Tachikaze class destroyer is a second generation vessel in service with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF). The ships of this class have had successive improvements after their completion, especially to their communication and tactical control systems. These air defense ships are the natural successor to the first generation air defense ship, the Amatsukaze-class destroyer, and they were in turn, followed by newer air defense ships, the Hatakaze class.
The Tachikaze class was the first of the Maritime Self Defense Force's ships that utilised computers widely. The Tachikaze class uses the OYQ-4 tactical control system, an improved version of the original OYQ-1b type.
Tachikaze destroyers' weapon systems include the Standard surface-to-air missile, anti-submarine rockets, the RGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missile, two Mark 15 20-mm Phalanx CIWS gun mounts, two torpedo mounts in a triple tube configuration, and two 5"/54-cal rapid fire guns.
In 1998, DDG-168 Tachikaze was converted to the flagship of Fleet Escort Force. The aft 5" gun was replaced with a commander area. Tachikaze was decommissioned in 2007. Sawakaze was succeeded flagship role.
The Tachikaze class is being decommissioned from 2007 onwards.