SATELLITE imagery and the latest computer technology have uncovered the wreck of a German U-Boat off the North-East coast.

The submarine has lain on the bottom of the North Sea since it was destroyed with depth charges by an RAF aircraft near the end of the war in 1945.

High resolution pictures taken from space by the NASA Landsat 8 satellite were examined with the specialist Merlindown programmes and revealed the secret of the deep.

The Yorkshire company behind the technology, Merlindown Science, is urging anyone who remembers the incident, just off Seaham in County Durham, to contact them.

Brian Jones, of the company, said they had no details about the incident, although an RAF aerial photograph of the explosion had been found.

He said the U-Boat wreckage was uncovered during an unrelated search.

“At first it was not clear as to what had actually occurred, but after careful study of the images a mystery began to emerge,’’ he said.

“We decided to take a closer look at this event with the evidence we had to hand.

“The Merlindown system can be used in conjunction with any photographic media,

“This photograph shows a vessel being destroyed with depth bombs.

“The explosion, which would have reached a height of more than 200 feet, has just subsided.

“The destroyed boat can be seen as a dark speck within and to the upper left of the white foam explosion aftermath.

“Closer examination with more detailed images revealed that the vessel being destroyed was indeed a German U-boat.”

Mr Jones said the explosion created a crater on the sea floor and that a detailed scan of the images revealed the U-Boat was using its snorkel (which allowed it run its diesel engines underwater) when it was blown up.

Mr Jones appealed for anyone with information to get in touch.

He said: “Records do not mention a U-boat operating so close to Seaham at this late stage of the war.

“So, does anyone remember the event or know of any oral accounts or of any written reports in local newspapers or announcements on the radio describing what happened?

“Taking place so close to the shore, and in daylight hours, the event would have been very dramatic and unforgettable for those who witnessed it.”

Call the company on 01274-638792 or visit