German submarine U-157 (1941)
U-505, a typical Type IXC boat
|Ordered:||25 September 1939|
|Builder:||DeSchiMAG AG Weser, Bremen|
|Laid down:||21 October 1940|
|Launched:||5 June 1941|
|Commissioned:||15 September 1941|
|Fate:||Sunk, 13 June 1942|
|Class and type:||Type IXC submarine|
|Height:||9.60 m (31 ft 6 in)|
|Draught:||4.70 m (15 ft 5 in)|
|Test depth:||230 m (750 ft)|
|Complement:||48 to 56|
|Victories:||1 commercial ship sunk (6,401 GRT)|
German submarine U-157 was a Type IXC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down on 21 October 1940 at the DeSchiMAG AG Weser yard in Bremen, launched on 5 June 1941, and commissioned on 15 September under the command of Korvettenkapitän Wolf Henne. After training with the 4th U-boat Flotilla, U-157 was transferred to the 2nd U-boat Flotilla for front-line service on 3 June 1942.
German Type IXC submarines were slightly larger than the original Type IXBs. U-157 had a displacement of 1,120 tonnes (1,100 long tons) when at the surface and 1,232 tonnes (1,213 long tons) while submerged. The U-boat had a total length of 76.76 m (251 ft 10 in), a pressure hull length of 58.75 m (192 ft 9 in), a beam of 6.76 m (22 ft 2 in), a height of 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in), and a draught of 4.70 m (15 ft 5 in). The submarine was powered by two MAN M 9 V 40/46 supercharged four-stroke, nine-cylinder diesel engines producing a total of 4,400 metric horsepower (3,240 kW; 4,340 shp) for use while surfaced, two Siemens-Schuckert 2 GU 345/34 double-acting electric motors producing a total of 1,000 metric horsepower (740 kW; 990 shp) for use while submerged. She had two shafts and two 1.92 m (6 ft) propellers. The boat was capable of operating at depths of up to 230 metres (750 ft).
The submarine had a maximum surface speed of 18.3 knots (33.9 km/h; 21.1 mph) and a maximum submerged speed of 7.3 knots (13.5 km/h; 8.4 mph). When submerged, the boat could operate for 63 nautical miles (117 km; 72 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph); when surfaced, she could travel 13,450 nautical miles (24,910 km; 15,480 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph). U-157 was fitted with six 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (four fitted at the bow and two at the stern), 22 torpedoes, one 10.5 cm (4.13 in) SK C/32 naval gun, 180 rounds, and a 3.7 cm (1.5 in) as well as a 2 cm (0.79 in) anti-aircraft gun. The boat had a complement of forty-eight.
The U-boat left Lorient on 18 May 1942 and sailed across the Atlantic to the Caribbean Sea. There, on 11 June, she torpedoed and sank the unescorted 6,401-ton American tanker Hagan about five miles off the north coast of Cuba. The ship, loaded with 22,676 barrels of blackstrap molasses, was hit in the engine room, destroying the engines and causing at least one boiler to explode. About a minute later a second torpedo struck, and the tanker began to sink by the stern. The crew abandoned ship in two lifeboats, but two officers and four crewmen were lost. The boats, containing 38 men, both landed in Cuba.
U-157 was sunk two days later, on 13 June 1942, south-west of Key West, Florida, in position Coordinates: , by depth charges from USCGC Thetis, a U.S. Coast Guard cutter assigned to the Eastern Sea Frontier Squadron at Key West. All 52 crew were lost.
Summary of raiding history
|11 June 1942||Hagan||United States||6,401||Sunk|
- Kemp, p 82
- Kemp, pp 82 – 83
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- Scheina, p 40
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