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The A‘XA’ stood for experimental, but it might equally have meant extraordinary, exotic or extravagant, as this giant submarine attracted superlatives A– the worldA’s largest, most heavily armed, and deepest diving submersible of the day. X.1 was a controversial project conceived behind the backs of the politicians, and would remain an unwanted stepchild. As British diplomats at the Washington naval conference were trying to outlaw the use of submarines as commerce raiders, the Admiralty was designing and building the worldA’s most powerful corsair submarine, to destroy single-handed entire convoys of merchant ships. This book explores the historical background to submarine cruisers, the personalities involved in X.1A’s design and service, the spy drama surrounding her launch, the treason trial of a leading RN submarine commander, the shipA’s chequered career, and her political demise. Despite real technical successes, she would finally fall foul of A‘black propagandaA’, aimed at persuading foreign naval powers that the cruiser submarine did not work; even today uninformed opinion repeats the myth of her failure. However, it was completely ignored by other navies, who went on building submarine cruisers of their own, some larger than, but none so sophisticated as, X.1. The book analyses in detail the submarine cruisers built by the US Navy, the French and the Japanese, plus the projected German copy of X.1, the Type XI U-Boat, paying belated tribute to the real importance of the mysterious X.1.CHAPTERl Giant Submarines Russian Plans In warships, the old adage that a#39; Size Does Mattera#39; seems to be true. ... tons, powered by eight diesel engines for a surface speed of 26 knots, and armed with no less than five 4.7111 guns, plus torpedoes and mines. ... by a multitude of openings, for retractable funnels, ventilators and the like, which all had to be closed by remote control before they dived.

Author:Roger Branfill-Cook
Publisher:Seaforth Publishing - 2013-01-21


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