Girish Mahajan (Editor)

HMS Rainbow (N16)

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Name  HMS Rainbow
Laid down  24 July 1929
Identification  Pennant number N16
Launched  14 May 1930
Draft  4.9 m
Ordered  28 January 1929
Commissioned  18 January 1932
Construction started  24 July 1929
Length  88 m
Builder  Chatham Dockyard
HMS Rainbow (N16) httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediaenthumbc
Fate  Believed sunk on 4 October 1940

HMS Rainbow was a Rainbow-class submarine built for the Royal Navy during the 1930s.


Design and description

The Rainbow-class submarines were designed as improved versions of the Parthian class and were intended for long-range operations in the Far East. The submarines had a length of 287 feet 2 inches (87.5 m) overall, a beam of 29 feet 10 inches (9.1 m) and a mean draft of 13 feet 10 inches (4.2 m). They displaced 1,772 long tons (1,800 t) on the surface and 2,030 long tons (2,060 t) submerged. The Rainbow-class submarines had a crew of 56 officers and ratings. They had a diving depth of 300 feet (91.4 m).

For surface running, the boats were powered by two 2,200-brake-horsepower (1,641 kW) diesel engines, each driving one propeller shaft. When submerged each propeller was driven by a 660-horsepower (492 kW) electric motor. They could reach 17.5 knots (32.4 km/h; 20.1 mph) on the surface and 9 knots (17 km/h; 10 mph) underwater. On the surface, the boats had a range of 7,050 nautical miles (13,060 km; 8,110 mi) at 9.2 knots (17.0 km/h; 10.6 mph) and 62 nmi (115 km; 71 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph) submerged.

The boats were armed with six 21-inch torpedo tubes in the bow and two more in the stern. They carried six reload torpedoes for a grand total of fourteen torpedoes. They were also armed with a QF 4.7-inch (120 mm) Mark IX deck gun.

Construction and career

Rainbow ran aground in the English Channel off Ventnor, Isle of Wight, on 22 January 1932. She was refloated later the same day.

Rainbow served in the Far East until 1940, when she moved to the Mediterranean. She left for a patrol off Calabria on 23 September 1940 and was due to be back in Alexandria on 16 October, she was last heard from on 25 September. She is believed to have been sunk on 4 October in a collision with the Italian merchant ship Antonietta Costa, which reported striking an underwater object at 03:30, followed by a huge underwater explosion on that date.

Until 1988 it was believed that Rainbow had been sunk by the Italian submarine Italian submarine Enrico Toti, but eventually it was determined that HMS Triad (N53) was submarine that Enrico Toti sank.


HMS Rainbow (N16) Wikipedia

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