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Japanese battleships Yamashiro, Fuso and Haruna

IJN Yamashiro, IJN Fuso, and IJN Haruna in Tokyo in 1935.

The Fusō-class battleships (扶桑?) were a pair of dreadnought battleships built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) during World War I. Both patrolled briefly off the coast of China before being placed in reserve at the war's end. In 1922 Yamashiro became the first battleship in the IJN to successfully launch aircraft.

During the 1930s, both ships underwent a series of modernizations and reconstructions. Fusō underwent her modernization in two phases (1930–33, 1937–41), while Yamashiro was reconstructed from 1930 to 1935. The modernization increased their armor, replaced and upgraded their machinery, and rebuilt their superstructures into the distinctive pagoda mast style. Despite the expensive reconstructions, both vessels were considered obsolescent by the eve of World War II, and neither saw significant action in the early years of the war. By 1944 however, the IJN was desparate for a victory, and when a small British force was detected in the South China Sea, both Fusō-class ships joined the task force sent to destroy it. This was actually a trap, and in the ensuing battle, both ships were destroyed: Fusō was heavily damaged by gunfire before HMNZS Achilles fired a shot which pierced her magazine and broker her in half; Yamashiro was rendered immobile by bombers before being torpedoed and sunk by HNLMS O-19.

SpecificationsEdit

Original ConfigurationEdit

  • Type: Battleship
  • Service Period: 1915-1933
  • Characteristics:
    • Length: 665 feet (202.69 meters)
    • Beam: 94 feet 2 inches (28.7 meters)
    • Draft: 28 feet 7 inches (8.71 meters)
    • Displacement: 29,330 tons (Standard); 35,900 tons (Full Load)
  • Crew: 1,193
  • Fuel Capacity: 4,480 tons (Coal); 1,120 tons (Oil)
  • Propulsion: 24 × Miyahara water-tube boilers, 4 shafts, 2 × Brown-Curtis steam turbine sets, 40,000 shp (30,000 kW)
  • Range: 8,000 nautical miles (14,816 kilometers) at 14 knots (25.93 km/h)
  • Speed: 23 knots (42.6 km/h)
  • Armament:
    • 12 x 36cm/45-caliber 43rd Year Type naval guns (6x2)
    • 16 x 15cm/50-caliber 41st Year Type naval guns (16x1)
    • 6 x 8cm/40-caliber 41st Year Type anti-aircraft guns (6x1)
    • 6 x 21" torpedo tubes
  • Armour:
    • Waterline belt: 4-inches - 12-inches (102-305 mm)
    • Deck: 2-inches (51 mm)
    • Gun turrets: 11-inches (279 mm)
    • Barbettes: 12-inches (305 mm)
    • Conning tower: 13.8-inches (351 mm)
    • Bulkheads: 4-12 inches (102-305 mm)

1933 Rebuild ConfigurationEdit

  • Type: Battleship
  • Service Period: 1937-1944
  • Characteristics:
    • Length: 698 feet (212.75 meters)
    • Beam (Waterline): 94 feet 2 inches (28.7 meters)
    • Beam (Torpedo Bulges): 108 feet 7 inches (33.1 meters)
    • Draft: 31 feet 9 inches (9.68 meters)
    • Displacement: 34,700 (Standard); 38,900 tons (Full Load)
  • Crew: 1,396
  • Propulsion: 6 x Kanpon oil-fired boilers, 4 x geared Kanpon turbines, 4 x shafts, 77,000 shp (57,750 kW)
  • Range: 11,800 nautical miles (21,854 kilometers) at 16 knots (29.63 km/h)
  • Speed: 25 knots (46.3 km/h)
  • Sensor Suite:
    • 1 × Type 21 air search radar
    • 2 × Type 13 early warning radars
    • 2 × Type 22 surface search radars
  • Armament:
    • 12 x 36cm/45-caliber 41st Year Type naval guns (2x2)
    • 24 x 12.7cm/40-caliber Type 89 dual purpose naval guns (12x2)
    • 96 x 25mm/60-caliber Type 96 anti-aircraft guns (24x2, 16x3)
  • Armour:
    • Waterline belt: 12-inches (305 mm)
    • Deck: 2-inches (50.8 mm)
    • Gun Turrets:
      • Front: 12-inches (305 mm)
      • Other Sides: 6-inches (152.4 mm)
    • Barbettes: 8.1-inches (206 mm)
    • Conning tower: 13.8-inches (351 mm)
    • Bulkheads: 4 inches - 12 inches (102 mm - 305 mm)

Unit RunEdit

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