Destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977)

Destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977) 0Destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977) 1Destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977) 2Destroyer USS Briscoe (DD-977) 3



Basic information

Country of build:
Laid down:
Commissioned (service):
Decommissioned (out):
Sunk as target, 25 August 2005

Ship measurements

8,040 t
161 m
16.8 m
8.8 m


Propulsion system:
  • 4 * General Electric LM2500 gas turbines
  • 2 * shafts, 80,000 shp (60 MW)
32.5 knots
6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)



Combat assets

  • AN/SPS-40 air search radar
  • AN/SPG-60 fire control radar
  • AN/SPS-55 surface search radar
  • AN/SPQ-9 gun fire control radar
  • Mark 23 TAS automatic detection and tracking radar
  • AN/SPS-65 Missile fire control radar
  • AN/SQS-53 bow mounted Active sonar
  • AN/SQR-19 TACTAS towed array Passive sonar
  • Naval Tactical Data System
  • AN/SLQ-32 Electronic Warfare System
  • AN/SLQ-25 Nixie Torpedo Countermeasures
  • Mark 36 SRBOC Decoy Launching System
  • AN/SLQ-49 Inflatable Decoys
  • 2 * 5 in (127 mm) 54 calibre Mark 45 dual purpose guns
  • 2 * 20 mm Phalanx CIWS Mark 15 guns
  • 1 * 8 cell ASROC launcher (removed)
  • 1 * 8 cell NATO Sea Sparrow Mark 29 missile launcher
  • 2 * quadruple Harpoon missile canisters
  • 2 * Mark 32 triple 12.75 in (324 mm) torpedo tubes (Mk 46 torpedoes)
  • 1 * 61 cell Mk 41 VLS launcher for Tomahawk missiles
  • 1 * 21 cell RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile launcher
  • 2 * Mk38 25mm Machine Gun System mounted midships
  • 2 * Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk LAMPS III helicopters

The USS Briscoe (DD-977), honoring Admiral Robert Pearce Briscoe USN, served as a Spruance-class destroyer crafted by the Ingalls Shipbuilding Division of Litton Industries at Pascagoula, Mississippi. Her construction began on 21 July 1975, with the vessel launched on 28 December 1976 and commissioned on 3 June 1978. Throughout her 25-year tenure, the ship operated exclusively from Norfolk, Virginia and was affiliated with Destroyer Squadron 22 upon decommissioning.

Briscoe conducted firing trials between 1981 and 1982 in aid of the SALGP (Semi-Active Laser Guided Projectile) near Vieques, Puerto Rico. These projectiles were discharged from the 5-inch (127 mm) gun, targeting distances beyond 11 miles (18 km). Mid-flight, an optical sensor detected a laser-painted target on the coast, transforming the shell into a homing rocket for precise elimination of stationary and moving targets.

She engaged in significant missions such as Operation Urgent Fury, aiding Grenada's liberation, the Multi-National Peacekeeping Forces off Lebanon's coast, and Baltic Operations in 1990. Briscoe served twice with Middle East Forces in the North Red Sea, executing Maritime Interception Operations in line with U.N. sanctions against Iraq. During her first deployment, Briscoe set a U.S. record, conducting 275 merchant vessel boardings in the North Red Sea.

During her second North Red Sea deployment in March 1994, Briscoe responded to a distress signal on 19 May 1994 from an Egyptian passenger ferry, the Al-Qamar Al-Saudi Al-Misri. Acting as the On-Scene Commander, Briscoe orchestrated the rescue efforts for over 500 passengers, coordinating multiple vessels in the vicinity.

In 1996, Briscoe embarked on a six-month deployment to the Mediterranean and Black Sea, participating in Exercise Atlas Hinge with Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron Light 44 (Detachment 5) and Exercise Shark Hunt and Jaws, aimed at undersea warfare with U.S. submarines.

Participating in Exercise Classica 96 in August through September 1996, Briscoe collaborated with ships from the U.S. 6th Fleet, Black Sea, and Mediterranean littoral nations like Italy, Ukraine, and Greece in the spirit of Partnership for Peace.

In 1999, at President Bill Clinton's direction, U.S. Navy vessels, including Briscoe, aided in the search for John F. Kennedy Jr.'s crashed plane. With Secretary of Defense William Cohen's authorization, Briscoe hosted a public memorial service for Kennedy, where his ashes were scattered into the Atlantic Ocean.

Briscoe's regular deployment preparations were interrupted in 2001 as she aided in the aerial defense of the U.S. East Coast post the 9/11 attacks. In 2002, as part of the Harry S. Truman Battle Group, Briscoe deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, firing a total of 25 Tomahawk cruise missiles on Iraqi targets.

She was decommissioned on 2 October 2003 and utilized as a target in a fleet training exercise on 25 August 2005, resting now at 34°49′N 072°31′W, submerged at a depth of 2,252 fathoms (13,512 ft; 4,118 m).

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