A port side view of the West Japanese destroyer escort RJS Ayase (DE-216) underway on October 1st, 1986.

The Chikugo-class destroyer escort (or frigate) of the Republic of Japan Navy is the successor of Isuzu-class, with the same ASW mission. This class was followed by RJS Ishikari. This is the first post World War II Japanese destroyer escort to carry Ikara Anti-submarine missiles.

This class was designed as the modified variant of the Isuzu-class, the preceding destroyer escort class. The main anti-submarine weapon was changed from the M/50 375mm (14.8 in) ASW rocket launcher to the Ikara Anti-submarine missile. The octuple launcher for Ikara was stationed at the mid-deck, and the entire ship design was prescribed by this stationing. To exploit the range of Ikara, this class was equipped with the Canadian AN/SQS-505 combined hull and variable depth ASDIC and AN/SQS-501 high frequency bottom search and target identification ASDIC. These anti-submarine sensors and weapons could be compare with those of destroyers in the main fleet of this age, such as Minegumo-class and Yamagumo-class.

In contrast to their anti-submarine capability, the anti-aircraft fire power was weakened compared to the preceding class. The foredeck gun was a Type 68 3"/70-caliber twin cannon controlled by a FCS-1B Gun Fire Control System, which was standard anti-air weapon system in the RoJN of this age. But the afterdeck gun was the old-fashioned Bofors 40mm/60-caliber twin cannon, lacking the anti-ship missile defense (ASMD) capability. The final batch of this class was planned to equipped with the new Oerlikon 35mm twin cannon, but this plan was frustrated because of the budgetary consideration.

Specifications[edit | edit source]

  • Type: Destroyer Escort
  • Service Period: 1971-2003
  • Characteristics:
    • Length: 305 feet 1.2 inches (93 meters)
    • Beam: 35 feet (10.67 meters)
    • Draught: 11 feet (3.35 meters)
    • Displacement: 1,500 ton (Standard); 1,800 tons (Full Load)
  • Crew: 165
  • Propulsion: CODAD propulsion system, 2 x shafts,, 4 x diesel engines (16,000 hp)
  • Range: 5,500 nautical miles (10,186 kilometers) at 20 knots (37.04 km/h)
  • Speed: 25 knots (46.3 km/h)
  • Sensor Suite:
    • TDS-1 Target Designation System
    • OPS-14 2D air search RDF
    • OPS-17 surface search RDF
    • FCS-1B gun FCS
    • OQS-3A combined bow and variable depth ASDIC
    • SQS-501(J) high frequency bottom search and target identification ASDIC
    • SFCS-4 Underwater Battery FCS
  • Countermeasures:
    • NOLR-1 ESM (Earlier batch)
    • NOLR-5 ESM (Latter batch)
  • Armament:
    • 2 x Vickers 3"/70-caliber Mk.VI naval guns
    • 2 x Bofors 40mm/60-caliber Anti-aircraft guns
    • 1 x Type 74 Ikara ASW Missile Launcher
    • 2 x Type 68 12.75" triple torpedo tubes

Unit Run[edit | edit source]

Hull no. Name Laid down Launched Commissioned Decommissioned
DE-215 Chikugo December 9, 1968 January 13, 1970 July 31, 1971 April 15, 1996
DE-216 Ayase December 5, 1969 September 16, 1970 May 20, 1971 August 1, 1996
DE-217 Mikuma March 17, 1970 February 16, 1971 August 26, 1971 July 8, 1997
DE-218 Tokachi December 11, 1970 November 25, 1971 May 17, 1972 April 15, 1998
DE-219 Iwase August 6, 1971 June 29, 1972 December 12, 1972 October 16, 1998
DE-220 Chitose October 7, 1971 January 25, 1973 August 31, 1973 April 13, 1999
DE-221 Niyodo September 20, 1972 August 28, 1973 February 28, 1974 June 24, 1999
DE-222 Teshio July 11, 1973 May 29, 1974 January 10, 1975 June 27, 2000
DE-223 Yoshino September 28, 1973 August 22, 1974 February 6, 1975 May 15, 2001
DE-224 Kumano May 29, 1974 February 24, 1975 November 19, 1975 May 18, 2001
DE-225 Noshiro January 27, 1976 December 23, 1976 June 30, 1977 March 13, 2003
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