Class: Königsberg Builder: Imperial Dockyard, Kiel. # 41
Length: 151.4m Launched: 31 Jan. 1916
Beam: 14.2m Commissioned: 15 Nov. 1916
Draft: 6.32m Speed: 27.7 kts
Displacement: 7 125 t Power: 55 700 shp

Service Record

Photograph of the Karlsruhe, Orkney Library archive.

Magnifying glass. A Photograph of the Karlsruhe from the Orkney Library archive.

Present Condition

Multibeam image of the Karlsruhe as she is today.

Magnifying glass. A multibeam image of the SMS Karlsruhe as she is today.

Laying on her starboard side the seabed is 25m below chart datum at the bow and 23m at the stern. The shallowest part of the hull is at 13m.

She is probably the most salvaged of the remaining wrecks and therefore shows most deterioration. However, many of her features such as guns and capstans are still clearly visible.

In 2003 divers reported what they believed to be postcards in an accessible area of the bow. Historic Scotland organised a rescue excavation and the postcards were recovered then conserved and are now held in the Kirkwall Library Archive.

3D interactive models

The interactive models below are based on acoustic surveys carried out by the ScapaMAP project. The Z (vertical) axis is emphasised in these models.

Survey geotiffs

Arrow to computer. karlsruhe 2001 survey (zip format 279kB).

Arrow to computer. karlsruhe 2006 survey (zip format 356kB).

The 2001 and 2006 surveys are available above as .zip's containing the geotiff and .tfw world information files. The geotiff is in EPSG Projection 32630 - WGS 84 / UTM zone 30N.

To use these models you will need to download iView3D (a free 3D viewer, you need to register to get this download) and the .sd file of interest from the links above.

Because the site of the Karlsruhe is of national importance it has been protected as a scheduled monument. Visitors are welcome to enjoy and respect this wreck but removal of artefacts from it is illegal. You can find out more about what scheduling means through the link below:
Protecting Scotland's nationally important monuments