Murasame class destroyers (1990's) - The start of the second-generation general purpose destroyers

Murasame class destroyers (1990’s) - The start of the second-generation general-purpose destroyers

Note - This suggestion is on the 1990’s Murasame class destroyers, not the 1950’s Murasame class, hence the 1990’s label in the suggestion.

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Background and History
The Murasame class destroyers are a class of 9 general purpose destroyers built for the Japanese maritime self-defense force during the 1990’s and early 2000’s as the first of the second-generation general-purpose destroyers.

The Murasame class was simply put the result of technological advancements, since while the Japanese had achieved the planned total of 20 general purpose destroyers with the Hatsuyuki and Asagiri classes, it was also recognized the need for newer more modern designs as the older ships would only be able to keep with the technological advancements up until a certain point, as such it was considered necessary to move forward with introducing the next generation of general purpose destroyers.

Compared to the Asagiri class the Murasame class was a heavily revised design as the overall hull design was changed which reduced the ships radar cross section and the underwater radiation noise. At the same time the ship included other major changes as with the introduction of the Kongo class guided missile destroyers, the Murasame class would see the transition from dedicated missile launcher mounts to vertical launch systems. In the case of the Murasame class they still would take a more unique approach with its missile armament compared to preceding and succeeding classes, since the ship had a Mk41 VLS located between the bridge and forward gun with a total of 16 cells, as well as a separate Mk48 VLS located amidship with another 16 cells. Unlike other Mk41 VLS used on other ships in other navies and even the JMSDF the Murasame dedicated the Mk41 launchers for RUM-139 vertically launcher anti-submarine rockets, while the Mk48 VLS was dedicated for the surface to air missiles with RIM-7 sea sparrow missiles. In terms of the ships remaining armament it had undergone less changes as the ship have a single 76m/62 Oto Melara gun along, further AA armament with a pair of 20mm Mark 15 Phalanx CIWS (compared to before however these were located on the front and back of the ship rather than on the sides of the ships like before), an anti-ship missile armament of up to 8 anti-ship missile launchers split between two Mk141 missile launchers with the ships using the Type 90 SSM, a torpedo armament of 6 12.75 inch (324mm) Type 68 (Mark 32/HOS-301) torpedo tubes in two triple mounts, and finally a small complement of machine guns placed around the ship when present. One other feature to note is the ships helicopter hangar, since while they were still intended to normally carry a singular helicopter the class was designed to be able to carry up to two helicopters for overseas operations.

Despite the Murasame class being a new design and meeting the requirements of the ship, there were certain aspects of the design that was found to be dissatisfying. As a result, the design of the class would be revised to address these issues, with these improvements being implemented for the destroyers ordered under FY1998 which would start being laid down in 2000. This improved design would come in the form of the Takanami class which introduced a variety of changes, however the most notable and obvious was the jump from a 76mm main gun to a 127mm main gun, as well as the simplification of the vertical launch systems of the ships as all the Mk48 launchers were deleted and all of the surface to air missiles were relocated to the Mk41 VLS on the front of the ship which was increased in size.

4,550 tons standard
6,200 tons full load

Length 151 m (495 ft 5 in)

Beam 17.4 m (57 ft 1 in)

Draft 5.2 m (17 ft 1 in)

2 × Ishikawajima Harima Industries (IHI)/General Electric LM-2500 gas turbines
2 × Kawasaki/Rolls-Royce Spey SM-1C gas turbines
60,000 shp (45 MW)
2 shafts, cp props
Speed 30 knots (35 mph; 56 km/h)

Complement 165

Sensors and processing systems
OYQ-9 CDS (w/ Link-11) (Combat Direction System)
OYQ-103 ASWCS (anti-submarine warfare control system)
FCS-2-31 fire-control systems
OPS-20B navigation radar
OPS-24B air search radar
OPS-28D surface search radar
OQS-5 hull sonar

Electronic warfare & decoys
NOLQ-3 ECM/ESM integrated electronic warfare system
4 x Mk 36 SRBOC Chaff and Decoy Launching System
AN/SLQ-25 Nixie torpedo decoys

Main armament
1 x 76mm/62 Oto Melara super rapid gun (compact mount)
Anti-ship missile launchers
2 x Mk 141 missile launchers (2 x 4)
Up to 8 x Type 90 SSM-1B anti-ship missiles
Anti-air armament
1 x 16 cell Mk 48 Mod. 0 VLS
16 x RIM-7 Sea sparrow SAM (As built)
32 x RIM-162 evolved sea sparrow missiles (Introduced during the 2010’s)
2 x 20mm Mk15 Phalanx CIWS
Anti-submarine warfare armament
1 x 16 cell Mk41 VLS
16 x RUM-139 VL-ASROC
Torpedo tubes
6 x 12.75 inch (324mm) Type 68 (HOS-302A/Mark 32) torpedo tubes (2 x 3) (Mark 46 or Type 73 torpedoes)
Other armament
up to 4 x 12.7mm machine guns

Aviation complement
up to 2 x SH-60J/K helicopters

More images




MURASAME destroyers (1996 - 2002) (

Murasame-class destroyer (1994) - Wikipedia

Murasame class Destroyer Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (

Image Sources


Murasame class Destroyer Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (

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