Retaining I Class Submarine Prizes

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Carl Schwamberger
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Retaining I Class Submarine Prizes

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 21 Apr 2023 20:15

My question is more about technology and any great historical effect. But, there is a counterfactual aspect.

In 1945 the USN took possession of several Japanese I Class submarines & sent them to Oahu for examination. In 1946 these were taken to sea and scuttled near Oahu. The explanation usually give is to avoid turning over one or more to the Soviet Navy for their use. At least one USN officer invited in this wrote there was more to be learned from these boats. Are there any experts here who can comment on this? & point to some reliable literature on the subject? Did the USN still have much to learn from these craft, were there any significantly different or advanced features to study? Or was disposing of them a timely action?

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Takao
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Re: Retaining I Class Submarine Prizes

Post by Takao » 21 Apr 2023 21:29

If I had to guess, as I have seen nothing concrete that there was more to study about Japanese submarines...The focus would likely be on the Japanese high-speed submarines of the I-200 class & HA-200 class. You can mine the US Naval Technical Mission To Japan archives here - https://www.fischer-tropsch.org/primary ... MJ_toc.htm - look for the ones that mention submarines.

EDIT - I surmise that since everyone had access to the German Type XXI and Type XXIII boats, the Japanese high speed submarines were considered superfluous, and with likely inferior technology. Further, the shorter high-speed range of these boats could have been seen as more favorable to a Soviet defensive naval strategy than to an American offensive naval strategy.

Carl Schwamberger
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Re: Retaining I Class Submarine Prizes

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 21 Apr 2023 23:32

Wish I had a better index to the Naval institute Proceedings. Knowing the name of the officer who was involved in the project and wrote the memoir would be useful.

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T. A. Gardner
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Re: Retaining I Class Submarine Prizes

Post by T. A. Gardner » 22 Apr 2023 19:16

Both the I 201 class and the I 400's were examined mostly because they were somewhat unique. One was high speed, the other huge. The USN also took several Type XXI's and even commissioned a couple into service

Image

The Japanese subs were sunk off Hawaii after an examination as they really didn't offer anything unusual in terms of technology. The Type XXI on the other hand, offered certain things, like the Balkon GHG sonar array, battery technology, diesel technology, the snorkel, that were worth examination.

On the other hand, the US largely ignored the Walther H2O2 boats, which was probably a good thing as the Russians and British both found using H2O2 on a submarine was incredibly dangerous.

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