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Shokaku file photo [1857]

Shokaku

CountryJapan
Ship ClassShokaku-class Aircraft Carrier
BuilderYokosuka Naval Arsenal
Laid Down12 Dec 1937
Launched1 Jun 1939
Commissioned8 Aug 1941
Sunk19 Jun 1944
Displacement25675 tons standard; 32105 tons full
Length844 feet
Beam85 feet
Draft29 feet
Speed34 knots
Range9,700nm at 18 knots
Crew1660
Armament16x127mm Type 98 anti-aircraft, 70x25mm Type 96 machine guns
Aircraft84

Contributor:

ww2dbaseShokaku was built at Yokosuka Dockyard, Japan. Completed in Aug 1941, she participated in Japan's early wartime offensives, including the attack on Pearl Harbor, the raid into the Indian Ocean and the Battle of Coral Sea. In the latter action, on 8 May 1942, Shokaku was seriously damaged by dive bombers from USS Yorktown (CV-5), but her modern designed allowed her to limp back to Japan for repairs and fight another day. However, that also meant she was to miss Midway action, where her presence might have tipped the balance of battle in Japan's favor. In Aug 1942, Shokaku took part in the Battle of the Eastern Solomons, where she helped in damaging but failed to sink the American carrier Enterprise. In Oct, she participated in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands in which she took on battle damage but her aircraft was able to sink the carrier Hornet. In 1943, Captain Hiroshi Matsubara took command of Shokaku. On 15 Jun 1944, she participated in Operation A-Go which led to the Battle of the Philippine Sea of 19 Jun. While refueling, she was hit at 1123 by three or four torpedoes from submarine Cavalla. The ensuing fire exploded a bomb at 1408, which ignited aviation fuel. As the fire grew out of control, she sank, taking 1,272 men to the bottom of the ocean with her. Only 570 men, including Captain Matsubara, survived.

ww2dbaseSource: Wikipedia.

Aircraft Carrier Shokaku Interactive Map

Shokaku Operational Timeline

8 Aug 1941 Shokaku was commissioned into service at Yokosuka, Japan.
23 Aug 1941 Shokaku arrived at Ariake, Tokyo, Japan and became the flagship of 1st Air Fleet of Carrier Division 5.
8 Sep 1941 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan and disembarked Commander First Air Fleet.
10 Sep 1941 Shokaku became the flagship of Carrier Division 5. She would remain at Yokosuka, Japan for the rest of the month.
8 Oct 1941 Shokaku arrived at Kure, Japan and joined new sister ship Zuikaku for the first time. She moved around in Kure, Oita, Saeki area in the remainder of the month.
9 Nov 1941 Shokaku arrived at Kure, Japan.
14 Nov 1941 Shokaku was relieved of her status as the flagship of Carrier Division 5; that responsibility was passed to Zuikaku.
19 Nov 1941 Shokaku departed the Inland Sea with Zuikaku for Hittokappu Bay in the Kurile Islands to join the ships massing for the Hawaii Operation.
22 Nov 1941 Shokaku and the Carrier Division 5 arrived at Hitokappu Bay in the Kurile Islands as part of a last-minute addition to the Carrier Striking Force.
26 Nov 1941 With Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo's First Air Fleet, Shokaku departed Hitokappu Bay in the Kurile Islands for the Hawaii Operation, the attack on the US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii.
7 Dec 1941 Shokaku participated in the two strike waves against Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Chuichi Nagumo ordered a withdrawal following recovery of the second attack wave.
23 Dec 1941 Shokaku returned with Akagi, Kaga, and Zuikaku to Hashirajima island in Hiroshima Bay, Japan.
3 Jan 1942 Shokaku was undocked at Kure, Japan.
5 Jan 1942 Shokaku departed Kure, Japan for Hiroshima Bay.
8 Jan 1942 Shokaku departed Hiroshima, Japan for Truk, Caroline Islands.
14 Jan 1942 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
16 Jan 1942 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands and took part in Operation R.
17 Jan 1942 Joseph Rochefort's cryptanalytic team in US Territory of Hawaii detected Japanese carrier Shokaku at Truk, Caroline Islands.
20 Jan 1942 Shokaku launched strikes against Rabaul, New Britain.
21 Jan 1942 Shokaku launched strikes against Lae.
29 Jan 1942 Shokaku returned to Truk, Caroline Islands.
30 Jan 1942 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands for Yokosuka, Japan to pick up aircraft.
3 Feb 1942 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan and remained there for the remainder of the month.
27 Feb 1942 Shokaku entered drydock at Yokosuka, Japan.
5 Mar 1942 Shokaku left drydock at Yokosuka, Japan.
7 Mar 1942 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan.
11 Mar 1942 With sister Zuikaku, Shokaku accompanied Vice Admiral Takasu Shiro's First Fleet (Ise and Hyuga) on a sortie to sweep for enemy believed to approaching Japan.
16 Mar 1942 Shokaku returned to Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan.
17 Mar 1942 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan for Staring Bay, Celebes, Dutch East Indies to join Operation C.
24 Mar 1942 Shokaku arrived at Staring Bay at Celebes, Dutch East Indies, joining Zuikaku.
26 Mar 1942 Shokaku departed Staring Bay, Celebes, Dutch East Indies for Operation C. She was assigned to First Air Fleet, Carrier Division 5, Striking Force, Air Attack Force.
3 Apr 1942 Shokaku entered the Indian Ocean.
5 Apr 1942 Shokaku launched air strikes against Colombo, Ceylon from the Indian Ocean.
9 Apr 1942 Shokaku launched air strikes against Trincomalee, Ceylon from the Indian Ocean.
18 Apr 1942 Shokaku arrived at Mako, Pescadores Islands.
19 Apr 1942 Shokaku departed Mako, Pescadores Islands to participate in Operation MO in the Coral Sea commencing 20 Apr 1942.
25 Apr 1942 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
30 Apr 1942 Shokaku departed from Truk to support the Port Moresby, New Guinea invasion.
1 May 1942 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands with Zuikaku to participate in Operation MO.
8 May 1942 Between 0907 and 0915 hours, Shokaku was severely damaged by three bomb hits. One tore open the port bow and started a fire in the forecastle. The second struck the end of the flight deck to starboard. The third hit the starboard side of the rear of the island, damaging gun tubs and the mainmast. Large fires broke out. She was able to evade all torpedoes successfully. Escorted by Ushio and Yugure, she was detached and was able to evacuate the battle area at full speed. 108 officers and men were killed by the fires and explosions, and another 40 wounded.
9 May 1942 Shokaku was reassigned to Carrier Division 5, 1st Air Fleet. She was detached to proceed immediately to Japan at top speed, starting a dramatic dash past a cordon of American submarines alerted to intercept the cripple.
10 May 1942 Shokaku arrived at Rabaul, New Britain.
12 May 1942 Shokaku made rendezvous with Kuroshio, Oyashio, and Hayashio in the Philippine Sea; Ushio and Yugure were released as her escorts. Shokaku avoided more US submarines during her final leg home. However, with the high speeds and gashed bow, the ship took on so much water that she nearly capsized en route.
17 May 1942 Shokaku, having evaded no less than eight submarines, returned to Kure, Japan for repairs. She was immediately placed in the Reserve Unit of the Mobile Force.
25 May 1942 Captain Jojima was relieved by Captain Masafumi Arima as the commanding officer of Shokaku.
16 Jun 1942 Shokaku entered drydock for battle damage repairs.
27 Jun 1942 Shokaku left drydock.
14 Jul 1942 Shokaku was reassigned to Striking Force, 3rd Fleet, Carrier Division 1. In Hashirajima-Kure area in Japan.
19 Jul 1942 Shokaku arrived at Hashirajima island in Hiroshima Bay, Japan.
21 Jul 1942 Shokaku departed Hashirajima island in Hiroshima Bay, Japan.
31 Jul 1942 Shokaku arrived at Hashirajima island in Hiroshima Bay, Japan.
16 Aug 1942 Shokaku was assigned to Main Body, Striking Force, 3rd Fleet, Carrier Division 1. She departed Kure, Japan for Phase 2 of the Eastern Solomons battle.
24 Aug 1942 Shokaku suffered light damage from bomb fragments during the Battle of the Eastern Solomons.
1 Sep 1942 Shokaku was assigned to Support Force, Striking Force Main Body (3rd Fleet, Carier Division 1).
5 Sep 1942 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
10 Sep 1942 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands.
23 Sep 1942 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
11 Oct 1942 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands for Guadalcanal operations.
15 Oct 1942 Aircraft from carrier Shokaku and Zuikaku sank destroyer USS Meredith off San Cristobal, Solomon Islands.
26 Oct 1942 Shokaku was heavily damaged by bombs during the Battle of Santa Cruz. Four to six bombs struck the flight deck; one struck aft of the island and the rest were grouped around the amidships and aft elevators. Large fires were started, and the flight deck was completely buckled by the blasts. Though sixty officers and men were killed, since no aircraft were aboard, no fuel was active and damage control was able to extinguish the fires and save the ship. Admiral Nagumo transferred his flag to destroyer Arashi. Then, with the damaged light carrier Zuiho, Shokaku was detached and ordered home to Truk escorted by Hatsukaze and Maikaze.
28 Oct 1942 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands for emergency repairs.
2 Nov 1942 Shokaku depart Truk, Caroline Islands screened by Destroyer Division 4 with the damaged Zuiho and Chikuma, for Japan for permanent repairs.
6 Nov 1942 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan and entered the navy yard immediately for a long period of extensive repairs and refit.
16 Jan 1943 Shokaku's assignment was shifted from Main Unit, Mobile Force to the Maintenance Force, Mobile Force.
8 Feb 1943 Shokaku entered drydock and remained there through the month.
16 Feb 1943 Captain Masafumi was relieved as the commanding officer of Shokaku; the successor was unknown.
19 Mar 1943 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan for Kure, Japan.
27 Mar 1943 Shokaku arrived at Kure, Japan after layovers at Tokuyama, Iwaishima, Beppu, and Tokuyama again en route.
5 Apr 1943 Shokaku departed Kure, Japan for a series of round trips between Iwaishima and Tokuyama (3 times), Oita, and Beppu.
26 Apr 1943 Shokaku arrived at Kure, Japan.
14 May 1943 Shokaku departed Kure, Japan for another series of trips to Oita, Iwasihima, and Tokuyama.
20 May 1943 Shokaku departed Tokuyama, Japan for the Yokosuka region to prepare for the counter offensive at the Aleutian Islands.
21 May 1943 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan with Cruiser Division 7 from Tokuyama, Japan.
22 May 1943 Shokaku joined a large fleet for the Aleutian Islands, but the sortie was canceled as Attu was reclaimed by US forces.
31 May 1943 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan for the Inland Sea.
1 Jun 1943 Throughout this month, Shokaku was in and around the Kure-Tokuyama area, Japan.
2 Jun 1943 Shokaku arrived at Kure, Japan.
9 Jul 1943 Shokaku departed Kure, Japan for Truk, Caroline Islands where she was to join her sister ship Zuikaku.
15 Jul 1943 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
1 Aug 1943 Shokaku remained at Truk, Caroline Islands throughout the month of Aug 1943, except for two short sorties on 3 Aug and 25 Aug.
3 Aug 1943 Shokaku sortied from Truk.
25 Aug 1943 Shokaku sortied from Truk.
18 Sep 1943 Shokaku sortied from Truk, Caroline Islands to Brown Island (Eniwetok), Marshall Islands with Combined Fleet under Vice Admiral Ozawa's tactical command in response to the US Task Force 15 carrier raids on Tarawa and Makin.
20 Sep 1943 Shokaku arrived at Eniwetok, Marshall Islands.
23 Sep 1943 Shokaku departed Eniwetok, Marshall Islands for Truk, Caroline Islands.
25 Sep 1943 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
15 Oct 1943 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands.
16 Oct 1943 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
17 Oct 1943 Shokaku sortied from Truk, Caroline Islands to Eniwetok, Marshall Islands with Combined Fleet under Admiral Koga's command in response to US Task Force 16 carrier raids on Wake Island.
19 Oct 1943 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
30 Oct 1943 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands for Rabaul, New Britain to reinforce Rabaul.
11 Nov 1943 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands for Yokosuka, Japan.
13 Nov 1943 Shokaku returned to Truk, Caroline Islands.
15 Nov 1943 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan.
17 Nov 1943 Shokaku's commanding officer Captain Hiroshi Matsubara was relieved; the successor was unknown.
26 Nov 1943 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan for Truk, Caroline Islands.
1 Dec 1943 Shokaku arrived at Truk, Caroline Islands.
12 Dec 1943 Shokaku departed Truk, Caroline Islands for Yokosuka, Japan.
17 Dec 1943 Shokaku arrived at Yokosuka, Japan.
27 Dec 1943 Shokaku entered drydock at Yokosuka, Japan.
6 Jan 1944 Shokaku left drydock.
17 Jan 1944 Shokaku departed Yokosuka, Japan to join Zuikaku in the Inland Sea.
6 Feb 1944 Shokaku departed Inland Sea near Tokuyama, Japan with Zuikaku for Singapore.
13 Feb 1944 Shokaku arrived at Singapore, the new advance base for decisive operations.
20 Feb 1944 Shokaku departed Singapore for Lingga, Dutch East Indies.
1 Mar 1944 Shokaku moved alternately between Singapore and Lingga, Dutch East Indies throughout the month of Mar 1944.
22 Mar 1944 Shokaku arrived at Lingga, Dutch East Indies.
25 Mar 1944 At Lingga, Dutch East Indies, Shokaku became the flagship of Admiral Ozawa Jisaburo's Third Fleet and the Mobile Fleet.
31 Mar 1944 Shokaku arrived off Singapore naval yard.
3 Apr 1944 Shokaku arrived at Lingga, Dutch East Indies.
4 Apr 1944 Shokaku returned to Singapore naval arsenal. The Third Fleet's flag was transferred ashore.
12 May 1944 Shokaku departed Lingga, Dutch East Indies for the Tawi-Tawi anchorage in the Philippine Islands.
15 May 1944 Shokaku arrived at Tawi-Tawi, Philippine Islands.
13 Jun 1944 Shokaku departed Tawitawi to reinforce Saipan.
14 Jun 1944 Shokaku arrived at Guimaras.
15 Jun 1944 Shokaku departed Guimaras, Philippine Islands with Mobile Fleet to counter the American invasion of the Mariana Islands.
18 Jun 1944 Carrier Shokaku sailed in company with flagship Taiho and sister ship Zuikaku for the Mariana Islands.
19 Jun 1944 At dawn, Shokaku launched 17 A6M fighters for combat air patrol duties. At 1100 hours, she recovered 10 fighters; while still recovering fighters, at 1122, she was hit by three torpedoes from USS Cavalla on the starboard side; two forward near the switchboard and generator room, one aft of amidships. Large fuel fires were ignited in the hangar and No. 1 boiler room went offline. Shokaku remained underway, but began to list to starboard. Counterflooding over-compensated, giving her a port list. Meanwhile flooding and heat of the fires forced shutting down of the boiler rooms. She continued to settle forward. Though damage control initially hoped to save her, the flooding forward and the fires intensify in the following hours. By 1210 hours she had come to a halt when fires detonate an aerial bomb on the hangar, setting off volatile gases from a cracked forward tank. Large induced explosions wrecked the carrier, and hope began to fade. The list to port and bow trim both increased. At 1350 hours, her strike planes returned, but were ordered away, having to be directed to Zuikaku and Taiho. At this time Captain Matsubara had ordered abandon ship and the crew mustered on the flight deck for flag lowering. However, before the evacuation can proceed far, the bow dipped under and water pours into No. 1 elevator well, causing the carrier to corkscew to port and up-end. She went down by the bow at 1401 hours, stern raised high. Between 1408 and 1411, four underwater explosions were registered. 58 officers, 830 petty officers and men, 376 members of Air Group 601, and 8 civilians were killed, totalling 1,272 deaths. Light cruiser Yahagi and destroyers Urakaze and Hatsuzuki rescued Captain Hiroshi Matsubara among 570 other survivors.
31 Aug 1945 Shokaku was removed from the Japanese Navy List.

Photographs

The chief shipbuilders of carrier Shokaku posing with the hull of the ship two days prior to launching, Yokosuka, Japan, 30 May 1939Launching of Shokaku from the second construction slip of Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan, 1430 hours on 1 Jun 1939
See all 37 photographs of Aircraft Carrier Shokaku

Maps

Battle of the Coral Sea map and infographic, published 3 May 2017




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More on Shokaku
Personnel:
» Arima, Masafumi
» Kaneko, Tadashi
» Kodaira, Yoshinao
» Minami, Yoshimi

Event(s) Participated:
» Attack on Pearl Harbor
» New Guinea-Papua Campaign, Phase 1, Bismarck Islands
» Raids into the Indian Ocean
» Battle of Coral Sea
» Guadalcanal Campaign
» Solomon Islands Campaign
» Mariana Islands Campaign and the Great Turkey Shoot

Document(s):
» Interrogation Nav 10, Captain Mineo Yamaoka

Partner Sites Content:
» Shokaku Tabular Record of Movement
» The Sinking of Shokaku: An Analysis

Aircraft Carrier Shokaku Photo Gallery
The chief shipbuilders of carrier Shokaku posing with the hull of the ship two days prior to launching, Yokosuka, Japan, 30 May 1939Launching of Shokaku from the second construction slip of Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, Japan, 1430 hours on 1 Jun 1939
See all 37 photographs of Aircraft Carrier Shokaku


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