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Naval Ensign of Germany.svg
FIAV 000001 Naval Ensign of Germany.
Founded 1956 (1990)
Country Flag of Germany.png Germany
Size 15,600 personnel
84 ships
53 aircraft
Part of Bundeswehr
Naval headquarters Glücksburg (Fleet Command) and Rostock (Marineamt)
Engagements Operation Sharp Guard (1993–96)
Operation Enduring Freedom
 • Combined Task Force 150
Operation Active Endeavour
Operation ATALANTA
Inspekteur der Marine Vice Admiral Axel Schimpf
Logo of the German Navy Bundeswehr Logo Marine with lettering

German Navy
Deutsche Marine
Naval Ensign of Germany
Naval Air Arm
Navy Command
Ship Classes
History and Traditions
Prussian Navy
Norddeutsche Bundesmarine
Imperial German Navy
Awards, Decorations and Badges
Badge of Honour of the Bundeswehr
Military Proficiency Badge
Badge of Marksmanship
Deployment Medal
Flood Service Medal

The Deutsche Marine (Loudspeaker listen ) is the navy of Germany and is part of the unified Bundeswehr (the German Armed Forces). It is deeply integrated into the NATO alliance. Its mission is protection of German and Allied territories as well as peace-keeping and peace enforcement operations. The Marine traces its roots back to the Reichsflotte (Imperial Fleet) of the revolutionary era of 1848 – 52. The Reichsflotte was the first German Navy to sail under the black-red-gold flag. Founded on 14 June 1848 by the orders of the democratically elected Frankfurt Parliament the Reichsflottes brief existence ended with the failure of the revolution and was disbanded on 2 April 1852; thus, the modern Marine celebrates its birthday on 14 June.

From 1945 to 1956, the German Mine Sweeping Administration and its successor organizations, made up of former members of the Kriegsmarine, became something of a transition stage for the Marine, allowing the future Marine to draw on experienced personnel upon its formation. In 1956, with West Germany's accession to NATO, the Marine was formally established in the name of Bundesmarine. With the reunification of Germany in 1990 the Marine took over the former East German Volksmarine (“People’s Navy”) and became the current Deutsche Marine.


The German navy has operated under different names. See

Current operationsEdit

German warships permanently participate in all four NATO Maritime Groups. The German Navy is also engaged in operations against international terrorism such as Operation Enduring Freedom and NATO Operation Active Endeavour.

Presently the largest operation the German Navy is participating in is UNIFIL II off the coast of Lebanon. The German contribution to this operation is two frigates, four fast attack craft, and two auxiliary vessels. The naval component of UNIFIL has been under German command.[1]


Ships and submarinesEdit

In total, there are about 84 commissioned ships in the German Navy, including 4 submarines and 22 auxiliary ships. The displacement of the navy is 220,000 tonnes. In addition, the German Navy and the Royal Danish Navy are in cooperation in the "Ark Project". This agreement made the Ark Project responsible for the strategic sealift of German armed forces where the full-time charter of three roll-on-roll-off cargo and troop ships are ready for deployments. In addition, these ships are also kept available for the use of the other European NATO countries. The three vessels have a combined displacement of 60,000 tonnes.[2][3] Including these ships, the total ships' displacement available to the Deutsche Marine is 280,000 tonnes.

A total of five Joint Support Ships, two JSS800 and three JSS400, were planned during the 1995-2010 period but the programme appears now to have been abandoned, not having been mentioned in two recent defence reviews. The larger ships would have been tasked for strategic troop transport and amphibious operations, and were to displace 27.000 to 30.000 tons for 800 soldiers.[4]


The naval air arm of the German Navy is called the Marineflieger. The Marineflieger operates approx. 50 aircraft.

Aircraft Origin Type Versions Quantity[5] Notes
Fixed-wing aircraft
P-3C Orion - CUP United States Maritime patrol P-3C MPA 8 Former Royal Dutch Navy
Dornier Do 228 Flag of Germany.png Germany Pollution control Do 228 LM/NG 2
Westland Lynx Maritime helicopter Mk 88 22 Will be replaced by NH90 NFH
Westland Sea King Search and rescue Mk 41 21 Replacement planned
NHI NH90 Flag of Germany.png Germany Maritime helicopter NFH 0 18 ordered[6]
Camcopter S-100 Flag of Austria.svg Austria UAV S-100 0 6 on order.
German Navy P8 Pistol

A German Navy boarding team member assigned to the frigate FGS Augsburg (F213) provides security with a P8 pistol for the remainder of his team as they board a local cargo dhow by fast rope to conduct a search of the vessel.


The German Navy is commanded by the Inspekteur der Marine in the Federal Ministry of Defence in Bonn. The major commands are the Fleet Command at Glücksburg near Flensburg and the Naval Office at Rostock. The Fleet is commanded by the Befehlshaber der Flotte (Commander-in-Chief German Fleet or CINCGERFLEET) and comprises all combat vessels, aircraft, helicopters and other combat forces, while schools, naval bases and test installations are under the purview of the Naval Office. The strength of the Navy is about 17,000 men and women.[7]

The navy as a part of the Bundeswehr is responsible for developing and providing the maritime capabilities of the German armed forces. Therefore it is operating a number of development and testing installations as part of an inter-service and international network.

The FleetEdit

  • Fleet Command (Flottenkommando), Glücksburg, Konteradmiral Michael Mollenhauer (CINCGERFLEET)
    • 1st Flotilla (Einsatzflottille 1), Kiel
      • HQ 1st Flotilla
        • Centre of Excellence for Operations in Confined and Shallow Waters (COE CSW)
      • 1st Corvette Squadron (1. Korvettengeschwader), Warnemünde
      • 1st Submarine Squadron (1. Unterseebootgeschwader), Eckernförde
      • Submarine Training Centre (Ausbildungszentrum Unterseeboote), Eckernförde
      • 3rd Mine Countermeasures Squadron (3. Minensuchgeschwader), Kiel
      • 7th Fast Patrol Boat Squadron (7. Schnellbootgeschwader), Warnemünde
      • 5th Mine Countermeasures Squadron (5. Minensuchgeschwader), Kiel
      • Force Protection Group, (Marineschutzkräfte), Eckernförde
        • HQ
        • 3x Force Protection companies (Marinesicherungskompanie)
        • HUMINT platoon (Feldnachrichtenzug)
      • Special Warfare Group, (Spezialisierte Einsatzkräfte Marine), Eckernförde
        • HQ
        • combat diver company (Kampfschwimmerkompanie)
        • mine clearance diver company (mine countermeasures and explosive ordnance disposal; Minentaucherkompanie)
        • Boarding company
        • Training Company (Ausbildungsinspektion)
    • 2nd Flotilla (Einsatzflottille 2), Wilhelmshaven
      • HQ 2nd Flotilla
      • 2nd Frigate Squadron (2. Fregattengeschwader), Wilhelmshaven
      • 4th Frigate Squadron (4. Fregattengeschwader), Wilhelmshaven
      • Auxiliary Squadron (Trossgeschwader), Wilhelmshaven/Kiel
    • Naval Air Wing 3 (Marinefliegergeschwader 3), Nordholz
    • Naval Air Wing 5 (Marinefliegergeschwader 5), Nordholz
    • Naval Medical Institute (Schiffahrtsmedizinisches Institut), Kiel (responsible especially for diving medicine)

Naval OfficeEdit

Marineschule Muerwik

Naval Academy Mürwik

  • Naval Office (Marineamt), Rostock
    • Department for Development of the Navy, Bremerhaven
    • Navy Schools (Admiral Naval Training)
      • Naval Academy (Marineschule Mürwik), Flensburg-Mürwik
      • Petty Officer School (Marineunteroffiziersschule), Plön
      • Engineering School (Marinetechnikschule), Parow, near Stralsund
        • Damage Control Training Centre (Ausbildungszentrum für Schiffssicherung), Neustadt in Holstein
      • Naval Operations School (Marineoperationsschule), Bremerhaven
    • Supporting Installations (Admiral Naval Logistics)
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Wilhelmshaven
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Eckernförde
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Kiel
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Warnemünde
      • Naval Service Test Command (Kommando Truppenversuche der Marine), Eckernförde
      • Naval Command & Control Systems Command (Kommando Marineführungssysteme), Wilhelmshaven


The German Navy has a strength of 15,600 personnel.



NATO CodeOF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF(D)Student Officer
Naval Ensign of Germany
no equivalent MDS 64 Admiral Trp
MDJA 64 Admiral Trp Lu
MDS 63 Vizeadmiral Trp
MDJA 63 Vizeadmiral Trp Lu
MDS 62 Konteradmiral Trp
MDJA 62 Konteradmiral Trp Lu
MDS 61 Flottillenadmiral Trp
MDJA 61 Flottillenadmiral Trp Lu
MDS 53 Kapitän zur See Trp
MDJA 53 Kapitän zur See Trp Lu
zur See
MDS 52 Fregattenkapitän Trp
MDJA 52 Fregattenkapitän Trp Lu
MDS 51 Korvettenkapitän Trp
MDJA 51 Korvettenkapitän Trp Lu
MDS 44 Stabskapitänleutnant Trp
MDJA 44 Stabskapitänleutnant Trp Lu
MDS 43 Kapitänleutnant Trp
MDJA 43 Kapitänleutnant Trp Lu
MDS 42 Oberleutnant zur See Trp
MDJA 42 Oberleutnant zur See Trp Lu
zur See
MDS 41 Leutnant zur See Trp
MDJA 41 Leutnant zur See Trp Lu
zur See
No equivalent Enlisted rank plus a star indicating cadet's career

Petty officers and enlisted seamenEdit

Germany Germany
MDS 35 Oberstaabsbootsmann 20 MDS 34 Staabsbootsmann 10 MDS 33 Hauptbootsmann 70 MDS 32 Oberbootsmann 60 MDS 31 Bootsmann 30 MDS 22 Obermaat 30 MDS 21 Maat 10 MDS 16 Oberstabsgefreiter 70 L MDS 15 Stabsgefreiter 60 L MDS 14 Hauptgefreiter 50 L MDS 13 Obergefreiter 30 L MDS 12 Gefreiter 20 L MDS 11 Matrose 10 L
MDJA 35 Oberstabsbootsmann 30 Lu MDJA 34 Stabsbootsmann 40 Lu MDJA 33 Hauptbootsmann 50 Lu MDJA 32 Oberbootsmann 70 Lu MDJA 31 Bootsmann 60 Lu MDJA 22 Obermaat 20 Lo MDJA 21 Maat 10 Lo MDJA 16 Oberstabsgefreiter 10 Lo MDJA 15 Stabsgefreiter 20 Lo MDJA 14 Hauptgefreiter 30 Lo MDJA 13 Obergefreiter 40 Lo MDJA 12 Gefreiter 50 Lo MDJA 11 Matrose 81 Lo
Oberstabsbootsmann Stabsbootsmann Hauptbootsmann Oberbootsmann Bootsmann Obermaat Maat Oberstabsgefreiter Stabsgefreiter Hauptgefreiter Obergefreiter Gefreiter Matrose
Germany Germany
(Officer designate)
No equivalent No equivalent MDS 33a Oberfähnrich zur See Trp MDS 31a Fähnrich zur See Trp MDS 21a Seekadett Trp No equivalent No equivalent No equivalent No equivalent
MDJA 33a Oberfähnrich zur See Trp Lu MDJA 31a Fähnrich zur See Trp Lu MDJA 21a Seekadett Trp Lo
Oberfähnrich zur See Fähnrich zur See Seekadett

Radio and communication stationsEdit

Future developmentsEdit

  • A first batch of four frigates of the F125 class (Baden-Württemberg class) specialised for persistent stabilization missions is planned to replace all 8 Bremen class frigates warships (eight guided-missile frigates). Each F125 will have two crews. They are expected to enter service between 2016 and 2018.
  • Six medium surface combat ships were planned under the name 'Korvette K131' (Corvette K131). They are now known as the Multi-purpose warship 180 (MKS 180 or Mehrzweckkampfschiff 180 in German).[8]
  • 18 NH90 NFH Helicopters ordered to replace Lynx in ASW/AsuW role, originally ordered by the German Army as NH90 TTH variant.
  • 12 Medium Sized Helicopters are planned to replace the current 22 Sea King helicopters of Naval Air Wing 5 in SAR & ship-based Transport Role (VertRep)
  • A first batch of six Camcopter S-100 UAVs for the use on the Braunschweig class corvettes has been ordered (more being planned). Deliveries will take place in 2013.[9]
  • In May 2013 it was announced by both Ministers of Defence that the German- & Dutch Navy agreed to integrate submarine operations, training and design for future replacements.


External linksEdit

See alsoEdit

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