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JS Ise DDH-182: The Resilient Second in the Hyuga Class Helicopter Destroyer Line

DDH-182 JS Ise is the second Hyuga class helicopter destroyer of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, and is one of the largest Japanese-built warships after World War II, second only to the newly built DDH-183 Izumo.

The JS Ise destroyer along with her sister JS Hyuga are the pride of the power of the Japanese Navy. This warship is both capable of a modern destroyer, and has the ability of a helicopter carrier. She has the ability to operate a large number of helicopters at the same time due to her vast whole deck and large hull volume.

This provides superior zone to anti-submarine warfare capabilities over conventional helicopter-equipped escorts, as well as transport helicopters and rescue helicopters, enabling military operations other than war, such as disaster dispatch and international peace operations, or amphibious operations. With a few modifications the ship can be adapted to accommodate the F-35B Joint Strike Fighters or the MV-22 Osprey, and then it would be a particularly dangerous light carrier for any force opposed to Japan. So she serves as a “helicopter destroyer” and can take on various roles related to the Japanese Navy.

JS Ise DDH-182 Helicopter destroyer review

The Ise was laid down on May 30, 2008 at the IHI Marine United Shipyard in Yokohama as a 13,500-ton helicopter-equipped escort ship based on the medium-term defense plan and commissioned into service on March 16, 2011. She is named after the Japanese province of Ise located in the south-central portion of mainland Japan. It is the second ship to be named Ise, the first being the Imperial Japanese Navy World War II era battleship Ise.

The ship was designed with a smooth shape, the hull and superstructure are slanted on the sides in consideration of stealth. The main hull consists of seven decks and the bridge structure is composed of five decks. The island structure was brought to the starboard side with a length of 70 meters and a width of 9 meters. The bridge is located on the fourth layer of the island, and there is an air traffic control room at the rear of the same level. Except for this island part, the upper deck has a flat structure from the bow to the stern, and the entire area is the flight deck.

The specifications of the Ise are comparable to light aircraft carriers, such as the Italian aircraft carrier Giuseppe Garibaldi and Spanish Príncipe de Asturias. Unlike conventional aircraft carriers, the Ise is unable to operate fixed-wing aircraft as it is not fitted with a ski-jump or any other equipment.

JS Ise and her sister ship are 197m long, a beam of 33m and weigh 19,000 tons fully loaded, making them even bigger than HMS Invincible. Both have two aircraft lifts, an enclosed hangar and are able to carry four antisubmarine warfare helicopters, and can support up to eleven SH-60K type helicopters. The ship has a crew of 340 sailors and can only carry helicopters. As Japan was restricted under the pacifist constitution, it cannot possess offensive aircraft carriers.


The JS Ise helicopter destroyer, 13,950 tons, is a camouflaged aircraft carrier and one of the most modern anti-submarine warfare vehicles of the JMSDF.
The JS Ise helicopter destroyer, 13,950 tons, is a camouflaged aircraft carrier and one of the most modern anti-submarine warfare vehicles of the JMSDF.


The heart of this helicopter carrier is a combined gas turbine and gas propulsion. She is fitted with four General Electric LM2500 gas turbines, developing 25,000 horsepower each. The propulsion system provides a maximum speed of more than 30 knots.

In order to protect the ship against inbound missile threats or airborne enemy aircraft, Ise is equipped with 16 mk41 vertical-launch system cells. She is also accommodates two 20mm Phalanx anti-missile cannons and two triple 324mm torpedo mounts for self defence against submerged enemy submarines. 4 12.7mm heavy machine guns are used for anti-personnel and extremely close-in anti-aircraft defense.


JS Ise (DDH-182) is one of the largest Japanese-made battleships since World War II
JS Ise (DDH-182) is one of the largest Japanese-made warships since World War II

Sensors and processing systems on the ship are executed by the advanced technology command system including OYQ-10 advanced combat direction system. FCS-3 AAW system is an integrated naval weapons system developed by the Japanese Defense Ministry. For submarine threats there is the OQQ-21 anti submarine warfare system. The electronic warfare is handled by the NOLQ-3C EW, OPS-20C surface search radar for scanning for low flying missile threats.

It can be said that the Ise is one of the largest warships built for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and has given Japan its first real power projection capability since 1945. The vessel could also be instrumental for disaster recovery missions in the region, prone to earthquakes, floods, tsunamis and typhoons.JS Ise joined the Philippines international emergency relief team to rescue the damage caused by the supertyphoon Haiyan hit the Philippines in 2013, carried out relief supplies, medical care and prevention activities. Most recent, Ise participated in the RIMPAC 2018 exercise.