The Evolution of the Sumarine Due to War
The submarine is an extreamly useful tactical tool. Bred through war, the submarine is one of the most advanced covert weapons technologies today. The submarine is a ship designed and built to travel under water. A “true” submarine spends the majority of time under water and is capable of staying under water indefinaltely(Rush 140). The only “true” submarine today is the nuclear sub. The first “true” submarine is the U.S.S nautilus(Rush 141). There are two main types of war affiliated submarines, attack submarines and ballistic missile submarines. The attack submarine is designed to seek and destroy enemy submarines and surface ships. The much larger ballistic missile submarine is designed to carry multiple warheads to attack enemy cities and military facilities ashore(Polmar 748).
The submarine origionated over 2,000 years ago when Alexander the great went below the Mediteranian Sea in a glass barrel(Wyckoff 13). Submarines were toyed with by scientists through the years but not many uses were found for the concept of a submersable until the revolutionary war. The first attack submarine was the Turtle, designed by a student at Yale university by the name of David Bushnell, it’s purpose was to sink a British war ship in New York Harbor(Polmar 750). It’s mission was a failure but none the less was the first attempt to sink a ship with a submersable(Polmar 750). The first success was made durring the Civil War(Polmar 750). The Confederate sub Hunley rammed the Union ship Housatonic in Charleston Harbor, and both the Hunley and the Housatonic sank(Polmar 750). The Hunley’s weapon consisted of an explosive at the end of a long pole wich was to be set off when in close enough proximity to the ship it was to attack(Polmar 750).
The submarine has advanced dramaticly due to war. The first major advancement in submarine technology is the invention of a gasoline and batery powered submarine by John P. Holland(Polmar 750). This ship was bought by the US Navy in 1900 and named the U.S.S Holland(Polmar 750). The U.S.S Holland was capable of speeds of 6 knots submerged(Polmar 750). The gasoline and battery powered combination allowed for submarines to run on gasoline while surfaced, and by battery power when submerged and combustion was no longer possable without wasting valuable oxogen within the submarine. The next leap in the technological development of the submarine was the periscope developed by Simon Lake in 1902(Polmar 750). The periscope allowed a submarine to site distant targets by use of a magnifying lense. A few years later the diesel and battery powered submarine was developed in Great Brittan(Polmar 751). The diesel submarine was cheeper to operate, more powerful, and produced less dangerous fumes than gasoline powered submarines. The majority of submarines were diesel until the next revolution in submarine technology, the nuclear powered submarine.
Although submarines were used extensivey durring WWI and WWII, the greatest advances were made to submarine technology,as well as other technologies due to the submarine, during WWII. The submarine was used extensively by the german military durring both WWI and WWII, and became a major threat to enemy millitary, as well as merchant, ships. This increased the rate at wich technology was developed both to aid and to destroy the submarine. An example of an advancement in technology, related to the submarine, is that of a device employed by the German military, for German submarines, or U-boats (Unterseebooten), is the snorkel(Botting 161). The idea of a snorkel had been around for quite some time however was not well devoloped until the Germans took intrest(Botting 161). The snorkel allowed for submarines to run their engines while submerged. Until the germans modified it, the snorkel was little more than a hose kept out of the water by a float(Botting 161). The germans perfected the snorkel by using a rigid telocopic pipe rather than a flexable hose and by using a float on the inlet so that if the U-Boat dipped too far under water, it would close the inlet preventing the water form entering the combustion engine(Botting 161). Two technologies wich were developed because of the threat by German U-boats are radar, allready in use by the allies to search for and track airplanes, and sonar, a new technology. To counter allied radar the Germans placed a rubber mesh acrost their snorkels to make detection more difficult(Rush 50).
Due to submarines, some of the most incredable advanses in millitarty technology have been made. Invoked by necesity and the desire to conquer these technologies advenced at extreemy fast paces. From offence to deffence to the insurance of covert operation submarine advancements only slowed in times of peace. Many of these technologies, such as sonar, have found there ways to research ocupations. One questoins wether these advancements would ever have been achieved if not for the sake of the competition of war.Words
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