JMSDF commissions surveillance ship, christens frigate

The Hibiki-class ocean surveillance ship JS Aki (Photo: JMSDF)

The Japan Maritime Self-Defence Force (JMSDF) commissioned the ocean surveillance ship JS Aki (pictured) into service on Thursday, March 4.

Built by Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding and utilising a small-waterplane-area twin hull (SWATH) design, the 67-metre Aki is the JMSDF’s third Hibiki-class surveillance ship.

The vessel, which has been named after the Aki-nada area of Japan’s Seto Inland Sea, is powered by four Mitsubishi S6U-MPTK diesel-electric engines that deliver a maximum speed of 11 knots and a range of 7,000 kilometres.

Earlier in the week, the JMSDF formally named the lead ship of a new class of guided missile frigate.

The frigate has been named Mogami after a river in Yamagata Prefecture. Shortly after christening, the vessel was launched into the water at the Nagasaki shipyard of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

The future Mogami‘s expected commissioning will be in March 2022.

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