Spanish Aircraft Carriers Principe de Asturia - Juan Carlos I - Machtres Fighters

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Spanish Aircraft Carriers Principe de Asturia - Juan Carlos I

Aircraft Carriers
R-11 PRINCIPE DE ASTURIAS


The Príncipe de Asturias (R-11), originally named Almirante Carrero Blanco, is an aircraft carrier, the flagship of the Spanish Navy. She was built in Bazan's Shipyards and delivered to the Spanish Navy on 30 May 1988.

Spain has operated aircraft carriers since the 1920s, initially with the seaplane tender SPS Dédalo (1922) and later the multi-role light carrier SPS Dédalo, which was formerly the US Navy's World War II light carrier USS Cabot. The SPS Dédalo has been replaced as the navy's fleet flagship by the Principe de Asturias.

The ship is permanently assigned to the Alpha Group, comprising the carrier and six Santa Maria class frigates (a Spanish version of the USN Oliver Hazard Perry FFGs). Other vessels such as logistic ships, tankers and corvettes are frequently assigned to the Group when required. Principe de Asturias and the Alpha Group have participated in peace support operations in the Adriatic Sea.
The ship is mostly seen pier-side at Naval Station Rota, Spain.


Design


The design is basically that of the initial US Navy's Sea Control Ship design of the 1970s, modified with a ski-jump ramp added to better enable V/STOL aircraft takeoff. Constructed by the National Company Bazan (then Empresa Nacional Bazán, now Navantia) in their shipyard at Ferrol, Principe de Asturias was delivered to the Navy on 30 May 1988. The construction process had begun eleven years previously, on 29 May 1977. The processing of the steel began on 1 March 1978 and the keel was laid on 8 October 1979. On 22 May 1982, in a ceremony presided over by Juan Carlos I of Spain, the launch took place, with Queen Sofía of Spain as the ship's godmother. The ship made her first sea trials in November 1987.
The Thai warship HTMS Chakri Naruebet, delivered in 1997, is based on the Spanish ship's design.


Armament

The self-defense armament includes four close defense Meroka systems and six chaff decoy launchers. For offensive weapons, the ship relies on the capabilities of her embarked aircraft. For anti-submarine defense, she relies upon the detection capacity and attacks of her ASW helicopters and accompanying frigate battle group.


Aircraft

The ship supports AV-8B Harrier II Bravo or AV-8B Harrier II Plus aircraft. The Harriers are armed with AIM-9 Sidewinder and AIM-120 AMRAAM air-to-air missiles, AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation missile and AGM-65 Maverick air-to-ground missiles, in addition to GAU-12U cannon. The carrier also has facilities to support helicopters, usually Sikorsky Sea King SH-3H, Agusta AB-212 and Sikorsky SH-3 AEW (Airborne Early Warning) helicopters.
The ship supports a maximum of 29 fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft with up to 12 on deck and 17 aircraft in the hangar. The hangar which measures 2,398 m² is accessed by two flight deck lifts. The 5,100 m² flight deck is 176 m in length. Operating V/STOL aircraft, the carrier has the characteristic "ski-jump" (12° here), with the runway sightly off the longitudinal axis, tilted portside.

CHARACTERISTICS


Name: Principe de Asturias
Namesake:
Prince of Asturias
Ordered:
29 May 1977
Builder:
Bazán, Ferrol
Laid down:
8 October 1979
Launched:
22 May 1982
Sponsored by:
Queen Sofía of Spain
Commissioned:
30 May 1988
Homeport:
Naval Station Rota
Identification:
Pennant number: R-11
Status:
Active

General characteristics


Class and type:
Principe of Asturias-class aircraft carrier
Displacement:
15,912 tons standard, 16,700 tons loaded
Length:
195.9 metres (643 ft)
Beam:
24.3 metres (80 ft)
Draught:
9.4 metres (31 ft)
Propulsion:
2 × General Electric LM2500+ gas turbines in COGAG configuration, one shaft, 46,400 shp
Speed:
26 knots (48 km/h)
Range:
6,500 nautical miles (12,000 km) at 20 knots (37 km/h)
Complement:
763 (total); 600 ship crew, 230 air crew
Sensors and processing systems:
Raytheon SPS-52C/D 3D air search radar,
ISC Cardion SPS-55 surface search radar,
ITT SPN-35A aircraft control radar,
FABA SPG-M2B fire control radar,
SELEX Sistemi Integrati RTN-11L/X missile approach warning radar,
Selex RAN 12 L target designation radar
Electronic warfare and decoys:
Nettunel electronic countermeasures unit, Super RBOC, Sensytech AN/SLQ-25 Nixie decoy
Armament:
4 x FABA Meroka Mod 2B CIWS, 12 × Oerlikon L120 20 mm guns
Aircraft carried:
29 fixed wing and rotary wing aircraft
Aviation facilities:
12° ski jump 46.5 m in length

L-61 JUAN CARLOS I

L-61

Juan Carlos I (L-61) is a multi-purpose warship just commissioned to the Spanish Navy (Armada Española). Similar in concept to the American Wasp class LHDs it has the addition of a ski jump for STOVL operations, the ship will be equipped with fighter jets of the type AV-8B Harriers and will primarily be used as an aircraft carrier.

The new vessel is to play an important role in the fleet, as a platform that not only replaces the Newport-class LSTs Hernán Cortés and Pizarro for supporting the mobility of the Marines, but that can also act as a platform for carrier-based aviation, and the strategic transport of ground forces as required.


Construction
The design for the Buque de Proyección Estratégica (Strategic Projection Vessel), as it was initially known, was approved in September 2003, and the construction of the 231-metre, 27,000-ton ship at the Navantia Shipyards in Ferrol, Galicia began in 2005. The vessel was launched on 10 March 2008, and was commissioned in 30 Sept 2010. The vessel is named in honour of Juan Carlos I, the current King of Spain.


Design

The capacity of the ship is of around 900 naval personnel, with equipment and support elements for 1,200 soldiers. Multi-functional garage and hangar space on two levels covers 6,000 m², with capacity for 6,000 tonnes load on each level. A stern dock is capable of holding up to four LCM-1e boats or one LCAC.


The vessel has a flight deck of 202 metres (663 ft) with a "ski-jump". The ship's flight deck has eight landing points for Harrier, JSF or medium helicopters, four points for heavy helicopters of the CH-47 Chinook type, and one point large enough to aircraft of the size of the V-22 Osprey. The ship can carry up to 30 aircraft in the aircraft carrier mode, using the light vehicles bay as an additional storage zone.

For the first time in the Spanish Navy, the ship uses diesel-electric propulsion, simultaneously connecting both diesels and the new technology gas turbine powerplant to a pair of azimuthal pods.


Construction

started in May 2005 simultaneously in Ferrol (with the cut of the first plate corresponding to Block 320) and in Fene (with the cut of the first plate corresponding to Block 330). The ship, that supposes a service load of 3,100,000 hours of production and 775,000 hours of engineering, was launched in March 2008, and was commissioned 30 September 2010.

CHARACTERISTICS

Namesake: King Juan Carlos I

Ordered:
5 September 2003

Builder:
Navantia

Cost:
€360 million

Laid down:
May 2005

Launched:
22 September 2009

Sponsored by
: Queen Sofia of Spain

Commissioned:
30 September 2010

Homeport:
Naval Station Rota, Rota

Identification:
Pennant number: L-61


General characteristics

Class and type:
Juan Carlos I class amphibious assault ship

Displacement:
27,079 tonnes (24'560 as a.c.c.)

Length:
230.82 metres (757.3 ft)

Beam:
32 metres (105 ft)

Draught:
6.9 metres (23 ft)

Propulsion:
2 x 11 Mw POD

Speed:
21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph)

Range:
9,000 nautical miles (17,000 km; 10,000 mi) at 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)

Boats and landing aircraft carried:
Four LCM

Capacity:
902 soldiers + up to 46 Leopard 2 tanks

Complement:
Ship's company: 243

Air wing:
172

Armament:
4 x 20 mm guns - 4x 12.7 mm machine-guns

Aircraft carried:
AV-8B Harriers, F-35, CH-47, Sea King, NH-90

 
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