Japanese cruiser Oyodo

Oyodo was a light cruiser of the Imperial Japanese Navy, completed during World War II, and was the only ship of her class completed before the end of the war. As was the practice with IJN light cruisers, she was named after a river, in this case the Oyodo River in Kyushu, Japan. Intended as a command vessel for submarine operations, she was used for a variety of missions, and became the flagship of the Combined Fleet before being sunk by American aircraft at Kure, Hiroshima in July 1945.


Country Name Origin Year
Japan 1942
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Japan 1943 1945 View

Ship in Class

Ship Ship Laid down Launched Completed Fate
136 Oyodo 14 February 1941 2 April 1942 28 February 1943 Sunk by air raid on 28 July 1945
137 Niyodo


Cancelled on 6 November 1941

Oyodo was laid down at Kure Naval Arsenal on 14 February 1941, launched on 2 April 1942 and completed 28 February 1943. Her chief equipping officer and first commander was Captain Sadatoshi Tomioka. However, by the time of her completion, the role for which Oyodo was designed no longer existed. Instead, the Japanese navy made use of her long range and anti-aircraft capability as an escort for carrier groups. Originally completed without any radar, a Type 21 radar set was installed in March 1943.

Early career

After her working-up period, on 15 July 1943 Oyodo arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands, the Japanese Navy's main fleet base in the Pacific, and continued on to Rabaul to deliver reinforcements and supplies. In mid-September, In response to American carrier aircraft raiding in the Gilbert Islands, Oyodo sortied with Vice Admiral Jisaburo Ozawa's fleet to engage the American carriers. The fleet consisted of the aircraft carriers Shokaku, Zuikaku and Zuiho, the battleships Yamato and Nagato, heavy cruisers Myoko, Haguro, Tone, Chikuma, Mogami, Atago, Takao, Chokai and Maya, the light cruiser Agano and fifteen destroyers. Despite extensive searches, this force failed to make contact with the American striking force and returned to Truk. A second mission in mid-October likewise failed to produce any results.

On 30 December 1943, Oyodo participated in an operation to reinforce the garrisons at Rabaul and Kavieng. Oyodo had became the flagship of Vice Admiral Jisaburo Ozawa's Third Fleet on 6 December. While returning to Truk on 1 January 1944, Oyodo was slightly damaged by US aircraft of Task Group 50.2, with two crewmen killed and six wounded. The following day, she rescued 71 survivors from the transport Kiyosumi Maru, which had been torpedoed by an American submarine. She returned to Yokosuka on 16 February following the successful American invasion of Kwajalein, and loaded torpedoes and supplies for the Japanese garrison at Saipan, which were delivered on 22 February.

Career (Japan)
Name: Oyodo
Namesake: Oyodo River
Ordered: 1939
Laid down: 14 February 1941
Launched: 2 April 1942
Commissioned: 28 February 1943
Struck: 20 November 1945
Fate: sunk 28 July 1945
bombed by USN aircraft at Kure Naval Base
Notes: raised and scrapped 1 August 1948
General characteristics
Class and type: Oyodo-class cruiser
Displacement: 8,164 long tons (8,295 t) (standard)
11,433 long tons (11,616 t) (full load)
Length: 192 metres (629 feet 11 inches)
Beam: 15.7 metres (51 feet 6 inches)
Draught: 5.95 metres (19 feet 6 inches)
Installed power: 110,000 shp (82,000 kW)
Propulsion: Geared turbines, 4 shafts
6 Kampon boilers
Speed: 34 kn (63.0 km/h; 39.1 mph)
Range: 10,600 nautical miles (19,600 kilometres) @ 18 knots (33 km/h)
Complement: 782 (initial); 911 (final)
Armament: 6 × 155 mm (6.1inch)/60 cal. 3rd Year Type guns (2 × 3)
8 × 100 mm (3.9inch)/65 cal. Type 98 AA guns (4 × 2)
18 × Type 96 25mm AA guns, (6×3, 1943)
52 × Type 96 25mm AA guns, (12×3 + 16x1, 1945)
Armor: 60 mm side belt, 30-50 mm deck, 25-30 mm turrets, barbettes, 40 mm conning tower
Aircraft carried: 6 × floatplanes (1943),
2 × floatplanes (1944)

End notes