German submarine U-273

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History
Nazi Germany
Name: U-273
Ordered: 20 January 1941
Builder: Bremer Vulkan, Bremen-Vegesack
Yard number: 38
Laid down: 5 December 1941
Launched: 2 September 1942
Commissioned: 21 October 1942
Fate: Sunk, 19 May 1943 by a British aircraft[1]
General characteristics
Class and type: Type VIIC submarine
Displacement:
  • 769 tonnes (757 long tons) surfaced
  • 871 t (857 long tons) submerged
Length:
Beam:
  • 6.20 m (20 ft 4 in) o/a
  • 4.70 m (15 ft 5 in) pressure hull
Height: 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in)
Draught: 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)
Installed power:
  • 2,800–3,200 PS (2,100–2,400 kW; 2,800–3,200 bhp) (diesels)
  • 750 PS (550 kW; 740 shp) (electric)
Propulsion:
Speed:
  • 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) surfaced
  • 7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph) submerged
Range:
  • 8,500 nmi (15,700 km; 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) surfaced
  • 80 nmi (150 km; 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph) submerged
Test depth:
  • 230 m (750 ft)
  • Crush depth: 250–295 m (820–968 ft)
Complement: 4 officers, 40–56 enlisted
Armament:
Service record[2][3]
Part of:
Commanders:
  • Oblt.z.S. Hans-Adolf Engel
  • 21 October 1942 – 31 March 1943
  • Oblt.z.S.. Hermann Rossmann
  • 1 April – 19 May 1943
Operations: 8–19 May 1943
Victories: None

German submarine U-273 was a Type VIIC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II.

The submarine was laid down on 5 December 1941 at the Bremer Vulkan yard at Bremen-Vegesack as yard number 38, she was launched on 2 September 1942 and commissioned on 21 October under the command of Oberleutnant zur See Hans-Adolf Engel.[2]

Design[edit]

German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-273 had a displacement of 769 tonnes (757 long tons) when at the surface and 871 tonnes (857 long tons) while submerged.[4] She had a total length of 67.10 m (220 ft 2 in), a pressure hull length of 50.50 m (165 ft 8 in), a beam of 6.20 m (20 ft 4 in), a height of 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in), and a draught of 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in). The submarine was powered by two Germaniawerft F46 four-stroke, six-cylinder supercharged diesel engines producing a total of 2,800 to 3,200 metric horsepower (2,060 to 2,350 kW; 2,760 to 3,160 shp) for use while surfaced, two AEG GU 460/8–27 double-acting electric motors producing a total of 750 metric horsepower (550 kW; 740 shp) for use while submerged. She had two shafts and two 1.23 m (4 ft) propellers. The boat was capable of operating at depths of up to 230 metres (750 ft).[4]

The submarine had a maximum surface speed of 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) and a maximum submerged speed of 7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph).[4] When submerged, the boat could operate for 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph); when surfaced, she could travel 8,500 nautical miles (15,700 km; 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph). U-273 was fitted with five 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (four fitted at the bow and one at the stern), fourteen torpedoes, one 8.8 cm (3.46 in) SK C/35 naval gun, 220 rounds, and an anti-aircraft gun. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.[4]

Service history[edit]

U-273 served with the 8th U-boat Flotilla for training from October 1942 to April 1943, and served operationally with the 9th U-boat Flotilla from 1 May 1943.[2]

U-273 sailed from Kiel under the command of Oblt.z.S. Hermann Rossmann, on 8 May 1943, arriving at Bergen, Norway, on 11 May. The next day she sailed out into the Atlantic on her first and only patrol and was sunk eight days later[3] on 19 May with all hands, in position 59°25′N 24°33′W / 59.417°N 24.550°W / 59.417; -24.550Coordinates: 59°25′N 24°33′W / 59.417°N 24.550°W / 59.417; -24.550 southwest of Iceland, by depth charges dropped from a Lockheed Hudson of No. 269 Squadron RAF.[2][1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Kemp 1999, pp. 118-9.
  2. ^ a b c d Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-273". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 2010-01-11. 
  3. ^ a b Helgason, Guðmundur. "War Patrols by German U-boat U-273". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 2010-01-11. 
  4. ^ a b c d Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999). Deutsche U-Boot-Verluste von September 1939 bis Mai 1945. Der U-Boot-Krieg (in German). IV. Hamburg, Berlin, Bonn: Mittler. ISBN 3-8132-0514-2. 
  • Gröner, Erich; Jung, Dieter; Maass, Martin (1991). U-boats and Mine Warfare Vessels. German Warships 1815–1945. 2. Translated by Thomas, Keith; Magowan, Rachel. London: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-593-4. 
  • Bishop, Chris (2006). Kriegsmarine U-Boats, 1939-45. London: Amber Books. ISBN 978-1-904687-96-2. 
  • Kemp, Paul (1999). U-Boats Destroyed - German Submarine Losses in the World Wars. London: Arms & Armour. ISBN 1-85409-515-3. 

External links[edit]

  • Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-273". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  • Hofmann, Markus. "U 273". Deutsche U-Boote 1935-1945 - u-boot-archiv.de (in German). Retrieved 26 December 2014.