The modern torpedo (historically called an automotive, automobile, locomotive, or fish torpedo) is a self-propelled explosive projectile weapon, launched above or below the water surface, propelled underwater toward a target, and designed to detonate on contact or in proximity to a target. A projectile is any object propelled through space by the exertion of a force which ceases after launch The original use of "torpedo" was for a variety of devices that would today be mostly called a "mine". A naval mine is a self-contained Explosive device placed in water to destroy Ships or Submarines Unlike Depth charges mines are deposited However, from the First World War onwards "torpedo" was only used for an underwater self-propelled missile, often called colloquially a "fish".
Today's torpedoes can be divided into lightweight and heavyweight classes, and into straight running, autonomous homers and wire-guided ones. They can be launched from a variety of platforms. Originally, the torpedo was primarily used in an anti-shipping role. This has been largely superseded by the missile, so the torpedo's main contemporary use is against submarines. A submarine is a Watercraft that can operate independently below water as distinct from a Submersible that has only limited underwater capability
Torpedoes may be launched from submarines, surface ships, helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft, unmanned naval mines and naval fortresses. History Since 400 AD Chinese children have played with bamboo flying toys. A naval mine is a self-contained Explosive device placed in water to destroy Ships or Submarines Unlike Depth charges mines are deposited Fortifications are Military Constructions and Buildings designed for defense in Warfare Humans have constructed defensive works for They are also used in conjunction with other weapons; for example the Mark 46 torpedo used by the United States becomes the warhead section of the ASROC (Anti-Submarine ROCket) and the CAPTOR mine (CAPsulated TORpedo) is a submerged sensor platform which releases a torpedo when a hostile contact is detected. Designed to attack high-performance submarines the Mark 46 Torpedo is the backbone of the U The United States of America —commonly referred to as the ASROC (for Anti-Submarine ROCket) is an all-weather all sea-conditions anti-submarine missile system developed by the United States Navy in the 1950s A rocket or rocket vehicle is a Missile, Aircraft or other Vehicle which obtains Thrust by the reaction of the The CAPTOR is the United States Navy 's primary anti-submarine Naval mine.
While the battleship had evolved primarily around engagements between armoured ships with large guns, the torpedo allowed torpedo boats, other lighter surface ships, submersibles, and aircraft to destroy large ships without large-caliber guns, though sometimes at the risk of being hit by longer-range shellfire. A torpedo boat is a relatively small and fast naval Ship designed to carry Torpedoes into battle In the Battle of Samar, destroyer-mounted torpedoes were the only weapons available to the U. The Battle off Samar was the central action of the Battle of Leyte Gulf, arguably the Largest naval battle in history. S. task force capable of damaging opposing Japanese cruisers and battleships.
The word torpedo comes from a genus of electric rays in the order Torpediniformes, which in turn comes from the Latin "torpere" (to stun). Electric rays (order Torpediniformes) are Fish that have a rounded body and a pair of organs capable of producing an Electric discharge, varying Electric rays (order Torpediniformes) are Fish that have a rounded body and a pair of organs capable of producing an Electric discharge, varying Latin ( lingua Latīna, laˈtiːna is an Italic language, historically spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. In naval usage, the torpedo was so named by Robert Fulton, who used it to refer to a towed gunpowder charge used by his submarine Nautilus to demonstrate it could sink warships. Robert Fulton ( November 14, 1765 &ndash February 24, 1815) was a U A submarine is a Watercraft that can operate independently below water as distinct from a Submersible that has only limited underwater capability Nautilus is often considered the first practical Submarine, though preceded by Cornelius Drebbel 's of 1620
Prior to the invention of the self-propelled torpedo, the term was applied to any number of different types of explosive devices, generally having the property of being secret or hidden, including devices which today would include booby traps, land mines, naval mines, and others. A booby trap is a device set up to be triggered by an unsuspecting victim A land mine is an Explosive device designed to be placed on or in the ground to explode when triggered by an operator or the Proximity of a vehicle person A naval mine is a self-contained Explosive device placed in water to destroy Ships or Submarines Unlike Depth charges mines are deposited
Much like the invention of the helicopter, the earliest torpedo concepts existed many centuries before being developed as working devices. The earliest known description is found in the work of Syrian engineer Hassan al-Rammah in 1275. Syria ( سوريّة or) officially the Syrian Arab Republic (Arabic ar الجمهورية العربية السورية His works show illustrations of a rocket-propelled device that appears to have been designed to move on the surface of water. 
Although the term "torpedo" was not coined until 1800, the early submarine Turtle attacked using an explosive very similar in intent and function. Turtle was the world's first Submarine used in battle It was invented in Connecticut in 1775 by American Patriot David Turtle dived under a British vessel to attach a bomb by means of an auger. The bomb was to be detonated by a timed fuse, probably a type of clockwork mechanism. In its only recorded attack, Turtle failed to penetrate the hull of HMS Eagle, which had been copper-plated to resist shipworms. Shipworms are not worms at all but rather a group of unusual saltwater clams with very reduced shells notorious for boring into (and eventually destroying wooden structures which
The first usage of the term torpedo to refer to a naval explosive was by American inventor Robert Fulton. In 1800, Fulton launched his submarine, Nautilus, and demonstrated its method of attack using a floating explosive charge Fulton called a torpedo. The submarine would tow the torpedo, submerging beneath an enemy vessel and dragging the torpedo into contact with it. Fulton successfully destroyed demonstration targets in both France and Britain, but neither government was interested in purchasing the vessel and Fulton's experiments ceased in 1805.
During the American Civil War, the term torpedo was used for what is today called a contact mine, floating on or below the water surface using an air-filled demijohn or similar flotation device. Causes of the war See also Origins of the American Civil War, Timeline of events leading to the American Civil War The coexistence of a slave-owning South A naval mine is a self-contained Explosive device placed in water to destroy Ships or Submarines Unlike Depth charges mines are deposited A carboy is a container for fluids Brewing In Brewing, a carboy is also known as a demijohn. (As self-propelled torpedoes were developed the tethered variety became known as stationary torpedoes and later mines. ) Several types of naval "torpedo" were developed and deployed, most often by the Confederates, who faced a severe disadvantage in more traditional warfare methods.
In this period, "torpedoes" floated freely on the surface or were bottom-moored just below the surface. They were detonated when struck by a ship, or after a set time, but were unreliable. These could be as much a danger to Confederate as to Union shipping, and were sometimes marked with flags that could be removed if Union attack was deemed imminent. During the American Civil War, the Union was a name used to refer to the federal government of the United States, which was supported by the twenty-three Rivers mined with Confederate torpedoes were often cleared by Unionists placing captured Confederate soldiers with knowledge of the torpedoes' location in small boats ahead of the main fleet.
"Torpedoes" (mines) could also be detonated electrically by an operator on shore (as demonstrated also by Fulton), so friendly vessels or low-value enemy vessels could be ignored while waiting for the capital ships to sail over them. However, the Confederacy was plagued by a chronic shortage of materials including platinum and copper wire and acid for batteries, and the wires had a tendency to break. Platinum (ˈplætɪnəm is a Chemical element with the Atomic symbol Pt and an Atomic number of 78 Electricity was a new technology, and the limitations of direct current for effective distance was poorly understood, so failures were also possible because of the decrease in voltage when the torpedoes were placed too far from the batteries. Direct current ( DC) is the unidirectional flow of Electric charge. Former United States Navy Commander Matthew Maury, who served as a commander in the Confederate Navy, worked on the development of an underwater electrical mine. Matthew Fontaine Maury ( January 14, 1806 &ndash February 1, 1873) USN was an American Astronomer, The Confederate States Navy ( CSN) was the naval branch of the Confederate States Armed forces established by an act of the Confederate Congress
David Farragut encountered tethered and floating contact mines in 1864 at the American Civil War Battle of Mobile Bay. David Glasgow Farragut ( July 5 1801 &ndash August 14 1870) was the first senior or "flag" officer of the United States Navy Battle Commanding the Union forces was Admiral David Farragut, while Admiral Franklin Buchanan commanded the Confederate fleet After his leading ironclad, USS Tecumseh, was sunk by a tethered contact mine (torpedo), his vessels halted, afraid of hitting additional torpedoes. An ironclad was a steam-propelled Warship of the later 19th century protected by Iron or Steel armor plates Construction History The first USS Tecumseh was an iron-hulled single-turret monitor in the United States Navy during the American Inspiring his men to push forward, Farragut famously ordered, "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!"
The first torpedo designed to attack a specific target was the spar torpedo, an explosive device mounted at the end of a spar up to 40 feet (12 m) long projecting forward underwater from the bow of the attacking vessel. A spar torpedo is a Weapon consisting of a Bomb placed at the end of a long pole or spar and attached to a Boat. When driven up against the enemy and detonated, a hole would be caused below the water line. Spar torpedoes were employed by the Confederate submarine H. L. Hunley, as well as by David-class torpedo boats, among others. History Hunley and two earlier submarines were privately developed and paid for by Horace Lawson Hunley, James McClintock, and Baxter Watson However, these torpedoes were liable to cause as much harm to their users as to their targets.
During the US Civil War, the term "torpedo" was also used to refer to various types of bombs and boobytraps. A booby trap is a device set up to be triggered by an unsuspecting victim Confederate General Gabriel Rains deployed "sub-terra shells" or "land torpedoes", artillery shells with pressure fuses buried in the road by retreating Confederate forces to delay their pursuers. Artillery (from French artillerie) is a military Combat Arm which employs any apparātus machine A shell is a payload-carrying Projectile, which as opposed to shot, contains an explosive or other filling though modern usage includes large solid projectiles Pressure (symbol 'p' is the force per unit Area applied to an object in a direction perpendicular to the surface In an Explosive, Pyrotechnic device or military Munition, a fuse (or fuze) is the part of the device that initiates function These were the forerunners of modern land mines. Union generals publicly deplored this conduct.
Confederate secret agent John Maxwell used a clockwork mechanism to detonate a large "horological torpedo" (time bomb) on August 9, 1864. John Maxwell may refer to John Maxwell (archbishop (d 1647 Scottish prelate Archbishop of Tuam Bishop of Ross General Sir John Maxwell Events 48 BC - Caesar's civil war: Battle of Pharsalus - Julius Caesar decisively defeats Pompey at Pharsalus Year 1864 ( MDCCCLXIV) was a Leap year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian Calendar (or a Leap year The bomb was hidden in a box marked "candles" and placed aboard a barge containing Union ammunition (20,000–30,000 artillery shells and 75,000 small arms rounds) moored at City Point, Virginia, on the James River. Small arms is a term used by the Armed forces to refer to Infantry Weapons such as the Firearms that an individual soldier can carry City Point was a town in Prince George County Virginia in the state of Virginia. The James River in the US state of Virginia is a long River, including its Jackson River source The explosion caused more than US$2 million in damage and killed at least 43 people. The United States dollar ( sign: $; code: USD) is the unit of Currency of the United States; it has also been
The coal torpedo was a bomb shaped like a lump of coal, to be hidden in coal piles used for fueling Union naval vessels. The coal torpedo was a hollow iron casting filled with explosives and covered in coal dust deployed by the Confederate Secret Service during the American Civil War The bomb would be shoveled into the firebox along with the real coal, causing an explosion. Although the North referred to the device as the coal torpedo in newspaper articles, the Confederates referred to it as a "coal shell".
From World War I onwards, the word torpedo was used only for self-propelled projectiles that travelled under or on water. World War I (abbreviated WWI; also known as the First World War, the Great War, and the War to End All
The first working prototype of the modern self-propelled torpedo was created by a commission placed by Giovanni Luppis (Ivan Lupis), an Austrian naval officer from Fiume (today Rijeka, Croatia), a port city of the Austrian Empire, on Robert Whitehead, an English engineer who was the manager of a Fiume factory. Giovanni Biagio Luppis von Rammer ( Croatian Ivan Lupis) ( August 27, 1813 &ndash January 11, 1875) was an officer of the The Austro-Hungarian Navy was the naval force of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Rijeka (other Croatian dialects Rika and Reka, Reka Italian and Hungarian: Fiume, Sankt Veit am Pflaumb is Rijeka (other Croatian dialects Rika and Reka, Reka Italian and Hungarian: Fiume, Sankt Veit am Pflaumb is Croatia (Hrvatska ˈxȓvatska officially the Republic of Croatia ( Republika Hrvatska) is a southern Central European country at the crossroads between For the history of these states before 1804 see Holy Roman Empire, Habsburg Monarchy, and articles on each of the component countries. Robert Whitehead ( 3 January 1823 &ndash 14 November 1905) was an English engineer The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located In 1864, Luppis presented Whitehead with the plans of the salvacoste (coastsaver), a floating weapon, driven by ropes from the land, and made a contract with him in order to perfect the invention.
Whitehead was unable to improve the machine substantially, since the clockwork motor, the attached ropes and the surface attack mode all contributed to a slow and cumbersome weapon. However, he kept considering the problem after the contract had finished, and eventually developed a tubular device, designed to run underwater on its own, and powered by compressed air.
The result was a submarine weapon, the Minenschiff (mine ship), the first real self-propelled torpedo, officially presented to the Austrian Imperial Naval commission on December 21, 1866. Events 69 - The end of the Year of the four emperors: Following Galba, Otho and Vitellius, Vespasian Year 1866 ( MDCCCLXVI) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common
Maintaining proper depth was a major problem in the early days but Whitehead introduced his "secret" in 1868 which overcame this. It was a mechanism consisting of a hydrostatic valve and pendulum which caused the torpedo's hydroplanes to be adjusted so as to maintain a preset depth. Pendulum and Hydrostat control is a simple system for automatically controlling the depth in water of a machine
After the Austrian government decided to invest in the invention, Whitehead started the first torpedo factory in Fiume. In 1870, they improved the devices to travel up to approximately 1000 yards (914 m) at a speed of up to six knots, and by 1881 the factory was exporting its torpedoes to ten other countries. The torpedo was powered by compressed air and had an explosive charge of gloxyline (gun-cotton). Nitrocellulose (also cellulose nitrate, flash paper) is a highly flammable compound formed by Nitrating Cellulose through exposure to Whitehead went on to develop more efficient devices, demonstrating torpedoes capable of 18 knots (1876), 24 knots (1886), and finally 30 knots (1890).
Royal Navy representatives visited Fiume to see a demonstration in late 1869 and in 1870 a batch of torpedoes was ordered. The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the oldest of the British armed services (and is therefore known as the Senior Service) In 1871, the British Admiralty paid him £15,000 for certain of his developments and production started at the Royal Laboratories in Woolwich the following year. The Admiralty was formerly the authority in the United Kingdom responsible for the command of the Royal Navy. The Pound Sterling ( symbol £; ISO code: GBP) subdivided into 100 pence (singular penny) is the Currency In 1893, RN torpedo production was transferred to the Royal Gun Factory. The British later established a Torpedo Experimental Establishment at HMS Vernon and a production facility at the Royal Naval Torpedo Factory, Greenock in 1910. Two ships and a training establishment of the Royal Navy have borne the name HMS Vernon, possibly after Admiral Edward Vernon: These are now closed.
Whitehead opened a new factory near Portland harbour, England in 1890, which continued making torpedoes until the end of the Second World War. Portland Harbour is located beside the Isle of Portland, off Dorset, on the south coast of England. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Because orders from the RN were not as large as expected, torpedoes were mostly exported. A series of devices was produced at Fiume, from 14" upward. The largest Whitehead torpedo was 18 inches (457 mm) in diameter and 19 feet (5. 8 m) long, made of polished steel or phosphor-bronze, with a 200 lb (90 kg) gun-cotton warhead. It was propelled by two propellers driven by a three-cylinder Brotherhood engine, using compressed air at around 1300 lbf/in² (9 MPa). The torpedo was designed to self-regulate its course and depth as far as possible. By 1881, nearly 1500 torpedoes had been produced. Whitehead also opened a factory at St Tropez in 1890 which exported torpedoes to Brazil, Holland, Turkey and Greece.
Whitehead faced competition from the American Lieutenant Commander John A. Howell, whose own design, driven by flywheel, was simpler and cheaper. Lieutenant Commander ( Lieutenant-Commander in the Royal Navy) is a Commissioned officer rank in many navies Superior John Adams Howell (1840-1918 was an American naval officer whose career included combat duty in the Civil War The Howell Automobile Torpedo was the first self-propelled (locomotive Torpedo in United States Navy service A flywheel is a mechanical device with significant Moment of inertia used as a storage device for Rotational energy. It was produced from 1885 to 1895, and left no wake and ran straight. A Torpedo Test Station had been set up on Rhode Island in 1870, and an automobile torpedo produced in 1871 but this was unsuccessful. The Lay torpedoes were also largely unsuccessful as were various privately invented ones. The Howell torpedo was the only USN one until Whitehead torpedoes produced by Bliss and Williams (later E W Bliss and Co) came into service in 1894. Five varieties were produced, all 45 cm diameter. An improved version, the Bliss-Leavitt,with a turbine engine was later produced, some with a larger diameter. Various versions were used in both World War I and World War II.
Whitehead purchased rights to the gyroscope of Ludwig Obry in 1888 but it was not sufficiently accurate, so in 1890 he purchased a better design (ironically from Howell) to improve control of his designs, which came to be called the "Devil's Device". A gyroscope is a device for measuring or maintaining orientation, based on the principles of Angular momentum. The firm of L. Schwartzkopf in Germany also produced torpedoes and exported them to Russia, Japan, and Spain. In 1885, Britain ordered a batch of 50 as torpedo production at home and at Fiume could not meet demand.
On 16 January 1878, the Turkish steamer Intibah became the first vessel to be sunk by self-propelled torpedoes, launched from torpedo boats operating from the tender Velikiy Knyaz Konstantin under the command of Stepan Osipovich Makarov during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78. Events 27 BC - The title Augustus is bestowed upon Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian by the Roman Senate. Year 1878 ( MDCCCLXXVIII) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common Turkey (Türkiye known officially as the Republic of Turkey ( is a Eurasian Country that stretches Stepan Osipovich Makarov (Степа́н О́сипович Мака́ров &mdash) was a famous Russian Vice-admiral, a highly accomplished and decorated commander The Russo-Turkish War of 1877–1878 had its origins in a rise in nationalism in the Balkans as well as in the Russian goal of recovering territorial losses it had suffered In another early use of the torpedo, Blanco Encalada was sunk on April 23, 1891 by a torpedo from the gunboat Almirante Lynch, during the Chilean Civil War. Events 215 BC - A temple is built on the Capitoline Hill dedicated to Venus Erycina to commemorate the Roman defeat at Year 1891 ( MDCCCXCI) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar (or a Common The Chilean Civil War of 1891 was an armed conflict between forces supporting Congress and forces supporting the sitting President, José Manuel Balmaceda
By this time the torpedo boat, the first of which had been built at the shipyards of Sir John Thornycroft in 1877, had gained recognition for its effectiveness, and the first torpedo boat destroyers (later simply destroyers) were built to counter it. A torpedo boat is a relatively small and fast naval Ship designed to carry Torpedoes into battle Sir John Isaac Thornycroft (1843&ndash1928 was the founder of the Thornycroft shipbuilding company. In naval terminology a destroyer is a fast and maneuverable yet long-endurance Warship intended to escort larger vessels in a fleet, Convoy Torpedoes were also used to equip gunboats of around 1,000 tons, thus becoming torpedo gunboats. A gunboat is literally a Boat carrying one or more Guns The term is rather broad and the usual connotation has changed over the years (sometimes encompassing Torpedo gunboat s were a form of Gunboat that were equipped with Torpedoes then a relatively new invention
Originally, torpedoes were designed to be straight running, though this was not always the case in practice. Around 1897, Nikola Tesla patented a remote controlled boat and later demonstrated the feasibility of radio-guided torpedoes to the United States military. There have already been discussions about Tesla's ethnicity on the talk page A remote control is an electronic device used for the remote operation of a Machine. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the
Torpedoes were widely used in the First World War, both against shipping and against submarines. Germany and its allies disrupted the supply lines to Britain largely by use of submarine torpedoes (though submarines also extensively used guns). ) Britain and its allies also used torpedoes throughout the war. U-boats themselves were often targeted, twenty being sunk by torpedo.
Originally the Japanese Navy purchased Whitehead or Schwartzkopf torpedoes but by 1917 they were conducting experiments with oxygen as a fuel. Because of explosions they abandoned the experiments but resumed them in 1926 and by 1933 had a working torpedo. They also used conventional wet-heater torpedoes.
In the inter-war years, tight budgets caused nearly all navies to skimp on testing their torpedoes. As a result, only the Japanese had fully-tested torpedoes (in particular the Type 93) at the start of World War II. The Type 93 was a 610 mm (24 inch diameter Torpedo of the Imperial Japanese Navy. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including The lack of reliability caused major problems for the American Submarine Force in the initial years of the American involvement in World War II, primarily in the Pacific War. World War II, or the Second World War, (often abbreviated WWII) was a global military conflict which involved a majority of the world's nations, including The Pacific War was the part of World War II —and preceding conflicts—that took place in the Pacific Ocean, its islands and in East Asia, between
All classes of ship, including submarines, and aircraft were armed with torpedoes. Naval strategy at the time was to use torpedoes, launched from submarines or warships, against enemy warships in a fleet action on the high seas. Targeting unarmed enemy merchant shipping was prohibited by rules of war. The law of war (also law of armed conflict, LOAC) is Law concerning acceptable practices relating to war (In the event, merchantmen were armed and acted as de facto naval auxiliaries, rendering the distinction moot. ) There was concern torpedoes would be ineffective against warships' heavy armor; an answer to this was to detonate torpedoes underneath a ship, breaking its back. This was demonstrated by magnetic influence mines in World War I. World War I (abbreviated WWI; also known as the First World War, the Great War, and the War to End All The torpedo is set to run beneath the ship, and the magnetic exploder to activate at the correct time. Germany, Britain, and the U. S. independently devised ways to do this; German and American torpedoes, however, suffered problems with their depth-keeping mechanisms, coupled with faults in magnetic pistols shared by all designs. Magnetic pistol is the term for the means by which the fuse on a Torpedo or Naval mine detects its target and then detonates
Inadequate testing had failed to reveal the effect of the earth's magnetic field on ships and exploder mechanisms, which resulted in premature detonation. The Kriegsmarine and Royal Navy promptly identified and eliminated the problems. The Kriegsmarine (English "War navy" was the name of the German Navy between 1935 and 1945 during the Nazi regime superseding the The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the oldest of the British armed services (and is therefore known as the Senior Service) In the United States Navy, there was an extended wrangle over the problems plaguing the Mark 14 torpedo (and its Mark 6 exploder). The Mark 14 torpedo was the United States Navy 's standard submarine-launched anti-ship Torpedo of World War II. Cursory trials had allowed bad designs to enter service. Both the Navy Bureau of Ordnance and the United States Congress were too busy protecting their own interests to correct the errors; fully-functioning torpedoes only became available to the USN twenty-one months into the Pacific War. The Bureau of Ordnance (BuOrd was the US Navy 's organization responsible for the procurement storage and deployment of all naval ordnance, between the years 1862 The United States Congress is the bicameral Legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, consisting of two houses 
British submarines used torpedoes to interdict the Axis supply shipping to North Africa and the Fleet Air Arm Swordfish sank three Italian battleships at Taranto by torpedo. The Fleet Air Arm is the branch of the Royal Navy responsible for the operation of the aircraft on board their ships WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft. Please see WikipediaWikiProject Aircraft/page content for recommended layout Torpedoes were used by British surface vessels to help finish off the German battleship Bismarck. Background Design of the ship started in the early 1930s following on from Germany's development of the ''Deutschland'' class cruisers and the ''Scharnhorst'' class Large tonnages of merchant shipping were sunk by U-boats with torpedoes; as in World War One, the Germans also made extensive use of deck guns.
Later in the Second World War, torpedoes were given acoustic (homing) guidance systems, originally by the Germans in the G7es torpedo, and they were a significant factor in the Allied victory in the Battle of the Atlantic. A guidance system is a device or group of devices used to navigate a Ship, Aircraft, Missile, Rocket, Satellite, or other The G7es or Zaunkönig T-5 ( Wren in German was a Torpedo employed by German U-boats during World War II. Pattern-following and wake homing torpedoes were also developed. Acoustic homing formed the basis for torpedo guidance after the Second World War. Though Lupis' original design had been rope guided, torpedoes were not wireguided until the 1960s. Because of improved submarine strength and speed, torpedoes had to be given improved warheads and better motors. During the Cold War, torpedoes were an important asset with the advent of nuclear powered submarines, which did not have to surface often, particularly those carrying strategic nuclear missiles.
This first successful self-propelled Whitehead torpedo of 1866 used compressed air as its energy source. Pneumatics, Pressurized gas to affect mechanical motion Pneumatic power is used in Industry, where it is common to have factory units plumbed for Compressed The air was stored at pressures of up to 2. 55 MPa and fed to a piston engine which turned a single propeller at about 100 rpm. A reciprocating engine, also often known as a piston engine, is a Heat engine that uses one or more reciprocating Pistons to convert A propeller is essentially a type of fan which transmits power by converting Rotational motion into Thrust for propulsion of a vehicle such as an It was able to travel about 180 m (200yd) at an average speed of 6. 5 knots (12 km/h). The speed and range of later models was enhanced by increasing the pressure of the stored air. In 1906 Whitehead built torpedoes which were able to travel nearly 1000 m (1100yd) at an average speed of 35kt (64 km/h).
At higher pressures the cooling experienced by the air as it expanded in the engine caused icing problems (see adiabatic cooling). This article covers adiabatic processes in Thermodynamics. For adiabatic processes in Quantum mechanics, see Adiabatic process (quantum mechanics This was remedied by heating the air with seawater before it was fed to the engine, which increased engine performance further, because the air expanded even more after heating. This was the principle used by the Brotherhood engine.
This led to the idea of injecting a liquid fuel, like kerosene, into the air and igniting it. Kerosene, sometimes spelled kerosine in scientific and industrial usage is a Combustible Hydrocarbon liquid In this manner the air is heated up more and expands even further, and the burned propellant adds more gas to drive the engine. Construction of such heated torpedoes started around 1904 by Whitehead's company.
A further enhancement was the use of water to cool the combustion chamber. A combustion chamber is the part of an Engine in which Fuel is burned This not only solved heating problems so more fuel could be burnt, but also allowed additional power to be generated by feeding the resulting steam into the engine together with the combustion products. Combustion or burning is a complex sequence of Exothermic chemical reactions between a Fuel and an Oxidant accompanied by the production of Torpedoes with such a propulsion system became known as wet heaters, while heated torpedoes without steam generation were, retrospectively, called dry heaters. A simpler system was introduced by the British Royal Gun factory in 1908. Most torpedoes used in World War I and World War II were wet-heaters.
The amount of fuel that can be burnt by a torpedo engine is limited by the amount of oxygen it can carry. Oxygen (from the Greek roots ὀξύς (oxys (acid literally "sharp" from the taste of acids and -γενής (-genēs (producer literally begetteris the Since compressed air contains only about 21% of oxygen, engineers in Japan developed the Type 93 (nicknamed Long Lance postwar by historian Samuel E. Morison) for destroyers in the 1930s. Temperature and layers The temperature of the Earth's atmosphere varies with altitude the mathematical relationship between temperature and altitude varies among five For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Japan topics. The Type 93 was a 610 mm (24 inch diameter Torpedo of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Samuel Eliot Morison, Rear Admiral, United States Naval Reserve ( July 9, 1887 – May 15, 1976) was an American The Type 93 used pure oxygen instead of compressed air and had unmatched performance in World War II. During the war, Germany experimented with hydrogen peroxide for the same purpose.
A derivative of the compressed-air torpedo was the steam torpedo. Developed by Vickers Ltd, it mixed alcohol (first ethanol, later methanol) with compressed air in the combustion chamber, producing steam. Please refer to the overview article Vickers for other companies known by this name Vickers Limited was a famous British engineering conglomerate that In Chemistry, an alcohol is any Organic compound in which a Hydroxyl group ( - O[[hydrogen H]]) is bound to a Carbon Methanol, also known as methyl alcohol, carbinol, wood alcohol, wood naphtha or wood spirits, is a Chemical compound This increased speed, but produced a visible wake. A wake is the region of Turbulence immediately to the rear of a solid body caused by the flow of Air or Water around the body 
The Brennan torpedo had two wires wound around drums inside the torpedo. The Brennan torpedo, patented by Irish born Australian inventor Louis Brennan in 1877 was powered by two contra-rotating propellors that were spun by rapidly pulling out wires A shore based steam winch pulled the wires, which spun the drums and drove the propeller. A winch is a mechanical device that is used to pull in (wind up or let out (wind out or otherwise adjust the " Tension " of a Rope or Wire rope Such systems were used for coastal defence of the British homeland and colonies from 1887 to 1903. In some jurisdictions the terms sea defense and coastal protection are used to mean respectively defence against flooding and erosion Speed was about 25 knots (46 km/h) for over 2,400 m.
The Howell torpedo used by the US Navy in the late 1800s featured a heavy flywheel which had to be spun up before launch. The Howell Automobile Torpedo was the first self-propelled (locomotive Torpedo in United States Navy service A flywheel is a mechanical device with significant Moment of inertia used as a storage device for Rotational energy. It was able to travel about 400yd (365 m) at 25 knots (46 km/h). The Howell had the advantage of not leaving a trail of bubbles behind it, unlike compressed air torpedoes. This gave the target vessel less chance to detect and evade the torpedo, and avoided giving away the attacker's position. Additionally, it ran at a constant depth, unlike the very early Whitehead models.
Electric propulsion systems also avoided tell-tale bubbles. John Ericsson invented an electrically propelled torpedo in 1873; it was powered by a cable from an external power source, as batteries of the time had insufficient capacity. This article is about John Ericsson the Swedish-American inventor In electronics a battery is a combination of two or more Electrochemical cells which store chemical Energy which can be converted into electrical energy The Sims-Edison torpedo was similarly powered. The Nordfelt torpedo was also electrically powered and was steered by impulses down a trailing wire.
Germany introduced its first battery-powered torpedo shortly before World War II, the G7e. The G7e or more appropriately the G7e/T2, G7e/T3, and G7e/T4 Falke Torpedoes were with the exception of the T4 model the standard torpedoes It was slower and had shorter range than the conventional G7a, but was wakeless and much cheaper. The G7a or G7a/T1 Torpedo was the standard issue torpedo for Germany during the early years of World War II. Its lead-acid rechargeable battery was sensitive to shock, required frequent maintenance before use, and required preheating for best performance. Lead-acid batteries, invented in 1859 by French Physicist Gaston Planté, are the oldest type of Rechargeable battery. See also Rechargeable electricity storage system A rechargeable battery, also known as a storage battery, is a group of two or more secondary The experimental G7ep, an enhancement of the G7e, used primary cells. A primary cell is any kind of Electrochemical cell in which the electrochemical reaction of interest is not reversible so used in Disposable
Modern electric torpedoes such as the Mark 24 Tigerfish or DM2 series commonly use silver oxide batteries which need no maintenance, allowing torpedoes to be stored for years without losing performance. The Mk 24 Tigerfish torpedo is a heavy Acoustic homing Torpedo used by the Royal Navy for several years A silver oxide battery (IEC code S also known as a silver–zinc battery, is a Primary cell (although it may be used as a Secondary cell with an
A number of experimental rocket propelled torpedoes were tried soon after Whitehead's invention. They were not successful. However rocket propulsion has again recently been used in Russian and German torpedoes (see below).
Modern torpedoes utilize a variety of drive mechanisms, including gas turbines (the British Spearfish), monopropellants, and sulphur hexafluoride gas sprayed over a block of solid lithium. The Spearfish torpedo (formally Naval Staff Target 7525 is the heavy Acoustic homing Torpedo used by the Submarines of the Royal Navy. Monopropellants are Propellants composed of chemicals or mixtures of chemicals which can be stored in a single container with some degree of safety Sulfur hexafluoride is an Inorganic compound with the formula. Lithium (ˈlɪθiəm is a Chemical element with the symbol Li and Atomic number 3 Some torpedoes, such as the Russian VA-111 Shkval, the Iranian Hoot or the proposed German Unterwasserlaufkörper / Barracuda , use supercavitation to increase their speed to over 200 knots (370 km/h); compare the speed of the Mark 48 torpedo, which does not use supercavitation, of about 55 knots (63 mi/h, 101 km/h). The VA-111 Shkval (from Russian: шквал - Squall) torpedo and its descendants are supercavitating torpedoes developed Hoot (حوت Whale) is an Iranian Supercavitation Torpedo that travels at approximately 360 km/h several times faster than a conventional torpedo Supercavitation is the use of Cavitation effects to create a large Bubble of Gas inside a Liquid, allowing an object to travel at great The Mark 48 and its improved ADCAP ( Ad vanced Cap ability variant are heavyweight submarine-launched torpedoes
The first of Whitehead's torpedoes had a single propeller and so needed a large vane to stop it turning in a circle. Not long afterwards the idea of contra-rotating propellers was introduced (at Woolwich), so not requiring the vane. The three bladed propellor came in 1893 and the four bladed one in 1897. To minimise noise, today's torpedoes often use pump jets.
The first guided torpedo was the Victorian era Brennan, which could be steered onto its target by varying the relative speeds of its contra-rotating propellers. However the Brennan required a substantial infrastructure and was not suitable for ship-board use. Therefore, for the first part of its history, the torpedo was guided only in the sense its course could be regulated so as to achieve an intended impact depth (due to the sine wave running path of the Whitehead, this was a hit or miss proposition, even when everything worked correctly) and, through gyroscopes, a straight course. With such torpedoes the method of attack in small torpedo boats, Torpedo bombers and small submarines, was to set on a collision course abeam to the target and to release the torpedo at the last minute, before peeling away; all the time running a gauntlet of defensive fire. A torpedo boat is a relatively small and fast naval Ship designed to carry Torpedoes into battle Types The torpedo bomber first appeared during the later years of World War I.
In larger ships and submarines, fire control calculators gave a wider engagement envelope. Originally, plotting tables (in large ships), combined with specialised slide rules (known in U. The slide rule, also known as a slipstick, is a mechanical Analog computer. S. service as the "banjo" and "Is/Was"), reconciled the speed, distance, and course of a target with the firing ship's speed and course, together with the performance of its torpedoes, to provide a firing solution. By the Second World War, all sides had developed automatic electro-mechanical calculators, exemplified by the U. S. Navy's Torpedo Data Computer. The Torpedo Data Computer (TDC was an early Electromechanical Analog computer used for Torpedo fire-control on American  Submarine commanders were still expected to be able to calculate a firing solution by hand as a back up against mechanical failure, and because many submarines existing at the start of the war were not equipped with a TDC; most could keep the "picture" in their heads and do much of the math (which was simple trigonometry) without recourse to paper calculations, from extensive training. 
Against high value targets and multiple targets, submarines would launch a spread of torpedoes, to increase the probability of success. Similarly, squadrons of torpedo boats and torpedo bombers would attack together creating a "fan" of torpedoes across the target's course. Faced with such an attack, the prudent thing for a target to do was to turn 90 degrees to its original course and steam away from the torpedoes and the firer, allowing the relatively short range torpedoes to use up their fuel. An alternative was to "comb the tracks", turning 90 degrees towards the torpedoes. The intention of such a tactic was still to minimise the size of target offered to the torpedoes, but at the same time be able to aggressively engage the firer. This was the tactic advocated by critics of Jellicoe's actions at Jutland, his caution at turning away from the torpedoes being seen as the reason the Germans escaped. fix various bugs per WikipediaHow to fix bunched-up edit links -->
The use of multiple torpedoes to engage single targets greatly reduces a submarine's combat endurance and its ability to stay on patrol.  This can be improved by ensuring a target can be effectively engaged by a single torpedo, which gave rise to the guided torpedo. Guided torpedoes can use passive or active guidance, or a mix of the two. Passive acoustic torpedoes home in on emissions from a target. An acoustic torpedo is a Torpedo that aims itself by listening for characteristic sounds of its target or by searching for it using Sonar. Active acoustic torpedoes home in on the reflection of a signal, or "ping", from the torpedo or its parent vehicle; this has the disadvantage of giving away the presence of the torpedo. In semi-active mode, a torpedo can be fired to the last known position or calculated position of a target, which is then acoustically illuminated ("pinged") once the torpedo is in attack range.
Torpedoes can operate on a fire and forget principle or be controlled by its firing vessel. Fire-and-forget is a third-generation method of Missile guidance During the Second World War, the U. S. experimented with frequency hopping radio controlled torpedoes using matching pairs of punched card rolls based on those of player pianos. Frequency-hopping spread spectrum ( FHSS) is a method of transmitting radio signals by rapidly switching a carrier among many frequency channels, using Radio control (often abbreviated to R/C or simply RC) is the use of radio signals to remotely control a device The player piano is a self-playing Piano, containing a pneumatic mechanism that plays on the piano action pre-programmed Music via perforated paper rolls Modern torpedoes use an umbilical wire; the advantage of the umbilical is the vastly greater computer processing power of the submarine or ship can be used. Torpedoes such as the U. S. Mark 48 can operate in a variety of modes increasing tactical flexibility. The Mark 48 and its improved ADCAP ( Ad vanced Cap ability variant are heavyweight submarine-launched torpedoes
The homing systems for torpedoes are generally acoustic, though there have been other target sensor types used. A ship's acoustic signature is not the only emission a torpedo can home in on. Acoustic signature is used to describe a combination of acoustic emissions of ships and submarines To engage U. S. supercarriers, the Soviet Union developed the 53-65 wake-homing torpedo. The 53-65 Torpedo family are Russian made wake-homing Torpedoes designed to destroy Surface ships The 53-65 became operational in 1965, while A wake is the region of Turbulence immediately to the rear of a solid body caused by the flow of Air or Water around the body
The warhead is generally some form of aluminised explosive, because the sustained explosive pulse produced by the powdered aluminium is particularly destructive against underwater targets. Typically a warhead is the Explosive material and Detonator that is delivered by a Missile, Rocket, or Torpedo. WikipediaNaming Torpex was popular until the 1950s, but has been superseded by PBX compositions. Torpex is a Secondary explosive 50% more powerful than TNT by weight A polymer-bonded explosive, also called PBX or plastic-bonded explosive, is an Explosive material in which explosive powder is bound together in a matrix Nuclear warheads for torpedoes have also been developed e. A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from Nuclear reactions either fission or a combination of fission and fusion. g. the Mark 45 torpedo. The Mark 45 anti-submarine torpedo (aka ASTOR was a weapon of the United States Navy designed for submarine launch against high-speed deep-diving enemy Submarines In lightweight antisubmarine torpedoes designed to penetrate submarine hulls, a shaped charge can be used. A shaped charge is an Explosive charge shaped to focus the effect of the explosive's energy Detonation may be triggered by direct contact with the target, or by a proximity fuze incorporating sonar and/or magnetic sensors. Detonation is a process of Supersonic Combustion in which a Shock wave is propagated forward due to energy release in a reaction zone behind it In an Explosive, Pyrotechnic device or military Munition, a fuse (or fuze) is the part of the device that initiates function
Control surfaces are essential for a torpedo to maintain its course and depth. A homing torpedo also needs to be able to out-manoeuvre a target. Good hydrodynamics are needed for it to attain high speed efficiently and also to give long range since the torpedo has limited stored energy.
Torpedoes are launched several ways:
Many navies have two weights of torpedoes:
In the case of deck or tube launched torpedoes, the diameter of the torpedo is obviously a key factor in determining the suitability of a particular torpedo to a tube or launcher, similar to the caliber of the gun. The term caliber or calibre designates the interior Diameter of a tube or the exterior diameter of a wire or rod The size is not quite as critical as for a gun, but diameter has become the most common way of classifying torpedoes.
Length, weight, and other factors also contribute to compatibility. In the case of aircraft launched torpedoes, the key factors are weight, provision of suitable attachment points, and launch speed. Assisted torpedoes are the most recent development in torpedo design, and are normally engineered as an integrated package. Versions for aircraft and assisted launching have sometimes been based on deck or tube launched versions, and there has been at least one case of a submarine torpedo tube being designed to fire an aircraft torpedo.
As in all munition design, there is a compromise between standardisation, which simplifies manufacture and logistics, and specialisation, which may make the weapon significantly more effective. Ammunition, often referred to as ammo, is a generic term derived from the French language la munition which Logistics is the management of the flow of Goods, Information and other resources including Energy and people between the point of origin and the point Small improvements in either logistics or effectiveness can translate into enormous operational advantages.
Some common torpedo diameters (using the most common designation, metric or inch, and listed in increasing order of size):
Even larger sizes of torpedo tube, including 660 mm (26 inches), 762 mm (30 inches), and 916 mm (about 36 inches), have been installed on some nuclear submarines. A torpedo tube is a device for launching Torpedoes in a horizontal direction These tubes are designed to be capable of firing large diameter munitions such as cruise missiles, as well as the standard 21 in heavy torpedo. A cruise missile is a guided Missile that carries an explosive payload and uses a lifting wing and a propulsion system usually a Jet engine, to allow
See also List of torpedoes
Modern German Navy:
The torpedoes used by the World War II Kriegsmarine included:
The torpedoes used by the Imperial Japanese Navy (World War II) included:
The torpedoes used by the Royal Navy include:
Torpedoes used by the Russian Navy include:
The four major torpedoes in the United States Navy inventory are:
Originally, Whitehead torpedoes were intended for launch underwater and the firm was upset when they found out the British were launching them above water, as they considered their torpedoes too delicate for this. However, the torpedoes survived. The launch tubes could be fitted in a ship's bow, which weakened it for ramming, or on the broadside; this introduced problems because of water flow twisting the torpedo, so guide rails and sleeves were used to prevent it. The torpedoes were originally ejected from the tubes by compressed air but later slow burning gunpowder was used. Torpedo boats originally used a frame which dropped the torpedo into the sea. Royal Navy Coastal Motor Boats of WW1 used a rear-facing trough and a cordite ram to push the torpedoes into the water tail-first. Cordite is a family of smokeless propellants developed and produced in the United Kingdom from 1889 to replace Gunpowder as a military propellant
Developed in the run up to Second World War, multiple-tube mounts (up to quintuple in some ships) for 21" to 24" torpedoes in rotating turntable mounts appeared. Destroyers could be found with two or three of these mounts with between five and twelve tubes in total. The Japanese went one better, covering their tube mounts with splinter protection and adding reloading gear (both unlike any other navy in the world), making them true turrets and increasing the broadside without adding tubes and top hamper (as the quadruple and quintuple mounts did). Considering their Type 93s possible war winners, IJN equipped their cruisers with torpedoes. The Type 93 was a 610 mm (24 inch diameter Torpedo of the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Germans also equipped their capital ships with torpedoes.
Smaller vessels such as PT boats would carry their torpedoes in fixed deck mounted tubes using compressed air. These were either aligned to fire forward or at an angle to the centerline.
Late in the war lightweight mounts for 12. 75" homing torpedoes were developed for anti-submarine use consisting of triple launch tubes used on the decks of ships. These were the Mark 32 launcher in the USA and part of STWS (Shipborne Torpedo Weapon System) in the UK. Later a below-decks launcher has been used by the RN. This basic launch system continues to be used to this day with improved torpedoes and fire control systems.
Submarine launched weapons now use compressed air, or the torpedoes swim out, or are pushed out by hydraulic ram. Both bow and stern tubes were fitted. However now only the former are used. The first French and Russian submarines carried their torpedoes externally in Drzewiecki drop collars. These were cheaper than launch tubes but unreliable.
Late in World War Two, the U. S. adopted a 16" (40cm) homing torpedo for use against escorts. 
Torpedoes may be carried by fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters or missile. They are launched from the first two at prescribed speeds and altitudes, dropped from bomb-bays or underwing hardpoints. A hardpoint is any part of an Airframe designed to carry an external load
Although lightweight torpedoes are fairly easily handled, the transport and handling of heavyweight ones is difficult, especially in the small space of a submarine. After the Second World War, some Type XXI submarines were obtained from Germany by the United States and Britain. One of the main novel developments seen was a mechanical handling system for torpedoes. Such systems were widely adopted as a result of this discovery.