History of War

YAMATO JAPAN’S DOOMED FLAGSHIP

Source:   The Japanese super battleship Yamato undergoing sea trials in late 1941  

Yamato’s senior officers prior to the start of Operation Ten-ichigo

Yamato in dock fitting out, September 1941

THE MIGHTY BATTLESHIP YAMATO

Yamato was enormous, measuring 263m (863ft) stem to stern. She displaced 70,000 tons and was 40 per cent bigger than the battleships of the Iowa class, the US Navy’s largest. Its superstructure, dominated by the mast and raked funnel, was like a fortress bedecked with guns. Enough steel went into the hull to lay a railway track between Tokyo and Osaka. Yamato bore a full load of munitions for all of its weapons on 7 April 1945.

TYPE 96 25MM ANTI-AIRCRAFT GUNS

Yamato had 152 Type 96 25mm (0.98in) anti-aircraft guns, with 50 in triple mounts and two single mounts.

RADAR

Three different radar sets were carried by the battleship, including a Type 13 air search radar, Type 21 air and surface search radar and a Type 22 surface search radar.

MAIN GUNS

The main armament of Yamato consisted of nine Type 94 46cm (18.1in) naval cannons mounted in three turrets. These guns, each weighing 162 tons, were the largest ever emplaced on a ship, and were capable of hurling a 1,400kg (3,200lb) shell to a maximum range of 4km (135,000ft). The ship carried 1,080 of these. Each triple turret weighed a hefty 2,774 tons.

ARMOUR

The Yamato possessed substantial protection, carrying 22,500 tons of armour – the most ever placed on a warship. Covering the armoured citadel was a 41cm (16in main belt of armour that extended below the

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