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Type XXIII U-boat

The Type XXIII U-boat was designed to operated in the shallow littorals of the North Sea, the Black Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea, where the larger Type XXI Elektro boats[?] would be at risk. They were so small that they could carry only two torpedoes, which had to be loaded externally.

The first Type XXIII, U-2321[?], was launched from Deutsche Werft[?] in Hamburg on April 17, 1944. She was one of six XXIIIs that went on operational patrol around the British Isles in early 1945. Forty-eight others followed from Deutsche Werft[?] and thirteen from Germaniawerft[?] of Kiel. U-4712[?] was the last one launched, on April 19, 1945.

The first patrol by a Type XXIII began when U-2324[?] put to sea on January 29, 1945. U-2336[?] under the command of Kapitänleutnant Klusmeier sank the last ships lost in World War II on May 7 when he torpedoed two British freighters inside the Firth of Forth.

None of the six operational Type XXIIIs -- U-2321[?], U-2322[?], U-2324[?], U-2326[?], U-2329[?], and U-2336[?] -- was sunk by the Allies during World War II. These boats sank or damaged five ships for a total of 14,601 tons.

Seven Type XXIIIs were lost to various causes.

In early May 1945, 31 XXIIIs were scuttled by their crews. Twenty surrendered to the Allies and were sunk in Operation Deadlight. Only three -- U-2326[?] (later British submarine N-35[?]), U-2353[?] (later British submarine N-37[?]), and U-4706[?] (later Norwegian submarine Knerten[?]) -- survived the war.

U-2321[?] - U-2322[?] - U-2323[?] - U-2324[?] - U-2325[?] - U-2326[?] - U-2327[?] - U-2328[?] - U-2329[?] - U-2330[?] - U-2331[?] - U-2332[?] - U-2333[?] - U-2334[?] - U-2335[?] - U-2336[?] - U-2337[?] - U-2338[?] - U-2339[?] - U-2340[?] - U-2341[?] - U-2342[?] - U-2343[?] - U-2344[?] - U-2345[?] - U-2346[?] - U-2347[?] - U-2348[?] - U-2349[?] - U-2350[?] - U-2351[?] - U-2352[?] - U-2353[?] - U-2354[?] - U-2355[?] - U-2356[?] - U-2357[?] - U-2358[?] - U-2359[?] - U-2360[?] - U-2361[?] - U-2362[?] - U-2363[?] - U-2364[?] - U-2365[?] - U-2366[?] - U-2367[?] - U-2368[?] - U-2369[?] - U-2371[?] - U-4701[?] - U-4702[?] - U-4703[?] - U-4704[?] - U-4705[?] - U-4706[?] - U-4707[?] - U-4709[?] - U-4710[?] - U-4711[?] - U-4712[?]

General Characteristics

  • Displacement: 234 tons surfaced, 258 submerged, 275 total
  • Length: 34.7 meters overall, 26 meters pressure hull
  • Beam: 3 meters
  • Draught: 3.67 meters
  • Height: 7.7 meters
  • Power: 630 horsepower surfaced, 580 horsepower submerged
  • Speed: 9.7 knots surfaced, 12.5 knots submerged
  • Range: 2600 nautical miles at 8 knots surfaced, 194 miles at 4 knots
submerged
  • Torpedoes: two bow tubes
  • Complement: 14-18 men
  • Maximum depth: 180 meters



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