German submarine U-206

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History
Nazi Germany
Name: U-206
Ordered: 16 October 1939
Builder: Germaniawerft, Kiel
Yard number: 635
Laid down: 17 June 1940
Launched: 5 April 1941
Commissioned: 17 May 1941
Fate: Possibly sunk by British minefield 'Beech', 30 November 1941
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:
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[1]
Part of:
  • 3rd U-boat Flotilla, Training
  • 17 May – 1 June 1941
  • 3rd U-boat Flotilla, Front (Operational) Boat
  • 1 June – 30 November 1941
Commanders:
  • Obtlt.z.S. Herbert Opitz
  • 17 May – 30 November 1941
Operations: Three patrols
Victories:
  • Two commercial ships sunk (3,283 GRT)
  • one warship sunk (925 GRT)

German submarine U-206 was a Type VIIC U-boat of the Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down on 17 June 1940 by the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft yard at Kiel as yard number 635, launched on 5 April 1941 and commissioned on 17 May under the command of Oberleutnant zur See Herbert Opitz.

She was possibly sunk in November 1941 by a British-laid minefield.

Design[edit]

German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-206 had a displacement of 769 tonnes (757 long tons) when at the surface and 871 tonnes (857 long tons) while submerged.[2] 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).[2]

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).[2] 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-206 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.[2]

Service history[edit]

Part of the 3rd U-boat Flotilla, U-206 carried out three patrols in the North Atlantic.[3]

1st patrol[edit]

U-206's first patrol began when she left Trondheim in Norway on 5 August 1941; she travelled through the gap between Iceland and the Faroe Islands and headed south, towards the west of Ireland. She sank the Ocean Victor on 9 August south of Iceland. She arrived at St. Nazaire in occupied France on 10 September.

2nd patrol[edit]

On her second foray, she sank HMS Fleur de Lys on 14 October 1941 55 nmi (102 km; 63 mi) west of Gibraltar and the Baron Kelvin, close to the Rock on the 19th.

3rd patrol and loss[edit]

U-206 was posted missing from about 30 November 1941. She is believed to have been the victim of a minefield laid by the RAF, (code-named 'Beech'), west of St. Nazaire. Forty-six men died; there were no survivors.

Wolfpacks[edit]

U-206 took part in four wolfpacks, namely

  • Grönland (10–23 August 1941)
  • Kurfürst (23 August – 2 September 1941)
  • Seewolf (2–7 September 1941)
  • Breslau (2–23 October 1941)

Summary of raiding history[edit]

Date Ship Name Nationality Tonnage[Note 1] Fate[4]
9 August 1941 Ocean Victor  United Kingdom 202 Sunk
14 October 1941 HMS Fleur de Lys  Royal Navy 925 Sunk
19 October 1941 Baron Kelvin  United Kingdom 3,081 Sunk

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Merchant ship tonnages are in gross register tons. Military vessels are listed by tons displacement.

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-206". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.
  3. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "War Patrols of German U-boat U-206". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  4. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U-206". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 

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. 

External links[edit]

  • Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-206". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  • Hofmann, Markus. "U 206". Deutsche U-Boote 1935-1945 - u-boot-archiv.de (in German). Retrieved 9 December 2014. 

Coordinates: 47°05′N 2°40′W / 47.083°N 2.667°W / 47.083; -2.667