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LPH-2 Iwo Jima class 

Iwo Jima class LPH

(United States)







USS Iwo Jima


17 Sep 1960

26 Aug 1961

14 July 1993

Scrapped (Brownsville, TX) 1997

USS Okinawa


19 Aug 1960

14 Apr 1962

17 Dec 1992

SINKEX target 2002

USS Guadalcanal


16 Mar 1963

20 July 1963

31 Aug 1994

SINKEX target 2005

USS Guam


22 Aug 1964

16 Jan 1965

25 Aug 1998

SINKEX target 2001

USS Tripoli


31 July 1965

6 Aug 1966

8 Sep 1995

Xfer to US Army

USS New Orleans


3 Feb 1968

16 Nov 1968

1 Oct 1997

NDRF (Middle Loch, HI)

USS Inchon


24 May 1969

20 June 1970

(6 Mar 1995)

(Converted to MCS-12)

Notes: These were the first ships designed from the keel up as LPH’s, and the first amphibious assault ships in the world entirely dependant on aircraft to land troops. They have non-sequential hull numbers due to the Boxer class conversions. As built, they were planned to have Mk33 3” guns, these were quickly replaced by Sea Sparrow SAMS and later Mk15 Vulcan Phalanx CIWS. At the base of the island was a ramp for vehicles to drive up to the flight deck. The two elevators folded vertically when not in use. There was a wide variety in the engine particulars due to the contracts being awarded independently of the hulls.

Combat usage:

USS Iwo Jima: Vietnam (several tours, including Tet counteroffensive), Nimbus Star (1974 MCM operations in Suez Canal), 1982 Beirut evacuation, Desert Storm. USS Okinawa: Vietnam, Desert Storm. USS Guadalcanal: Eagle Claw (1979 Tehran hostage rescue attempt), 1982 Beirut evacuation, Restore Hope (Somalia). USS Guam: Grenada invasion, Desert Storm, Sharp Edge (Liberia), Restore Hope (Somalia). USS Tripoli: Vietnam (several tours), Desert Storm, Eastern Exit/Restore Hope (Somalia). USS New Orleans: Vietnam (several tours), Desert Storm, Sharp Edge (Liberia), Restore Hope (Somalia). USS Inchon: Vietnam, Desert Storm, Sharp Edge (Liberia), Restore Hope (Somalia).

(Iwo Jima off downtown Beirut in 1982.)

(Mine damage to Inchon in drydock at Manama, Bahrain in 1991.)

Fates: Inchon was converted into a mine countermeasures support ship and described separately in the DB Encyclopedia. New Orleans was slated to become a possible museum ship in New Orleans, LA. After hurricane Katrina this was cancelled and the ship will likely be a SINKEX target in 2009.

Tripoli was transferred to the US Army in 1997. Initially based in San Francisco, the hulk was used as a mobile sensor platform for SAM tests. It enabled the Army to get sensor views otherwise not available. The hulk (with no propulsion) has been modified with a radome over the former bridge (the naval masts removed), and various other radars on the flight deck. Two large canvas tents cover some of the gear. Much of the ship is sealed off and tests are supported by 20’ shipping containers on deck. Later, the ship supported tests of the National Missile Defense programme, firing two Lance missiles off her deck. This is the only known seaborne launches of the Lance. In 2006, the ship was towed to Hawaii for further tests.

(ex-USS Tripoli in 2006.)

(Lance missile launch from ex-USS Tripoli in 2005.)

Displacement: 11,250t standard, 18,798t full Dimensions: 602’3”x104’x37’ Machinery: Steam-reduction: 2 Babcock & Wilcox or Combustion Engineering boilers, 1 DeLaval or General Electric or Westinghouse geared steam turbine, 1 shaft Max speed: 23kts Range: 10,000NM @ 20kts Complement: 902 (52 officers, 805 enlisted) + 1562 USMC detachment (158 officers, 1404 enlisted)


Typical configuration: 4 AV-8B Harrier, 8 CH-46 Sea Knight, 4 CH-53 Sea Stallion

MCM configuration: 8 MH-53 Sea Stallion, 4 CH-46 Sea Knight

Helo-max configuration: 16 CH-46 Sea Knight, 4 AH-1 Cobra

Sea Control Ship (USS Guam 1971): 12 AV-8A Harrier, 4 SH-2 Seasprite


x2 octuple Mk25 launchers for RIM-7 Sea Sparrow (8NM AA)


x4 (2 twin) Mk33 3”                       6NM AA/surface

x2 Mk15 Phalanx CIWS                 1NM AA


AN/SPS-65 (D)                              2D air search: 100NM vs. large/high, 32NM vs. small/low / 10NM surface search (range, bearing)

AN/SPS-40 (E/F)                           220NM max, 150NM vs. large/high, 48NM vs. small/low, 14NM vs. sea-skimming missile (range, bearing)

AN/SPS-10 (G)                              48NM surface search (range, bearing)

Mk51 (I/J)                                      10NM FC for RIM-7

AN/SPS-59 (I)                                28NM surface search (range, bearing)

AN/SPN-35 and AN/SPN-43           CCA radars



Mk36 SRBOC countermeasures launchers

AN/KAS-1 NBC warfare sensor



AN/UQN-1 Fathometer



(ex-USS Okinawa being struck by a Mk48 torpedo in 2002)


Entry created by: Jason W. Henson

Related database records

LPH 2 Iwo JimaHutchDB 0.9 (1980-2015 Alternate)
LPH 2 Iwo Jima (1980)1965-1979 Database 1.08
LPH 2 Iwo Jima (1980)DB2000(1980-2015)
LPH 2 Iwo Jima (1986)DB2000(1980-2015)

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