The JS Shiranui, second Asahi-class guided-missile destroyer, was commissioned into Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) service in a ceremony held at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ Nagasaki Shipyard on February 27.
The lead ship in the class, JS Asahi, was commissioned a year before, on March 8, 2018.
The 5,100-ton general-purpose escort destroyers were previously designated as 25DD and were designed based on the Akizuki-class destroyers which were focused on anti-air warfare but the new systems focus on anti-submarine instead of anti-air warfare.
Construction of the JS Shiranui (DD-120) was launched in October 2017 and the first sea trails were held in July 2018.
Asahi-class destroyers are praised for their fuel-efficiency which can be attributed to COGLAG, a combined gas turbine engine and electric propulsion system. This results in a significant increase in operational range of the ship.
The ship can accommodate up to two Mitsubishi-built (Sikorsky) SH-60K helicopters, one on the flight deck and another one in the hangar. These helicopters were specialized in anti-submarine warfare. The helicopters, fitted with dipping sonars, can carry up to two Mark 46 lightweight torpedoes and depth charges.
To fit its original role in anti-submarine warfare, the Shiranui is fitted with six (two triple) 324-millimeter torpedo tubes, an OQQ-24 hull-mounted sonar, and an OQR-4 tactical towed array system (TACTAS). The ship is also equipped with a modified FCS-3A active phased array fire control radar. It is to be noted that Asahi-class destroyers are the first JMSDF ships to deploy with periscope detection radars. The combat management system is the OYQ-13 ACDS (Advanced Combat Direction System).
The Asahi-class is armed with two BAE Systems Mk45 mod 4 127-millimeter naval main guns with a range of 20 nautical miles (36 kilometers), two Raytheon Phalanx 20 mm close-in weapon systems (CIWS), 32 Mk41 vertical launching system (VLS) cells for RIM-162 Evolved SeaSparrow surface-to-air (SAM) missiles, Type 07 vertical-launch anti-submarine rockets, up to eight Type 90 anti-ship missiles, and two 533-millimeter triple torpedo launchers.
The JS Shiranui has a top speed of 30 knots and requires a crew of 220.
[Source: Naval Today, Jane’s Defense Weekly]