Royal Navy Submarine Command , Control and Communications in WW2

Home Forums Nautical Research: 1830 – Present Day Royal Navy Submarine Command , Control and Communications in WW2

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  • #2506
    C. M
    Participant

    I would like to hear from any member who can help me understand how the RN achieved Command and Control of and Communications with their submarines in WW2, with a focus on the Mediterranean theatre.
    Christopher Morgan-Jones

    #2507
    P.S. B
    Participant

    The following sentences occur on page 1 of Vice Admiral Sir Arthur Hezlet’s British and Allied Submarine Operations in World War II, 2 vols, Royal Naval Submarine Museum, 2001 (ISBN: 0-952-66961-7):
    “All submarines had a wireless loop aerial which could receive low frequency signals from Rugby wireless station when totally submerged in home waters and the Mediterranean. New construction submarines could send messages by high frequency wireless from anywhere in the world to the Admiralty’s shore network of receiving stations. In general, however, this could only be done when the submarine was on the surface as the mast aerial with which new construction submarines were fitted for use from periscope depth proved to be only of short range and so of very little value.”

    The submarines in the Far East in the 1930s were able to receive Rugby’s signals while on patrol in the Sea of Japan.
    Peter Beeston

    #2508
    C. M
    Participant

    From what I can gather from various published sources, operations in home waters seem to have been organised from Northways,in North London and foreign operations by each of the respective Submarine Flotilla commanders. There is nothing that I can find that refers to how the whole submarine operation of the Royal Navy was co-ordinated within the RN or with other interested parties such as ASW aircraft, and ships.
    I am also keen to find operational tasking orders and signals to RN submarines for the period 1940-43.
    Christopher Morgan-Jones

    #2509
    Anonymous
    Guest

    I undestand that the Rugby transmission was at a frequency chosen to follow the curvature of the earth [about 10 Kiloherts]. The phenomenon that allows this to happen is well known. The wave is slowed near the earth’s surface for reasons which we need not address. which causes the wave to bend, and in the case of Rugby, follow the cuvature with some precision. This, coupled with the power of the transmitter, was designed to ensure world-wide communications. A bye-product was that the induced ground or water wave under the signal penetrated to some depth, although it was comparatively weak. I have always uderstood that this was used for command receiving purposes by the submarine fleet.
    One or two submarine commanders who wrote up their experiences in World War II refered to it in passing. I believe both Mars and Young made comments, but do not have time at present to research their books. Whether it actually performed world-wide I cannot say, as I have no knowledge of an authoritataive statement on the matter.

    I feel certain that sufficient information could be recovered from veterans both of the Post Office, who operated that facility, and the Royal Navy, to define fully what happened.
    Paul Quinn

    #2510
    C. M
    Participant

    The subject that interests me is more of the waterspace management than the transmissions of the signals. Can anybody elaborate how this was achieved in the 1939-1945 period?

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