Italian submarines in World War Two

Wolframio (Volframio) (VO)

TypeCoastal / Sea going 
ClassPlatino 2 (25) 
Laid down 16 Dec 1940 Cantieri Navale Tosi di Taranto, Taranto
Launched9 Nov 1941
Commissioned15 Feb 1942
End service
Loss date9 Sep 1943
Loss position44° 05'N, 9° 50'E
History The name of this submarine is often spelled as 'Volframio', yet in most official documents from the submarine herself her name is spelled as 'Wolframio'.

Scuttled at La Spezia on 9th September 1943 to prevent her capture by the Germans. Raised by the Germans. Sunk during an Allied air raid in 1944.



CommanderDate fromDate toCommand notes
C.C. Giuseppe Vocaturo15 Feb 194219 May 1942
T.V. Giovanni Manunta20 May 19427 Jul 1943
C.F. Alcide Bardi7 Jul 19439 Sep 1943

Ships hit

No ships hit by this submarine.

Patrols and events

 CommanderDateTimePortArr. dateArr. timeArr. portMilesDescription
5 Feb 19421028Taranto5 Feb 19421606TarantoTrials, escorted by the tug Gennariello.

Vocaturo, Giuseppe3 May 19420800Taranto3 May 19421830Taranto27Exercises.

Vocaturo, Giuseppe5 May 19420620Taranto5 May 19421820Taranto29Exercises, escorted by minesweeper R.D.13.

Vocaturo, Giuseppe7 May 19420900Taranto7 May 19421805Taranto29Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni11 Jun 19420700Taranto11 Jun 19421913Taranto34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni14 Jun 19420620Taranto14 Jun 19421420Taranto34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni16 Jun 19421200Taranto16 Jun 19421955Taranto40Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni19 Jun 19420900Taranto19 Jun 19421600Taranto35Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni20 Jun 19420830Taranto20 Jun 19421600Taranto35Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni24 Jun 19421358Taranto26 Jun 19422241Naples521Passage Taranto-Naples on the surface at 12 knots. Escorted through the Strait of Messina by torpedo boat Dezza.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Jun 19420808Naples28 Jun 19421545Naples34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni29 Jun 19420805Naples29 Jun 19421700Naples31Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni30 Jun 19420810Naples30 Jun 19421622Naples35Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni2 Jul 19420821Naples2 Jul 19421600Naples28Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni3 Jul 19420802Naples3 Jul 19421600Naples32,1Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni4 Jul 19420807Naples4 Jul 19421501Naples28Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni6 Jul 19420800Naples6 Jul 19421536Naples28Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni7 Jul 19420801Naples7 Jul 19421744Naples39Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni8 Jul 19420820Naples8 Jul 19421427Naples22,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni10 Jul 19420815Naples10 Jul 19421548Naples32,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni11 Jul 19421400Naples11 Jul 19421902Naples29,1Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni12 Jul 19420812Naples12 Jul 19421409Naples28,7Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni14 Jul 19420820Naples14 Jul 19421446Naples31,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni15 Jul 19420803Naples15 Jul 19421606Naples34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni16 Jul 19420906Naples16 Jul 19421525Naples30Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni18 Jul 19420827Naples18 Jul 19421551Naples30Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni19 Jul 19421305Naples19 Jul 19422327Naples36,2Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni20 Jul 19420810Naples20 Jul 19421629Naples33,3Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni22 Jul 19420819Naples22 Jul 19421512Naples36,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni23 Jul 19420839Naples23 Jul 19421524Naples34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni24 Jul 19420812Naples24 Jul 19421555Naples26,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni27 Jul 19420910Naples27 Jul 19421154Naples15,7Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni31 Jul 19420726Naples31 Jul 19420800Naples6Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni1 Aug 19420800Naples1 Aug 19421904Naples63,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni3 Aug 19420959Naples4 Aug 19420934Cagliari280Passage Naples-Cagliari.

1Manunta, Giovanni5 Aug 19421759Cagliari19 Aug 19420035Cagliari1390Patrolled north-west of Cape Caxine, between 37°40'N and 38°00'N, and between 02°20'E and 02°40'E, to intercept PEDESTAL convoy. Heard only H.E. and distant explosions.
  12 Aug 19420230At 0230 hours, Wolframio received information of a damaged aircraft carrier 60 miles from her position and proceeding toward her. She dived to listen with her hydrophones.

At 2000 hours, the submarine received an order to change her patrol area and took a 230° course. The next day, another signal was received ordering her to a new position and she altered course to 240°. On 14th August, the submarine heard H.E. but sighted nothing.
  17 Aug 19421054At 1054 hours, an aircraft was seen and the submarine dived.
  18 Aug 19420852At 0852 hours, an aircraft was seen and the submarine dived.

Manunta, Giovanni2 Sep 19421400Cagliari2 Sep 19421802Cagliari31,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni4 Sep 19420814Cagliari4 Sep 19421215Cagliari33,6Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni10 Sep 19420801Cagliari10 Sep 19421232Cagliari34,2Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni13 Sep 19422158Cagliari15 Sep 19420807Augusta367Passage Cagliari-Augusta.

Manunta, Giovanni30 Sep 19420822Cagliari30 Sep 19421157Cagliari24Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni5 Oct 19420833Augusta5 Oct 19421215Augusta17Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni14 Oct 19420825Augusta14 Oct 19421235Augusta17,8Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni22 Oct 19420835Augusta22 Oct 19421253Augusta18,5Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni2 Nov 19420839Augusta2 Nov 19420952Augusta2,2Exercises.

2Manunta, Giovanni4 Nov 19421807Augusta10 Nov 19421505Augusta2433,4Sailed for transport mission to Tobruk (22.5 tons of ammunition), but recalled on 8th November.
  5 Nov 19421118At 1118 hours, a submarine was sighted surfacing. This was Giada and recognition signals were exchanged.
  6 Nov 19421425At 1425 hours, fourteen aircraft were sighted on a southerly course and the submarine dived.
  7 Nov 19421525At 1525 hours, twenty aircraft were seen on a 190° course and the submarine dived.
  7 Nov 19421615At 1615 hours, a hospital ship was sighted at a distance of 10,000 metres.
  10 Nov 19421230
1221 (e)
37° 06'N, 15° 50'EAt 1230 hours, a torpedo track was sighted and missed Wolframio by 50 metres on the starboard side. The Italian submarine fired three rounds in the presumed direction of the enemy submarine for intimidation purposes.

The attack was made by the British submarine HMS Una (Lieutenant C.P. Norman). The Italian submarine had been sighted at 1215 hours, steering 231° at 9 knots. Due to overstrain and fatigue, Norman had forgotten to order the reload of the torpedo tubes after an attack on the light cruiser Emanuele Filiberto Duca D'Aosta earlier in the day. A single torpedo was reloaded under 8 minutes and fired at 1221 hours at a range of 600-800 yards. It was believed to have missed the target by only 10-15 feet.

3Manunta, Giovanni11 Nov 19420727Augusta21 Nov 19420925Cagliari2433,4Patrolled off Philippeville, between 37°00'N and 37°20'N, and between 08°20'E and 08°40'E.
  14 Nov 19421010
(0) Off Bone.
At 1010 hours, Wolframio was at periscope depth reconnoitering the bay of Bone when a large aircraft was sighted approaching. The submarine went down to 50 metres.
  14 Nov 19421615
(0) Off Bone.
At 1615 hours, a submarine, believed to be Italian, was observed proceeding on the surface on a southerly course and later submerged. Hydrophone effect was heard but nothing could observed through the periscope but depth charges explosions were heard close. Wolframio was later ordered to go to the Bay of Djidjelli, but could not comply as it was 110 miles away and the submarine had not had an opportunity to fully.charge her batteries Finally, at 1330 hours on the 15th, she was ordered to check the Bay of Bougie but sighted nothing.
  20 Nov 19420645
(0) Near Point C of Cagliari.
At 0645 hours, the submarine Giada was encountered and exchanged recognition signals.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Nov 19420850Cagliari28 Nov 19421250Cagliari35,1Exercises.

4Manunta, Giovanni2 Dec 19421848Cagliari16 Dec 19421142Cagliari1696Patrolled off Algerian coast between 37°00'N and 37°20'N, and between 05°40'E and 06°00'E, then moved to between 37°20'N and 37°40'N, and between 08°20'E and 08°40'E.
  5 Dec 19420800At 0800 hours, an aircraft was seen and the submarine dived to 30 metres.
  5 Dec 19421330At 1330 hours, an aircraft was seen and the submarine dived to 30 metres.
  6 Dec 19420805At 0805 hours, an aircraft was seen and the submarine dived to 30 metres.
  7 Dec 19422316The submarine was informed about a German aircraft shot down and at 2316 hours arrived in the presumed area and began searching.

At 0417 hours on the 8th, nothing could be found and Wolframio returned to her patrol area.
  8 Dec 1942065837° 21'N, 8° 24'EAt 0632 hours, a vessel was detected with the hydrophones.

At 0658 hours, Wolframio came to periscope depth and observed an enemy destroyer. The forward tubes were not yet ready to fire, when the destroyer passed some 500 metres from the submarine. At 0730 hours, the target disappeared over the horizon.
  10 Dec 19422320At 2320 hours, an aircraft dropped three flares over the submarine. Wolframio dived.
  11 Dec 1942052737° 31'N, 6° 56'EAt 0527 hours, a destroyer was sighted in poor visibility. It moved away and Woframio submerged at 0551 hours. The destroyer returned at 0658 hours and was joined later by a second vessel. The submarine was depth-charged ineffectively until 0952 hours and escaped by going deep.
  11 Dec 1942201537° 20'N, 6° 34'EAt 2015 hours, a destroyer, five corvettes and a small patrol vessel were sighted at a distance of 3-4,000 metres. Wolframio submerged to attack, but lost contact with her hydrophones.
  13 Dec 1942172537° 51'N, 6° 56'EAt 1725 hours, four destroyers were sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. Wolframio turned away to fire her stern torpedoes, but the distance had closed rapidly and the track angle did not permit a good shot. The submarine was forced to submerge.

Manunta, Giovanni17 Dec 19420934Cagliari18 Dec 19421017Naples280Passage Cagliari-Naples on the surface at 12 knots.

Manunta, Giovanni7 Jan 19431213Naples7 Jan 19431729Naples30Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni9 Jan 19431540Naples10 Jan 19431835Cagliari280Passage Naples-Cagliari.

5Manunta, Giovanni11 Jan 19431800Cagliari12 Jan 19430457Cagliari83,5Sailed for patrol off Bougie but returned due to a leak.

Manunta, Giovanni15 Jan 19430819?Cagliari15 Jan 19431126Cagliari27Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni18 Jan 19430810Cagliari18 Jan 19431158Cagliari26,7Exercises.

6Manunta, Giovanni20 Jan 19431234Cagliari21 Jan 19430547Cagliari140Sailed for patrol off Bougie but had to turn back due to chlorine fumes.

Manunta, Giovanni24 Jan 19430818Cagliari24 Jan 19431521Cagliari40Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Jan 19430712Cagliari28 Jan 19431131Cagliari22Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni31 Jan 19430110Cagliari31 Jan 19430800Cagliari13Exercises.

7Manunta, Giovanni2 Feb 19432000Cagliari10 Feb 19430620Cagliari677,1Sailed for special operation on the Algerian coast, between Cape Carbon and Cape Sigli (landing a commando consisting of one officer and ten other ranks of the Arditi).
  5 Feb 19432111
(0) Near Cape Carbon.
At 2111 hours, an attempt was made to land an Arditi (commando) team of eleven men led by Tenente Mario Betti on the Algerian coast. The attempt was finally abandoned because of the rough seas.

Manunta, Giovanni13 Feb 19430812Cagliari13 Feb 19431240Cagliari25,2Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni14 Feb 19430810Cagliari14 Feb 19431136Cagliari22,6Exercises.

8Manunta, Giovanni16 Feb 19431811Cagliari22 Feb 19431037Cagliari699Patrolled off Algerian coast between Bone and Philippeville, between 37°20'N and Algerian coast, and between 05°40'E and 06°00'E.
  18 Feb 1943034537° 08'N, 5° 59'E
(0) Approximate position.
At 0345 hours, a Wellington bomber was seen and the submarine dived.
  18 Feb 1943071537° 08'N, 5° 59'EAt 0715 hours, a convoy, escorted by destroyers and MTBs, was sighted at a distance of 8-9,000 metres. All the merchant ships were towing a balloon with about 100 metres of cable. Wolframio made a submerged approach but gave up because the noises of the MTBs confused the hydrophone operator.
  18 Feb 1943101537° 03'N, 5° 57'EAt 1015 hours, two steamers escorted by two MTBs, were sighted at a distance of 5-6,000 metres on easterly course. Wolframio dived again to 50 meters, but could not regain contact.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Feb 19431223Cagliari1 Mar 19430914La Maddalena224,3Passage Cagliari-La Maddalena. Probably sighted by the Dutch submarine Dolfijn off Serpentara Island.

Manunta, Giovanni3 Mar 19430806La Maddalena3 Mar 19431311La Maddalena34Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni13 Mar 19430632La Maddalena13 Mar 19430800La Maddalena13Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni14 Mar 19430800La Maddalena14 Mar 19431056?La Maddalena18Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni26 Mar 19430943La Maddalena26 Mar 19431654La Maddalena4Exercises.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Mar 19431007La Maddalena29 Mar 19430858La Maddalena10Exercises.

9Manunta, Giovanni30 Mar 19431621La Maddalena11 Apr 19431400La Maddalena790,5Sailed for special operation on Algerian coast between Cape Carbon and Cape Sigli, landing a commando consisting of one officer and ten other ranks of the Arditi. After several attempts on 5-7th April, the operation was aborted due to poor visibility.
  8 Apr 1943000238° 12'N, 4° 44'EAt 0002 hours, a submarine, apparently of the ARGO class, was sighted at a distance of 1,000 metres. It did not answer recognition signals and Wolframio broke off contact.

Manunta, Giovanni12 Apr 19431045La Maddalena13 Apr 19430855Naples232Passage La Maddalena-Pozzuoli with the submarine Mocenigo, escorted by two MAS.
  12 Apr 1943123041° 06'N, 9° 43'EAt 1230 hours, a submarine was sighted at a distance of 2,000 metres. It was lost from sight very quickly and Wolframio made an enemy report. A MAS boat was sent to investigate.

Manunta, Giovanni13 Apr 19431020Naples13 Apr 19431200Pozzuoli8,8Passage La Maddalena-Pozzuoli.

Manunta, Giovanni13 Apr 19431705Pozzuoli13 Apr 19431915Castellammare di Stabia20,5Passage Pozzuoli-Castellammare di Stabia.

Manunta, Giovanni19 Apr 19430558Castellammare di Stabia19 Apr 19430812Naples13,2Passage Castellammare di Stabia-Naples.

Manunta, Giovanni19 Apr 19431710Naples19 Apr 19431900Pozzuoli8,8Passage Naples-Pozzuoli.

Manunta, Giovanni3 Jun 19430842Naples3 Jun 19431454Naples43,25Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni6 Jun 19431110Naples6 Jun 19431210Naples8Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni6 Jun 19431420Naples6 Jun 19431629Naples16Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni7 Jun 19430830Naples7 Jun 19431310Naples48Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni8 Jun 19430855Naples8 Jun 19431123Naples12,15Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni9 Jun 19430716Naples9 Jun 19431237Naples26,5Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni10 Jun 19431553Naples10 Jun 19432350Naples59Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni15 Jun 19431605Naples16 Jun 19430105Naples71Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni20 Jun 19430859Naples20 Jun 19431145Naples20Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni27 Jun 19431334Naples27 Jun 19431630Naples19,8Trials.

Manunta, Giovanni28 Jun 19430800Naples28 Jun 19431019Pozzuoli12Passage Naples-Pozzuoli.

Manunta, Giovanni1 Jul 19430213Pozzuoli2 Jul 19430834Portoferraio285Passage Pozzuoli-Portoferraio.

Manunta, Giovanni6 Jul 19431437Portoferraio6 Jul 19432221La Spezia101,2Passage Portoferraio-La Spezia, escorted by the torpedo boat Orione.

Bardi, Alcide9 Sep 1943La Spezia9 Sep 19431000ScuttledScuttled after Armistice. One of seven boats scuttled at La Spezia. In November 1943, she was raised by the Germans, docked and awaited a change of batteries.
  9 Sep 1943
(0) At La Spezia.
Wolframio was unable to sail from La Spezia at the Armistice and was scuttled by her crew. She was later raised by the Germans.

4 Sep 1944La Spezia4 Sep 1944SunkSunk in an air raid at La Spezia.
  4 Sep 1944
(0) La Spezia harbour.
During an Allied air raid, Wolframio was bombed and sunk.

108 entries. 90 total patrol entries (9 marked as war patrols) and 28 events.

All Italian submarines