Flight IV DDG-765 Haruka Amami
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Acheron Technologies Naval Design Group
Bissau Corporation Naval Group
Japan Marine United
New Washington Navy Yard
Songoro Marine Dynamics
W. H. Kappa Works
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|Preceded by:||Sabah Khayyam-class destroyer|
|Succeeded by:||Johann A. Revil-class destroyer|
|Cost:||NSD$1.70 billion (FY2014)|
|In commission:||22 April 1989|
|Beam:||21.1 m (69 ft)|
|Draft:||9.2 m (30 ft)|
|Speed:||33 knots max, 20 knots cruise|
|Range:||8,400 km (4,500 nmi) at 20 knots|
|Boats & landing |
|2 × RHIB|
|Complement:||23 officers, 300 enlisted|
|Sensors and |
|Electronic warfare |
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2 × SR/EWS-654(AM1) electronic warfare suite
2 × Mark 40 Integrated Countermeasure Dispenser
Mark 111 missile decoy
SR/ENS-670 torpedo decoy
SSI-725 torpedo interceptor (Flight IV)
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30 mm spaced steel box around magazines and engines
50 mm kevlar over magazines, engines, and bunkers
|Aircraft carried:||2 × QMS-50 Gannet medium ASW helicopters|
The Elementario-class of multi-role guided missile destroyers is a type of warship in service with the Punic Navy and Imperial Japanese Navy. Developed as part of the joint Fleet Replenishment Program in the 1980s, it is the first class of destroyer built to accommodate the Stele combat management system. Incorporating a powerful anti-aircraft armament through their flexible vertical launch systems along with torpedoes for anti-submarine warfare and cruise missiles for land attack, the Elementario-class is capable of undertaking a number of missions ranging from carrier escort to surface strike and anti-submarine patrol.
Entering service in 1989, the class was designed to replace a number of smaller and older escorts in the Punic and Japanese navies. Major design changes between models are generally grouped into the Flight I, II, III, and IV configurations, with only the Flight IV design remaining in production. With the decommissioning of the last Sabah Khayyam-class destroyer in 2005, the Elementario-class is the last conventionally-powered escort in the Punic Navy. Production was initially scheduled to end in 2007 with the expectation that nuclear destroyers such as the Johann A. Revil-class would replace all conventional destroyers, but rising cost estimates for the nuclear designs of the NP21 program led to the establishment of the Technology Integration Program to develop the Flight IV Elementario, with an additional 80 units ordered. in 1996 the Gensokyo Republic became the design's first export customer, ordering 40 Flight II destroyers with the last 20 later amended to the Flight III design.
- 1 History
- 2 Characteristics
- 3 Operators
- 4 See also
In 1980 the Punic Navy operated several escort classes, including the first-generation Himilco Phameas-class destroyer, the newer Sabah Khayyam-class, and the Hampsicora-class frigate. Production of the Himilco Phameas-class had begun in 1962 with the final order placed in 1966, and production finishing in 1971. The Sabah Khayyam-class had entered service in 1972, and the Hampsicora-class dated from 1970. The Imperial Japanese Navy's Tachikaze-class was of a similar age, commissioned in 1973, and a new design to replace it into the 1990s was desired.
In June 1981, the Punic Navy issued a requirement for a new guided missile destroyer design, incorporating the then-new Stele weapon system developed for the Lagos-class guided missile cruiser. A similar requirement was issued by the Imperial Japanese Navy in August. Between the two independent design competitions, twelve designs were submitted, but all ran into problems with cost control in the relatively budget-conscious environment. In 1983, the programs were combined to develop a single multi-role warship to be purchased by both navies. A joint design from Fugaku Heavy Industries and Magonid Navigation was selected as the winner in 1985 with the laying down of the first keels in Carthaginian and Japanese service to begin in 1986. The new design represented a significant increase in displacement from the Tachikaze and Hampsicora-classes, and a significant increase in tracking capability thanks to the ER-7 multi-function radar and its accompanying control systems.
The first ships of the class were launched in 1988 and commissioned in 1989, Elementario in Carthaginian service and Shimakaze in Japanese service. Production of additional models of the same design proceeded until 1994 when the Flight II design was introduced, adding covered hangars for helicopter operations and incorporating a taller bridge tower for improved command facilities and radar placement. The mast was also redesigned to reduce topweight and simplify construction, and the exhaust funnels were buried within the superstructure to reduce radar returns. In 1996, the Gensokyo Republic contracted an order for 60 vessels of the Flight II design for an estimated $60 billion over twenty years. The first ship for the Republic Navy was commissioned in 1998 as GRS Magus Night.
Improvements to the Flight II design were incorporated into the Flight III design first commissioned in 2001. The Flight III design incorporates a hull stretch to improve seakeeping and adds an additional 32 cell VLS to the aft launcher, increasing VLS count to 128 cells. Boat and handling systems were also improved, and the new ER-7R2 radar was fitted to provide greater range and resolution. The final twenty ships of the Republic Navy's unfinished order were converted to Flight III models in 2002 for an additional $6 billion.
With the development of the larger nuclear Johann A. Revil-class in the early 2000s as part of the NP21 program, procurement of large conventionally-powered escorts such as the Elementario-class was slated to end in 2007. However, by 2005 it had become clear that rising costs prevented the Johann A. Revil-class from economically replacing conventional escorts in all roles, and the Technology Integration Program was initiated to fit some technologies of the Revil-class into the Elementario-class, creating the Flight IV design.
The Flight IV design entered service in the Punic Navy with DDG-765 Haruka Amami in 2008. Flight IV represents the most significant design change to the class yet, integrating the new AESA SW/ETS-970 multifunction radar to replace the older PESA ER-7 system, removing the need for separate missile datalink transmitters. Due to increased power requirements for the radar, an integrated electric propulsion system was implemented, and the separate electrical system removed. To reduce radar cross section, the exposed decks amidships were enclosed and the 30 mm Buckler CIWS replaced with the 24-cell Mark 99 rolling airframe missile.
Under the current budget projections, construction of additional Elementario-class ships is expected to continue through 2030, and may be extended further based on the cost-effectiveness of the Johann A. Revil-class. Modernization programs to keep current vessels up to date have been approved, including software overhauls to older ships and replacement of obsolete parts. A short-range ballistic missile defense capability is also expected to be integrated, supplementing the long-range ballistic missile defense capability of the larger Karisimbi-class cruisers.
The Elementario-class is 156-169.6 m (512-556 ft) in length depending on design, with a beam of 21.1 m (69 ft). From an initial displacement of 8,800 tonnes for the Flight I model, the current Flight IV design has an increased displacement of 11,800 tonnes. The hull design is a clean-sheet design focused on stability in high sea states, and as a result the hull is fuller than previous destroyers or cruisers which were designed with a higher length-to-beam ratio. The bow incorporates significant flaring to improve seakeeping and reduce spray in high sea states. The class incorporates all-steel construction with spaced plating around the engineering spaces and magazines supported by kevlar spall liners.
The superstructure incorporates additional streamlining compared to previous classes to reduce radar cross section and detection range. Flight II ships modified the original structure by increasing the bridge height by two decks to improve radar coverage and expand command facilities. Two enclosed hangars were also added to allow for the embarkation and storage of medium helicopters or UAVs. A simplified mast with only a single spar was also incorporated to compensate for the increased topweight. Flight III included a hull stretch to improve seakeeping and fit an additional 32 cell VLS in the aft position. Flight IV fully enclosed the amidships decks to reduce radar cross section and added a new deckhouse atop the bridge to house the X-band element of the SW/ETS-970 radar. Two additional eight cell VLS were also added amidships for self-defense purposes.
Powerplant and propulsion
Four United Nigerian PR-1100 gas turbines provide motive power, initially rated for 22 MW (29,500 hp) each. Flight III ships incorporate the improved PR-1100E model delivering 23.5 MW (31,500 hp) with improved fuel efficiency, while Flight IV ships use the PR-1100EX design providing 29 MW (38,900 hp). The engines are combined in a COGAG arrangement with two turbines per shaft. The use of gas turbine propulsion allows for high speeds in a compact hull, with excellent acceleration. Flights I through III use geared shafts to output power, while Flight IV uses integrated electric propulsion with all turbines connected to generators, and the shafts powered by permanent magnet motors. Flight IV also introduces improved acoustic rafting for the turbines to reduce noise transmission to the hull and surrounding water.
Although all models use five-bladed propellers of the same geometry, Flights I-III use controllable pitch propellers to provide reversing capability, while Flight IV uses fixed propellers due to the greater flexibility of the electric motors. As part of the Overhaul and Modernization Program, Flight I-III destroyers are to be retrofitted with auxiliary electric motors connected to the main gearbox, allowing them to maintain speeds up to 13 knots with reduced fuel consumption and noise generation. Maneuverability is provided through a twin-rudder system. At maximum output the ships can reach an estimated maximum speed of 33 knots, with a 20 knot cruising speed.
Electric power in Flights I through III is provided by three Hanno Marine Diesel SXG2600 generators, providing 2,600 kW each. Flight IV vessels dispense with the independent generators due to the integrated power system which allows the main turbines to supply electrical power to the ship. With increasing electrical requirements from new components installed in overhauled vessels, the more powerful SXG3000 is being installed on refit ships to provide additional power.
The core of the Elementario-class is its sensor suite, feeding information into the Stele combat management system. The radar systems provide detection of air and surface threats while the sonar arrays provide detection of subsurface threats. Infrared search and track capability was introduced in Flight II and expanded in Flight IV to improve defense against passive infrared missiles and other low-emission threats.
Flight IV ships are equipped with the Stele II system, a new-build system developed as a replacement for the original Stele processing suite. Stele II is designed to integrate more modern, higher-performance sensors and is built on an extensible framework enabling new systems to be added and existing systems replaced and upgraded more easily than the original 1980s-era Stele I system. It replaces the older fixed-console CIC design of the original system with a series of flexible common consoles capable of being switched between tasks as required.
The anti-air and anti-surface system is centered on the PESA EN-7 S-band multifunction radar mounted on the four corners of the superstructure and providing 3D search capabilities against aircraft and missiles. Low-angle coverage is provided by the EN-12 and EG-3 X-band surface search and gunfire control radars, and the EN-9 C-band search and navigation radar. While providing volume search capabilities, the S-band EN-7 possesses insufficient resolution for terminal guidance, and the missiles initially deployed on the Elementario-class required the EN-12 X-band radar to provide terminal illumination. Illumination is required for the SR-150 missile series due to the track-via-missile (TVM) guidance employed. The EG-3 radar is capable of operating in both surface and air modes, and supplements the EN-7's low-angle coverage against sea-skimming targets.
Flight IV destroyers integrate the improved SW/ETS-970 multi-band system, using a system of four S-band and three X-band radars to replace the EN-7/EN-12 combination. The S-band arrays are derived from the EN-7 but are AESA radars with greater accuracy and a higher scan rate, as well as an increased panel size to support a larger number of separate transmit/receive modules. The SW/ETS-970 shares a number of similarities with the Army's ground-based GW/ETS-980/981 series, used in the land-based Tarnhelm air defense system. Target tracking and illumination is provided by the X-band array mounted directly above the bridge in a new deckhouse, although the new SR-77X series possesses onboard guidance computers allowing them to operate in seeker-aided ground guidance (SAGG) mode or an enhanced networked mode known as Multiple Input Guidance (MIG) The SW/ETS-970 system has significantly improved bandwidth and performance against fast-moving and low-RCS targets, extending the ship's detection and engagement range. The combined system is estimated to be capable of tracking up to 1,000 aerial targets at up to 480 kilometers (300 mi) and up to 800 kilometers (500 mi) against ballistic missiles.
Supporting the SW/ETS-970 is the SW/ETG-972 search and gunfire control radar, an AESA X-band derivative of the EN-12. It provides extended-horizon surface search capabilities from a higher position on the mast, and is primarily employed against sea-skimming missiles to reduce the search load on the SW/ETS-970. With a much higher mounting height, SW/ETG-972 provides nearly double the search horizon and is capable of discriminating against surface clutter and other impediments. Navigation is handled by two SW/ETN-975 X-band radar sets on the mast and aft of the communications tower, which also incorporate surface search capability. Beginning in 2012, a number of Flight IV ships have been refitted with the SW/ETS-984 counter-stealth radar, similar to the GW/ETS-983D used in the land-based Tarnhelm system.
To improve compatibility with the new SAR-77X missile series designed to operate in the X-band, the SW/ETG-972 radar is due to be fitted to older class destroyers as they are rotated in for refitting and maintenance, replacing the mast-mounted EN-12 array. This allows refitted destroyers to properly interface and link with the SAR-77X series. The radar suite is also capable of detecting submarine periscopes out to the horizon, allowing torpedoes and ASROC to be rapidly targeted and launched.
Optical and infrared
Infrared search and track capability was added in 1998 to Flight II vessels beginning with GRS Fires of Hokkai. A single sensor was placed on the mast, replacing the obsolete HFR-13 radio antenna. The IRST module provides passive detection of non-emitting threats, allowing for greater defense against infrared guided missiles when operating with limited radar coverage and providing additional resistance to radar-based jamming measures. The new SW/ETI-848 module was fitted to Flight IV destroyers, with a single mount above the bridge and another in a separate mast forward of the hangar. The SW/ETI-848 module has increased resistance to infrared countermeasures through a multi-spectral sensor. It is expected the new module will be refitted to older destroyers during overhauls in the same mast-mounted position as the HFR-13 antenna.
An additional series of combined electro-optical and television sensors provides awareness for the crew in a variety of situations including inclement weather. All of the onboard and electro-optical sensors are tied into the combat system and may be directed on target by alternative input or manual control.
The Elementario-class is fitted with a fixed-array bow sonar and a towed array for anti-submarine warfare. The SR-235 sonar array is housed in a standard bow mount and is used in all ships of the class, upgraded to the redesignated SW/ESH-820 in Flight III and IV destroyers. It incorporates both active and passive elements in the high-, mid-, and low-frequency bands and can incorporate data from the towed array as well as sonobuoys and dipping sonar deployed by helicopters to detect, classify, and engage subsurface threats including submarines, torpedoes, and mines. The SW/ESH-820 retains the same transducers as the SR-235 but uses improved digital signal processing equipment for better sensitivity and a reduced electronics footprint.
Aft sonar coverage is provided by the SR-237 towed array sonar, which also boasts improved sensitivity compared to the bow array. The SR-237 towed array is a variable depth sonar controlled by a towed body with a total length of 400 meters attached to an 800 meter cable. The SR-237 is replaced by the SW/EST-822 in Flight III and IV destroyers and is similar to the EST-996 array used in Type-061N nuclear submarines. The surface-model EST-822 incorporates a pair of transducers in the depth-control section, improving sensitivity against low-noise threats.
The Elementario-class is armed with a variety of weapon systems capable of engaging targets in the air as well as on land and sea, and subsurface threats. Guided missiles constitute the bulk of the armament, supplemented by conventional guns and torpedoes. Additional weapons may also be deployed by the embarked helicopters.
The primary armament of the Elementario-class is its set of vertical launch systems, capable of housing an array of different missiles. Flight I and II ships incorporate a 64 cell VLS forward of the bridge and a 32 cell installation forward of the landing area for a total of 96 cells, while Flight III ships add an additional 32 cells to the aft battery for a total of 128 full-length VLS cells. Flight IV adds two eight-cell Mark 21 modules amidships for use with decoys and short-range missiles, for a total of 144 cells. To increase missile capacity, smaller missiles can be quad-packed into a single cell.
The incorporation of the additional 32 cells to the aft VLS in Flight III destroyers allows for a significant increase in surface strike and anti-aircraft capability, with the additional space usually dedicated to additional anti-ship and cruise missiles in the bow VLS and additional long-range SAMs in the aft VLS. The 16 additional cells added in Flight IV are dedicated to self-defense, carrying short-range missiles and decoys and are limited in length compared to the fore and aft systems.
Launch and guidance is handled by the Stele weapon system, later expanded into the Stele combat management system. The initial SR-150 series surface-to-air missile system the class relied on TVM guidance and required illumination from the ship's radars as well as a guidance datalink to the ship's computers for tracking, limiting the number of simultanous targets engaged. The introduction of the new SAR-77X series under the Tarnhelm program adds an onboard flight control computer with terminal homing seekers, allowing the tracking to be achieved via autonomously. Due to the use of MIG, missiles can be guided via the combined input of the missile's onboard seeker, the launch platform radar, or other sources, while also being capable of relying solely on onboard guidance in the event of jamming or datalink saturation.
|Flight I-II||Flight III||Flight IV|
Missile loads can be changed flexibly based on expected mission parameters, but in the common escort role the Elementario-class will carry a heavier load of surface-to-air missiles with land attack falling to submarine-launched cruise missiles and strikes from carrier aircraft. SR-150 series missiles require refit with the Multispectrum Datalink module to receive guidance from the newer high-bandwidth illumination element of the SW/ETS-970 radar when deployed aboard Flight IV vessels. SAR-77X-series missiles are equipped with this functionality by design, and do not require modification.
All ships of the class are armed with a 120 mm gun of Mark 43 or 44 design mounted forward of the bow VLS. The Mark 43 is present on all Flight I through III ships while the Mark 44 is used on all Flight IV ships. Both types are water-cooled and fed from a belowdecks magazine with a maximum elevation of +70 degrees. The Mark 44 introduces a new stealthed gunhouse and a longer 48-caliber barrel, replacing the 46-caliber barrel in the Mark 43. Due to improvements in autoloader function and barrel design, the Mark 44 has a maximum cyclic rate of fire of 84 rounds per minute, slightly greater than the 80 RPM of the Mark 43. The Mark 44 also introduces an automated ammunition handling system, reducing crew requirements and replacing the previous drum system that required sailors to manually load rounds into the autoloader. The internal magazines accommodate 400 rounds for the Mark 43 and 460 rounds for the Mark 44.
Both are equipped to chamber and fire guided and rocket-assisted ammunition to improve accuracy and extend range. The Mark 44 has a maximum range of 40 kilometers (25 mi) with conventional ballistic projectiles, and over 100 kilometers (62 mi) with rocket-assisted projectiles. Due to gun length, the mount must be positioned to the broadside (usually to port) to use the forward vertical replenishment station.
To compensate for the replacement of the gun-based 30 mm Buckler CIWS in Flight IV ships, two 35 mm CRA-952 autocannons are placed amidships aft of the communications mast. While possessing sufficient tracking speed and accuracy to engage small boats and helicopters, they are not designed for CIWS use. Two remotely-controlled 15.5 mm chain guns mounts are positioned to either side of the forward VLS module for additional close-in protection. Additional rifles, pistols, and automatic weapons are stored in the ship's armory for use by the crew, including several 15.5 mm heavy machine guns that may be installed on mounts along the railings.
Torpedo provisions consist of two three-tube Mark 19 launchers for 400 mm lightweight torpedoes located amidships in Flights I through III. The tubes are compatible with a range of torpedoes, including the Inuk Marks 46, 50, and 54, the Japanese Type 73 and Blue Shark, and the Carthaginian SWT-723 Blazing Star. Each can be swiveled to face expected targets and are controlled remotely but have manual controls located on-mount. Flight IV introduces a fixed set of launchers in a similar position but concealed behind a sliding door for protection from the elements and reduced radar cross section.
Lightweight torpedoes may also be deployed via helicopter from either of the ship's two QMS-50 Gannets, extending range and improving response time.
Aviation facilities are provided by an aft landing pad and a forward vertical replenishment station. Initial ships lacked hangar facilities to store and embark helicopters, but all ships since Flight II have incorporated a pair of enclosed hangars for medium helicopters and UAVs. Heavy lift helicopters may land on the aft landing pad but cannot be stowed in the hangars. The forward vertical replenishment station can only support the landing of light helicopters but can accept heavy cargo for stowage. Use of the forward station requires the deck gun to be slewed to the broadside.
Communications facilities allow properly-fitted helicopters to work in conjunction with the ship's sonar arrays to perform ASW missions, supplementing ship coverage with an onboard dipping sonar and sonobuoys. The helicopters may also carry and deploy lightweight torpedoes, extending the ship's weapon range. The aviation facilities also allow for the deployment of troops ashore and for the flexible transport of vital cargo.
The SR/EWS-654 electronic warfare suite (formerly the WN-19) provides dedicated passive detection and active jamming capability against radar-guided weapons as well as warship/aircraft surveillance and targeting radar. Two units are installed on either side of the bridge structure and can provide targeting information for anti-ship missile strikes based on radar emissions. It is also tied to the chaff and active decoy dispensers allowing it to control the activation of both systems in response to detected threats.
Torpedo defense is provided by the towed SR/ENS-670 acoustic torpedo decoy, which can generate simulated ship noise to seduce torpedoes away from the target. It is also capable of generating false active sonar returns to spoof onboard active guidance systems. The decoy can function as a towed receiver for the Warship Torpedo Defense System, which uses the active emitter of the SW/ESH-820 sonar to detect incoming torpedoes and deploy soft and hardkill countermeasures including the SSI-725 interceptor torpedo and the SDC-729 torpedo countermeasure system.
Defense against laser and optically-guided missiles is provided by a quartet of Mark 40 Integrated Countermeasure Dispensers, a carousel-type design capable of launching a variety of smoke and chaff modules, as well as active decoys and light missiles. Older vessels use the more conventional rack-type Mark 36 countermeasure dispenser, but are being refitted with the Mark 40 during regular maintenance. Certain ships have been fitted with directed infrared countermeasures for use against imaging infrared guided missiles.
The Remote Standoff Minehunting System can be deployed from the ship's boat bays to provide more comprehensive minehunting capability. The system adds a pair of remotely operated underwater vehicles that can be used to disarm or destroy naval mines at a safe distance. Due to cost and space constraints, however, the system is deployed only as needed.
Beginning in 2012, certain ships have been fitted with the Mark 115 Long Range Acoustic Device, an acoustic hailing device also intended for use as a non-lethal deterrent against interlopers. By 2022, all ships of the class are expected to be fitted with such devices.
Crew and sustainment
The class is provided with a high-power air conditioning system to support operations in the tropics and other warm environments. The system also includes filtration and overpressure capabilities for CBRN protection. Flight III ships introduced a higher-capacity system to support the larger electronics outfit, while Flight IV introduced a further upgraded system with more compact compressors. The electronics suite of a Flight IV destroyer is estimated to require twice the cooling power of the original Flight I design.
Underway replenishment provisions allow ships to receive resupply from either side in addition to vertical replenishment through the fore and aft stations. The ships can also provide fuel supplies to smaller craft over the stern.
- Punic Navy
- 670 ships active, 20 building, 60 ordered
- Punic Navy
- Gensokyo Republic
- Republic Navy
- 44 active, 4 building, 12 ordered (as Magus Night-class)
- Republic Navy
- Imperial Navy
- 96 active, 6 building, 38 ordered (as Shimakaze-class)
- Imperial Navy