Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Commissions JS Maya AEGIS Destroyer

The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) commissioned JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer at Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) Isogo shipyard in Yokohama. JS Maya (DDG-179) is a Maya-class AEGIS destroyer in the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF). Maya was named for Mount Maya and shares her name with a World War II heavy cruiser. The announcement of a new destroyer class was on August 2015 with the name 27DDG. She was laid down by Japan Marine United in Yokohama, Kanagawa on April 14, 2017, and was launched on July 30, 2018. She was commissioned on March 19, 2020. JS Maya (DDG-179) joins the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force’s Escort Flotilla 1, based in Yokosuka.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer

The Maya-class AEGIS destroyer destroyer is 170 meters long, displaces 8200 tons, will operate with a crew of 310 sailors and will be fitted with the AEGIS Baseline J7 combat system and the Northrop Grumman AN/SPQ-9B radar system. Being an improved subclass of the Atago-class destroyer, the Maya-class is very similar to its parent class but with several differences and improvements. The enlarged hull is believed to allow future naval weapons to be accommodated, most notably railguns and laser point-defense systems. The ships will be powered two combined gas turbine-electric and gas turbine (COGLAG) engines, the ship and 300 crew are propelled to a maximum stated speed of 30 knots.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer

The Maya-class features the newer Aegis Baseline 9 system (referred as J7 in Japan). The Maya-class is also the first JMSDF Aegis vessel to be ready for ballistic missile defense (BMD) from the time of its commissioning. The Atago-class uses the Aegis Baseline 7 system and underwent modifications to be able to conduct BMD. The Maya-class is equipped with the Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) system. This will allow the ship to share surveillance or targeting information between other CEC equipped assets, whether that be from ships from the American or Australian Navy or from American or Japanese E-2 Hawkeye.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer

The AEGIS destroyer destroyers are equipped with the SM-3 Block IIA and SM-6 missiles. The SM-3 Block IIA is the latest variant of the SM-3 missiles and is joint developed between the U.S. and Japan. While the primary role of the SM-6 is to intercept enemy aircraft and cruise missiles, the SM-6 is also capable of intercepting medium-range ballistic missile and can double as an anti-ship missile. The ship will use a Type 17 Ship-to-Ship Missile. The ships are equipped with one 5-inch (127mm/L62) Mk-45 Mod 4 naval gun in a stealth-shaped mount, two 20 mm Phalanx Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWS), SM-3 Block IIA and SM-6 air/missile defense missiles and Type 17 ship-to-ship missiles.

Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer
Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force JS Maya (DDG-179) guided missile destroyer

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