Of all the projects of submarine aircraft carriers made between the world wars, special attention should be the work of Japanese designers. At some point the military control of the rising sun has proposed to do plane not only in the eyes of the submarine, and its longish hand with a blade. Indeed, even a purely intelligence capacity light aircraft allowed to take on board a couple of small bombs. Fully understand that for this bombing that would not be enough, but sometimes 2-3 bombs enough. However, the effect of such an attack would be faster psychic.
Japanese first submarine with the ability to transport aircraft was built in 1932. Boat I-2 project J-1M was sealed for transport aircraft hangar. Dimensions hangar allowed to keep it light reconnaissance Caspar U-1 — German airplane 20s, produced in the country of the rising sun under license. It was built only one copy of the submarine project J-1M. Despite the marching in full swing preparing for future expansion, the residents of the country of the rising sun in no hurry to build an underwater carrier fleet. Submarine I-2 was equally military and testing: the construction of aircraft-carrying submarines due to the abundance of specific problems. For example, the small flap to seal the crew is even easier than to prevent the ingress of water through the cracks in bolshennom hatches hangar. In addition, it was necessary to make compact and crane: the draft J-1M was not provided a springboard takeoff because the plane had to go up into the air and land with water. To migrate to the surface of the water and climb on the last boat had to have a crane. In the first time with a crane had to suffer — salt water is very badly acted on its mechanisms and sometimes jammed parts. Yet, crane and construction of the hangar eventually brought to mind. The possibility of creating a fundamentally-submarine aircraft carrier carrying strike aircraft, was confirmed.
By 1935, the fleet submarine aircraft carriers, land of the rising sun added another boat. It was 6 I-J-2 project. It is different from its predecessor in a number of design configurations. It was slightly more had the best driving characteristics and, in a larger hangar could carry one type of spy plane Watanabe E9W. Although he made the first flight directly from launching the boat, and then specifically E9W became the basis of airborne weapons I-6. Thanks to the intelligent approach to testing prior Japanese submarine USS engineers managed to make a perfect design and with all this, do not repeat some mistakes. All the same, the plane soared as before with water. If landing on the floats, no one claims did not cause — easy to imagine the size of the submarine curb this flight deck — then the need to lower the first plane on the water, then it could take off, was a prerequisite prirekany. Specifically, and this fact was a prerequisite that the project J-2 was able to "produce" only one submarine, aircraft carrier.
Follow-on project of Japanese submarine aircraft carriers was J-3. It was more severe submarine: hangar could accommodate two aircraft already, and for their take-off ramp and had a catapult. In 1939 was launched the first series of the boat — I-7. Slightly later was completed and I-8. Air armament of 2-submarine aircraft were Yokosuka E14Y. These seaplanes were even better the past, although its features are still not able to compete with other Japanese bombers. Well, the correct load in four 76-kilogram bomb was apparently insufficient. Yet, as an armed scout for submarines E14Y was totally good.
In the months before the attack on Pearl Harbor in order Japanese navy came in boat I-9. She became head submarine project A1. Then there were built two similar submarine ship, designated I-10 and I-11. Owning a decent displacement of 4,000 tons and six torpedo tubes, these boats also carry on board one plane, "Yokosuka» E14Y various weapons and supplies for them. Noteworthy that A1 was the first Japanese submarine aircraft carrier project, which had no operational constraints associated with the construction of the hangar hatch. The designers successfully coped with the problem of sealing thereof, and project A1 could quietly go on depths up to 100 meters without the risk of flooding the room for the plane. Immediately this external contours almost did not spoil the streamlined submarine and not "eat" the speed and range. The head of the project boat, bearing the designation of I-9, and specifically its aircraft, Dec. 7, 1941 produced a photo and filming the attack on a South American naval base at Pearl Harbor.
Project A1 in some measure was the basis for the following series of Japanese submarines, aircraft carriers. So, in a matter of months have been constructed and put into a series of boats following projects:
— A2. Practically represented the modernization of A1 with the addition of several new systems. Associated with aircraft equipment did not undergo any configurations. Built one boat;
— AM. The profound modernization A1. Has been reduced body length, which, however, did not prevent increment hangar to accommodate the second plane E14Y. Boats of this project I-13 and I-14 were prepared only to the 44th year.
Develop project families «J» and «A» have allowed to collect all the necessary experience and in the summer the 42nd was launched even more perfect boat I-15 project B1. Until the 44th year will be built 20 such submarines with the notation of I-15 and I-39. Specifically B1 submarine project was one of the first Japanese aircraft carriers, submarines, which had an opportunity to participate in strikes against the U.S. countryside. September 9, 1942 Yokosuka E14Y crew consisting of pilot N. Fujita and arrow S. Okuda threw a few incendiary bombs on the forest in Oregon. Shortly before the operation, and later received the title «Lookout Air Raid» in the locality was raining and the highest moisture content of leaves, land, etc. not give incendiary bombs do the trick. The only knock on boats, aircraft carrier of the continental United States is not crowned with success.
Project B1, like the preceding A1, became the basis for the whole family. For example, there have been several upgrades its: B2, B3 and B4. Apart they differed technical features and the number of boats made. After 20 submarines option B1 was made only six submarines and three B2 B3 / 4. With all of this w
as canceled construction of eight B2 and 12-B3 / 4. By the end of the 43rd, when the decision was made, Japan was in need of another arm for its own fleet.
But the decline in construction has no effect on overall plans for the Japanese command. Back in 1942, began designing a new type of submarine aircraft carriers, designated I-400. Submarines with underwater displacement of more than 6500 tons and a length of about 120 meters had to be underwater cruising range of 110 km and above water for more than 60 thousand km. For all this they had to carry 20 torpedoes and 3-4 aircraft. Especially for the boats I-400 was designed aircraft Aichi M6A Seiran. This aircraft was able to bear arms in the severe form of 2-250-kg bombs or a caliber of 800 kg. In addition, seriously considered the possibility of using special containers with rodents that transmit the disease. Only one such container to the discharge of the continental United States area could lead to severe consequences. Well, the range of the submarine allowed to go beyond the borders of the Pacific Ocean.
The photo captures a series of head submarine I-400 for the next day after the date of the Yankees. The Japanese submarine I-400 series were naikrupneyshimi submarines before the nuclear submarines. Start their design put Admiral Yamamoto, who needed a submarine aircraft carrier, capable of carrying armed seaplanes 800-kg bomb or aviatorpedoy. So the aircraft was Aichi M6A «Seiran» (mountain mist), which, incidentally, has not received the nickname of the Allies, one of the few Japanese cars later. Of the 18 boats to the planned construction was completed only 3, and they did not take part in hostilities
Head boat project I-400 was laid in February 43rd. The Navy wanted to get 18 of these submarines. But after only a few months after the laying of the first submarine series of plans had to cut in half. The consistent deterioration on the fronts led to the fact that until the end of the war of the planned 6 submarines of the residents of the country of the rising sun had time to lay only 6. As for the end of construction, it was launched on the four boats, and in the system was introduced only three. Certain enthusiasm is the design of these boats. Shape of the case were unusual for such technology and the Japanese zabugornogo production. Thus, to ensure the necessary internal volume and size to maintain applicable bow hull had 8-shaped section. To the center of the cross section smoothly transformed into the likeness of the sign «∞», and feed again looked like a figure eight. Such a profile doublecase boat was based on the fact that the terms of reference sought a huge amount of fuel on board, and a separate hangar led to an increase in vertical dimensions of the structure. Because tubular sealed hangar diameter of about 3.5 m was placed in the middle of the boat, under the wheelhouse. The shape of the middle part of the body it has not led to a significant increase in the height of the boat. In ready for use on the boat could be three aircraft M6A. Before taking off the submarine surfaced, explorers opened the doors of the hangar, set the plane on the catapult (the bow), laid out to the plane and the pilot was creating takeoff. He would sit plane the water, where he was lifted by a crane. Apart from the 3-aircraft ready to take off in the hangar disassembled can be transported fourth, but the volume of the room lacked only three collected.
Japanese aircraft-carrying submarine I-401 moored in Pearl Harbor. South American military experts at studying the internal structure boats, one of the 3-series aircraft-carrying submarines I-400, surrendered to the Yankees
Because of the constant problems with the resources headache boat I-400 project was commissioned in the Navy land of the rising sun only December 30, 1944. January 8 following the 45th was followed I-401 of the same project, and the third I-402 was the only warship in late July. Of course, these submarines have not had time to do something for the configuration of the situation at the front. In the month of August and the 45th for a few days before the end of the second World War, the crews of boats made the decision to surrender to the Yankees. Boats I-400 and I-401 in a matter of months, his own combat work normally do not have time to do some fighting. So, at first they were ordered to attack the Panama Canal locks. But the management of the fleet will soon be conformed to the futility of such operations and canceled its order. Now submarine aircraft carriers had to walk to Ulithi atoll and storm stood by South American ships. August 6 boats out to sea, but after a couple of days back — on I-400 caught fire and needed repairs. I-401, in turn, could not cope with the task without the assistance of others. Re-entry initially planned for the 17th number. Next start of the operation was moved to August 25, but in the end the 20th of the commanders of the boats were ordered winding up of all offensive weapons. Execution of this order meant only one thing — boats, aircraft carriers are no longer able to do anything to save the land of the rising sun from defeat. I-400 crew had shot a torpedo into the sea and threw the aircraft into the water. The boat captain I-401 Aridzumi, having given the order to do the same, shot himself.
History of Japanese submarine aircraft carriers ended in spring 1946. After passing the Yankees' draft boats I-400 were taken to Pearl Harbor, where they were carefully examined. In March, the 46th Russian Alliance, in accordance with the available arrangements, claimed by the United States to provide access to the Japanese miracle weapons. Not even share trophies South American commanders gave the order to kill them. On April near Pearl Harbor was shot torpedoes boat I-402, and on May 31 went to the bottom of I-400 and I-401.
Sources disk imaging:
Magazines "Marine Collection" and "Technology of Youth"