HMS A2 was an A-class submarine built for the Royal Navy in the first decade of the 20th century.

United Kingdom
Name: HMS A2
Builder: Vickers, Barrow-in-Furness
Launched: 15 April 1903
  • Wrecked January 1920
  • Sold for scrap 22 October 1925
General characteristics
Class and type: A-class submarine
  • 190 long tons (193 t) surfaced
  • 206 long tons (209 t) submerged
Length: 105 ft (32.0 m)
Beam: 12 ft 9 in (3.9 m)
Draught: 10 ft 8 in (3.3 m)
Installed power:
  • 1 × 16-cylinder Wolseley petrol engine
  • 1 × electric motor
  • 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) surfaced
  • 7 knots (13 km/h; 8.1 mph) submerged
Range: 320 nautical miles (590 km; 370 mi) at 10 kn (19 km/h; 12 mph) surfaced
Complement: 2 officers and 9 ratings
Armament: 2 × 18-inch (45 cm) torpedo tubes

Design and description

A2 was a member of the first British class of submarines, although slightly larger, faster and more heavily armed than the lead ship, HMS A1. The submarine had a length of 105 feet 1 inch (32.0 m) overall, a beam of 12 feet 9 inches (3.9 m) and a mean draft of 10 feet 8 inches (3.3 m). They displaced 190 long tons (190 t) on the surface and 206 long tons (209 t) submerged. The A-class submarines had a crew of 2 officers and 11 ratings.[1]

For surface running, the boats were powered by a single 16-cylinder 450-brake-horsepower (336 kW) Wolseley petrol engine that drove one propeller shaft. When submerged the propeller was driven by a 150-horsepower (112 kW) electric motor. They could reach 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph) on the surface and 7 knots (13 km/h; 8.1 mph) underwater. On the surface, A2 had a range of 320 nautical miles (590 km; 370 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph);[1] submerged the boat had a range of 30 nautical miles (56 km; 35 mi) at 5 knots (9.3 km/h; 5.8 mph).[2]

The boats were armed with two 18-inch (45 cm) torpedo tubes in the bow. They could carry a pair of reload torpedoes, but generally did not as doing so that they had to compensate for their weight by an equivalent weight of fuel.[3]

Construction and career

Like all boats in her class, she was built at Vickers, Barrow-in-Furness. She was launched on 15 April 1903. During World War I, A2 served on harbour service at Portsmouth.[4] She flooded after running aground in Bomb Ketch Lake in Portsmouth Harbour in January 1920 and was sold for scrap to H. G. Pound of Portsmouth on 22 October 1925.


  1. Gardiner & Gray, p. 86
  2. Akermann, p. 120
  3. Harrison, Chapter 27
  4. Dittmar, F. J.; Colledge, J. J.,. British Warships 1914-1919. Ian Allan. p. 82. ISBN 0-7110-0380-7.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link) CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)


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