With the 13DDX destroyer, the Japanese Navy wants to take a head start in the field of naval escorts

The first characteristics of the 13DDX destroyer, the Japanese Navy's new escort which is due to enter service in the next decade, were made public during the Naval Leaders' Combined Naval Event 24 (CNE 24) conference, which is held in London at the end of May,

While the design of the new New-FFM frigates, a lengthened and better armed version of the Mogami class frigates, began this year, the Japanese Navy presented its next destroyer, which should help complete the transformation of the Japanese naval forces. Japanese self-defense, to respond to the evolving regional threat, characterized by the Chinese and Russian fleets, and by North Korean ballistic and cruise missiles.

However, much more than complementing the already impressive Japanese surface fleet, within the no less impressive Japanese naval self-defense force, the 13DDX destroyer will, in many respects, be the first representative of a new generation of escorts, having a head start on the next American Constellations, the Italian DDx, the German F126 or even the British Type 83.

The 13DDX destroyer, the first representative of a new generation of surface combatants?

Indeed, in many aspects, the choices of the Japanese Navy, concerning the expected capabilities of the 13DDX destroyer, open the way to a new generation of surface combatants, for which the missile does not represent the alpha and omega operational efficiency.

Japanese Navy Railgun
Japan has one of the most advanced Railgun programs today, having already carried out firing from a naval platform. This did not prevent Tokyo from joining the Franco-German ISL program on this subject.

Thus, the entire architecture of the new ship, as presented today, is based on the integration of new capabilities designed specifically to respond to this evolution. This is largely based on a wide range of energy weapons, since the 13DDX destroyer must simultaneously carry a high-energy laser with a power of 100 Kw, as well as a microwave cannon system, and one or more Railgun type electric cannons.

All this equipment has the function of ensuring an optimal interception bubble against emerging threats, composed of anti-ship ballistic missiles, supersonic cruise missiles, missiles carrying a hypersonic glider, as well as against the drone threat, whether they are aerial or surface, FPV or swarm.

The 13DDX destroyer will not, however, neglect the specific added value of missiles, in particular surface-to-air missiles, since it will carry two types, one to intercept medium and long range threats, the other composed of short and very short range SHORAD type missiles.

The ship will finally carry hypersonic anti-ship and land-strike missiles, both cruise and ballistic with hypersonic glider, giving it strike and power projection capabilities which are out of reach, even today, of Japanese destroyers. . Electromagnetic and cyber warfare capabilities will complete this offensive and defensive arsenal.

New sensors, electric propulsion and automation at the heart of the new Japanese destroyer

To implement these systems, the 13DDX destroyers will have new sensors, including a radar designed to track and engage maneuvering targets at hypersonic speed, at high and very high altitude.

destroyers 13ddx armaments and systems
Presentation of the capabilities and equipment of the 13DDX destroyer during the CNE 24 conference – The navalnesw.com site, present on site, published an article to read on this subject.

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