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Ibuki in drydock at Sasebo – 64% scrapped, 14 March 1947

Career (Japan)
Name: Ibuki
Ordered: November 1941
Builder: Kure Naval Arsenal, modified at Sasebo
Laid down: 1942
Launched: 21 May 1943
Fate: Scrapped 1946–47
General characteristics (1943 design)
Type: Light aircraft carrier
Displacement: 14,800 t (14,600 long tons) (trials)
Length: 200.6 m (658 ft 2 in)
Beam: 21.2 m (69 ft 7 in)
Draft: 6.31 m (20 ft 8 in)
Installed power: 72,000 shp (54,000 kW)
Propulsion: 2 × shafts

2 × geared steam turbinesets 4 × water-tube boilers

Speed: 29 knots (54 km/h; 33 mph)
Range: 7,500 nmi (13,900 km; 8,600 mi) at 18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph)
Complement: 1,015
Sensors and

processing systems:

1 × Type 2, Mark 2, Model 1 air search radar
Armament: 22 × 3 - Type 96 25 mm anti-aircraft guns
Aircraft carried: 27 aircraft

Ibuki (伊吹?) was the last named heavy cruiser begun by the Imperial Japanese Navy.


[hide] *1 Design and service

Design and serviceEdit


Ibuki was to have a similar armament to Mogami, with ten 200 mm (8 in) guns mounted in five twin turrets. She was to have a secondary armament of eight 127 mm (5 in) dual purpose guns, sixteen 600 mm (24 in) torpedo tubes and two catapults for three floatplanes. She was to have a maximum speed of 33 kn (61 km/h; 38 mph). The Mogamis had been built to save as much weight as possible but had to be extensively rebuilt shortly after trials to fix several defects. Because Ibuki was ordered after Japan had withdrawn from the Washington Naval Treaty and was not hindered by the 10,000 long tons (10,000 t) displacement limitation for cruisers, she was designed to weigh 12,200 long tons (12,400 t) with a good balance of armament, armour, speed and seaworthiness.

Construction of a second Ibuki-class cruiser, designated No. 301 but never given a name, was begun on 1 June 1942, but suspended a month later. No. 301 was scrapped in 1943, but Ibuki was launched at Kure Dockyard on 21 May 1943.[1]

Aircraft carrierEdit

The Japanese Navy considered completing Ibuki as a fleet oiler for underway replenishment, a capability that the Navy needed. However, since Ibuki's hull was already complete and Japan was desperate for carriers, she was towed to Sasebo in November 1943 to be converted to a light aircraft carrier.[2]

Ibuki was built with a full-length 205 m (8,071 in) long flight deck, two lifts that serviced a single hangar[3] and a small starboard island structure. She was to have a very light armament of only four 76 mm (3 in) and forty-eight 25 mm (1 in) anti-aircraft guns. Even so, she would only have been able to operate 27 aircraft in her hangar and 10 to 11 more on her deck[4], less than other Japanese light carriers. In addition, Ibuki was to have stern rails for up to 30 depth charges. Her maximum speed was reduced to 29 kn (54 km/h; 33 mph), which was still enough for fleet operations. Two 21-go radars [5] were to be fitted and launchers for 120 m (4,724 in) anti-aircraft rockets were later included.

By late 1944, the Japanese Navy was so short of advanced aircraft, trained aircrew and aviation fuel that the shortage of carriers had become irrelevant. However, work continued until March 1945, when shipyard damage and material shortage from American bombing and submarine attacks made construction impossible. On 16 March 1945 the work on Ibuki officially ceased.[6] When Ibuki was surrendered to occupying forces in September, she was 80% complete. She was scrapped at Sasebo in 1947.


  1. ^ Fontenoy, Paul E. (2006). Aircraft carriers: an illustrated history of their impact. ABC-CLIO. p. 82. ISBN 978-1-85109-573-5. Retrieved 2010-07-21.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^


  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946. Greenwich: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7.
  • Jentschura, Hansgeorg; Jung, Dieter; Mickel, Peter (1977). Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869–1945. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. ISBN 0-87021-893-X.
  • Lacroix, Eric; Wells, Linton (1997). Japanese Cruisers of the Pacific War. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-311-3.
  • Polmar, Norman; Genda, Minoru (2006). Aircraft Carriers: A History of Carrier Aviation and Its Influence on World Events. Volume 1, 1909-1945. Washington, D.C.: Potomac Books. ISBN 1-57488-663-0.
  • Silverstone, Paul H. (1984). Directory of the World's Capital Ships. New York: Hippocrene Books. ISBN 0-88254-979-0.
  • Stille, Mark (2005). Imperial Japanese Navy Aircraft Carriers 1921–1945. New Vanguard. 109. Oxford, UK: Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1-84176-853-7.
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