IMPORTANT:This page has used Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia in either a refactored, modified, abridged, expanded, built on or 'strait from' text content!
Sokol torpedo

Workers loading torpedoes to Polish Submarine ORP "Sokół" - British U-class submarine ind 1943.


21 inch Mark VIII Torpedo.
Category. Data.
Type. Conventional Cold War Torpedo.
Nationality. British.
Made in. 1927
Retired. 1993 in Norway (a coastal fort torpedo battery).
Designer. N\A.
Manufacturer. N\A.
Variants. 3 in the UK, plus S. Africa's Steel Fish!\Staal Vis!.
Diameter. 21 inches..
Speed. 40 knots.
Warhead. 750 lb (340 kg) TNT.
Operational range. 5,000 yards (4,570 m).
Guidance system. N\A.
Launch platform. Submarines, escorts frigates, ASW frigates, coastal forts and ASW aircraft.
Weight. N\A, but probably akin to those of comparable role, configuration and era.


21 inch Mark VIII variants-

  • Mark VIII
  1. Entered Service: 1927
  2. Weight: 3,452 lb (1,566 kg)
  3. Length: 259 inches (21.6 ft) (6.58 m)
  4. Explosive Charge: 750 lb (340 kg) TNT
  5. Range & Speed: 5,000 yards (4,570 m) / 40 knots
  • Early Mark VIII**
  1. Range & Speed: 5,000 yards (4,570 m) / 45.6 knots
  2. Explosive Charge: 722 lb (327 kg) Torpex
  • Late Mark VIII**
  1. Range & Speed: 7,000 yards (6,400 m) / 41 knots
  2. Explosive Charge: 805 lb (365 kg) Torpex



The Mark VIII was designed around 1925 and was the first British burner-cycle design torpedo. It was used from 1927 on submarines of the O class onwards and motor torpedo boats. The principal World War II version was the improved Mark VIII**, 3,732 being fired by September 1944 (56.4% of the total number). The torpedo was still in service with the Royal Navy as late as 1983, and with the Royal Norwegian Navy (Coastal Artillery: Kaholmen torpedo battery at Oscarsborg Fortress) until 1993.

On 9 February 1945 the Royal Navy submarine HMS Venturer sank the German submarine U-864 with four Mark VIII** torpedoes. This is the only intentional wartime sinking of one submarine by another while both were submerged.

Falklands WarEdit

On 2 May 1982 the Royal Navy submarine HMS Conqueror sank the Argentine cruiser ARA General Belgrano with three Mark VIII** torpedoes during the Falklands War. This is the only sinking of a surface ship by a nuclear-powered submarine in wartime (and only the second sinking of a surface ship by any submarine since the end of World War II).

Also seeEdit

  1. Steel Fish!\Staal Vis!
  2. 1950-1954 Commonwealth 21 inch torpedo project
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.