HMS Stonehenge (P232)

HMS Stonehenge.jpg
Stonehenge on the surface
History
United Kingdom
Name:Stonehenge
Namesake:Stonehenge
Ordered:3 August 1941
Builder:Cammell Laird, Birkenhead
Laid down:4 April 1942
Launched:23 March 1943
Commissioned:15 June 1943
Fate:Presumed sunk, March 1944
Badge:Badge
General characteristics
Class and type:S-class submarine
Displacement:
  • 865 long tons (879 t) (surfaced)
  • 990 long tons (1,010 t) (submerged)
Length:217 ft (66.1 m)
Beam:23 ft 9 in (7.2 m)
Draught:14 ft 8 in (4.5 m)
Installed power:
  • 1,900 bhp (1,400 kW) (diesel)
  • 1,300 hp (970 kW) (electric)
Propulsion:
Speed:
  • 15 kn (28 km/h; 17 mph) (surfaced)
  • 10 kn (19 km/h; 12 mph) (submerged)
Range:6,000 nmi (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) (surfaced); 120 nmi (220 km; 140 mi) at 3 knots (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph) (submerged)
Test depth:300 ft (91.4 m)
Complement:48
Sensors and
processing systems:
Armament:

HMS Stonehenge was an S-class submarine of the third batch built for the Royal Navy during World War II. Completed in 1943, she made her initial patrol off Norway and was then transferred to the Far East, where she conducted two war patrols, during which she sank two Japanese ships. On her second patrol, Stonehenge disappeared with all hands and was declared overdue on 20 March 1944. The most probable cause of her sinking is that she hit a mine, but her wreck has never been found.

Design and description

Schematic drawing of a S-class submarine

The S-class submarines were designed to patrol the restricted waters of the North Sea and the Mediterranean Sea. The third batch was slightly enlarged and improved over the preceding second batch of the S class. The submarines had a length of 217 feet (66.1 m) overall, a beam of 23 feet 9 inches (7.2 m) and a draught of 14 feet 8 inches (4.5 m). They displaced 865 long tons (879 t) on the surface and 990 long tons (1,010 t) submerged.[1] The S-class submarines had a crew of 48 officers and ratings. They had a diving depth of 300 feet (91 m).[2]

For surface running, the boats were powered by two 950-brake-horsepower (708 kW) diesel engines, each driving one propeller shaft. When submerged each propeller was driven by a 650-horsepower (485 kW) electric motor. They could reach 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph) on the surface and 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) underwater.[3] On the surface, the third-batch boats had a range of 6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) and 120 nmi (220 km; 140 mi) at 3 knots (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph) submerged.[2]

The boats were armed with seven 21-inch (533 mm) torpedo tubes. A half-dozen of these were in the bow, and one external tube was mounted in the stern. They carried six reload torpedoes for the bow tubes for a total of thirteen torpedoes. Twelve mines could be carried in lieu of the internally stowed torpedoes. They were also armed with a 3-inch (76 mm) deck gun.[4] It is uncertain if Stonehenge was completed with a 20-millimetre (0.8 in) Oerlikon light AA gun or had one added later. The third-batch S-class boats were fitted with either a Type 129AR or 138 ASDIC system and a Type 291 or 291W early-warning radar.[5]