
  • Gröner, Erich; Jung, Dieter; Maass, Martin (1991). U-boats and Mine Warfare Vessels. German Warships 1815–1945. 2. Translated by Thomas, Keith; Magowan, Rachel. London: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-593-4.
  • Bishop, Chris (2006). Kriegsmarine U-Boats, 1939-45. London: Amber Books. ISBN 978-1-904687-96-2.

External links

  • Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-268". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
  • Hofmann, Markus. "U 268". Deutsche U-Boote 1935-1945 - u-boot-archiv.de (in German). Retrieved 26 December 2014.