Giuseppe Miraglia

Italy (1923) Seaplane Carrier

Italy's ww2 seaplane carrier

De Facto naval rivalry between France and Italy was traduced on an almost ship-to-ship basis: To the Giuseppe Miraglia, first Italian seaplane carrier modified as such in 1923, answered the French Commandant Teste, which was larger and built as a dedicated ship in 1929. The Miraglia was the product of the heavy use of seaplanes in WW1 for reconnaissance and attacks. Their use in combination with the fleet predated the use of radars. The French already experimented the cruiser Foudre as such before the war and showed the concept was more interesting than using a forward screen of destroyers or light cruisers for such role. Seaplane just were faster and covered much more area, plus they were perfectly suited for the sunny Mediterranean which allowed long range visibility.

Miraglia at Tarento
Miraglia at Tarento

A precursor: 1915 seaplane carrier Europa

According most sources, Italy in ww1 only operated one seaplane carrier/tender: The Europa. This 6400 tonnes British ship (8500 fully loaded) built in Glasgow in 1895 as SS manila (4134 grt) was renamed Salacia in 1898 and until 1911. She became German (name unknown or, same) and in 1913 she was purchased by Italy and renamed Quarto (later dropped to free a cruiser name). The Regia Marina purchased her in 6 February 1915 and converted her as a seaplane carrier. She was recommissioned as the Europa in October, 6, and could operate in this new capacity up to eight seaplane carriers. However in practice this was reduced to two fighter and two reconnaissance types. In the end she was also fitted as a submarine tender. She was stricken and broken up in 1920 but bring some extremely valuable operational experience to the Italian Navy.


Conversion of the Miraglia

This experience was not lost to the admiralty which, soon after the war, thought about a new ship based on a faster, more modern and roomier basis. Therefore on 5 March 1921 the new Italian State Railway Company Città di Messina, a train ferry, already showed large hangars and could be a prime candidate for conversion. She was launched on 20 December 1923 and soon after, requisitioned by the Regia Marina and towed to La Spezia Nyd and arsenal for completion. It seems however that the ship, almost complete in 1925 (undergoing trials ?) capsized during a storm, was salvaged and repaired by Umberto Pugliese (Cernuschi, Enrico and Vincent P. O'Hara. in Jordan, John (2007). Warship 2007). She was completed for good and commissioned 1 November 1927.

Plans schematics of the Miraglia

Design of the Miraglia

The ship, as completed was 5,400 tonnes normal, and 5,913 tonnes fully loaded, for a length of 121.22m, a beam of 14.99m, and a draught of 5.82 m. She was propelled y two shafts, 2 Parsons steam turbines fed by 8 Yarrow oil-firing boilers (oil 430 tons) with 16,700 shp and a speed of 21 knots (39 km/h).

Her Complement was 16 Officers, 40 NCOs, and 240 sailors and air crews including pilots. Her armament comprised four 102mm/35 Schneider-Armstrong guns Model 1915 fore and aft in open sponsons, twelve 13.2mm MGs, and her protection consisted in an armoured belt 70mm thick, and a deck 80mm thick. She has a forward and aft hangars covered by a flight deck which served for prelaunch maintenance of aircraft. The two axial catapults were located fore aft too. Planes had to be lifted through the hangar roof on platforms to the flight deck.

Her namesake was a WW1 Italian airman and marine officer that illustrated himself in many dangerous recce missions, awarded by six medals included the Medaglia d'argento al valor militare. He died in 1915 while testing a seaplane Macchi L 1746. His death was celebrated by poet Gabriele D'Annunzio.

Air complement

According to navypedia.org her first air complement was of 20 planes, M.5, M.7, M.18, P.6, small and four large seaplanes. Later she carrier 17 seaplanes of the same type (a large fraction of which could be bring on deck simultaneously), which were launched by 2 steam catapults. Gantries helped recuperate these but this operation required calm weather, as they were loaded through side doors and bring into the hangar. This later air complement was composed of Macchi M.18 seaplane fighters/recce, and the last of IMAM Ro.43.



About the Macchi M18: A pusher biplane flying boat with unstaggered wings of unequal span braced by Warren truss-style struts. The version used by Giuseppe Miraglia was the M.18AR with folding wings. The plane could reach 187 km/h (116 mph) thanks to its Isotta Fraschini Asso 250, 186 kW (250 hp). Service ceiling was 5,500 m (18,000 ft) and range about 1000 km. Armament comprised a fixed bow Vickers 7.7mm MG and four light bombs carried underwing.



About the IMAM Ro.43 Idro These 1935 seaplanes became the main recce floatplanes of the Regia Marina, carried onboard all cruisers and battleships and stationed in many bases. Much more powerful, they relied on a Piaggio P.X R. 9-cylinder radial engine, 522 kW (700 hp), to reach 300 kph (162 knots, 186 mph) and her range was 1,500 km (590 nm, 678 mi) with a service ceiling of 6000m. Constructed with steel tubes and wood covered by soft alloy and fabric. Wings can be folded. The Ro.43 could carry a small payload in its main float, but no bombs. These were armed with a couple of 7.7 mm machine guns in the nose. 193 were built in all, in service in 1940 and until 1943.

schematics of the Miraglia

The Miraglia in operations

The first years were spent testing launching and recuperating planes. Intensive tests on catapults led to many adjustments. Miraglia participated first in the Second Italo-Abyssinian War. After 1937 she was also deployed to assist the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War. When Italy declared war on France in 1940, the Miraglia operated as aircraft transport, performing training duties in home waters. After the Armistice she sailed to Malta for internment, just as the rest of the Italian fleet.

Now on the allied side, she replaced temporarily MTB depot ship HMS Vienna bombed and heavily damaged by the Luftwaffe in Bari, December, 2, 1943. After the war she was used to repatriate Italian POW. She ended as a barrack ship/workshop at Taranto. She was eventually sold for scrapped and be broken up in 1950, not converted back as a civilian ship.

Other Italian developments in aircraft carriers also includes the famous Aquila ("eagle"), a conversion of the trans-Atlantic passenger liner SS Roma which began in late 1941 at the Ansaldo shipyard in Genoa. However she was still not completed when the armistice was signed. We will see her later in an extensive article.

Miraglia

Links/Src

Conway's all the world's fighting ships 1921-1947
Bonfiglietti Project
navypedia.org/ships/italy/it_cv_giuseppe_miraglia.htm
On agenziabozzo.it
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_seaplane_carrier_Giuseppe_Miraglia
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seaplane_tender

Naval History

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WW2

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HMS Pretoria Castle (1941)
Ameer class (1942)
Merchant Aircraft Carriers (1942)
Vindex class (1943)

WW2 British Destroyers
Shakespeare class (1917)
Scott class (1818)
V class (1917)
S class (1918)
W class (1918)
A/B class (1926)
C/D class (1931)
G/H/I class (1935)
Tribal class (1937)
J/K/N class (1938)
Hunt class DE (1939)
L/M class (1940)
O/P class (1942)
Q/R class (1942)
S/T/U//V/W class (1942)
Z/ca class (1943)
Ch/Co/Cr class (1944)
Battle class (1945)
Weapon class (1945)

WW2 British submarines
L9 class (1918)
HMS X1 (1923)
Oberon class (1926)
Parthian class (1929)
Rainbow class (1930)
Thames class (1932)
Swordfish class (1932)
HMS Porpoise (1932)
Grampus class (1935)
Shark class (1934)
Triton class (1937)
Undine class (1937)
U class (1940)
S class (1941)
T class (1941)
X-Craft midget (1942)
A class (1944)

WW2 British Amphibious Ships and Landing Crafts
LSI(L) class
LSI(M/S) class
LSI(H) class
LSS class
LSG class
LSC class
Boxer class LST

LST(2) class
LST(3) class
LSH(L) class
LSF classes (all)
LCI(S) class
LCS(L2) class
LCT(I) class
LCT(2) class
LCT(R) class
LCT(3) class
LCT(4) class
LCT(8) class
LCT(4) class
LCG(L)(4) class
LCG(M)(1) class

British ww2 Landing Crafts
LCA
LCP
LCM

WW2 British MTB/gunboats.
WW2 British MTBs
MTB-1 class (1936)
MTB-24 class (1939)
MTB-41 class (1940)
MTB-424 class (1944)
MTB-601 class (1942)
MA/SB class (1938)
MTB-412 class (1942)
MGB 6 class (1939)
MGB-47 class (1940)
MGB 321 (1941)
MGB 501 class (1942)
MGB 511 class (1944)
MGB 601 class (1942)
MGB 2001 class (1943)

WW2 British Gunboats

Denny class (1941)
Fairmile A (1940)
Fairmile B (1940)
HDML class (1940)

WW2 British Sloops
Bridgewater class (2090)
Hastings class (1930)
Shoreham class (1930)
Grimsby class (1934)
Bittern class (1937)
Egret class (1938)
Black Swan class (1939)

WW2 British Frigates
River class (1943)
Loch class (1944)
Bay class (1944)

WW2 British Corvettes
Kingfisher class (1935)
Shearwater class (1939)
Flower class (1940)
Mod. Flower class (1942)
Castle class (1943)

WW2 British Misc.
WW2 British Monitors
Roberts class monitors (1941)
Halcyon class minesweepers (1933)
Bangor class minesweepers (1940)
Bathurst class minesweepers (1940)
Algerine class minesweepers (1941)
Motor Minesweepers (1937)
ww2 British ASW trawlers
Basset class trawlers (1935)
Tree class trawlers (1939)
HMS Albatross seaplane carrier
WW2 British river gunboats

HMS Guardian netlayer
HMS Protector netlayer
HMS Plover coastal mines.
Medway class sub depot ships
HMS Resource fleet repair
HMS Woolwhich DD depot ship
HMS Tyne DD depot ship
Maidstone class sub depot ships
HmS Adamant sub depot ship

Athene class aircraft transport
British ww2 AMCs
British ww2 OBVs
British ww2 ABVs
British ww2 Convoy Escorts
British ww2 APVs
British ww2 SSVs
British ww2 SGAVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Mines.
British ww2 CAAAVs
British ww2 Paddle Mines.
British ww2 MDVs
British ww2 Auxiliary Minelayers
British ww2 armed yachts

✙ Axis ww2 Fleets

Japan ww2 Imperial Japanese Navy
WW2 Japanese Battleships
Kongō class Fast Battleships (1912)
Fuso class battleships (1915)
Ise class battleships (1917)
Nagato class Battleships (1919)
Yamato class Battleships (1941)
B41 class Battleships (project)

WW2 Japanese cruisers
Tenryū class cruisers (1918)
Kuma class cruisers (1919)
Nagara class (1920)
Sendai class Cruisers (1923)
IJN Yūbari (1923)
Furutaka class Cruisers (1925)
Aoba class heavy cruisers (1926)
Nachi class Cruisers (1927)
Takao class cruisers (1930)
Mogami class cruisers (1932)
Tone class cruisers (1937)
Katori class cruisers (1939)
Agano class cruisers (1941)
Oyodo (1943)

Seaplane & Aircraft Carriers
Hōshō (1921)
IJN Akagi (1925)
IJN Kaga (1927)
IJN Ryujo (1931)
IJN Soryu (1935)
IJN Hiryu (1937)
Shokaku class (1937)
Zuiho class (1936) comp.40
Ruyho (1933) comp.42
Junyo class (1941)
IJN Taiho (1943)
Chitose class (comp. 1943)
IJN Shinano (1944)
Unryu class (1944)
IJN Ibuki (1942)

Taiyo class (1940)
IJN Kaiyo (1938)
IJN Shinyo (1934)

Notoro (1920)
Kamoi (1922)
Chitose class (1936)
Mizuho (1938)
Nisshin (1939)

IJN Aux. Seaplane tenders
Akistushima (1941)
Shimane Maru class (1944)
Yamashiro Maru class (1944)

Imperial Japanese Navy Aviation

WW2 Japanese Destroyers
Mutsuki class (1925)
Fubuki class (1927)
Akatsuki class (1932)
Hatsuharu class (1932)
Shiratsuyu class (1935)
Asashio class (1936)
Kagero class (1938)
Yugumo class (1941)
Akitsuki class (1941)
IJN Shimakaze (1942)

WW2 Japanese Submarines
KD1 class (1921)
Koryu class
Kaiten class
Kairyu class
IJN Midget subs

WW2 Japanese Amphibious ships/Crafts
Shinshu Maru class (1935)
Akistu Maru class (1941)
Kumano Maru class (1944)
SS class LS (1942)
T1 class LS (1944)
T101 class LS (1944)
T103 class LS (1944)
Shohatsu class LC (1941)
Chuhatsu class LC (1942)
Moku Daihatsu class (1942)
Toku Daihatsu class (1944)

WW2 Japanese minelayers
IJN Armed Merchant Cruisers
WW2 Japanese Escorts
Tomozuru class (1933)
Otori class (1935)
Matsu class (1944)
Tachibana class (1944)
Ioshima class (1944)
WW2 Japanese Sub-chasers
WW2 Japanese MLs
Shinyo class SB

⚑ Neutral

Armada de Argentina Argentinian Navy

Rivadavia class Battleships
Cruiser La Argentina
Veinticinco de Mayo class cruisers
Argentinian Destroyers
Santa Fe class sub. Bouchard class minesweepers King class patrol vessels

Marinha do Brasil Brazilian Navy

Minas Gerais class Battleships (1912)
Cruiser Bahia
Brazilian Destroyers
Humaita class sub.
Tupi class sub.

Armada de Chile Armada de Chile

Almirante Latorre class battleships
Cruiser Esmeralda (1896)
Cruiser Chacabuco (1911)
Chilean DDs
Fresia class subs
Capitan O’Brien class subs

Søværnet Danish Navy

Niels Juel
Danish ww2 Torpedo-Boats Danish ww2 submarines Danish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Merivoimat Finnish Navy

Coastal BB Ilmarinen
Finnish ww2 submarines
Finnish ww2 minelayers

Nautiko Hellenon Hellenic Navy

Greek ww2 Destroyers
Greek ww2 submarines
Greek ww2 minelayers

Marynarka Vojenna Polish Navy

Polish ww2 Destroyers
Polish ww2 cruisers
Polish ww2 minelayer/sweepers

Portuguese navy ww2 Portuguese Navy

Douro class DDs
Delfim class sub
Velho class gb
Albuquerque class gb
Nunes class sloops

Romanian Navy Romanian Navy

Romanian ww2 Destroyers
Romanian ww2 Submarines

Royal Norwegian Navy Sjøforsvaret

Norwegian ww2 Torpedo-Boats

Spanish Armada Spanish Armada

España class Battleships
Blas de Lezo class cruisers
Canarias class cruisers
Cervera class cruisers
Cruiser Navarra
Spanish Destroyers
Spanish Submarines
Dedalo seaplane tender
Spanish Gunboats
Spanish Minelayers

Svenska Marinen Svenska Marinen

Gustav V class BBs (1918)
Interwar swedish BB projects

Tre Kronor class (1943)
Gotland (1933)
Fylgia (1905)

Ehrernskjold class DDs (1926)
Psilander class DDs (1926)
Klas Horn class DDs (1931)
Romulus class DDs (1934)
Göteborg class DDs (1935)
Mode class DDs (1942)
Visby class DDs (1942)
Öland class DDs (1945)

Swedish ww2 TBs
Swedish ww2 Submarines
Swedish ww2 Minelayers
Swedish ww2 MTBs
Swedish ww2 Patrol Vessels
Swedish ww2 Minesweepers

Türk Donanmasi Turkish Navy

Turkish ww2 Destroyers
Turkish ww2 submarines

Royal Yugoslav Navy Royal Yugoslav Navy

Dubrovnik class DDs
Beograd class DDs
Hrabi class subs

Royal Thai Navy Royal Thai Navy

Taksin class
Ratanakosindra class
Sri Ayuthia class
Puket class
Tachin class
Sinsamudar class sub

minor navies Minor Navies

naval aviation Naval Aviation
Latest entries

USN aviation
Consolidated PBY Catalina
Brewster F2A Buffalo
Curtiss SOC seagull
Douglas SBD Dauntless
Douglas TBD Devastator
Grumman J2F Duck
Grumman F3F
Vought SB2U Vindicator
Vought Kingfisher
Curtiss VE-7 (1918)
Vought FU (1927)
Vought O2U Corsair (1928)
Berliner-Joyce OJ (1931)

Japanese WW2 naval aviation
Mitsubishi 1MF
Nakajima A1N
Nakajima A2N
Mitsubishi A5M
Nakajima A4N
Mitsubishi A6M "zeke"

Mitsubishi B1M
Aichi D3A Navy Type 99 "Val" (1940)
Aichi B7A Ryusei "Grace" (1942)
Mitsubishi B5M (1937)
Nakajima B5N Navy Type 97 "Kate" (1937)
Nakajima B6N Tenzan "Jill" (1941)
Yokosuka B4Y Navy Type 96 "Jean" (1935)
Yokosuka D4Y Suisei "Judy" (1942)
Yokosuka MXY-7 Ohka "Baka" (1944)
Mitsubishi G3M Navy Type 96 "Nell" (1935)
Mitsubishi G4M Navy Type 1 "Betty" (1941)
Mitsubishi Ki-67 Hiryu Type 4 "Peggy" (1942)
Yokosuka P1Y1 Ginga "Frances" (1943)

Aichi M6A1-K Nanzan (1943)
Kyushu K10W1 Type 2 "Oak" (1941)
Kyushu K11W1 Shiragiku (1942)
Kyushu Q1W1-K Tokai-Ren "Lorna" (1943)
Mitsubishi K3M Navy Type 90 "Pine" (1930)
Yokosuka K5Y1 "Willow" (1933)
Yokosuka MXY-7 Ohka Model 43 K-1 "Kai" (1944)
Yokosuka MXY-8 Akigusa

Yokosho Rogou Kougata
Aichi Type 15-Ko Mi-go
Aichi H9A
Aichi E13A "pete"
Aichi E16A "Zuiun"
Aichi E13A "pete"
Aichi M6A1 Seiran
Aichi E11A "Laura"
Hiro H4H
Nakajima E2N
Nakajima E3A
Nakajima E4N
Nakajima E14Y
Nakajima E8N "Dave"
Mitsubishi F1M "pete"
Kawanishi E7K
Kawanishi H6K
Kawanishi E11K
Kawanishi K6K
Kawanishi K8K
Kawanishi E15K Shiun
Kawanishi H8K "Emily"
Kawanishi N1K1 Kyofu "Rex"
Watanabe E9W
Watanabe K8W
Yokosuka K1Y
Yokosuka E1Y
Yokosuka K4Y
Yokosuka H5Y

Italian WW2 air arm CANT 6
CANT 18
CANT 25
CANT 25
CANT Z.501 Gabbiano
CANT Z.506 Airone
CANT Z.515
CANT Z.511
CANT Z.515
Caproni Ca.316
Fiat CR.20 Idro
Fiat RS.14
IMAM Ro.43
IMAM Ro.44
Macchi M3
Macchi M5
Macchi M18
Macchi M24
Macchi M41
Macchi M53
Macchi M71
Piaggio P6
Piaggio P8
Savoia-Marchetti S.55
Savoia-Marchetti S.56
Savoia-Marchetti S.57
Savoia-Marchetti S.59
Savoia-Marchetti SM.62
SIAI S.13
SIAI S.16
SIAI S.67

British Fleet Air Arm
Fairey Swordfish
Fairey III

The Cold War

Royal Navy Royal Navy
Sovietskaya Flota Sovietskiy flot
US Navy USN (1990)


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