German submarine U-470
|Career (Nazi Germany)|
|Ordered:||20 January 1941|
|Builder:||Deutsche Werke, Kiel|
|Laid down:||11 October 1941|
|Launched:||8 August 1942|
|Commissioned:||7 January 1943|
|Fate:||Sunk by aircraft, 16 October 1943|
|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
(7 January–30 June 1943)
7th U-boat Flotilla
(1 July–16 October 1943)
|Commanders:||Oblt.z.S.. Günther-Paul Grave
|Operations:||1st patrol: 28 September–16 October 1943|
German submarine U-470 was a Type VIIC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine built for service in the Second World War. She was a very short-lived vessel, being commissioned in the months following the turning point of the Atlantic campaign and thus into a time in which many U-boats were being lost. The demise of U-470 was especially notable as she was sunk with two of her sisters in a brief melée in the waters of the Western Approaches.
Built by the Deutsche Werke shipyards in Kiel, U-470 took a long time to complete, not being ready for initial working-up operations until a year after her construction began. She was given to Oberleutnant zur See Günther-Paul Grave, a highly experienced submarine officer, who led her through her training and mechanical trials and readied the boat for her active career, a difficult six month process.
U-470's only war patrol was an unlucky affair. After a difficult passage round the British Isles, U-470 received orders to join U-844 and U-964 to form a wolfpack to attack Convoy ON-206 in the Western Approaches to the English Channel. On 16 October, just 18 days after leaving Bergen in Norway, a patrolling aircraft spotted U-470 with her sister boats whilst still a long distance from their targets. The aircraft radioed back to base, and soon a whole swarm of British Royal Air Force B-24 Liberator bombers from 59 and 120 Squadrons had descended on the trio, who decided to battle it out on the surface rather than dive, which would have made them easy targets for depth charges.
Over the course of the next several hours, the Liberators attacked the U-boats again and again, losing two of their number to anti-aircraft fire, one with all aboard and the other with two fatalities amongst the crew. The submarines, however, were suffering much worse, and gradually all three were sunk, U-470 going down with 46 hands including the captain, only two being picked-up later off rafts by allied ships. The aircraft had reported 20 survivors in the water, but many of them did not find buoyancy supports and drowned over the next few hours.
- Kemp, Paul: U-Boats Destroyed - German Submarine Losses in the World Wars, 1997, Arms & Armour, ISBN 1-85409-515-3, p. 150.
- "The Type VIIC boat U-470 - German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net". www.uboat.net. Retrieved 2009-08-25.
- "War Patrols by German U-boat U-470 - Boats - uboat.net". www.uboat.net. Retrieved 2009-08-25.
- Sharpe, Peter, U-Boat Fact File, Midland Publishing, Great Britain: 1998. ISBN 1-85780-072-9.
- U-boat.net webpage for U-470