SLC 200 Maiale
by: Rui Matos
the history of the "siluro a lenta corsa" or maiale
This manned torpedo was invented by Capitan G.N. tesei and Toschi in the year of 1935.
Siluro a Lenta Corsa can be roughly translated to Slow Moving Torpedo.
The idea was to go slowly and undected to the enemy ship and then release and/or attach the explosive warhead.
The Maiale could navigate on the surface or submerged and was operated by two man, wearing a rubberized suit and with a closed-circuit breathing apparatus - the first operator is the one in charge of manouvering, navigation, variation of depth and speed; the second operator is in charge of deploying the explosive warhead, but also cooperating with number one and if needed, replacing him.
The most famous actions were directed against the Royal Navy in Alexandria and Gibraltar, with the operations started on an strategicaly "sinked" merchant ship Olterra, just a stone away from Gibraltar.
Appart from HMS Queen Elizabet and HMS Valiant, the most famous of Maiale's targets, they scored more 14 vessels in a total of approximatly 200,000 tons.
Lenght: 6.70 m
Diameter: 0.53 m
Propulsion: electrical engine powered by batteries
Speed: 2.5 knots
Autonomy: 10 nm
Armament: warhead with 250 or 300 kg of Tritolo
SLC 200 Maiale at Museo Storico Navale - Venezia, Italia