USS Halfbeak (SS-352)

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Halfbeak (SS-352), underway, 1967.
Career
Builder: Electric Boat Company, Groton, Connecticut[1]
Laid down: 6 July 1944[1] n
Launched: 19 February 1946[1]
Commissioned: 22 July 1946[1]
Decommissioned: 1 July 1971[1]
Struck: 1 July 1971[1]
Fate: Sold for scrap, 13 June 1972[1]
General characteristics
Class & type: Balao class diesel-electric submarine[2]
Displacement: 1,526 tons (1,550 t) surfaced[2]
2,424 tons (2,463 t) submerged[2]
Length: 311 ft 9 in (95.02 m)[2]
Beam: 27 ft 3 in (8.31 m)[2]
Draft: 16 ft 10 in (5.13 m) maximum[2]
Propulsion:

4 × Fairbanks-Morse Model 38D8-⅛ 10-cylinder opposed piston diesel engines driving electrical generators[2][3]
2 × 126-cell Sargo batteries[4]
4 × high-speed Elliott electric motors with reduction gears [2]
two propellers [2]
5,400 shp (4.0 MW) surfaced[2]

2,740 shp (2.0 MW) submerged[2]
Speed: 20.25 knots (38 km/h) surfaced[4]
8.75 knots (16 km/h) submerged[4]
Range: 11,000 nautical miles (20,000 km) surfaced at 10 knots (19 km/h)[4]
Endurance: 48 hours at 2 knots (3.7 km/h) submerged[4]
75 days on patrol
Test depth: 400 ft (120 m)[4]
Complement: 10 officers, 70–71 enlisted[4]
Armament: 10 × 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes
 (six forward, four aft)
 24 torpedoes[4]
1 × 5-inch (127 mm) / 25 caliber deck gun[4]
Bofors 40 mm and Oerlikon 20 mm cannon
General characteristics (Guppy II)
Displacement:

1,870 tons (1,900 t) surfaced[5]

2,440 tons (2,480 t) submerged[5]
Length: 307 ft (93.6 m)[6]
Beam: 27 ft 4 in (7.4 m)[6]
Draft: 17 ft (5.2 m)[6]
Propulsion:

Snorkel added[5]
Batteries upgraded to GUPPY type, capacity expanded to 504 cells (1 × 184 cell, 1 × 68 cell, and 2 × 126 cell batteries)[5]

4 × high-speed electric motors replaced with 2 × low-speed direct drive electric motors[5]
Speed:

Surfaced:

  • 18.0 knots (20.7 mph; 33.3 km/h) maximum
  • 13.5 knots (15.5 mph; 25.0 km/h) cruising

Submerged:

  • 16.0 knots (18.4 mph; 29.6 km/h) for ½ hour
  • 9.0 knots (10.4 mph; 16.7 km/h) snorkeling
  • 3.5 knots (4.0 mph; 6.5 km/h) cruising[5]
Range: 15,000 nm (28,000 km) surfaced at 11 knots (13 mph; 20 km/h)[6]
Endurance: 48 hours at 4 knots (5 mph; 7 km/h) submerged[6]
Complement: 9–10 officers
5 petty officers
70 enlisted men[6]
Sensors and
processing systems:
WFA active sonar
JT passive sonar
Mk 106 torpedo fire control system[6]
Armament:

10 × 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes
 (six forward, four aft)[6]

all guns removed[5]

USS Halfbeak (SS-352), a Balao-class submarine, was a ship of the United States Navy named for the halfbeak, a garlike fish with a beak formed by an extension of the lower jaw, found in warmer seas.

Halfbeak was launched 19 February 1946 by the Electric Boat Co., Groton, Conn., sponsored by Mrs. William Craig; and commissioned 22 July 1946, Commander Evan T. Shepard in command.

After shakedown in the Caribbean and along the Latin American coast to the Canal Zone, Ecuador, and Colombia, Halfbeak spent the next 3 years in training operations and fleet exercises out of New London, Conn., where she was part of SubRon 8. Entering the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard 12 September 1949, Halfbeak was converted to a GUPPY II type submarine. Fitted with a snorkel to enable her to stay submerged for long periods of time and distinguished by a greatly streamlined superstructure, Halfbeak left Portsmouth 13 January 1950 to work with the Research and Development Group at New London. While conducting tests on special underwater sound equipment, she made a cruise to English waters, operating off Jan Mayen Island, in the winter of 1951.

Halfbeak was engaged in further Caribbean exercises until 10 November 1954, when she sailed for her first Mediterranean cruise. Having visited Gibraltar, Naples, Marseilles, Lisbon, and Valencia, Spain, the submarine returned to New London 2 February 1955. A similar cruise in 1956 was punctuated by the Suez Crisis, and Halfbeak remained in the eastern Med operating with the 6th Fleet until January 1957 helping to maintain the peace in that crucial region.

Her duties took another turn as 28 July 1958 she departed for the Arctic, where with the nuclear submarine Skate (SSN-578) she operated under and around the polar ice pack to gather information in connection with the International Geophysical Year. During these operations, Skate sailed under the Arctic ice pack to reach the North Pole 11 August and continued to cruise freely there repeating the visit 6 days later.

Local operations and exercises, primarily submarine and fleet maneuvers in the Caribbean but also NATO maneuvers, occupied Halfbeak until 1963, when she resumed her role testing and evaluating sonar and other underwater sound equipment out of New London.

Halfbeak was awarded the Battle Efficiency "E" for 1966 and 1967 and held the "E" for Submarine Division 102 for 1968. Halfbeak was decommissioned and simultaneously struck from the Naval Register, 1 July 1971. She was sold for scrapping, 13 July 1972.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Friedman, Norman (1995). U.S. Submarines Through 1945: An Illustrated Design History. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. pp. 285–304. ISBN 1-55750-263-3. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Bauer, K. Jack; Roberts, Stephen S. (1991). Register of Ships of the U.S. Navy, 1775-1990: Major Combatants. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. pp. 275–280. ISBN 0-313-26202-0. 
  3. ^ U.S. Submarines Through 1945 pp. 261–263
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i U.S. Submarines Through 1945 pp. 305-311
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Friedman, Norman (1994). U.S. Submarines Since 1945: An Illustrated Design History. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. pp. 11–43. ISBN 1-55750-260-9. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h U.S. Submarines Since 1945 pp. 242

External links[edit]