The AE1, the Royal Australian Navy's first submarine, was commissioned in the United Kingdom on 28 February 1914. After commissioning, AE1 accompanied by AE2, sailed to Australia crewed jointly by British and Australian sailors, arriving at Sydney in May 1914.

Following the outbreak of war in August 1914, both submarines proceeded to New Guinea for operations against the German colonies. On 14 September, AE1, accompanied by HMAS Parramatta, left Blanche Bay, New Britain, to patrol off Cape Gazelle. She was last seen by Parramatta at 3.30 pm that day and no trace has been found of her, or her company, since. It has been presumed that AE1 struck an uncharted reef and sank.
ReferencesM.W.D. White, Australian submarines: a history, (Canberra: Australian Government Publishing Service, 1992).
Related conflicts First World War, 1914-1918
Related events Operations against German Pacific territories
Commanding officers Besant, Thomas Flemming
Alternative names
  • AE1 (1914-1914)
  • HMAS AE 1
  • HMAS AE1
  • HMAS AE1 (1914-1914)
Unit hierarchy
Pendant Number
  • 80
  • AE1
SpecificationsClass: E Class light submarine; Launched: 22 May 1913; Commissioned: 28 February 1914; Complement: 35; Length: 181 feet [55.16m]; Beam: 22 feet 6 inches [6.85m]; Draught: 12 feet 6 inches [3.81m]; Displacement: 660 tons surfaced, 800 tons submerged; Speed: 15 knots surfaced, 10 knots submerged; Armament: four 18 inch torpedo tubes; Armour: not applicable