Japanese aircraft carrier Kumano Maru

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KumanoMaru-1945.jpg
Class overview
Operators: War flag of the Imperial Japanese Army.svg Imperial Japanese Army
Preceded by: Yamashio Maru class
Succeeded by: None
Built: 1944–1945
In commission: 1945
Planned: 1
Completed: 1
Scrapped: 1
Career (Empire of Japan)
Name: Kumano Maru
Builder: Hitachi Shipbuilding, Innoshima
Laid down: 15 August 1944
Launched: 28 January 1945
Completed: 31 March 1945
In service: 1945–1947
Captured: 15 August 1945
Fate: Scrapped, 1948
General characteristics
Type: Landing ship/aviation ship
Displacement: 8,258 tonnes (8,128 long tons)
Length: 152.7 m (501 ft 0 in)
Beam: 19.58 m (64.2 ft)
Draught: 7 m (23 ft 0 in) (mean)
Installed power: 10,000 shp (7,500 kW)
4 × boilers
Propulsion: 2 shafts
2 Geared steam turbines
Speed: 19 knots (35 km/h; 22 mph)
Range: 6,000 nmi (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) @ 17 knots (31 km/h; 20 mph)
Armament: 8 × 75 mm (3 in) AA guns
6 × 25 mm (1 in) AA guns
Aircraft carried: 8 to 37
Aviation facilities: takeoff-only flight deck

Kumano Maru (熊野丸?) was a landing craft carrier with a small flight deck built for the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II. Launched and completed in early 1945, the ship saw no significant action.

Construction[edit]

Kumano Maru was laid down at the Hitachi Shipbuilding yard at Innoshima as a standard Type M wartime cargo ship. The ship was taken over by the Army during construction, redesigned as a landing craft transport, and designated a Type B landing ship. It could carry up to a dozen 17.1-metre (56 ft) and thirteen 14.0-metre (46 ft) landing craft in its hold. They were launched on rails through two large doors in the stern.[1]

The ship was also designed to transport anywhere from 8 to 37 aircraft, depending on their size and the number of landing craft aboard. A 110.0 by 21.3 metres (361 by 70 ft) flight deck was mounted above the main deck with an elevator aft. This permitted the stored aircraft to be flown off the ship to onshore airfields. The deck was not large enough to allow aircraft to land. The ship's funnel was mounted on the starboard side and vented horizontally outward to keep the flight deck clear.[1]

Operational history[edit]

Kumano Maru in 1947 at Kawasaki Heavy Industries

Kumano Maru was launched 28 January 1945 and completed on 31 March. She survived the war, and was used until 1947 to repatriate Japanese forces abroad. The ship was sold to Kawasaki Kisen K. K. Line in 1947 and converted to a conventional merchant ship. Afterward, she was scrapped in 1948.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Gardiner, p. 214

Bibliography[edit]

  • Chesneau, Roger (1995). Aircraft Carriers of the World, 1914 to the Present: An Illustrated Encyclopedia (New, revised ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-902-2. 
  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7. 
  • Fukui, Shizuo (1991). Japanese Naval Vessels at the End of World War II. London: Greenhill Books. ISBN 1-85367-125-8. 
  • Hackett, Bob; Cundall, Peter (2010). "IJA Landing Craft Depot Ship KUMANO MARU: Tabular Record of Movement". CombinedFleet.com. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  • 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. 
  • 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. 

See also[edit]

Hitachi Zosen Corporation