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German submarine U-640
Career (Nazi Germany)
Name: U-640
Ordered: 20 January 1941
Builder: Blohm & Voss, Hamburg
Yard number: 616
Laid down: 30 October 1941
Launched: 23 July 1942
Commissioned: 17 September 1942
Fate: Sunk 14 May 1943 in the Atlantic Ocean, in position 60°32′N 31°05′W / 60.533°N 31.083°W / 60.533; -31.083Coordinates: 60°32′N 31°05′W / 60.533°N 31.083°W / 60.533; -31.083, by depth charges from a US Catalina.
General characteristics [1]
Class & type: Type VIIC submarine
Displacement: 769 tonnes (757 long tons) surfaced
871 t (857 long tons) submerged
Length: 67.1 m (220 ft 2 in) o/a
50.5 m (165 ft 8 in) pressure hull
Beam: 6.2 m (20 ft 4 in) o/a
4.7 m (15 ft 5 in) pressure hull
Draft: 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in)
Propulsion: 2 × supercharged Germaniawerft 6-cylinder 4-stroke F46 diesel engines, totalling 2,800–3,200 PS (2,800–3,200 bhp; 2,100–2,400 kW). Max rpm: 470-490
2 × BBC GG UB 720/8 electric motors, totalling 750 PS (740 shp; 550 kW) and max rpm: 296
Speed: 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h; 20.4 mph) surfaced
7.6 knots (14.1 km/h; 8.7 mph) submerged
Range: 8,500 nmi (15,700 km; 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) surfaced
80 nmi (150 km; 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph) submerged
Test depth: 230 m (750 ft)
Crush depth: 250–295 m (820–968 ft)
Complement: 44–52 officers & ratings
Armament: 5 × 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (4 bow, 1 stern)
14 × torpedoes or 26 TMA mines
1 × 8.8 cm (3.46 in) deck gun (220 rounds)
Various AA guns
Service record
Part of: 5th U-boat Flotilla
(17 September 1942 – 30 April 1943) - Training
6th U-boat Flotilla
(1–14 May 1943)
Commanders: Oblt.z.S. Karl-Heinz Nagel[2]
(17 September 1942 - 14 May 1943)
Operations: 1st patrol:
1–14 May 1943
Victories: None

German submarine U-640 was a Type VIIC U-boat built for Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine for service during World War II. She was laid down on 30 October 1941 by Blohm & Voss, Hamburg as yard number 616, launched on 23 July 1942 and commissioned on 17 September 1942 under Oberleutnant zur See Karl-Heinz Nagel.

Service History[]

The boat's career began with training at 5th U-boat Flotilla on 17 September 1942, followed by active service on 1 May 1943 as part of the 6th Flotilla.

In 1 patrol she sank no ships.

Wolfpacks[]

U-640 took part in one wolfpack, namely

  • Iller (12–14 May 1943)

Fate[]

There are discrepancies between the fate of U-640 and U-657, which was sunk in the same vicinity around the same time. Paul Kemp’s book[3] attributes the sinking of British freighter Aymeric to U-640, and then subsequently sunk by HMS Swale on the 17 May 1943, whereas UBoat.net attributes this success and fate to U-657.

Uboat.net states that U-640 was sunk on 14 May 1943 in the Atlantic Ocean in position 60°32′N 31°05′W / 60.533°N 31.083°W / 60.533; -31.083, by depth charges from a US Catalina of VP-84 Squadron. All hands were lost.

References[]

  1. Gröner 1985, pp. 72-74.
  2. Helgason, Guðmundur. "Karl-Heinz Nagel". http://www.uboat.net/men/commanders/864.html. Retrieved 21 April 2015. 
  3. Kemp, Paul (1997). U-Boats Destroyed – German Submarine Losses in the World Wars. Arms and Armour Press. pp. 117, 118. ISBN 1-85409-321-5. 

Bibliography[]

  • Busch, Rainer; Röll, Hans-Joachim (1999) (in German). Deutsche U-Boot-Verluste von September 1939 bis Mai 1945. IV. Hamburg, Berlin, Bonn: Mittler. ISBN 3-8132-0514-2. 
  • Gröner, Erich (1985) (in German). U-Boote, Hilfskreuzer, Minenschiffe, Netzleger, Sperrbrecher. III. Koblenz: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 3-7637-4802-4. 
  • Sharpe, Peter (1998). U-Boat Fact File. Great Britain: Midland Publishing. ISBN 1-85780-072-9. 

External links[]


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