Hiryū (飛龍?, "Flying Dragon") was a modified Sōryū-class aircraft carrier of the Imperial Japanese Navy. They failed to shoot down any of the dive bombers, but two of the Zero were shot up by the bombers' rear gunners, with one Zero forced to ditch near a destroyer. [10], Aircraft were transported between the hangars and the flight deck by three elevators, the forward one abreast the island on the centerline and the other two offset to starboard. The fighters engaged 261 Squadron RAF, claiming to have shot down two with two more shared with fighters from the other carriers. Four B-17s attacked Hiryū, but missed with all their bombs. After a brief refit, HiryÅ« and three other fleet carriers of the First Air Fleet (Kido Butai) participated in the Battle of Midway in June 1942. At roughly the same time, the Japanese carriers were attacked by 12 USAAC B-17s, bombing from 20,000 feet (6,100 m). They found only empty ocean, as the American carriers had immediately departed the area to return to Hawaii. It was backed by an internal anti-splinter bulkhead. Two Zeros were shot down later for the loss of one Wildcat. Modified Sōryū-class aircraft carrier 17,300 tons (standard) 20,165 tons (full load) 12 × 127mm DP guns 31 × 25mm AA guns Aircraft: 57 Renzo 1942: Ship History Built by Yokosuka Naval Arsenal at Yokosuka in Japan. Poor armor protection reduced the aircraft carrier's … [21] Now the flagship of the Second Carrier Division, the ship embarked 21 Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighters, 18 Aichi D3A "Val" dive bombers, and 18 Nakajima B5N "Kate" torpedo bombers. This process was slowed by the number of ordnance carts used to handle the bombs and torpedoes and the limited number of ordnance elevators. Their maximum rate of fire was 14 rounds a minute, but their sustained rate of fire was approximately eight rounds per minute. According to historian Mark Stille, the weapon had many faults including an inability to "handle high-speed targets because it could not be trained or elevated fast enough by either hand or power, its sights were inadequate for high-speed targets, it possessed excessive vibration and muzzle blast, and its magazines were too small to maintain high rates of fire". [37] While at Hashirajima, HiryÅ«'s air group was based ashore at Tomitaka Airfield, near Saiki, Ōita, and conducted flight and weapons training with the other First Air Fleet carrier units. The Japanese were jumped at 14:38 by two Wildcats which shot down one torpedo bomber before they were both shot down by the escorting Zeros. The fleet departed Etorofu on 26 November[19] and followed a course across the north-central Pacific to avoid commercial shipping lanes. Later that day the dive bombers sank the oil tanker USS Pecos. ... IJN Unryū Class Carrier. The ship's power and slim, cruiser-type hull with a length-to-beam ratio of 10:1 gave her a speed of 34.3 knots (63.5 km/h; 39.5 mph)[6] and made her the fastest carrier in the world at the time of her commissioning. Hiryū ("Flying Dragon") was an aircraft carrier built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) during the 1930s. Her aircraft supported the Japanese invasion of French Indochina in mid-1940. After bombarding American forces on the atoll, the carriers were attacked by aircraft from Midway and the carriers USS Enterprise, Hornet, and Yorktown. The Imperial Japanese Navy planned the construction of 45 aircraft carriers from 1918 to 1943 and commissioned 25 of them between 1922 and 1944. The British were attempting to find Nagumo's ships all morning and HiryÅ«'s Zeros on CAP over the fleet helped to shoot down an RAF Catalina, shot down a Fairey Albacore torpedo bomber and drove off another from the carrier Indomitable. They strafed the airfield, and shot down two Curtiss P-40 fighters attempting to take off when the Zeros arrived and a Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bomber that had earlier diverted from Hickam Army Airfield, and also destroyed a Stinson O-49 observation aircraft[26] on the ground for the loss of one of their own. From a position 230 nmi (430 km; 260 mi) north of Oahu, Hiryū and the other five carriers launched two waves of aircraft on the morning of 7 December 1941 Hawaiian time. 413, 421–23, 426–29, Parshall & Tully, pp. [9] Hiryū had a designed aircraft capacity of 64, plus nine spares. After bombarding American forces on the atoll, the carriers were attacked by aircraft from Midway and the carriers USS Enterprise, Hornet, and Yorktown. After being heavily damaged by air attacks 4 June 1942 at the Battle of Midway, Hiryu sank on 5 … [34], On 26 March, the five carriers of the First Air Fleet departed from Staring Bay; they were spotted by a Catalina about 350 nautical miles (650 km; 400 mi) southeast of Ceylon on the morning of 4 April. An American carrier-plane attack around 10:25 am disabled IJN carriers Kaga, Sōryū and Akagi but left Hiryū untouched. A sister ship, Hiryū, was intended to follow Sōryū, but Hiryū 's design was heavily modified and she is often considered to be a separate class. The Avengers went after Hiryū while the Marauders attacked Akagi. It was at this time, around 10:20, that in the words of Jonathan Parshall and Anthony Tully, the "Japanese air defenses would finally and catastrophically fail. That ship, the battleship Pennsylvania, was in drydock and its position was occupied by the light cruiser Helena and the minelayer Oglala; all four torpedoes missed. How and why the Japanese designed and constructed the WWII-era, medium-sized Sōryū-, Hiryū-, and Unryū-class aircraft carriers, and how they were operated, is covered in detail. The air group suffered heavily during the attack: 2 B5Ns were shot down en route to the island, another was shot down by AA fire, 1 was forced to ditch on the trip back, another disappeared on the return trip and 5 were damaged beyond repair. Around 07:00, one of Hōshō's Yokosuka B4Y aircraft discovered Hiryū still afloat and not in any visible danger of sinking. This raid was intended to secure newly conquered Burma, Malaya, and the Dutch East Indies against any Allied attack by destroying base facilities and forces in the eastern Indian Ocean. The other four pilots attacked the battleships West Virginia and Oklahoma. Seventeen minutes later, after the list increased to 23 degrees, the crew was ordered to abandon ship. During the first few months of the Pacific War, the ship supported the conquest of the Dutch East Indies in January 1942. One torpedo missed and the other struck near the bow without the typical plume of water, although the detonation was quite visible. HiryÅ« (飛龍?, "Flying Dragon") was an aircraft carrier built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) during the 1930s. The four carriers launched an airstrike of 180 aircraft against Tjilatjep on 5 March and set the town on fire, sinking five small ships, and damaging nine others that later had to be scuttled. To this day there is much confusion about VMSB-241 at Midway. That ship, the battleship Pennsylvania, was in drydock and its position was occupied by the light cruiser Helena and the minelayer Oglala; all four torpedoes missed. In September 1940, the ship's air group was transferred to Hainan Island to support the Japanese invasion of French Indochina. [Note 1] Her aircraft supported the Japanese invasion of French Indochina in mid-1940. 392–93, Shores, Cull & Izawa, Vol. Her aircraft supported the Japanese invasion of French Indochina in mid-1940. [5], Hiryū was fitted with four geared steam turbine sets with a total of 153,000 shaft horsepower (114,000 kW), each driving one propeller shaft, using steam provided by eight Kampon water-tube boilers. The air group suffered heavily during the attack: two B5Ns were shot down by fighters, with a third falling victim to AA fire. The maximum effective rate of fire was only between 110 and 120 rounds per minute because of the frequent need to change the fifteen-round magazines. She was one of the carriers that began the Pacific War with the attack on Pearl Harbor. The carriers quickly abandoned the chase and dropped anchor at Hashirajima anchorage on 22 April. [8] This caused problems in handling aircraft because the wings of a Nakajima B5N "Kate" torpedo bomber could neither be spread nor folded in the upper hangar. II, pp. [55] HiryÅ« was untouched and proceeded to launch 18 D3As, escorted by 6 Zeros, at 10:54 and a second wave of 10 B5Ns, escorted by 6 Zeros, at 13:30 against the American carrier Yorktown. It was at this time, around 10:20, that in the words of Jonathan Parshall and Anthony Tully, the "Japanese air defenses would finally and catastrophically fail. This page was last modified on 7 January 2016, at 02:25. The Avengers shot down 1 of Hiryū's Zeros. [22][23][Note 2], In the first wave, 8 B5N torpedo bombers were supposed to attack the aircraft carriers that normally berthed on the northwest side of Ford Island, but none were in Pearl Harbor that day; 4 of the B5N pilots diverted to their secondary target, ships berthed alongside "1010 Pier" where the fleet flagship was usually moored. 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