German submarine U-453

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History
Nazi Germany
Name: U-453
Ordered: 30 October 1939
Builder: Deutsche Werke, Kiel
Yard number: 284
Laid down: 4 July 1940
Launched: 30 April 1941
Commissioned: 26 June 1941
Fate: Sunk by depth charges on 21 May 1944 off the south coast of Italy at position 38°13′N 16°30′E / 38.217°N 16.500°E / 38.217; 16.500Coordinates: 38°13′N 16°30′E / 38.217°N 16.500°E / 38.217; 16.500 by Royal Navy surface warships.
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[1]
Part of:
Commanders:
Operations:
  • 1st patrol: 12 November – 17 December 1941
  • 2nd patrol: 17 January – 1 February 1942
  • 3rd patrol: 22 March – 21 April 1942
  • 4th patrol: 25 May – 14 June 1942
  • 5th patrol: 18 June – 21 July 1942
  • 6th patrol: 17 September – 15 October 1942
  • 7th patrol: 29 November – 17 December 1942
  • 8th patrol: 11 January – 16 February 1943
  • 9th patrol: 1 April – 5 May 1943
  • 10th patrol: 23 June – 24 July 1943
  • 11th patrol: 31 July – 14 August 1943
  • 12th patrol: 21–27 October 1943
  • 13th patrol: 2–13 November 1943
  • 14th patrol: 24 November – 1 December 1943
  • 15th patrol: 12 January – 9 February 1944
  • 16th patrol: 8–25 March 1944
  • 17th patrol: 30 April – 21 May 1944
Victories:
  • 9 merchant ships sunk (23,289 GRT)
  • 2 merchant ships damaged (16,610 GRT)
  • 2 warships sunk (2,540 tons)

German submarine U-453 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II. She was laid down on 4 July 1940 by Deutsche Werke in Kiel as yard number 284, launched on 30 April 1941 and commissioned on 26 June 1941 under Kapitänleutnant Egon-Reiner von Schlippenbach (Knight’s Cross).

The boat's service began on 26 June 1941 with training as part of the 7th U-boat Flotilla, followed by active service until being transferred to the 29th flotilla on 1 January 1942, based in La Spezia in Italy.

Design[edit]

German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-453 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 Siemens-Schuckert GU 343/38–8 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-453 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 a 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft gun. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.[2]

Service history[edit]

In 17 patrols she sank nine merchant ships for a total of 23,289 gross register tons (GRT), plus two warships and damaged two merchant ships.

Fate[edit]

She was depth charged and sunk by on 21 May 1944 off the south coast of Italy at position 38°13′N 16°30′E / 38.217°N 16.500°E / 38.217; 16.500 by Royal Navy destroyers HMS Termagant, HMS Tenacious and the escort destroyer HMS Liddesdale.

Summary of raiding history[edit]

Date Name Nationality Tonnage[Note 1] Fate[3]
13 December 1941 Badalona  Spain 4,202 Sunk
7 April 1942 HMHS Somersetshire  Royal Navy 9,716 Damaged
20 January 1943 Jean Jadot  Belgium 5,859 Sunk
30 June 1943 Oligarch  United Kingdom 6,894 Damaged
6 July 1943 Shahjehan  United Kingdom 5,454 Sunk
15 November 1943 HMS Quail  Royal Navy 1,705 Total loss - mined
20 November 1943 Jela  Yugoslavia 335 Sunk - mined
22 November 1943 HMS Hebe  Royal Navy 835 Sunk - mined
1 February 1944 Agia Paraskevi  Greece 80 Sunk
1 February 1944 Salem  Lebanon 81 Sunk
1 February 1944 Himli  Lebanon 67 Sunk
1 February 1944 Yahiya  Syria 64 Sunk
19 May 1944 Fort Missanabie  United Kingdom 7,147 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-453". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.
  3. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U-453". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 27 December 2014. 

Bibliography[edit]

  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999). German U-boat commanders of World War II : a biographical dictionary. Translated by Brooks, Geoffrey. London, Annapolis, Md: Greenhill Books, Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-186-6. 
  • 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. 

External links[edit]

  • Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-453". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  • Hofmann, Markus. "U 453". Deutsche U-Boote 1935-1945 - u-boot-archiv.de (in German). Retrieved 26 December 2014.