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  #276  
Old 07-06-2012, 19:02
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Richtea Richtea is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Nikki,
it still boils down to a question of numbers, if the Prinz had accompanied Bismarck, on the dawn of the 27th of May the numbers were as follows;

RN UNITS
2 aircraft carriers
2 battleships ( more in the area if required )
1 battlecruiser
2 heavy cruisers ( 2 more in the area )
11 light cruisers in the area
30 destroyers in the area
The RN was so desperate to sink Bismarck they detached convoy escorts from their duties to join in the hunt / battle.


All would have been swarming around wanting to land a telling hit
and all the Prinz could do would be to lash out at the nearest tormentor
while the rest savaged him/her.

All that I am doing is looking at the cold facts and making the conclusion that all the Prinz's crew could have done was to die gallantly alongside the Bismarck.

I will leave the last words in this post to Admiral John Tovey quote;

" The Bismarck put up a most gallant fight against impossible odds worthy of the old days of the Imperial German Navy,
and she went down with her colours flying."

Regards
Richard
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  #277  
Old 07-06-2012, 19:18
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Richard,
I know its a Numbers game, But If you look at Prinz, she had the Harder hitting cannons!!! But I thing she could have kept the cruisers at bay, long enough to Get a few good hits!!!
Nikki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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  #278  
Old 07-06-2012, 23:46
esl esl is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Some one already pointed out that had Prince Eugen been with Bismarck when attacked by Stringbags her superior Flak [all same type] could have been enough to ensure no critical hit. No critical rudder hit and Lutjens can still maintain 20 knots instead of 10 knots. Then both warships manage to out run the RN get back to France, before RN can intercept them.

Last edited by esl : 08-06-2012 at 00:03.
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  #279  
Old 07-06-2012, 23:55
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

esl,
If she had yes, But she broke away, from Bismarck on May 24th!!! But She missed a few ships, that were looking for her brother!!! And To me she'll Always be a Lucky Ship!
Nikki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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  #280  
Old 08-06-2012, 19:01
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Nikki,
You are missing the point, the Prinz's guns like all naval guns of that period, work at their best when fired in salvo.
So all eight eight inch guns would have been trained on ONE target at a time.
This is why the number of ships is important.
Until you have neutralised the 1st target, the enemies other ships are free to attack you.
Then you have to go through the whole aiming process from scratch.
Shift target, 1st salvo over and right, second salvo short, third salvo straddle, fire for effect. ( And I simplified that change of target by not taking the weather into consideration.)
This takes time, and a ship surrounded by the enemy does not have that luxury.

The weight of shells coming from the RN's cruisers and destroyers would have more than compensated the bigger guns of the Prinz.

Don't forget the British had a Battlecruiser sulking in the area just waiting to use her 15 inch guns.
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  #281  
Old 08-06-2012, 21:15
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Richtea
That was Renown, who was ORDERED to stay away from the battle with Bismarck! Look at the battle with Hood and Bismarck, That just goses to show her what happens when you match two ship that are on Scale as far as firepower goes!!! Now the Question Becomes, Could she and the cruisers and Destroyers, Keep Prinz away from the Battle with out fire a shot at her????
Nikki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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  #282  
Old 08-06-2012, 22:47
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Richtea Richtea is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

The answer to that one Nikki is that Battlecruisers were made to SINK cruisers ( IE Prinz Eugen ) and be fast enough to run from any thing that could sink themselves.

Even the "mighty" Hood was not built to fight Battleship's.
The problem was the old Nelsonian adage "No Captain can do very wrong if he places his ship alongside that of the enemy"

That was the RN's way of fighting.
Look for HMS Glowworm ( H92 )
HMS Rawalpindi
HMS Jervis Bay

No matter the size of the enemies gun's, no matter how small your own ship,
no matter how futile the battle may seem, if the enemy is in sight you do your utmost to damage him and if you lose your ship or your life, you have done your DUTY.

This is the Nelsonian spirit that is in the DNA of Royal Navy Officers and Crew.
I hope this helps you understand why I am certain that the Prinz would have suffered the same fate as the Bismarck.
Regards
Richard
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  #283  
Old 09-06-2012, 04:27
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Hey Richard,
I know!!! and I understand what your saying! but I was thing about that hole idea as a what if ok!!!!!!!!!!
Niki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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  #284  
Old 09-06-2012, 05:41
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

All the what if come out about the same, Nikki -- Germany's fleet of tough ships didn't stand much of a chance. They built an enormous navy in WWI and that didn't turn out so good either...
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  #285  
Old 09-06-2012, 14:52
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Guys,
I'M NOT MAD, at any of you!!!! And i understand everything you guys are talking about ok!!!
Nikki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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  #286  
Old 29-06-2012, 12:35
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

I'll post this here, amidst all the fine articles about this ship. This paper, however opens up some very basic questions about the designs of the German Navy, which were sadly lacking in some vital aspects of ship survival in battle.
As an ex R.N. stoker P.O. I can see major flaws in this ship's lay-out. Why couldn't the German designers have seen them too, I ask?

© Crown Copyright/MoD (1946).


DAMAGE CONTROL IN THE GERMAN NAVY.



The following article is compiled from the notes of an Engineer officer who recently
visited the PRINZ EUGEN to report on methods of damage control and fire-fighting as
practised in the German Navy.

Although in the British and American Navies the subject of damage control
in all its aspects was not deeply studied until the early stages of the present
war, vast strides have been made since that time. In the case of the German
Navy one has always been led to believe that, in the intervening period between
the two wars, much consideration had been given to the subject. This belief
had been further strengthened by the severe punishment that such ships as
the Graf Spee and Bismark suffered before being finally sent to the bottom.
The visit to the PPINZ EUGEN was therefore looked forward to with considerable
interest.

The visit, however, while revealing certain interesting features, brought to
light the somewhat amazing fact that, considered broadly, damage control
and fire-fighting in the German Navy were much behind the times.

On approaching the ship, one's first impression was that here indeed was a
very powerful vessel. For a cruiser she is certainly large, displacing 20,080 tons
in war trim and developing 145,000 S.H.P. which gives her a sped of 32 knots.
Very noticeable, however, was the fact that there was a complete row of
un-blanked scuttles just above the waterline. However, the object of the
visit was to obtain facts and not impressions, so a detailed investigation was
at once begun.

Organisation and training.

It was fortunate that the engineer officer of this ship is one of two
Commanders (E) who had been solely connected with damage control in the
German Navy and he proved very keen and knowledgeable on the subject.
It was most interesting to discover that the engineer officer was entirely
responsible for the damage control organisation and training in the ship.
It appeared that this decision was made two years ago, when it was agreed that
the subject was more satisfactorily dealt with by a technical branch.

To assist him, the engineer officer has, in cruisers and above, three lieutenant commanders.
One is for machinery, one for electrics, and the other for damage control.
Matters are considerably simplified in the German Navy owing to
the fact that the engineering branch is responsible for all the electric power
supplies and distribution.
On the Admiralty side, there appeared to be practically no organisation for
dealing with damage control and fire-fighting matters. Early in the war, a
small team was formed consisting of the present engineer officer of the
Prinz Eugen and one other engineer commander whose job it was to analyse
damage reports from ships and promulgate bulletins to the fleet containing
any lessons learnt. These officers also produced a damage control book.

Both these officers had been sent to sea to spread the gospel to the fleet, one to the
Prinz Eugen and the other to the Tirpitz. Considering, therefore, that the
Prinz Eugen was completed in 1939, it is evident that the design requirements
for ability to withstand damage were, to a certain extent, catered for by the
knowledge possessed by the design staff.

fig 1.jpg

No special ratings were carried for damage control, the engine room
department personnel being utilised as in the Royal Navy. The rigid discipline
of the German Navy was no doubt of initial value in the early stages of
damage, but its value is doubtful should key ratings be killed and the
initiative of the individual become the saving factor. The knowledge of the
personnel appeared on the whole poor. There was no damage control training
other than that carried out on board. This, however, as very thorough;
the working up period of this particular ship had, apparently been eight months
during which time much effort had been spent on damage control. Since,
however, the only training given to engineer officers is carried out at college,
and none is apparently given to officers of the other branches, training must
be difficult.

Under the control of the engineer officer, three warrant officers were
employed in damage control maintenance and instruction. These were the
pump-master, carpenter and the gas protection officer. The pump-master,
who was responsible for fire-fighting training, did not appear to have a very
complete grasp of his subject.

The ship was divided into seven sections for damage control. Five of these
were below the weather decks and the other two dealt with the weather decks.
This was not in keeping with the latest policy of the German Navy, which
was, to extend the damage control sections vertically upwards to the highest
deck in the section. Section officers were all engineer oficers with the
exception of the carpenter and the gas protection officer previously mentioned.

Stability officer.

In Damage Control headquarters, the damage control officer had another
engineer officer to assist him as stability officer. In action there was also
another engineer officer stationed in the secondary damage control
headquarters whose function was that of secondary damage control officer.
He was kept abreast of the situation by following the damage control telegraphs
with which the position is equipped. The damage control headquarters had a
flooding indicator which operated a tell-tale in the secondary damage control
headquarters, thus informing the officer there should headquarters be out of
action.
The ship has three shafts and the machinery is operated in three " Units,"
Each unit being supplied with steam from a separate boiler room. The lay out
of the machinery; as shown in Fig. l. Although each unit is completely
separate from the others so far as pipe-lines are concerned, the actual
positions of the compartments are such that as a whole it is a vulnerable
installation. It closely resembles the design of our ships before the era of the
separated unit. By suitable operation of isolation valves it was possible to
cross-connect the units after damage It was not evident, however, that these
cross-connections were used for reducing the amount of machinery running in
the low states of readiness.

Feed water transfer.

The only item of machinery damage control that appeared to have been given
any attention was that of maintaining feed water. Special bulkhead hose
connections were fitted and petrol-driven portable pumps supplied for the
purpose of transferring feed water. This special attention may be due to the
fact that the feed water was stowed in the double bottoms.

Ventilation of machinery compartments seemed to have been given no
consideration at all. It was most surprising to discover that there were no
alternative supplies to the engine room fans which were all electrically driven,
neither was provision made for the use of self-contained or other form of
breathing apparatus, although a very large number of oxygen breathing sets
similar to our Salvus were carried- a total of 110. In the event of smoke filling
a machinery compartment these sets would have to be sent for.

No rigid or resilient mountings were fitted to any machinery although diesel
dynamos and some other auxiliary machinery were mounted on rubber as an
anti-vibration measure. No scheme for replacing castings by steel fabricated
structures was contemplated.
The control of main machinery was interesting, as centralised control was
fitted and carried out from a well-equipped machinery control room. In action,
both the engineer officer and the senior engineer were stationed there, the
former having a complete picture of the damage situation as the compartment
was directly below and had access to the secondary damage control headquarters.
The equipment in the machinery control room was elaborate but
compact. All gauges were of the edgewise type and sufficient gauges and
instruments were fitted to enable a bird's eye view of the steam and electrical
machinery situation to be obtained. In addition to the ordinary telephonic
arrangements, electrically operated telegraphs were also fitted. These were
capable of transmitting a variety of orders to all machinery compartments
and units. It was inferred that the control officer exercised more control over
machinery in general than is the practice in our ships fitted with a control
room, with the exception of carriers. No unit control system as we know it
was fitted, but it was apparently the intention that this should be the case in
new construction. Engine room telegraphs were electrically operated and
three separate systems were fitted to cater for breakdowns.

It had apparently hen decided that it was not good practice to have the
engineer officer and senior engineer in the same compartment in action and
recently the senior had been occupying the forward engine room. This was
fitted out in the same manner as our controlling engine room. The action, the
were two further engineer officers in the machinery compartments, one for the
boiler rooms and one for the engine rooms.

Steering gear.

The steering gear, which was of the Napier screw type operated by a Ward
Leonard system was most vulnerable since all the equipment was situated in
the adjacent compartments forward of the tiller head compartment. The
hand steering gear, which required twelve men to operate, was sited in one of
these compartments. Operation of the system from the steering positions
was by electrical control on the Ward Leonard system. There was no method
of centring the rudder in the event of flooding of the steering compartment ;
this would almost certainly occur in all compartments in the event of a hit in
the vicinity in any one of the compartments.

Stowage of petrol was interesting, special tanks being fitted in the bilges
and not surrounded by any liquid. As the petrol was pumped from the
tanks the space remaining was charged with nitrogen at a pressure of from
0.01 to 0.02 atmospheres. The petrol piping itself was jacketed throughout its
whole length and the jacket was charged with nitrogen at a pressure of 4
atmospheres. An automatic switch stopped the petrol pump in the event of
pressure failing in the jacket. Petrol precautions appeared to be conspicuous
by their absence as the pipe systems were neither drained nor blown back
after use. The dangers of petrol did not seem to be fully appreciated by
personnel questioned.

The vessel was divided transversely into 10 compartments, each of which
was provided with a 600-ton submersible salvage pump. Each pump was
also capable of pumping out the compartment immediately ahead. The
pumps were also used for spraying the magazines, as no method of flooding
from the sea was fitted. Remote control of the valves was by rod gearing, the
bevels being totally enclosed and nipple lubricated ; it was noted that the
rod gearing was of considerably lighter scantlings than that fitted in our ships
and an ingenious method of saving space was adopted. The rods all ran close
to bulkheads, but where they entered the upper operating position were
hinged at deck level. Thus they were normally stowed close to the bulkhead,
but when required for use were pulled from their stowage position and a T
handle fitted.

Steam bilge ejectors are fitted in the machinery compartments together
with small capacity electrically driven bilge pumps. Except for the water
driven portable pumps mentioned under fire-fighting there arc no other salvage
arrangements fitted.

Fire fighting.

From the fire-fighting aspect the most noteworthy item was the fire-main.
In principle this followed the lines of the system fitted in American warships,
namely, a high pressure system fitted solely for the purpose of supplying water
under pressure for fire-fighting. The system was not fitted in the form of a
ring nor was it a continuous straight run. Briefly, it consisted of three pumps
each supplying one third of the ship through its own pipe system, cross-connections
being arranged at pump level only. The pumps were electrically driven
and non-submersible with a capacity of 60 tons per hour. There were also
three other pumps which normally supplied pressure to the washdeck and
domestic services main which could be used in the fire-main in an emergency.

Since there were only the three main pumps it was impossible to isolate the
fire-main system except into the three main runs. No diesel-driven emergency
pumps were carried. One amazing feature was the fact that the only portable
salvage pumps carried were operated by water motors which required 60 tons
per hour from the fire-main for efficient operation. Thus, should a portable
pump be in use in one section of the fire-main, then there would be no pressure
available for fire-fighting.

In the machinery compartments, large fires were extinguished by fixed
chemical spray installations operated from group cabinets. The liquid used
was similar to carbon tetrachloride and the dangers of this substance due to
the resultant gases produced on heating have only recently been appreciated
by the German Admiralty. This has been caused by experience and has
resulted in the creation of a new liquid alleged to be harmless. What this liquid
is composed of is not yet known, but an analysis is being made. The same
liquid is also used for extinguishing electrical fires, small extinguishers being
used, The design of those is such that the liquid is atomised as it leaves the
nozzle and the particles so formed provide insulation. In both the fixed
installations and hand extinguishers the liquid is expelled by compressed air.

Steam injectors.

In addition to the chemical sprays, machinery compartments are also fitted
with steam injection. Here again it was surprising to note that the injection
orifices were fitted in the bilges -- practice that experience in the Royal Navy
early in the war clearly showed to be most unsatisfactory since the oil that
was burning invariably covered the outlets of the steam pipes.

The use of chemical foam did not seem so extensive as in our Navy, no
continuous foam compound units being carried though there were some small
"pick up '" types. There was also a 60 litre ready mixed foam generator operated
by compressed & stored in an attached bottle. This machine was supplied
for use on aircraft fires, thee aircraft being carried. The only method of
injecting foam into machinery compartments was by means of a special
tube that could be lowered down a hatch. Carbon dioxide was not used in many
form for fire-fighting.

The responsibility for fire-fighting training and equipment was in the hands
of the engineer officer. There are no fire-fighting schools as we know them,
although training in practical fire-fighting is given in hulks, the training being
confined to warrant and petty officers.

The sectional fire-fighting technique did not appear to consider the idea of
" Every man a fire-fighter " but rather to regard fire-fighting as a specialised
team operation. A specially trained party, consisting of one petty officer
and four men, was stationed in each damage control sect ion whose sole function
was fire-fighting. Should the party in one section become casualties it appeared
that: the party from another section would be called in to deal with any fires.

The use of water spray, for fire-fighting did not seem very prominent. All
hydrants were normally rigged with ordinary jet nozzles, while, although a
type of jet-spray nozzle was supplied to the damage control parties, the spray
could not be used alone, but only in conjunction with the jet. It therefore
appeared that the spray was only for personal protection.

Although this article gives a very broad idea of damage control in a
comparatively modern German warship, it should be remembered that the
PRINZ EUGEN has had no refit nor A and A’s carried out since the day she
commissioned.
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Andy.

(A proper Old Stoker.)

OLD SHIPS: VANGUARD, CHAPLET, VIGILANT, ROEBUCK, PALLISER (x2), DIANA, TIGER, CENTAUR, EAGLE, BELFAST,
GANGES, RALEIGH, COCHRANE, SULTAN, TERROR, INSKIP, ROYAL ARTHUR, VICTORY, AMPHIBIOUS TRAINING UNIT, ROYAL MARINES. (Poole.)

Last edited by ap1 : 29-06-2012 at 12:45. Reason: copyright notice
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  #287  
Old 29-06-2012, 14:17
NABERA NABERA is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Thanks for posting this informative report. I've tried a few times to access info on the net or in books with regards to German ships from a technical point of view and found very little available.

Alan.
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  #288  
Old 29-06-2012, 20:36
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

On a different but related subject for certain feminine fans of Prinz Eugen, I ran across a photo of a US submarine the other day showing it with a higly modified round bulging "sail" which contained the sonar array removed from Prinz Eugen by the US at the end of the war. This unit was extensively tested, and became the scientific basis for the modern "passive array" sonars used by nuclear submarines today. Apparently it was quite good, even when the ship was moving at high speed. If I can get the photo to scan decently, I'll post it later.
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  #289  
Old 29-06-2012, 22:03
WGVSr WGVSr is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Supposedly during the Bismarck episode the Prinz detected one of the shadowing British cruisers at 33,000 yds while making 30+ knots using the passive array. The sub you're looking for is/was Flying Fish [SS-229]. I've seen several pictures of the array and it's beam-wide on the sub and envelops the entire fairwater.
Bill
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  #290  
Old 30-06-2012, 01:05
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Smile Re: Prinz Eugen

Quote:
The following article is compiled from the notes of an Engineer officer who recently visited the PRINZ EUGEN to report on methods of damage control and fire-fighting as practised in the German Navy.
Andy,

This is GREAT stuff, just the sort of material I enjoy reading time and again. I also enjoyed the similar post about HMS Ulster at another thread but, while far more detailed and absorbing, this Prinz Eugen appreciation contains many more (of what are to me, at any rate) surprising revelations.

I have never seen a similar assessment or appreciation written about the ship while briefly in US Navy service, outside a bit here and there from the Bikini tests--which, of course, are of a completely different nature.

Your efforts are absolutely appreciated!

Dan
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  #291  
Old 30-06-2012, 02:18
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

The Prince Eugens GHG passive array was also credited with detecting HMS HOOD prior to the fatal battle on the 24th May 1941.

German subs carried the GHG from the start of the war and they often used them to detect convoys at distances of 50km although some sources say 100km. In one case a skilled operator detected battle sounds at 160km distance with this type of array.

I was reading Polmar and Moors, "Cold War Submarines" and they report the main GHG Studies were done with captured XXI Uboats , from which the GUPPY conversions were ordered along with The TANG design authorized.

Type XXI Uboat GHG array, was more advanced than Prince Eugens array and included the SU active pencil beam sonar plus the associated firecontrol computer that allowed underwater firing and guiding of new torpedos.
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  #292  
Old 30-06-2012, 06:25
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Found the photo I was looking for -- a bit hazy, but the sonar fit is rather obvious. This was strictly a test-fit, of course, not an operational sonar array. Photo taken 23 March 1951. The GHG passive array sonar from the Prinz Eugen along with the more advanced Type XXI array mentioned above opened a whole new world of low-frequency passive sonar technology for the US navy at a time when it was badly needed to counter the Soviets ever-increasing submarine fleet. These test sonars formed the scientific basis of all the sonar technology developed for the nuclear attack subs that gave them the ability to track and kill submerged submarines, this ASW role becoming the main role of SSNs right up to today.
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  #293  
Old 30-06-2012, 11:14
Grosser Kreuzer Grosser Kreuzer is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Gentlemen,

Certainly, PE is credited with detecting the HOOD Group at a considerable distance, however, in a fairly recent book written by a British naval officer as a critique of the "Bismarck Episode" and the decisions made, it was stated that this was one of many "false alarms." One might say the result of an over-excitment on the part of the operating crew. I suppose that it must be a case of choosing your own version of what to believe.

If PE did indeed detect the ships as stated, then it was a phenominal performance by a passive system mounted in the hull of a fast-steaming surface unit.

GK
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  #294  
Old 30-06-2012, 14:06
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Excellent, informative read, but I've never seen the PE as being over 20,000 tons in "war trim" before??? Paul Schmalenbach, her gunnery officer, listed her at 18,400 tons full load in my old WARSHIP PROFILE 6. DFO
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  #295  
Old 30-06-2012, 18:32
WGVSr WGVSr is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

Quote:
Originally Posted by designeraccd View Post
Excellent, informative read, but I've never seen the PE as being over 20,000 tons in "war trim" before??? Paul Schmalenbach, her gunnery officer, listed her at 18,400 tons full load in my old WARSHIP PROFILE 6. DFO
Groener has her at 18,750 full load; Conway at 19,042. DANFS shows her at 19,250 as IX 300.
Bill
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  #296  
Old 30-06-2012, 20:32
esl esl is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2012
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

GHG sonar was a ultra low frequency sonar operating down to the 400-600 hertz region as I recall for extreme long range detection. According to Ohara Prince Engen alerted Lutjens to two fast approaching heavy units. That was a distance of 22nm?
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  #297  
Old 03-11-2012, 01:38
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NASAAN101 NASAAN101 is offline
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Default Re: Prinz Eugen

hey guys,
does anyone know were i can find info on her move from Copenhagen to Wilhelmshaven? and I don't even remember The name of the Operation!
Nikki
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The mighty beast is wounded, a Swordfish torpedoed the steering gear, with rudder's jammed..is his Achilles Heel with... K.G.5 and Rodney closing in for the kill". From "You Must Sink The Bismarck" on youtube..
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Random Timeline Entry : 20th January 1940 : HMS Foresight : Attacked a contact NE of the Faroes in 62-54N, 3-10W

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 The E-class light cruiser HMS Emerald is shown off the Newfoundland coast in company with a Flower class corvette.  Between October 1939 and August 1940, HMS Emerald carried £58 million in gold from Britain to Canada.

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The Battle of Trafalgar was fought on a calm, almost windless day, on 21st October 1805.  Nelsons revolutionary battle plan was to cut apart the larger Franco-Spanish fleet of Vice-Admiral Villeneuve by sailing in two single column divisions directly at right angles into the combined fleet and thus rendering almost half of the leading ships useless until the could turn and join the fight, which in such calm conditions could take hours.  The battle raged for five hours in which time not one British ship was lost, however, Nelson would tragically lose his life at the very moment of his triumph, a triumph which rendered the British Navy unchallenged in supremacy for over a century.  Here HMS Mars passes between the French ship Belleisle on her starboard and the French ship Fougeux on her port, firing a murderous hail of gunfire at both ships.  Also shown in the painting on the left hand side is the Spanish ship Monarco and the French ship Pluton.

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 Between 24th may and 4th June 1940 an extraordinary armada of craft, large and small, naval and civilian, embarked on one of the greatest rescue missions in history. the evacuation of 330,000 British and French troops from the beaches of Dunkirk in northern France. the destroyer HMS Wakeful dominates the foreground here as troops pour onto the beaches and harbour moles in search of salvation. Both Wakeful and distant HMS Grafton were lost during the evacuation.

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 Fully dressed and resplendent, HMS Hood is pictured preparing for King George Vs review of the Fleet in July 1935 as other capital ships take up their positions around her. Ramillies can be seen off Hoods port bow, Resolution astern, whilst just beyond her boat deck, the mighty Nelson gently nudges into position.

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HMS Eagle and the commando carrier HMS Albion during the withdrawal from Aden in November 1967.  One of HMS Eagles Sea Vixen is passing overhead and RFA Stromness is at anchor in the distance.

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To increase the strength of the US fleet in the Pacific during the critical early months of the war, USS Indiana went through the Panama Canal.  On the 28th of November 1942 USS Indiana joined Rear Admiral Lee's aircraft carrier screening force.  For the next 11 months, USS Indiana helped protect USS Enterprise and USS Saratoga, which had been supporting the US invasion on the Solomon Islands.  On the 21st of October 1943 USS Indiana went to Pearl Harbor, but after only a couple of weeks left to support forces designated for the invasion of the Gilbert Islands.  The battleship protected the carriers which supported the Marines during the bloody fight for Tarawa atoll.  Then, in late January 1944, she bombarded Kwajalein for eight days prior to the  Marshall Island landings on 1st February 1944.  USS Indiana collided with the battleship USS Washington while refuelling destroyers, killing several men.  Temporary repairs to her starboard side were made at Majuro and USS Indiana returned to Pearl Harbor on 13th February 1944 for additional repair work.  The painting shows USS Indiana with one of the two carriers she protected.

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17th May 1943, Sqn Ldr Frank (Jerry) Fray in his Spitfire PRX1 of 542 Squadron operating out of RAF Benson, Oxfordshire, returned alone and unarmed to gather photographic evidence from 30,000 feet of the Möhne dam having been breached earlier the same day by 617 Squadron Lancaster bombers.

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 Often described as the most effective fighter escorts in the US Army Air Force, the famous red-tailed Tuskegee airmen could proudly boast that they never lost a single bomber to enemy fighters in all the missions flown. Nearest aircraft here is the P51C of Lt. Lee A Archer Jr, who finished the war with four confirmed victories and one shared. His personal aircraft was named <i>Ina the Macon Belle</i> after his wife.

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 Pushing the concept of the Spitfire almost to the limit, the sleek F Mk212 represented the ultimate in fighter design at the end of the Second World War. Powered by the mighty Griffon 61 engine driving a five blade propeller, its armament consisted of four 20mm British Hispano Cannon, two in each wing. This example is LA200 (DL-E) of 91 Sqn in 1945.

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 M3 Lee tanks and troops from General Slims 14th Army clear Japanese resistance form the village of Ywathitgyi in their drive to Mandalay.

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 Oberfeldwebel Albert Kerscher, commander of 2nd company 511 Heavy Tank Battalion aided by a Panzer IV, two Hetzers, a Kingtiger and a Pak gun, successfully defended against concerted Soviet air and armoured attacks, his action buying valuable time for the evacuation of German wounded from Pilau and scoring his 100th victory in the process.

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