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France's Pluton class Cruisers

Design

The Pluton was authorized under the 1925 Program to be a minelayer.1,2,3 She was also able to be a troop transport.1

Ships

Pluton

  • Manufacturer: Arsenal de Lorient2, Lorient Dock Yards3, Lorient Navy Yard1
  • April 19282,3, April 16, 1928: Laid down.1,2,3
  • April 10, 1929: Launched.1,2,3
  • April 19312,3, October 1, 1931: Completed.1,2,3
  • 1932: Member of the Training Division of the 1st Squadron in Toulon.1
  • 1933: Gunnery training ship.1
  • 1936: Refit.1 Aerial supports added to aft funnel.1 Taller director added above bridge.1
  • October 1, 1938: Member of Gunnery Division of the Training Squadron.1
  • May 1939: Member of 5th Squadron.1
  • September 2, 1939: Sailed for Casablanca.1
  • September 13, 1939: Sunk during loading of mines.1,2 There were heavy casualties.1

Usage

Used as a gunnery training ship before World War II.1,2 Was to become a sub-lieutenant trainer and and change her name to La Tour d'Auvergne, but she was lost before that could happen.1,2

Specifications

  Pluton class
Crew 4063, 4241
Crew - War  
Displacement 4,773 tons1,2, 4,850 tons3
Displacement - Loaded 6,500 tons1,2
Physical Characteristics  
Length 472' 6"3, 500' 3"1, 500' 4"2
152.5 m1,2
Length - Water Line  
Length - Between Perpendiculars 472' 5"2, 472' 6"1
144 m1,2
Beam 51'3, 51' 2"2, 51' 3"1
15.6 m1,2
Draft / Height 17'1,2,3
5.18 m1,2
Draft / Height - Maximum  
Performance  
Speed 30 knots1,2,3
Range  
Armament 5.45", 13.36 cm M1927: 41
5.5": 43
Anti-Aircraft 7.5 cm: 41
37 mm: 21, 103
13.2 mm triple mount machine guns: 41
Machine Guns: 123
Mines 2901
Armor  
Belt - Main  
Control Tower  
Deck - Main  
Magazine  
Turrets  
Engines  
Boilers 41,2,3
Shafts  
Turbines Bréguet geard2,3
Bréguet SR geard1
HP 57,0001,2,3
Oil 1,200 tons1,2,3

Sources:

  1. Cruisers of World War Two An International Encyclopedia, M. J. Whitley, 1995
  2. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946, Robert Gardiner, 1987
  3. Janes' Fighting Ships of World War II, 1989
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site