German submarine U-305
|Ordered:||20 January 1941|
|Builder:||Flender Werke, Lübeck|
|Laid down:||30 August 1941|
|Launched:||25 July 1942|
|Commissioned:||17 September 1942|
|Fate:||Sunk, January 1944, in mid-Atlantic|
|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-305 was a Type VIIC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down on 30 August 1941 at the Flender Werke yard at Lübeck as yard number 305, launched on 25 July 1942 and commissioned on 17 September under the command of Oberleutnant zur See Rudolf Bahr.
During her career, the U-boat sailed on four combat patrols, sinking four ships, before she was sunk in January 1944 in mid-Atlantic, southwest of Ireland.
She was part of eight wolfpacks.
German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-305 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-305 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 two twin 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft guns. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.
The submarine's first patrol began with her departure from Kiel on 27 February 1943. She passed through the gap between Iceland and the Faroe Islands and into the north Atlantic Ocean. On 17 March she sank Port Auckland and Zouave southeast of Cape Farewell (Greenland), the latter foundering in five minutes. The boat arrived in Brest in occupied France, on 12 April 1943.
2nd and 3rd patrols
U-305's second foray was relatively uneventful, starting and finishing in Brest, as would all her remaining patrols, on 12 May and 1 June 1943.
4th patrol and loss
The boat's final patrol commenced on 8 December 1943. She successfully attacked HMS Tweed southwest of Ireland. This ship sank in just two minutes, with the loss of 83 men.
U-305 was lost in January 1944. Fifty-one men died; there were no survivors.
U-305 was originally thought to have been sunk by the British destroyer HMS Wanderer and the frigate HMS Glenarm at Coordinates: on 17 January 1944. but recent research suggests this attack sank U-377, and U-305 was lost by unknown cause, possibly a victim of one of her own torpedoes.
U-305 took part in eight wolfpacks, namely.
- Stürmer (11–20 March 1943)
- Seewolf (21–30 March 1943)
- Mosel (19–23 May 1943)
- Leuthen (15–24 September 1943)
- Rossbach (25 September - 5 October 1943)
- Borkum (18 December 1943 - 3 January 1944)
- Borkum 1 (3–13 January 1944)
- Rügen (13–16 January 1944)
Summary of raiding history
|Date||Ship Name||Nationality||Tonnage[Note 1]||Fate|
|17 March 1943||Port Auckland||United Kingdom||8,789||Sunk|
|17 March 1943||Zouave||United Kingdom||4,256||Sunk|
|20 September 1943||HMCS St. Croix||Royal Canadian Navy||1,190||Sunk|
|7 January 1944||HMS Tweed||Royal Navy||1,370||Sunk|
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- Whinney 1986, p.11-18
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