• Document: A Marine Forensic Analysis of HMS Hood and DKM Bismarck
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SNAME Transactions, Vol. 110, 2002, pp. 115-153 A Marine Forensic Analysis of HMS Hood and DKM Bismarck William Jurens, Assocate Member, Consultant, William H. Garzke, Jr., Member, Consultant, Robert O. Dulin, Jr., Visitor, Consultant, John Roberts, Visitor, Consultant, and Richard Fiske, Member ABSTRACT The wrecks of the British battle cruiser HMS Hood and German battles.hip DKM Bismarck were explored during July 2001. Bill Jurens, a member of Panel SD-7 was aboard the expedition ship and provided an analysis. This 2001 visit to Bismarck has clarified many details of damage and construction missed in the 1989 Ballard expedition. Comprehensive and systematic video coverage should eventually enable researchers to compile a complete survey of shell and torpedo damage to the exterior of the main hull and superstructure. A number of new items were discovered in the debris field including one additional main turret and almost the entire forward superstructure. A subsequent and related visit to the wreck of HMS Hood provided the first opportunity to investigate the damage caused by the explosion that tore this battle cruiser apart during her engagement with Bismarck on 24 May 1941. The wreck reveals the severity of that firestorm, and also exhibits significant implosion damage unlike that seen in the wrecks of Bismarck, Titanic, Yorktown, and Derbyshire. The unusual debris field of Hood also presents a number of interesting and mysterious characteristics that may eventually yield significant knowledge regarding the sequence of breakup as the ship approached the bottom. A concluding section provides an introduction to upcoming research, and some perspective regarding the state of marine forensics at the current time. INTRODUCTION Fleet, who by then felt that design emphasis should be re-directed towards the production of vessels This paper presents the authors' findings on capable of engaging the 30-knot battle cruisers then the design of these two famous warships, provides a believed to be building in Germany. Design effort brief description of how each met its fate, and thereafter focused on vessels with much higher presents preliminary analyses and descriptions of speed and greatly decreased armor. Orders for three the condition of their wreckage and its distribution ships of the "Admiral" class were placed in April of on the bottom of the sea. The paper also discusses 1916, with a fourth being added in July. This proposed research into the effects of implosion and design, with an overall length of 262.1 meters, a explosion on ship structures, the hydrodynamics of beam of 31.7 meters and a full load displacement of sinking, and the creation of debris fields. In approximately 36,300 long tons, formed the original addition, a discussion of "lessons learned" can be basis for the design of Hood. The ships were to used to guide the work of future expeditions. mount a main armament of eight 381 mm and sixteen 140mm guns. Speed was projected at 32 BRIEF HISTORY of HMS HOOD and knots on 144,000 shaft horse power. The ships were designed around a relatively shallow draft of D K M BISALtRCK: 7.77 meters at normal displacement, increasing to about 8.84 meters at full load. The original design Design rationale and operational chronology- was relatively lightly armored, with a 203 mm main HMS Hood. In 1915, the Director of Naval Construction was asked to investigate the design of side belt and mostly 25mm deck armor. a new battleship based on the 24-knot Queen The Battle of Jutland, which took place on Elizabeth Class then just completing, incorporating 31 May 1916, saw the destruction of three lightly- the latest ideas in underwater protection and with a greatly reduced draft. Several designs were armored British battle cruisers due to magazine explosions under gunfire attack, t Inadequate armor submitted along these lines, which were, in the end, was seen to be a major culprit in this unexpected rejected by the Commander-in-Chief of the Grand 115 and embarrassing disaster. Construction on Hood, torpedo tubes were removed in 1938, and her which had just begun, was stopped, an

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