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SS Harushio Class

The SS Harushio class is a 3rd generation submarine, and uses a tear drop type hull. It is technically derived from the previous Yushio class and there is no major advancement, but silent running quality is improved [with a decrease of self noise] and there are some improvements in underwater capability.

Because is is a slightly enlarged and revised edition of the Yushio type, the silhouette is similar, but there is a projection section of the countermeasure intelligence sonar where it differs in the appearance extending to the bow top that makes it is possible to distinguish them. The hull was extended about 1 meter in total length attendant upon inside of warship space enlargement in comparison with the Yushio type.

Many characteristics of the submarines of the Maritime Self Defense Force are not published, with secrecy concerning maximum depth. The Harushio class uses the NS110 high strength steel in portions of the pressure-resistant boat hull, and the operating depth is presumed to be 300 meters or more. Making use of NS90 steel and the NS110 steel, the safe operating depth for the pressure-resistant boat hull is said by some sources to be 500 meters.

The Harushio class, is equipped with the the ZQQ sonar and TASS for bow sonar. The torpedo system uses the domestic 89 type torpedoes to assure improving the torpedo attack power.

The budget for the Harushio class was estimated at 38,673,000,000 Yen, but construction expenses increased substantially, to 44,266,000,000 Yen ago. As for the breakdown, the hulls cost 26,558,000,000 Yen, the main electric motors 1,433,000,000 Yen, the main generators 1,792,000,000 Yen, and the main storage batteries reached 2,185,000,000 Yen. The remainder of the electronic equipment and the like probably is 10,000,000,000.

The last unit of this class, the Asashio, began a new practice of the Submarine Division which was executed in 1999. In March 2000 the Asashio was redesignated as a training submarine (the TSS 3601), and was modified for this role. Until recently, modifying an old-fashioned submarine into an auxiliary vessel was the norm for training submarine crew members. But because these older vessels had restricted periscope depth, range and the like, this became less useful for training. It was decided to use as a training ship a vessel which had the characteristics of newly-built ship, and which possessed the same search and attack equipment.

The National Defense Program Guidelines in and after JFY 2005 and Mid-Term Defense Program (JFY 2005-2009) were adopted by the Security Council and the Cabinet on 10 December 2004. The latest changes to MSDF organisation was elaborated in the December 2004 guiding documents, the National Defence Program Outline (NDPO) and the Mid-Term Defence Program (MDP). It called for maintaining the number of combat-coded submarines at 16. This would imply withdrawing two additional Harushio class submarines from service by 2010 that would otherwise remain in service through the 2015 timeframe. Possibly these boats would also be redesignated as training submarines.

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