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Monday, November 16, 2009

World War II "samurai submarines" discovered off Hawaii

research documentary team Thursday reports the discovery of two Japanese "samurai submarines" scuttled after the end of World War II.
The "I-14" carried two planes while submerged, while the "I-201" was a diesel-powered attack submarine with a range of 37,500 miles.
"These submarines are 60-year-old time capsules offering firsthand insight into a military technology that was far ahead of its time -- so much so that if introduced earlier and in greater numbers, the submarines had the potential to turn the tide of war," said Dr. Hans Van Tilburg of NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, in a statement.

The subs, sitting at a depth of 3,000 feet, were discovered by a NOAA Undersea Research Lab at the University of Hawaii at Manoa team along with National Geographic Channel filmmakers.
In the NGC documentary, "Hunt for the Samurai Subs," (Tuesday, November 17, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT), Navy officers involved in scuttling the subs, captured after World War II, say the U.S.A. sank them to evade sharing their technology with the Soviet Union as promised by treaty. About 400 feet long, the "Sen-Toku" class subs were intended to carry out missions against the U.S. mainland, including 1,800 pound bomb drops by kamikaze planes launched from the I-14.


Photos: One of the submarines, photographed under water; a drawing of the I-14; the view from the research boat.

Source : usatoday