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Scuttled WWII Japanese subs found off Hawaii

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Wide shot of the Sen-Toku class: Image credit: National geographic

HONOLULU (AP/PTI): Two captured Japanese submarines scuttled by the US Navy just after World War II have been discovered in the Pacific Ocean south of Pearl Harbour.

The subs were found in February in 3,000 feet of water by the pilots of two Hawaii Undersea Research Laboratory submersibles, according to an announcement made yesterday by the lab and the National Geographic Channel, which partly funded and documented the mission.

One of the subs was 400 feet long and carried planes as well as enough fuel to travel around the world, said Hans Van Tilburg, maritime heritage coordinator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Marine Sanctuaries in the Pacific Islands.

The second sub had a streamlined body, conning tower and retractable guns, making it look more like a Cold War-era submarine, he said.

National Geographic Channel is set to broadcast the special "Hunt for the Samurai Subs" on November 17.

The two were among five Japanese submarines brought to Pearl Harbour after the war for inspection. They were sunk by the US Navy in 1946 when Russian scientists began demanding access to the technology under terms of the treaty that ended the war.

The submersibles, piloted by Terry Kerby, the lab's operations director, and Max Cremer, came upon the subs while conducting test and trial dives.

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