The Type XXI U-Boat was a German submarine in service with the Kriegsmarine between 1943 and 1945, during World War II. It was intended to operate mainly in the Atlatic Ocean and the Mediterranean sea, trying to cut Britain’s vital, maritime suplylines that came mostly from the United States and Canada. A total of 118 Type XXI U-boats were built by by Blohm & Voss and AG Weser at shipyards in Hamburg and Bremen from the 1,150 originally planned. However, only two ever left port and neither of them fired a single torpedo in anger. Although it was an advanced submarine, the Type XXI was introduced too late in the war to make a difference.
It was a double-hull submarine, which stored the fuel and reagent in the space between the two hulls. Since its batteries were fitted into the lower deck space, it sailed faster submerged than on the surface. The power plant of the Type XXI consisted of two MAN 6-cylinder diesel engines of 1,000 bhp each, which drove two propeller shafts via two 125-shp electric motors. On the surface, it could reach 15 knots, but underwater it could sail at 17 knots, with a range of 15,500 nautical miles on the surface at 10 knots and 350 nautical miles submerged. The Type XXI submarines were equipped with six 533-mm torpedo tubes, armed with 23 torpedoes and 12 mines.
Type: attack submarine
Length: 76.7 m
Beam: 6.6 m
Displacement: 1,600 tons on the surface; 1,800 tons submerged
Draft: 6.3 m
Crew: 57 men