German submarine U-408
|Ordered:||16 October 1939|
|Builder:||Danziger Werft, Danzig|
|Laid down:||30 September 1940|
|Launched:||16 July 1941|
|Commissioned:||19 November 1941|
|Fate:||Sunk by a US aircraft, in November 1942, north of Iceland|
|Type:||Type VIIC submarine|
|Displacement:||769 tonnes (757 long tons) surfaced
871 t (857 long tons) submerged
|Length:||67.1 m (220 ft 2 in) o/a
50.5 m (165 ft 8 in) pressure hull
|Beam:||6.2 m (20 ft 4 in) o/a
4.7 m (15 ft 5 in) pressure hull
|Draft:||4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)|
|Propulsion:||2 × supercharged Germaniawerft 6-cylinder 4-stroke F46 diesel engines, totalling 2,800–3,200 bhp (2,100–2,400 kW). Max rpm: 470-490
2 × electric motors, totalling 750 shp (560 kW) and max rpm: 296.
|Speed:||17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) surfaced
7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph) submerged
|Range:||15,170 km (8,190 nmi) at 10 kn (19 km/h) surfaced
150 km (81 nmi) at 4 kn (7.4 km/h) submerged
|Test depth:||230 m (750 ft)
Crush depth: 250–295 m (820–968 ft)
|Complement:||44–52 officers and ratings|
|Armament:||5 × 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (four bow, one stern)
14 × G7e torpedoes or 26 TMA mines
1 × 8.8 cm (3.46 in) deck gun (220 rounds)
Various AA guns
|Part of:||5th U-boat Flotilla
(19 November 1941–30 April 1942)
9th U-boat Flotilla
(1 May–30 June 1942)
11th U-boat Flotilla
(1 July 1942–5 November 1942)
|Commanders:||KrvKpt. Reinhard von Hymmen
(19 November 1941–5 November 1942)
7 June–16 July 1942
10–26 September 1943
31 October–5 November 1942
|Victories:||Three ships sunk; 19,689 GRT|
She carried out three patrols. She sank three ships.
She was a member of two wolfpacks.
She was sunk by a US aircraft north of Iceland in November 1942.
The submarine was laid down on 30 September 1940 at the Danziger Werft at Danzig (now Gdansk) as 'werk' 109, launched on 16 July 1941 and commissioned on 19 November under the command of KorvettenKapitän Reinhard von Hymmen.
She served with the 5th U-boat Flotilla from 19 November 1941 for training and the 9th flotilla from 1 May 1942 for operations. She was reassigned to the 11th flotilla on 1 July 1942 and served with that organization until her loss.
U-359's first patrol was preceded by a move from Kiel in Germany to Skjomenfjord in Norway. She left there for her first patrol on 7 June, sailing through the north Norwegian Sea into the Barents Sea. She returned to Skjomenfjord on 16 July.
The boat set-out on her second foray on 10 September 1942. She sank the Stalingrad on the 13th, 100 nautical miles (190 km; 120 mi) southwest of Spitsbergen. She also sank the Oliver Ellsworth with the same spread of torpedos. The master of the Soviet ship, A. Sakharov, was awarded the George Cross after acting as pilot for his convoy and spending 40 minutes in the freezing water.
The next day she sank the Atheltemplar southwest of Bear Island.
3rd patrol and loss
The submarine's third and last sortie began from Narvik on 31 October 1942. On 5 November she was sunk by a US PBY Catalina north of Iceland. Her previous track was from the east, towards the Denmark Strait, (which separates Greenland from Iceland).
Forty-five men died in U-408; there were no survivors.
Summary of raiding history
|13 September 1942||Oliver Ellsworth||USA||7,191||Sunk|
|13 September 1942||Stalingrad||Soviet Union||3,559||Sunk|
|14 September 1942||Atheltemplar||United Kingdom||8,939||Sunk|
- Kemp, Paul: U-Boats Destroyed - German Submarine Losses in the World Wars, 1997, Arms & Armour, ISBN 1-85409-515-3, p. 95
- "The Type VIIC boat U-408 - German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net". www.uboat.net. Retrieved 13 September 2012.