Bliss-Leavitt Mark 2 torpedo

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Bliss-Leavitt Mark 2 torpedo
Type Anti-surface ship torpedo[1]
Place of origin  United States
Service history
In service 1905–1922[1]
Used by  United States Navy
Production history
Designer Frank McDowell Leavitt
Designed 1905[1]
Manufacturer E. W. Bliss Company
Variants Mod 1[2]
Weight approximately 1500 pounds[1]
Length 197 inches (5.0 meters)[1]
Diameter 21 inches (53.34 centimeters)[1]

Effective firing range 3500 yards[1]
Warhead wet guncotton[1]
Warhead weight approximately 200 pounds[1]
War Nose Mk 5 contact exploder[1]

Engine Contra-rotating turbine[1]
Speed 26 knots[1]
battleships, torpedo boats and cruisers[1]

The Bliss-Leavitt Mark 2 torpedo was a Bliss-Leavitt torpedo adopted by the United States Navy for use in an anti-surface ship role after the E. W. Bliss Company of Brooklyn, New York, which had been building Whitehead torpedoes for the US Navy, began designing and manufacturing their own torpedoes in 1904. It was the first American-built torpedo to feature counter-rotating turbines, each driving a propeller. This design eliminated the unbalanced torque that contributed to the tendency of its predecessor (the Bliss-Leavitt Mark 1 torpedo) to roll.[1]


The design of the Bliss-Leavitt Mark 1 torpedo was revolutionary, but not without problems. The single-stage turbine engine drove a single propeller, which had a tendency to develop unbalanced torque and thus to roll in the water, affecting its accuracy. This problem was corrected by Navy Lieutenant Gregory Davison in the Mark 2 by using a twin-turbine engine driving twin propellers, thus steadying the torpedo's trajectory.[3] The Mark 2 was a "hot-running" torpedo, propelled by heated air. About 250 units were built by E. W. Bliss for the US Navy.

The Bliss-Leavitt Mark 2 was launched from battleships, torpedo boats and cruisers.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "Torpedo History: Bliss-Leavitt Torpedo Mk2". Retrieved 10 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "United States of America Torpedoes Pre-World War II". Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  3. ^ Newpower, Anthony (2006). Iron Men And Tin Fish: The Race to Build a Better Torpedo During World War II. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 18. ISBN 0-275-99032-X.