Spanish Navy

Hydrography

Malaspina (A-31) - Ships - Hydrography - Armada Española - Ministerio de Defensa - Gobierno de España

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Wednesday, 27 March 2019 - document to 04:00:41
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Ships Hydrography

Malaspina (A-31) Hydrography

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HISTORY

The hydrographic ship “Malaspina” (A-31) was built by Bazán Shipyards in La Carraca and delivered to the Spanish Navy in 1975. Her homeport is San Fernando (Cádiz) and she is the second Navy ship with that name. Alejandro Malaspina (1754-1809) was a Spanish Royal Navy brigadier from the age of the Enlightenment who sailed around the world leading a scientific expedition on board the corvettes “Atrevida” and “Descubierta”.

In the year 2007 the ship was upgraded and equipped with new and modern sensors. Since her commissioning the ship has sailed more than 180,000 miles gathering bathymetric and oceanographic data all along the Spanish coasts.

MISSION

The “Malaspina” is a unit from the hydrographic flotilla, under the command of the Director of the Spanish Navy Hydrographic Institute, and belongs to the Fleet’s Maritime Action Force.

Her main missions are:

  • Hydrographic surveys, oceanographic research, study of the national seabed and any other seamounts studied under International Agreements.
  • Updating of sailing directions, lighthouse books, beacons and radio books.
  • Installation of tide gauges and MASLs (meters above sea level).
  • Coastal photographs.
  • Measurements of flying miles.
  • Naval presence in sovereign waters or areas of interest to contribute to the protection of national maritime interests.
  • Collaboration with other State departments (SAR and Port Authorities).
  • Participation in REA operations, national or multinational Fleet tasks, etc.
  • Weather data collection.
  • Collaboration with other civilian organizations or institutions engaged in oceanographic research activities like Cadiz University.
CHARACTERISTICS
DISPLACEMENT 1.150 Tns.
LENGTH 58 meters
BEAM 12 m.
PROPULSION - 2 MWM TBRHS-345-AU diesel engines (2800 BHP)
- 2 variable-pitch propellers (4 blades each)
- 1 electric pusher in the rudder for auxiliary propulsion and maneuver
- 3 diesel generators (378 Kw each) and 250 Kw emergency generator
CREW 63
WEAPONS 2 OERLIKON 20 mm guns and machine-guns. Portable weapons
SENSORS 2 Sperry Marine Vision Master FT surface and navigation radars and Bridgemaster E(bands X/S)
Thermosalinograph SBE 21
Multi-beam echo sounder SIMRAD EM 302 (30 Khz)
  • Number of scans per ping: 1 or 2
  • Number of beams per scan: 288 (432 in high density)
  • Impulse repetition frequency: 10 Hz Max.
  • Pulse width: 0.7, 2 and 5 milliseconds in CW, 40-200 milliseconds in FM.
  • Pulse modulation: Continuous wave (CW) and FM generate more power; 15 dB in the signal/noise relation as regards continuous wave pulses, increasing the depth of lateral beams.
  • Optimum max. depth: 5,000 m.
Multi-beam echo sounder SIMRAD EM 3002 (300 Khz)
  • Number of beams per scan: 160
  • Number of soundings per scan: 254
  • Impulse repetition frequency: 40 Hz max.
  • Pulse width: 15 microseconds.
  • Pulse modulation: Continuous wave
  • Optimum max. depth: 120 m.

Single-beam echo sounder SIMRAD EA 600 (12/210 Khz)
Doppler NORTEK AWAC-AST 600Khz
Sound speed profiler
MISCELLANEOUS - 2 cargo cranes (one fore for 2,500 kilos and one aft for 750 k.
- 2 hydrographic craft for bathymetric works with portable multi-beam sounders for swallow waters.
- Accurate positioning system receivers.
- An oceanographic winch
- Possibility of embarking wheel vehicles on the upper deck for works on land.
AIRCRAFT VERTREP operations from poop deck
WHERE WE ARE

The two ‘Malaspina’-class hydrographic ships are currently stationed in San Fernando (Cádiz).

MATERIAL/WEAPONS

The ‘Malaspina’ has 2 OERLIKON guns (20 mm) and has also ‘Browning’ machine-guns (12.7 mm) and MG (7.62 mm) as well as several portable small and long arms.

WHO WE ARE

The commanding officers of the different hydrographic ships are all under the direct command of the Chief of the Hydrographic flotilla and Director of the Spanish Navy Hydrographic Institute, a navy Captain.

The crew of the ‘Malaspina’ consists of 63 people: 9 officers, 13 NCOs and 41 leading seamen and ratings. All the personnel has trained in specialized educational centers like the Naval Academy (officers), the Non-Commissioned Officers’ School (petty-officers) in San Fernando, and the ‘Antonio Escaño’ School (leading seamen) in Ferrol.

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