German Navy

German Navy
German Navy
Deutsche Marine
Naval Ensign of Germany.svg
FIAV 000001.svg Naval Ensign of Germany.
Founded 1956 (1990)
Country  Germany
Size 17,000 personnel, 47 surface vessels, 4 submarines, 43 auxiliary vessels, 55 aircraft
Part of Bundeswehr
Engagements Operation Sharp Guard (1993–96)
Operation Enduring Freedom
 • Combined Task Force 150 (2002– )
Operation Active Endeavour
Operation ATALANTA
Inspekteur der Marine Vice Admiral Axel Schimpf
Logo of the German Navy Bundeswehr Logo Marine with lettering.svg

German Navy
Deutsche Marine
German Naval Ensign
Naval Air Arm
Fleet Command
Ship Classes
History and Traditions
Prussian Navy
Norddeutsche Bundesmarine
Kaiserliche Marine
Awards, Decorations and Badges
Badge of Honour of the Bundeswehr
Military Proficiency Badge
Badge of Marksmanship
Service Medal
Flood Service Medal

The German Navy (Deutsche Marine (About this sound navy of Germany and is part of the unified Bundeswehr (the German Armed Forces).

The German Navy traces its roots back to the Imperial Fleet (Reichsflotte) of the revolutionary era of 1848 – 52 and more directly to the Prussian Navy, which later evolved into the Northern German Federal Navy (Norddeutsche Bundesmarine, 1866 – 71) and became the Imperial German Navy (Kaiserliche Marine) of 1872–1918. From 1919 to 1921 it was known as the Temporary Imperial Navy (Vorläufige Reichsmarine) and then became the Reichsmarine. It was known as the Kriegsmarine (War Navy) from 1935 to 1945.

From 1945 to 1956, the German Mine Sweeping Administration and its successor organizations, made up of former members of the Kriegsmarine, became something of a transition stage for the German Navy, allowing the future Bundesmarine to draw on experienced personnel upon its formation.

In 1956, with West Germany's accession to NATO, a new Navy was established and was referred to as the Federal Navy (Bundesmarine). With the reunification of Germany in 1990, and the taking-over of units of the former East German Volksmarine ("People's Navy"), it was decided to simply use the name Deutsche Marine ("German Navy").

In total, there are about 90 commissioned warships in the German Navy, including four submarines and 43 auxiliary ships; the displacement of the navy is 220,000 tonnes. In addition to this, the German Navy and the Royal Danish Navy are in cooperation in the "Ark Project". This agreement made the Ark Project responsible for the strategic sealift of German armed forces where the full-time charter of three roll-on-roll-off cargo and troop ships are ready for deployments. In addition, these ships are also kept available for the use of the other European NATO countries.

The three vessels have a combined displacement of 60,000 tonnes.[1][2] Including these ships, the total ships' displacement available to the Deutsche Marine is 280,000 tonnes.



The German Navy is part of the German armed forces (Bundeswehr), and is deeply integrated into the NATO alliance. Its mission includes the participation in peace-keeping and peace enforcement operations as well as the protection of German and Allied territories.


A German Navy boarding team member assigned to the frigate FGS Augsburg (F213) provides security with a P8 pistol for the remainder of his team as they board a local cargo dhow by fast rope to conduct a search of the vessel.

German war ships permanently participate in all four NATO Maritime Groups. The German Navy is also engaged in operations against international terrorism such as Operation Enduring Freedom and NATO Operation Active Endeavour.

Presently the largest operation the German Navy is participating in is UNIFIL II off the coast of Lebanon. The German contribution to this operation is two frigates, four fast attack craft, and two auxiliary vessels. The naval component of UNIFIL has been under German command.[3]


The German Navy is commanded by the Inspekteur der Marine in the Federal Ministry of Defence in Bonn. The major commands are the Fleet Command at Glücksburg near Flensburg and the Naval Office at Rostock. The Fleet is commanded by the Befehlshaber der Flotte (Commander-in-Chief German Fleet or CINCGERFLEET) and comprises all combat vessels, aircraft, helicopters and other combat forces, while schools, naval bases and test installations are under the purview of the Naval Office. The strength of the Navy is about 17,000 men and women.[4]

The navy as a part of the Bundeswehr is responsible for developing and providing the maritime capabilities of the German armed forces. Therefore it is operating a number of development and testing installations as part of an inter-service and international network.

The Fleet

  • Fleet Command (Flottenkommando), Glücksburg
    • 1st Flotilla (Einsatzflottille 1), Kiel
      • HQ 1st Flotilla
        • Centre of Excellence for Operations in Confined and Shallow Waters (COE CSW)
      • 1st Corvette Squadron (1. Korvettengeschwader), Warnemünde
      • 1st Submarine Squadron (1. Unterseebootgeschwader), Eckernförde
      • Submarine Training Centre (Ausbildungszentrum Unterseeboote), Eckernförde
      • 3rd Mine Countermeasures Squadron (3. Minensuchgeschwader), Kiel
      • 7th Fast Patrol Boat Squadron (7. Schnellbootgeschwader), Warnemünde
      • 5th Mine Countermeasures Squadron (5. Minensuchgeschwader), Kiel
      • Force Protection Group, (Marineschutzkräfte), Eckernförde
        • HQ
        • 3x Force Protection companies (Marinesicherungskompanie)
        • HUMINT platoon (Feldnachrichtenzug)
      • Special Warfare Group, (Spezialisierte Einsatzkräfte Marine), Eckernförde
        • HQ
        • combat diver company (Kampfschwimmerkompanie)
        • mine clearance diver company (mine countermeasures and explosive ordnance disposal; Minentaucherkompanie)
        • Boarding company
        • Training Company (Ausbildungsinspektion)
    • 2nd Flotilla (Einsatzflottille 2), Wilhelmshaven
    • Naval Air Wing 3 (Marinefliegergeschwader 3), Nordholz
    • Naval Air Wing 5 (Marinefliegergeschwader 5), Kiel
    • Naval Medical Institute (Schiffahrtsmedizinisches Institut), Kiel (responsible especially for diving medicine)

Naval Office

  • Naval Office (Marineamt), Rostock
    • Department for Development of the Navy, Bremerhaven
    • Navy Schools (Admiral Naval Training)
      • Naval Academy (Marineschule Mürwik), Flensburg-Mürwik
      • Petty Officer School (Marineunteroffiziersschule), Plön
      • Engineering School (Marinetechnikschule), Parow, near Stralsund
        • Damage Control Training Centre (Ausbildungszentrum für Schiffssicherung), Neustadt in Holstein
      • Naval Operations School (Marineoperationsschule), Bremerhaven
    • Supporting Installations (Admiral Naval Logistics)
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Wilhelmshaven
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Eckernförde
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Kiel
      • Naval Base Command (Marinestützpunktkommando) Warnemünde
      • Naval Service Test Command (Kommando Truppenversuche der Marine), Eckernförde
      • Naval Command & Control Systems Command (Kommando Marineführungssysteme), Wilhelmshaven



NATO Code OF-10 OF-9 OF-8 OF-7 OF-6 OF-5 OF-4 OF-3 OF-2 OF-1 OF(D) Student Officer
 Germany (Edit) No Equivalent 23 - ad.GIF
22 - vad.GIF
21 - kad.GIF
20 - fltlad.GIF
19 - kpt zs.GIF
Kapitän zur See
18 - fkpt.GIF
17 - kkpt.GIF
16 - stkptlt.GIF
16 - kptlt.GIF
15 - olt zs.GIF
Oberleutnant zur See
14 - lt zs.GIF
Leutnant zur See
11 - ofhr zs.GIF
Oberfähnrich zur See
OFD2 Marine lo.png
Fähnrich zur See
7 - skad.GIF
Enlisted rank plus a star indicating cadet's career

NCOs and Enlisted Seamen

NATO Code OR-9 OR-8 OR-7 OR-6 OR-5 OR-4 OR-3 OR-2 OR-1
Germany Germany
GE-NAVY-OR-9 OStBtsm.png GE-NAVY-OR-8 StBtsm.png GE-NAVY-OR-7a HptBtsm.png GE-NAVY-OR-6c OBtsm.png GE-NAVY-OR-6a Btsm.png GE-NAVY-OR-5c OMaat Var1.png GE-NAVY-OR-5a Maat Var1.png GE-NAVY-OR-4b OStGefr.png GE-NAVY-OR-4a StGefr.png GE-NAVY-OR-3b HptGefr.png GE-NAVY-OR-3a OGefr.png GE-NAVY-OR-2 Gefr.png GE-NAVY-OR-1 Matr.png
Oberstabsbootsmann Stabsbootsmann Hauptbootsmann Oberbootsmann Bootsmann Obermaat Maat Oberstabsgefreiter Stabsgefreiter Hauptgefreiter Obergefreiter Gefreiter Matrose


Ships and weapon systems


See: List of Active Ships of the German Navy


Aircraft Origin Type Versions In service[5] Notes
Transport/Utility Helicopter
Sea Lynx United Kingdom Anti-submarine helicopter Sea Lynx Mk 88 22
Sea King United Kingdom Multipurpose naval helicopter Sea King Mk 41 21
Maritime Patrol
P-3C Orion United States Maritime patrol P-3C 8 Formerly owned by the Netherlands Navy Maritime Patrol
Dornier Do 228 Germany Pollution control Do 228 LM 2 Under orders by the Federal Ministry of Transport
Reconnaissance Aircraft
Camcopter S-100 Austria unmanned aerial vehicle Camcopter S-100 0 A first batch of six UAVs has been ordered (more being planned)

Radio and communication stations


  • A first batch of four frigates of the F125 class (Baden-Württemberg class) specialised for persistent stabilization missions is planned to replace some of the older Bremen class warships (eight guided-missile frigates). Each F125 will have two crews. They are expected to enter service between 2016 and 2018.
  • Six medium surface combat ships are planned under the name Korvette "K131" (corvette "K131")
  • Two Joint Support Ships (JSS) for strategic troop transport and amphibious operations are planned. of the type "JSS800" of 27.000 to 30.000 tons for 800 soldiers, i.e. "Juan Carlos",[6]
  • Three "JSS400+" of more than 20.000 tons for 400 soldiers, i.e. "Johan de Witt" or "JSS400" for 400 soldiers and in need of supporting units, i.e. "Bay" Class.[7]
  • A new development called "Mehrzweckeinsatzschiff" (multi-mission ship) was announced in January 2009.[8]
  • One more Berlin class replenishment ship was ordered in December 2008.
  • 30 × MH90 frigate helicopters are planned to replace the 22 old Sea King helicopter of Naval Air Wing 5 and some of the Sea Lynx helicopters.
  • A first batch of six Camcopter S-100 UAVs for the use on the Braunschweig class corvettes has been ordered (more being planned). Deliveries will take place in 2013.[9]


External links

See also

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