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German Balkenkreuz

Germany's Seydlitz light aircraft carrier

Design

The Seydlitz was originally a Hipper class heavy cruiser that was ordered to be converted into a carrier by Adolf Hitler. It had been about 90% done when conversion was ordered.

The superstructure and turrets removed. The B and C turrets were installed near Lorient.

Aircraft

There were two catapults to launch aircraft. The aircraft that were to be used were the Bf 109T and Ju 87C.

Ships

Seydlitz

  • Conversion Manufacturer: Deschimag, Deschimag in Bremen, Deschimag Yard in Bremen
  • December 29, 1936: Laid down.
  • January 19, 1939: Launched.
  • August 26, 1942: Adolf Hitler ordered conversion.
  • January 30, 1943, early 1943: Cancelled.
  • 1943: Towed to Königsberg.
  • April 10, 1945: Scuttled.

Specifications

  Seydlitz
Crew  
Physical Characteristics  
Displacement 17,139 tons, 18,000 tons
Length 711' 11"
217 m
Length - Water Line 654' 6"
199.5 m
Beam 105'
32 m
Beam - Hull 70' 6"
21.5 m
Draft / Height 22', 25' 11"
6.71 m
Draft / Height - Maximum 25' 11"
7.9 m
Flight deck 197 m x 30 m
hangar 148 m x 18 m
Performance  
Speed 32 knots
Range at 18 knots 5,500 nautical miles
Armament  
Anti-Aircraft 4.1", 10.5 cm twin mounts, 10.5 cm L/50 C33 twin mounts: 5
37 mm, 37 mm twin mounts, 37 mm L/83 C39 twin mounts: 4, 10
20 mm, 20 mm quad mounts: 24
Aircraft 18
BF 109G: 10, 10 - 12
Ju 87D: 8
Armor  
Belt 1.25", 3.5"
Deck 1.5"
Engines  
Boilers Wagner: 12
Shafts 3
Turbines Deschimag, Deschimag geared
Steam
HP 130,000, 132,000
Oil 4,250 tons

Sources:

  1. Heavy Cruisers of the Admiral Hipper Class, Gerhard Koop, Klaus-Peter Schmolke, 2001
  2. Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946, Robert Gardiner, 1987
  3. The World's Aircraft Carriers 1914 - 1945, Roger Chesneau, 1986
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site