|Ordered:||23 September 1939|
|Laid down:||19 June 1940|
|Launched:||20 March 1941|
|Commissioned:||3 May 1941|
|Fate:||Sunk 17 February 1943 by HMS Paladin at 32.56N, 22.01E|
|Class and type:||Type VIIC submarine|
|Draught:||4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)|
|Complement:||4 officers, 40–56 enlisted|
German submarine U-205 was a Type VIIC U-boat of the Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down on 19 June 1940 by the Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft yard at Kiel as yard number 634; launched on 20 March 1941; and commissioned on 3 May 1941 under the command of Franz-Georg Reschke.
She was sunk on 17 February 1943 by HMS Paladin at .
German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-205 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 AEG GU 460/8–27 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-205 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 a 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft gun. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty.
U-205's first patrol began when she left Trondheim on 24 July 1941; she travelled through the gap between Greenland and Iceland (the Denmark Strait) and docked at Brest in occupied France, on 23 August 1941.
Leaving Lorient on 23 September 1941, U-205 was attacked and damaged by aircraft on 27 September and returned to port, arriving in Lorient on 2 October 1941.
On 3 November 1941 U-205 left Lorient and joined Wolfpack Arnauld. Breaking through the Gibraltar barrage, U-205 joined the 29th U-Flotilla in La Spezia on 10 December 1941.
U-205 left La Spezia on 5 January 1942 and returned on 10 February.
Having left La Spezia on 17 March, U-205 encountered the fleet tanker RFA Slavol on her way to Tobruk on 26 March 1942 and sank her with a torpedo from her stern torpedo tube after a four-torpedo-screen failed to generate any hits.
Saling from La Spezia on 6 May 1942, U-205 reached Salamis on 8 June 1942.
On the return leg, U-205 successfully attacked the British light cruiser HMS Hermione on 16 June 1942, guarding convoy MW-11. The U-boat docked in La Spezia on 23 June.
On 3 August 1942, U-205 sailed from La Spezia for Pula, arriving there on 10 September 1942.
Pola, 20 October 1942 – La Spezia, 19 November 1942
La Spezia, 20 November 1942 – Pola, 24 November 1942
Pola, 12 January 1943 – Salamis 26 January 1943
Last patrol and sinking
Leaving Salamis on 2 February 1943, U-205 was manoeuvering to attack a convoy off Apollonia, Cyrenaica on 17 February 1943 when she was spotted by a Bristol Blenheim bomber of the South African Air Force and attacked by British destroyer HMS Paladin at Coordinates: . Forced to surface by depth charges, U-205's crew abandoned ship after opening the sea vents. A boarding party from HMS Paladin managed to salvage documents and radio equipment. A second warship, HMS Gloxinia, attempted to tow the still-floating submarine to the beach, but failed. U-205 sank about 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) off shore.
U-205 took part in one wolfpack, namely.
- Arnauld (5–18 November 1941)
U-205 is widely believed to be the submarine with the erroneous number U-307 in Peter Keeble's book Ordeal by Water, in which he describes his dive to recover encrypting equipment from a sunken U-boat.
Summary of raiding history
|26 March 1942||RFA Slavol||Royal Fleet Auxiliary||2,623||Sunk|
|16 June 1942||HMS Hermione||Royal Navy||5,450||Sunk|
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- Gröner 1991, pp. 43-46.
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- Jak Mallmann Showell, Enigma U-boats, 2000, p. 95.
- Helgason, Guðmundur. "The Type VIIC boat U-205". German U-boats of WWII - uboat.net. Retrieved 9 December 2014.
- Hofmann, Markus. "U 205". Deutsche U-Boote 1935-1945 - u-boot-archiv.de (in German). Retrieved 9 December 2014.