The Imperial Navy is the Naval Arm of the Imperial Armed Forces of Auwalt, which is usually simply referred to as the Marine. Currently, the Imperial Navy roundabout 250,000 officers and men, as well as 15,000 women, under arms.
- Faden: The Faden, fd, is a unit of measurement still used in expressing calibers. 1 fd = 1.82 cm/1 cm = 0.55 fd.
- One of the main-suppliers are the Imperatorwerften Wahlerhaven.
Command and Organization
- For their aircraft, see: List of Aircraft in service with the Imperial Armed Forces.
While the Imperial Navy lacks a 'true' aircraft carrier (at least until 1933, when both units of the Waldschatten-class Aircraft Carriers are ready), it does possess three smaller carriers with a capacity of around a hundred aircraft in total, a number of seaplane carriers and many of the larger ships carry floatplanes. A number of seaplanes used from shore bases are used to fulfill patrol duties along the waters of the Empire.
It is estimated by foreign observers, that the Imperial Navy is around five to ten years behind in development and utilization of aircraft.
Supporting Arms and Branches
The Imperial Navy relies on the doctrine of Command of the Sea and maintains the strength necessary to ensure that no enemy can (or should) attack it directly. Primacy is put on the absolute control of the own home waters and its trade routes, both those along the shores and those leading to far-off lands.
To that end, the Imperial Navy maintains a large and strong battle fleet, capable of challenging an enemy battle fleet to battle and coming out of top. Part of that battle fleet are also battlecruisers, "the heavy cavalry of the Fleet", and lighter cruisers, "the light cavalry of the Fleet." The Kreuzer-Kavallerie-Dogma, or Cruiser-Cavalry-Dogma, came into being around 1916, with the design work of the Tauläufer-class Battlecruisers.
Additionally, the cruisers like the Prinzessin-class Cruisers can and are employed in escorting roles together with destroyers like the Zerstörer 1925 and Flottenbegleitern like the Flottenbegleiter 1928.
In order to facilitate longer ranges and easier resupplies of vessels, the Imperial Navy only operates ships with oil-fired boilers in frontline roles (several types of supply ships still use coal or an oil-coal mixture). Currently, the Imperial Navy is experimenting with diesel-powered vessels.
The Imperial Navy long since determined, that aircraft carriers would not play a major role in naval warfare in the foreseeable future and estimates, that the submarine will be deciding factor in future naval wars, especially when it comes to commerce raiding. However, that does not mean, that an aircraft or a swarm of aircraft can not pose a danger to a ship or a fleet, which is why newer vessels of the Imperial Navy are equipped with anti aircraft weaponry. The Imperial Navy is also experimenting with smaller carriers themselves (see Early Aircraft Carriers of the Imperial Navy).
- See Category: Equipment of the Imperial Navy.
The Imperial Navy is running a large naval modernization and expansion program since 1925, which saw the replacement of a huge number of old and over-aged ships with newer vessels. The Pride of the Navy are the battleships, first and foremost those of the Eyckenbaum- and Imperatrix Gundel classes.
In 1929, the Imperial Navy decommissioned the last frontline warships with coal-fired boilers and now only operates frontline ships with oil-fired boilers, although the first vessels with diesel engines are currently on shakedown. A number of support and supply vessels still operate on coal-fired boilers.
Generally, the Naval High Command is split into three factions, the Battleship Faction, the Aircraft Carrier Faction and the Cruiser Faction, all three having different ideas about how to approach the future of Naval Warfare. In the light of the successes of the RKN with aircraft carriers in the early Decolonization Wars, the Aircraft Carrier Faction is winning more and more ground.