JAPANESE THREAT TO AMERICANSIn late 1942, the Americans felt themselves masters in the district of the island of Guadalcanal, where the Japanese switched to the defensive, both on land and at sea. So Admiral Wright calmly reacted to the arrived at 11 PM a message stating that to meet his connection of four cruisers and five destroyers, there is another “Tokyo Express” — a squad of eight destroyers with reinforcements for the garrison of the island. The US ships had radar and the first discovered of the enemy. But the Japanese Admiral Tanaka, one of the most talented and cold-blooded admirals of the Second world war, led his forces between the enemy and the shore, camouflaged against the background of high cliffs. He strictly ordered not to open fire, hoping to make a sudden torpedo attack.

The order violated the commander of the sentinel “Takana”, to be very close to the American squadron. He realized that the enemy noticed his destroyer and started shooting. Immediately the answer came — a flurry of volleys 203 and 152 mm cannons in a matter of minutes turned the brand new ship, entered service just three months ago, into a pile of flaming wreckage. However, the service he rendered. Focusing on the flash guns, the other Japanese destroyers were given the torpedo volley gut was off in the opposite direction.
The consequences of the attacks were for Americans, terrible. The torpedo struck all four of the cruiser: “Minneapolis” and “new Orleans” lost nasal extremities, “Pensacola” got hit in the engine room, has lost speed and almost all artillery. But worst of all I had, “Northampton”, which soon sank. By the time the destroyers Tanaka went home with only a few fragments of shells, not inherited the unfortunate “Takana”.
So, after the first year of the war, the Japanese destroyers managed to finally successfully implement a classic attack — so what was she predskolaci during the previous two decades and to which they built these ships belonged to the descendants of the new “special” type.
Signed in 1922, the Washington naval agreement, Japan was facing a serious choice. The ratio of three to five battleships with the British and, more importantly, with the Americans almost closed the opportunity to win the battle of the main forces. Had to either accept the role of sea power second-class citizens, or to seek a fundamentally different way to even the odds. Needless to say, ambitious admirals — former young lieutenants of the times wins the Russo-Japanese war — chose the second option.
Navy staff created a harmonious system of “processing” the future of the enemy, whom probably already had become the United States. The main role in “softening” of the linear forces of the enemy and their cover was supposed to instruct torpedo forces. Analytics accurately calculated that to crush the cruisers and battleships Americans need 144 of the destroyer. But before that they have to engage in an artillery battle, even with the escorts, that is with the same squadron destroyers. It was clear that the already constructed “destroyer” is not responsible for this task, neither in number nor in strength.
The designers of the rising sun have begun work on new ships at the end of 1922, but after only two years in the drawings embodied 2000-ton destroyer with a speed of 39 knots, armed with two twin 120-mm guns and three three-pipe torpedo tubes. Although the project looked quite balanced, the admirals were dissatisfied: released by the Washington agreement of 200 thousand tons of such large units can hold a hundred. There was an indication: to reduce a displacement of 250 tons, but at the same time… to add another paired gun mount, increasing the caliber of guns up to 127 mm. So began the battle of Japanese designers with the displacement, and sometimes with common sense, trying to perfect a fighting machine as possible strength and smaller size.
231. Destroyer “Kagero”, Japan, 1939
Built at the shipyard of the Navy in Maizuru. A displacement of 2050 tons standard, 2,500 tons full Length the greatest 118,5 m, beam 10.8 m, draft 3,71 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installation of 52,000 HP, a design speed of 35 knots. Armament: six 127 mm universal guns, four 25-mm machine gun, two four-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Just 1939-1941 built 18 units. 17 of them sunk in 1942— 1945 years, “Yukikaze” transferred after the war to China.
232. Destroyer “Fubuki”, Japan, 1928
Built at the shipyard in Kawakubo (Maizuru). The standard displacement of 1750 tons, full 2090 t maximum Length of 118.4 m, width of 10,36 m, draft 3.2 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 50 000 HP, speed 35 knots. Armament: six 127 mm universal guns, two 13.2-mm machine gun, three sin-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Only in the years 1928-1931 the built 20 units. “Miyuki” died in 1934, in a collision, another 18 — during the Second world war. The last representative of the series — “Osio” — scrapped in 1948.
233. Destroyer”, Kamikadze”, Japan, 1943
Built at the shipyard of the Navy in Maizuru. The standard displacement of 2570 tons, 3080 full t Length overall 125.0 m, width 11,2 m, draft 4,14 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 75 000 HP, the design speed of 39 knots. Armament: six 127 mm universal guns, six 25-mm guns, three platetronic 610-mm torpedo tubes. Constructed in one piece. Sunk in November 1944 by the American aircraft.

The repeated redrawing of blueprints and application of advanced construction technologies in the first place welding, have led to impressing result. In mid-1926 was laid the keel of the head of the destroyer new, “special” series — “Fubuki”. The engineers managed to fit in a nominal 1750 t is all that was required of naval authorities. The armament of these ships for the mid 20-ies can be called great, and this applies above all to the torpedoes. The Japanese replaced the air, usually used as the oxidizer in the engine “cigars”, in pure oxygen, again killing several birds with one stone. First, dramatically increased the speed and range: new 610-mm torpedo could pass more than 20 miles and develop up to 60 knots at ranges of 80 — 100 cables! Second, oxygen is allowed to draw underwater weapon more stealthy. Useless nitrogen, which constitutes 3/4 of the volume of air, creating a large number of bubbles ran over the torpedo. At the same oxygen torpedoes the formation of bubbles was reduced to a minimum, is due only to gaseous products of combustion. However, the new weapons represented a great danger for the media: when released into the oxygen reservoir of the slightest fragment could happen a huge explosion, followed by the detonation of the warhead. However, the Japanese not only took a risk with the choice of oxidant, but chose to give its second torpedo ammunition. It was believed that the first destroyers will spend in battle with the escort ships, and then, recharge devices, attacks on the battleships of the enemy. Remembering the “oxygen” of the danger, the Japanese covered themselves rude, and blocks overcharge with steel plates that protected not only against splashes and waves, but also from small fragments.
Another important element of combat power “special” destroyers became artillery: 127-graph paper was a good gun with an initial velocity, significantly greater than comparable guns of other countries, and could shoot 100 cables. Guns were mounted in these small towers (usually set blennophobia installation), and if the first ten terms of the series angle of elevation was limited to 40 degrees, then the rest it was 75, which allowed firing at the planes.
It looked great, but caused some experts puzzled: how the samurai managed to achieve what did not work from designers the rest of the world? Something has to be wrong!
And really, really heavy weapons, located on the upper deck, dangerously lowered the stability. Not helped by the raised location of the 127-mm turret at the rear, to lower the center of gravity and reduce load of the bow. The maneuvers of 1935, the fleet of new destroyers caught in the Typhoon of two ships left no tip, and seven were cracks in the hull, and some of them almost broke in half.
234. Destroyer
234. Destroyer “Hibiki”, Japan, 1933
Built at the shipyard in Kawakubo. Displacement standard 1680 t, 2100 t full Length most of 118.4 m, width of 10,36 m, draft 3,28 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 50 000 HP, the design speed of 38 knots. Armament: six 127 mm universal guns, two 13.2-mm machine gun, three three-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Belonged to the second series of “special;) destroyers. In 1932 built four units: “akatsuki”, “Hibiki”, “ICAD-Chicago fire” and “Inazuma”. In 1942-1943 upgraded (lifted a lofty tower and installed 25 to 28 mm assault rifles). Three units were killed during the war, the head of “Hibiki” transferred to the Soviet Union in 1947.

235. Destroyer
235. Destroyer “Ariake”, Japan, 1935
Built at the shipyard “Kawasaki”. The standard displacement of 1490 tons, full 1800 t maximum Length 109,5 m, width 10 m, draft 3.05 m Power two shaft turbine installations 42 000 HP, speed 36.5 per node. Armament: five 127 mm universal guns, two 13.2-mm machine gun, three three-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Only 1933 to 1935 years, we have built six units: “Hatsushima”, “Hatsuharu”, “Ariake”, “Nenohi,” “Wakaba” and “Ugors”. All were killed in the fighting in 1942— 1945 the od.

236. Destroyer
236. Destroyer “Shigure”, Japan, 1936
Built at the shipyard “m”. The standard displacement of 1685 tons, T. 1980 full waterline Length 107,5 m, width-9,9 m, draft 3,5 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 42 000 HP, speed 34 knots. Armament: five 127 mm universal guns, two 13.2-mm machine gun, two four-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Only in 1936 — 1937 built ten units. All died in the years 1942-1945.

Followed by a major upgrade. High bridges and pipes cut off a few meters, all backed with torpedo reloading system (except three) have passed ashore, the ammunition reduced to a quarter, and still unoccupied compartments at the bottom of the hull was filled with fuel or, as it expenditure, water. In this embodiment, the total displacement exceeded 2,500 tons.
The Japanese only managed to build two fleets (24 units) “special” destroyers, when the next international naval agreement London (1930) — gave them another, seemingly intractable, problems. Now the displacement of each destroyer was limited to 1500 tonnes, which, it seemed, did not allow to hold six guns in the towers and nine torpedo tubes. But Japanese designers have made another “miracle” (it is violence over common sense). They managed to save three towers and received only one gun: the six destroyers type “Ariake” stern lofty tower replaced odnorodnoi, moving her nose over the front spark. With the full set of nine torpedo tubes and spare torpedoes nine 1,500-ton ship with a pretty massive add-on looked very unusual.
Begun operation only a couple of pieces of new type (“Wakaba” and “Nenohi”) when something happened that sooner or later it had to happen. On maneuvers in the spring of 1934 the newest destroyer “Tomozuri” (we will discuss it further in a later editions), not less overloaded than its larger peers, fell not even a storm, just heavy seas. With the same success in its place could be “Wakaba” or “Nenohi”. The bell rang, and the engineers began, as far as possible, to eliminate the overload. Almost ready ships of the “Ariake” was subjected to almost total makeover: for a shot aft torpedo tubes from the bow moved odnoimennuyu installation; significantly “lost” add-ons, bridges, pipes and masts. But these measures proved insufficient, and in the hold were down 85 tonnes of metal ballast. In a new destroyers began to weigh more than 2000 tons, and their speed fell to three knots. However, the stability continued to be questioned, and during the Second world war odnoimennuyu tower removed altogether, replacing it with light anti-aircraft machine guns.
The next series (ten units of the “Sigurd”) built immediately on the changed option, replacing, however, two of the remaining three-pipe four-pipe torpedo tubes. The nightmare for the shipbuilders of the country of Yamato ended. Although the period of the London naval agreement has not expired, the leadership took a secret decision to withdraw from it, so the new destroyers could be created without hard limits on displacement. The designers then went back to the advanced “special” type. The width of the body increased, and the standard displacement reached 2,000 tonnes, the rest ten ships of the “Asashio”, which entered into operation in 1937-1938, much like “Fubuki”, differing from it only their two four-pipe apparatus with a full recharge of the eight torpedoes.
237. Destroyer
237. Destroyer”, Acasio”, Japan, 1937
Built at the shipyard in Sasebo. Displacement standard 1960 t 2370 t full Length the greatest 118,26 m, width: 10.35 m, draft of 3.7 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 50 000 HP, speed 35 knots. Armament: six 127 mm universal guns, four 25-mm machine gun, two four-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes. Only in 1937-1938, built ten units. All died in the years 1942-1945.
238. Destroyer air defense,

238. Destroyer air defense, “Akizuki”, Japan, 1942
Built at the shipyard of the Navy in Maizuru. The standard displacement of 2700 tons, full 3700 t maximum Length of 132.4 m, width of 11.61 m, draft 4,15 m. Capacity twin-shaft turbine installations 52 000 HP, speed 33 knots. Armament: eight 100-mm anti-aircraft guns, four 25-mm machine gun, one four-pipe 610-mm torpedo tubes, six mortars for deep bombs. Only the years 1942-1945 built 12 units, “Akizuki”, “Terusuke”, “Suzutsuki”, “Kazutoki, Niizeki”, “Wakatsuki”, “Snooki”, “Fuyutsuki”, “Hanatsuki, Yazuki”, “Ha-Suzuki and Matsuzaki”. Another, “Mochizuki”, not completed. During the war the number of 25-mm guns brought to 20-40 trunks. Six destroyers were killed in the fighting, divided between the four allies (USA, Britain, USSR and China), two scrapped in 1948.

Founded after the rejection of the hated Japanese restrictions “Kagero” (18 units) externally, as little different from its predecessors, but much more respond to the requests of the fleet. Cruising speed increased from 10-12 knots to 18 and the new destroyer could pass such a course of 5000 miles. From the use of welding for cladding Board refused, returning to the good old riveting. Displacement increased nearly 100 tons, but the maximum speed is not affected, as it was possible to improve both the shape and mechanical installation. “Kagero” has become the benchmark standard Japanese destroyers of world war II: in his image and likeness from 1942 to 1944, managed to build 20 more units (usually allocated in a separate type of “Yugumo”). Eight similar ships could not even lay: not enough materials or workers.
Although the improved version of the “special” type and in 1941 it looked bad, the Japanese did not want to stop there. In the middle of the same year was laid the destroyer “Kamikaze”, which was assigned the role of founder of a new type. The project seemed ambitious; particularly impressive is the three platetronic torpedo tubes and mechanical installation with very high steam parameters, allowing you to easily develop on tests 41 node. However, mass production is too big and too long (and, of course, too expensive) “Kamikaze” was neither the budget nor the industry of Japan. He remained single instance and only outlined a possible future shipbuilders of the Country of the rising sun.
Much more successful was another project. Actively preparing for war, the Japanese found that their signature weapon is the shock carrier battle groups do not have sufficient anti-aircraft cover. Although the “special” destroyers carried a universal artillery, its effectiveness against enemy aircraft has remained low due to low speed lay towers. It was decided to create a brand new ship — the largest destroyer of defenses. So there was a type of “Akizuki” one of the best and most useful ships in the fleet of Japan. Armed with eight rapid-fire semi-automatic 100-mm antiaircraft guns, he, despite the significant decrease in calibre of artillery, were produced in a minute more metal and explosives than the standard “special” destroyer. It is not surprising that enemy planes, fearing to fall under his fire, we tried to stay away from him. This may explain the relatively small losses of destroyers type “Akizuki”. A typical example: in the last battle of the battleship “Yamato” with the American air force during his hopeless attempt to prevent the landing on the island of Okinawa survived both destroyer defense — “Fuyutsuki” and “Suzutsuki”, while half of conventional ships of this class went down with battleship and cruiser “Oyodo”. However, because of its small size, destroyers type “Akizuki” any appreciable impact on the course of the fighting to provide could not. It was supposed to build 54 units of this type, but in a system managed to put only 12, and the last — “Matsuzaki” — just a month before the surrender of Japan.
Despite the high fighting qualities of the Japanese destroyers, the loss of them (as, however, and ships of other classes) were very large. During the war years was lost 134 destroyers, and after the surrender afloat had only nine ships of this class.

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