BRP Rajah Humabon

Date Updated:
Tuesday March 15, 2005


 

Technical Details:

Displacement: 1390 tons standard

Length: 306 ft (93.6 m)

Speed: 21 knots when new.

Range: 10,800 mi. at 12 knots

Crew: 165



Armament:

Three – US 76mm/50 cal. Mk22

Three – twin Bofors 40mm/56

Four – Oerlikon 20mm

Two – 50 cal. Mgs.



Electronics:

Navigation/Surface Search Radars

FLIR (?)

Furuno Satcom

Firecontrol:

Status of the gun fire control system is unknown.

Engines:

Diesel-electric tandem motor drive
.
Four GM 6-278A diesel engines providing electric power to 6000 shp motors
driving two screws.


Notes:

Ex-USS Atherton, DE169, launched 1943.
The USS Atherton actually sank a U-boat during the war.  It was transferred to Japan
in 1955, commissioned in JMSDF as Hatsushi, DE 263. Retired in 1975 and reverted
to US Navy. Transferred to Philippines in September 1976 and was towed to South
Korea for an extensive refit where she had additional guns fitted. Commissioned in PN service 1980. 
Was in service until 1993 when she was retired but was later called back into
service in 1995.

She later underwent another
minor refit from 1995 to 1996 to give a few more years service.  Once
carried depth charges aft and hedgehog anti-submarine projectors forward as well
as Mk38
anti-submarine torpedoe
s in two triple tube amidships but these have been
removed.  Sonar equipment previously installed has also since been removed. 

Had been experiencing hull
problems but these were repaired with the assistance of the US Navy and the USS
Salvor during CARAT 2000 dive training operations held in Manila Bay. 
Links to official photos here –
1,
2,
3,
4,
5,
6,
7
Note, there are more pictures of the repair operations on the
PN site.

She must undergo a more
extensive refit to her hull and engines if she is to provide more service and if
she is to be operated safely in rough seas.  This places the Philippine
Navy in a quandary – spend the money on new equipment or spend it to maintain
current equipment. 

The Rajah Humabon is one of the
last World War II ships in frontline duty anywhere in the world.  US
historical preservation groups have expressed interest in acquiring her for
preservation and display when she is finally retired from Philippine service.

The old and the new, or the
past and the future…

The photo below was taken in
2004(?) off the Palawan coast with BRP Juan Magluyan,
an Andrada Class gunboat
moored alongside.  The white ball on the mast
is the FLIR turret.  Still a beautiful ship IMHO, Ed.