The Spanish Navy (Armada Española) is considering to upgrade the self-protection capability of its BPE (Buque de Proyección Estratégica) landing helicopter dock vessel L-61 SPS “Juan Carlos I”.
The 26000 tonnes and 231 meters long projection ship built by the local shipbuilder Navantia is armed with four mounts for 12.7mm heavy machine guns and with four MK36 SRBOC (Super Rapid Bloom Offboard Countermeasures) chaff and decoy launching system.
The machine gun mounts will be replaced by BAE Systems US Combat Systems MK 38 Mod 2 naval remote controlled weapon stations.
MK 38 Mod 2 is armed with the M242 Bushmaster 25mm gun from Alliant Techsystems Inc, and incorporates the Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd Toplite electro-optical fire control system to optimize effective engagement of enemy targets during day, night and in all weather conditions.
The MK 38 Mod 2 weapon system has been also selected to equip the BAM (Buque de Acción Marítima) multi-purpose ocean patrol vessels of Meteoro Class and to fit the Álvaro de Bazán Class F-105 SPS “Cristóbal Colón” frigate being built for the Spanish Navy at Navantia´ Fene-Ferrol shipyard.
The U.S. Navy, Australia, Singapor and Israel procured the weapon station for surface vessels.
L-61 SPS “Juan Carlos I” Could be also equiped with Sistemas FABA DORNA 2 fire control system and have Tecnobit LINPRO Link 11 datalink system configured to include Link 16 capability.