German submarine U-398
|Ordered:||20 January 1941|
|Builder:||Howaldtswerke AG, Kiel|
|Laid down:||26 August 1942|
|Launched:||6 November 1943|
|Commissioned:||18 December 1943|
|Fate:||Went missing after 17 April 1945 in the North Sea or possibly the Arctic Ocean, position and cause unknown. 43 dead (all hands lost).|
|Class and type:||Type VIIC submarine|
|Height:||9.60 m (31 ft 6 in)|
|Draught:||4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)|
|Complement:||4 officers, 40–56 enlisted|
German submarine U-398 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II. The U-boat was laid down at the Howaldtswerke in Kiel on 26 August 1942, launched on 6 November 1943 and commissioned on 18 December of that same year, under Korvettenkapitän Johan Reckhoff. He was replaced by Oberleutnant zur See Wilhelm Kranz on 8 November 1944.
The boat served initially with the 5th U-boat Flotilla, a training organization, between 18 December 1943 and 31 July 1944, before moving over to the operational 3rd flotilla between 1 August and 31 October 1944 and the 33rd flotilla between 1 November 1944 and her loss.
German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-398 had a displacement of 769 tonnes (757 long tons) when at the surface and 871 tonnes (857 long tons) while submerged. 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 Garbe, Lahmeyer & Co. RP 137/c 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).
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). 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-398 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), one 3.7 cm (1.5 in) Flak M42 and two twin 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft guns. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.
U-388 carried out two patrols, the first, commencing on 23 August 1944, took her as far as the west coast of Ireland; starting from Horten Naval Base in Norway and finishing with her arrival in Bergen on 15 October. A total of 54 days were spent at sea. These were uneventful.
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- Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999). Deutsche U-Boot-Verluste von September 1939 bis Mai 1945 [German U-boat losses from September 1939 to May 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.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-398". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 26 December 2014.