The construction of submarines in Germany in the navy of the German Reich began later than in countries. By 1904, Germania Werft (part of the Krupp combine) had already developed submarines on their own initiative. Three were built for Russia. These submarines were full working order and the German navy was finally prompted to commission one as well. The U-1 was, above all, intended as an experimental vessel in order to perform technical tests under working conditions. In 1907 the U-1 completed a journey around Jutland convincing the German admiralty thar submarines had operational capability. In World War I she was employed as a training boat. In 1919 the German navy faced the choice of destroying the U-1 or handing her over to the allies – this also applied to all other German „U-boats“. Due to the efforts of Oskar von Miller, the founder of the Deutsches Museum, the submarine was installed in the shipping department of the museum.
Length: 42.4 m
Displacement on the surface 238 t, submerged 283 t
Propulsion on the surface 2 heavy oil engines built by Körting each producing 140 kW (200 HP). Maximum speed 10.8 kn. Submerged 2 electric motors built by Deutsche Elektromotoren Werke each producing 140 kW (200 HP). Maximum speed 8.7 kn. The two electric motors were used during surface propulsion as dynamos to charge the batteries. Hull construction tubular pressure hull, thin unpressurized outer hull. The ballast tanks were housed between the pressure hull and the outer hull.
Horizontal rudders or diving planes, placed forward and aft, moved the ship up and down. Ballast tanks helped it to submerge and regain surface buoyancy. Trimming by movable weights inside the pressure hull. Crew 12 to 22. Two crew members, awho alternated watches, shared a berth. Armament 1 torpedo, 2 reserve torpedos. Diving depth 30 m.