Spanish ship Juan Carlos I (L61)
Juan Carlos I on the Ria of Ferrol, October 2010
|Name:||Juan Carlos I|
|Namesake:||King Juan Carlos I of Spain|
|Ordered:||5 September 2003|
|Cost:||€462 million (~US$600 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: L61|
|Status:||Active as of 2011|
|Class & type:||Juan Carlos I class amphibious assault ship|
|Displacement:||27,079 tonnes (24'560 as a.c.c.)|
|Length:||230.82 m (757.3 ft)|
|Beam:||32 m (105 ft)|
|Draught:||6.9 m (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 & landing
|Capacity:||913 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 Harrier II, F-35 (planned), CH-47, Sea King, NH-90.|
Juan Carlos I is a multi-purpose warship in the Spanish Navy (Armada Española). Similar in concept to the American Wasp-class amphibious assault ship, it has the addition of a ski jump for STOVL operations. The ship will be equipped with the AV-8B Harrier II attack aircraft and will primarily be used as an aircraft carrier. The vessel is named in honour of Juan Carlos I, the current King of Spain.
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 and the strategic transport of ground forces, but that can also act as a platform for carrier-based aviation replacing the now withdrawn aircraft carrier Príncipe de Asturias.
The design for the Buque de Proyección Estratégica (Strategic Projection Vessel), as it was initially known, was approved in September 2003.
The vessel has a flight deck of 202 m (663 ft), with a "ski-jump" ramp. The ship's flight deck has eight landing spots for Harrier, F-35 Lightning II or medium-sized helicopters, four spots for heavy helicopters of the CH-47 Chinook type, and one spot large enough for aircraft of V-22 Osprey size. The ship can carry up to 30 aircraft in aircraft carrier mode, using the light vehicles bay as an additional storage zone.
The complement of the ship is 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 (65,000 sq ft), with capacity for 6,000 tonnes load on each level. A stern well deck measuring 69.3 by 16.8 m (227 by 55 ft) can accommodate four LCM-1E landing craft which can beach-deliver non-swimming ground vehicles like tanks and four RHIBs, or one Landing Craft Air Cushion plus Assault Amphibious Vehicles.
Construction of the 231 m (758 ft), 27,000-tonne ship started in May 2005 simultaneously at the Navantia Shipyards in Ferrol, Galicia (with the cut of the first plate corresponding to Block 320) and in Fene, Galicia (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 10 March 2008, and was commissioned 30 September 2010. The original budget was €360 million but the ship cost €462 million (US$600 million) in the end.
Following a lengthy design contest that pitted the design against the similar but smaller French Mistral-class amphibious assault ship, the Prime Minister of Australia announced on 20 June 2007, that Australia would purchase and build two ships of the same design to become the Canberra-class landing helicopter docks. Navantia will be responsible for construction of the ships from the keel to the flight deck in Spain, after which the hulls will be transported to Australia for completion by BAE Systems Australia.
In September 2009, Russia invited Navantia to take part in the competition to supply Russian Navy with the new generation of amphibious assault ships to compete against the French Mistral-class ships. In January 2011 Russia chose the Mistral over the Spanish concept.
- Ministerio de Defensa (September 2011). "Evaluación de los Programas Especiales de Armamento (PEAs)" (in Spanish). Madrid: Grupo Atenea. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
- Ministerio de defensa S.M. el Rey preside la entrega a la Armada del mayor buque de su historia
- "LHD Juan Carlos I Technical data".
- Spanish Navy receives its largest warship 'Juan Carlos I'
- "LHD Juan Carlos I (Mission profile)" (in Spanish, English, and French). Spanish Ministry of Defense (armada). 2007-10-28. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- "Juan Carlos I Landing Helicopter Dock, Spain". Naval-Technology.com. Retrieved 29 September 2011.
- "Alonso elude concretar si el Gobierno contratará una sexta fragata F-100 para Navantia" (in Spanish). lavozdegalicia.es. 2007-10-28. Retrieved 2007-12-27.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Juan Carlos I (L-61).|
- Official Web-site of the Spanish Navy (in Spanish) with information about the "Buque de Proyección Estratégica"
- Digital renderings of the finished vessel
- "Juan Carlos I under construction" (JPEG). Retrieved 2008-02-25.
- 41 photographs Juan Carlos I (L61) launch in Revista Naval (Spanish)