German submarine U-624

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History
Nazi Germany
Name: U-624
Ordered: 15 August 1940
Builder: Blohm & Voss, Hamburg
Yard number: 600
Laid down: 15 July 1941
Launched: 31 March 1942
Commissioned: 28 May 1942
Fate: Sunk 7 February 1943 in the North Atlantic in position 55°42′N 26°17′W / 55.700°N 26.283°W / 55.700; -26.283, by a RAF Liberator aircraft.
General characteristics
Class & 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:

German submarine U-624 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II. She was laid down on 15 July 1941 by Blohm & Voss in Hamburg as yard number 600, launched on 31 March 1942 and commissioned on 28 May 1942 under Kapitänleutnant Ulrich Graf von Soden-Fraunhofen.

Contents

Service record[1]
Part of:
Commanders:
  • Kptlt. Ulrich Graf von Soden-Fraunhofen
  • 28 May 1942 – 7 February 1943
Operations:
  • 1st patrol: 10 October – 4 December 1942
  • 2nd patrol: 7 January – 7 February 1943
Victories:
  • 5 merchant ships sunk (39,855 GRT)
  • 1 merchant ship damaged (5,432 GRT)
  • 3 warships sunk (873 tons)

Design[edit]

German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-624 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 Brown, Boveri & Cie GG UB 720/8 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-624 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]

The boat's service began on 28 May 1942 with training as part of the 8th U-boat Flotilla. She was transferred to the 7th Flotilla, operating out of St.Nazaire, on 1 October 1942 for active service in the North Atlantic .

In just two patrols she sank five merchant ships, for a total of 39,855 gross register tons (GRT), plus one merchant ship damaged. Three Royal Navy landing craft were also sunk as they were being transported by Kosmos II at the time she was sunk.

Fate[edit]

U-624 was sunk on 7 February 1943 in the North Atlantic in position 55°42′N 26°17′W / 55.700°N 26.283°W / 55.700; -26.283Coordinates: 55°42′N 26°17′W / 55.700°N 26.283°W / 55.700; -26.283. She was caught unawares on the surface whilst transmitting to base a lengthy report of the previous night's action around Convoy SC 118. A RAF Liberator aircraft of (Sqdn. 220/J), operating out of Londonderry, depth charged her 55 nautical miles (102 km; 63 mi) astern of the convoy. All 45 hands were lost.

Wolfpacks[edit]

U-624 took part in five wolfpacks, namely.

  • Puma (23–29 October 1942)
  • Natter (30 October – 8 November 1942)
  • Kreuzotter (8–24 November 1942)
  • Habicht (10–19 January 1943)
  • Haudegen (19 January – 7 February 1943)

Summary of raiding history[edit]

Date Name Nationality Tonnage
(GRT)
Fate[3]|- 29 October 1942 HMS LCT-2190  Royal Navy 291 Sunk
29 October 1942 HMS LCT-2192  Royal Navy 291 Sunk
29 October 1942 HMS LCT-2284  Royal Navy 291 Sunk
29 October 1942 Kosmos II  Norway 16,966 Sunk
29 October 1942 Pan-New York  United States 7,701 Sunk
18 November 1942 President Sergent  United Kingdom 5,344 Sunk
18 November 1942 Parismina  United States 4,732 Sunk
18 November 1942 Yaka  United States 5,432 Damaged
25 January 1943 Lackenby  United Kingdom 5,112 Sunk

References[edit]

  1. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-624". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 20 May 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.
  3. ^ Helgason, Guðmundur. "Ships hit by U-624". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 20 May 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. 
  • Edwards, Bernard (1996). Dönitz and the Wolf Packs - The U-boats at War. pp. 148–149. ISBN 0-304-35203-9. 
  • 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. 
  • Sharpe, Peter (1998). U-Boat Fact File. Great Britain: Midland Publishing. ISBN 1-85780-072-9. 

External links[edit]