The Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) commissioned its fourth Mogami-class frigate at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ Nagasaki Works yard on March 7.
Mikuma is named after the Mikuma River in the Oita prefecture, Kyusyu, and entered service a little under three months after it was launched in December last year.
With JS Mikuma, Japan commissioned the fourth ship in the class in a year, with the first one – JS Kumano – entering service in March 2022. The second and third ships in the class entered service in May and December last year.
The Mogami-class is a new generation of JMSDF frigates, displacing over 5,000 tons at full load and combining compactness with manpower saving measures. The ships of the class are envisioned as frigate-sized vessels with destroyer capabilities.
The 133-meter vessels will be crewed by some 100 sailors, a notable decrease compared to conventional and Aegis destroyers. The frigates will be replacing the Asagiri- and Abukuma-class destroyers.
They will be powered by Rolls-Royce MT30 gas turbines and MAN diesel engines, propelling to speeds of over 30 knots. When it comes to armaments, the ships are expected to carry vertical launch system cells, anti-ship missiles, and a SeaRAM short range missile system, in addition to a main gun and remote weapon stations.
Up to 22 ships in the class will be built at a unit price of about ¥48 billion (approx. $461M) to replace the Asagiri- and Abukuma-class destroyers.