Isaac Peral and his submarine Peral
Spanish naval officer Isaac Peral (1851-1891)made some studies about the underwater navigation conclude in a submarine torpedo boat construction project. In 1887, the Queen Maria Cristina signed the Royal Act approving the construction of a `ship for underwater navigation`.

Construction is given to the Arsenal de la Carraca (Cadiz) shipyard. The torpedoes to be installed, manufactured by Whitehead (Italy), are replaced by German`s Schwartzcopff. Nevertheless, the keel is laid down on January 1, 1888 and the launching of the Peral is performed on September 8. For the next months several tests were performed.
The technical commission final report sticks several boat constructive faults, avoiding Peral neither to reject nor to repair these faults arguing the lack of his technical knowledge dew to the fact he is not a Naval Engineer. However, the press celebrated the event, praising Peral and his invention.
On October 10, 1890 A Royal Order was published compiling the conclusions of the Technical Commission, though it also opened doors to the construction of a new submarine under the leading of Peral but with the intervention of other departments and authorities. Peral told to the Minister of the Navy the plans for the construction of a new boat, a submarine of 120 tons and 30m long, whose construction would be leaded by him having under his own responsibility the selection of the human resources and the shipyards where the boat should be constructed. The answer, negative, arrived on October 31, ordering Peral to leave the boat in the Arsenal de la Carraca. On November 11, the Act which ended the underwater navigation projects was released.

Peral fails to obtain further governmental funds to build an improved version of his submarine.
The Peral`s hull remained in the Arsenal de la Carraca, emptied of devices, until 1914 when, by an initiative of commander Mateo Garcia de los Reyes, Submarine Navy Commander, is carried to the Submarine Base of Cartagena. In 1965, the Major of Cartagena reclaims the submarine to be exhibited to all the citizens of Cartagena and the people who visit the city. Nowadays, the Peral is shown in the Paseo de Alfonso XII as a monument for her brilliant inventor, the Lieutenant Commander Isaac Peral.
Specifications, Peral:
The first fully capable military submarine. Electrically powered, had two torpedoes, new air systems, hull shape, propeller and cruciform external controls anticipating later designs. Its top underwater speed was ten knots. When fully charged it was the fastest submarine yet built with performance levels (except for range) that matched or exceeded those of First World War U-boats. In June 1890 Peral`s submarine launched a torpedo under the sea. It was also the first submarine to incorporate a fully reliable underwater navigation system. However conservatives in the naval hierarchy terminated the project despite two years of successful tests.
Displacement (srf/sub tons): 77/85
Dimensions (L*B*D meter): 22.0*2.87*2.76
Propulsion: 2*30hp electric motors, 2 propellers
Speed (srf/sub knots): 7.8/3.0
Range (srf/sub miles@knots): 132@6 or 284@4/396@3
Diving depth (meter): 30
Complement: 10 crew members
Torpedo: 1*14" (356mm) bow torpedo tube, total of 3 torpedoes
Mines: none
Armament: none

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Image Country Year Description
Spain Exposizione Filatelica 1er Centenario Del Submarino Peral, 8-11 Sep', 1988, Cartagena
Spain 1964 Submarine of Isaac Peral
Cambodia 1994 Submarine Peral Spain 1888
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