How Submarines Changes Warfare in Wwi

Topics: U-boat, World War I, World War II Pages: 3 (926 words) Published: May 27, 2013
World War I was all it took to prove the importance role submarines would play in battle. Before the war, underwater warfare was unheard of. That all changed on January 9th, 1917 when the use of submarine warfare was introduced. The German U-Boats enjoyed a great deal of success and were responsible for the destruction of half of all the food and supplies the British were attempting to transport. This new weapon had a big impact on World War I because it was a major cause of America joining in the war. When the news came that the German submarine U-9 sunk three British cruisers, the entire world paid attention. There was immediately a stronger interest in Germany and their new weapons of war. U-boats changed the war by giving new battle opportunities, new war tactics, and making it almost impossible for anyone to fight back because their weapons had not been designed to fight underwater. The first U-boats used in World War I were diesel powered, which are very different than the ones of today. Submarines had four torpedo tubes in the bow and two in the stern. They came equipped with 16 cm guns and equipment to plant mines. The hulls were made of carbon steel, with a 100 metre maximum depth. These ships could reach a depth of 30 to 75 metres with a speed of 7.5 to 8.5 knots when underwater and a surface speed of 18 knots. The first hydrophones, which are devices that can listen to or pick up the acoustic energy underwater, were used to locate submarines and icebergs. Being a member of a U-boat crew had its hardships. The U-boat crew would be made up of roughly 55 men, although the ships were not equipped with enough beds for every crew member. This shortage resulted in long nights and forced the men to sleep in hammocks, while others slept on the floor. Because the crew members had such a difficult job, not just sleeping arrangements but living in confined quarters under the sea, they received almost double the pay of what an average sailor would receive. Like...
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