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Spanish Álvaro de Bazán class Guided Missile Frigate:

Based around the well tested Aegis / SPY-1D system, carried on the American Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer, the Álvaro de Bazán class frigate was one of the most effective surface combatant classes when introduced. The slightly later Australian Hobart class guided missile destroyer was derived from the Álvaro de Bazán class frigate. While called a frigate, it would be more accurate to classify the Spanish vessels as destroyers instead of frigates due to fire power and size of these vessels.

Originally six other these frigates were authorized with two vessels later cancelled. However, the two vessels were later restored with the last two vessels completing eight years after the first batch of for were completed. There was some debate about building another two of these frigates but was never realized. It should be said however that the much later Almirante Miranda class frigate was largely based on the Álvaro de Bazán design.

Designed primarily for air defense, the Álvaro de Bazán class frigate was designed with forty-eight missile cells. Usually thirty-two RIM-67/RIM-156 “Standard” missiles and sixty four RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles (ESSM) missiles would be carried. While only a single “Standard” missile could be packed per missile cell, ESSM could be quad packed so that large numbers could be carried. In addition, these ships mounted eight Mk 141 missile canisters in the superstructure for RGM-84 Harpoon missiles. These were designed to give the ship the ability to strike at long range against other warships.

Otherwise, these frigates were armed with a single American Mk 45 five inch gun mount on the bow. These five inch guns were from older United States naval vessels with the first four coming from Tarawa class amphibious carriers. Various rounds could be fired including rocket propelled round for an extended range. In addition, these ships had space set aside for a close range CIWS mount but were not fitted with one.

While these frigates were not primarily designed for anti-submarine warfare, they still carried four 324 mm torpedoes tubes with two on each side. As far as sonar, these vessels were only fitted with a relatively short range hull sonar and no towed array sonar was fitted. Compared to the American Arleigh Burke class, the Álvaro de Bazán class frigate were far less effective in anti-submarine warfare. Even though derived from the Spanish frigate design, the Australian Hobart class were built with a more powerful bow sonar as well as mounting a towed array sonar. As such, they were consider far more effective in anti-submarine warfare.

The Spanish Navy, like most of the military forces of the time, were caught with all of their hardware becoming obsolete over night with the introduction of the new high strength alloys and composites in the Twenty-Thirties. Due to costs involved in replacing their entire navy, initially it was decided to rebuild many of their warships instead of embarking on a program of new construction. The six Álvaro de Bazán class frigate were among the Spanish navy’s most effective warships and it was decided that they would the first warships to be rebuilt. At the same time, older vessels such as the Santa María class frigates, a modified version of the American Oliver Hazard Perry class, were retired instead of being refitted.

With the Álvaro de Bazán class frigates, the rebuilding program was considered quite extensive and took several years each. There was criticism even at the time that rebuilding these vessels cost a significant fraction of how much building new frigates might cost. During this process, much of the original hull and superstructure was stripped of their original plating and replaced by new alloys and composites.

At the same time, the weapon systems of these frigates were upgraded. New ammunition made these vessels even more lethal than they had been. In the case of the Mk 45 five inch gun mount, it was simply modified versions of the original ammunition. There was some discussion give towards upgrading the gun mounts to the Mk 45 Mod 4 but the idea was eventually shelved.

With respect to the missile cells, a new generation of missiles had been developed and the launchers were modified to be able to fire these new missiles. In place of a single “Standard” missile, two long range missiles could be carried. Similar to ESSM, medium range missiles could be quad packed in the missile calls. Even though the launchers could also fire cruise missiles, they were rarely carried. Similarly, because of the limited range of the vessel’s sonar, anti-submarine rocket boosted torpedoes are rarely carried even though they could also be carried.

The Mk 141 missile canisters were retained but were modified to be able to fire a wider variety of long range missiles. Most commonly sea skimming missiles were carried in the canisters and were considered the ship’s main long range anti-ship weapon. Even though long range missiles did not carry as large a warhead, they still had a considerable punch and enough range that it was rarely an issue.

In general, there were few new systems actually fitted to these frigates during these major refits. One of the exceptions was that the Álvaro de Bazán class frigates were finally fitted with a close range defense system. Originally, the FABA 20 mm CIWS was planned but the Mk 49 launcher for the RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) launcher was chosen instead. Compared to the 20 mm CIWS, the Rolling Airframe Missile was considered far more effective as close range defense against missiles. Even early during these frigates service, there was consideration given towards mounting the Mk 49 launcher but were not fitted until the late Twenty-Thirties. While the Australian Hobart class had their CIWS mounts replaced with the Sea Sabre mount, the Rolling Airframe Missile launchers were retained on the Spanish vessels.

Even though considered relatively old by that time, it was decided to give these frigates a second major refit. With the introduction of fusion turbines, ships could operate for an almost indefinite period. In part the refit was justified in terms of reducing operating cost however. Compared to conventional nuclear power, fusion power was considered far more cost effective and over the course of a few years the fusion turbines would pay for themselves in terms of fuel consumption.

During this second major refit, the two original KN02599 gas turbines were replaced by a pair of fusion turbines. At the same time, the diesel engines were completely removed as they were no longer needed. Compared to the gas turbines they replaced, the two fusion turbines produced around sixty percent greater power. This did require the replacement of the original shafts in order to be able to withstand the additional power. After the refit, these frigates were able to reach a top speed of thirty two knots compared to just over twenty eight knots as these frigates could originally reach.

Various automation was added during this second major refitting as well, allowing for considerable reduction in crew size. As with the replacement of the engines, this automation was justified in terms of reducing operating costs. As it was, the use of the new composites and alloys allowed for greater reduced maintenance costs.

As they were considered obsolete, these frigates were retired to reserve in the decade before the coming of the Great Cataclysm. Even so, their extensive rebuilding meant that they were surprisingly good shape for their age. The use of new high strength composites and alloys in their rebuilding meant that they were virtually immune to corrosion. While it is speculated by some that these frigates were all destroyed during the cataclysm, it is possible that one or more actually managed to survive. If they remained sealed, it might only require minimal refit to be reactivated as well.

Author Note: With respect to time line, these designs may or may not reflect our modern time line. The time line of these writeups diverged from our time line starting around 1999. Consider the universe that these designs are created for to be an alternate universe not bound by ours.

Model Type: F100 Álvaro de Bazán class Frigate

Vehicle Type: Ocean, Guided Missile Frigate

Crew: 175; 25 officers, 20 Chief Petty officers, and 130 enlisted (Has a high degree of automation) - original crew was 235. Has space for a 16 personnel flag group.

Troops: 2 Helicopter Pilots, 12 Pilots for SAMAS Power Armors, and 12 soldiers in body armor that are retained on board the ship.

Robots, Power Armors, and Vehicles:

Power Armor Compliment:



USA-PA-04A SAMAS Power Armors (or other power armors.)

Aircraft Compliment:



Helicopters or other VTOL Aircraft (V-22N Osprey - Anti-Submarine Model in Spanish service.)

M.D.C. by Location:





[1] SPY-1D+ Phase Array Radar Panels (4, Superstructure):

300 each.


Mk 45 Five Inch (127 mm) / 54 Barrel (1, gun mount):



Mk 45 Five Inch (127 mm) / 54 Mount (forward):



Mk 41 Strike Length 48 Cell Vertical Launch System (1, forward):



Mk 141 Missile Canisters (8 total, 4 on each side):

100 each.


GDC Mk 49 Rolling Airframe Missile Launcher (1, above hanger):



Mk 32 Dual 12.75 inch (324 mm) Medium Torpedo Launchers (2, sides):

35 each.


[2] Chaff / Decoy Launchers (2, superstructure):

10 each.


Hanger (aft):



VTOL Pad (aft):



Outer Hull (per 40 foot / 12.2 meter area):



[3] Main Body:



[1] Destroying the SPY-1D Phase Array radar panels will destroy the ship’s fire control systems but guns have backup systems and panels can partially compensate for each other.

[2] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,” but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.

[3] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body destroys the ship’s structural integrity, causing it to sink. There are enough flotation devices and inflatable life rafts to accommodate everyone aboard.


Surface: 36.8 mph (32 knots/ 59.3 kph).

Range: Effectively Unlimited due to fusion engines (needs to refuel every 15 years and requires maintenance as well). Ship carries eight (8) months of supplies on board.

Statistical Data:

Draft:    15.75 feet (4.8 meters) mean and 24 feet (7.2 meters) including sonar array.

Width:   61.0 feet (18.6 meters).

Length:  481.2 feet (146.7 meters).

Displacement: 4,550 tons standard and 5,853 tons fully loaded.

Cargo: Can carry 300 tons (272.2 metric tons) of nonessential equipment and supplies. Each enlisted crew member has a small locker for personal items and uniforms. Ships officers have more space for personal items. Most of the ship’s spaces are taken up by extra ammo, armor, troops, weapons, and engines.

Power System: Originally conventional diesel and gas turbine propulsion (CODOG), converted to two nuclear fusion turbine reactors with an average life span of 15 years.

Black Market Price: Not for Sale but if found on the black market would probably cost 250 million credits or more if intact and operational. Cost does not include embarked craft and power armors.

Weapon Systems:

  1. One (1) Mk 45 Mod 2 Single Barrel Five Inch (127 mm) / 54 Naval Gun: The ship mounts a five inch gun on the bow of the ship. The gun is very reliable although it fires at a relatively slow rate (20 rounds per minute). The gun was carried on many ship classes until well into the Twenty First century. The guns can be used against other ships, against ground targets, and against aircraft. The five inch guns can also use rocket assisted projectiles for extended range.

    Maximum Effective Range: 12 miles (10.4 nautical miles/19.3 km) for standard projectiles, 20 miles (17.4 nautical miles/32.2 km) for rocket propelled rounds.

    Mega-Damage: Standard Projectiles: 2D6x10 to a blast radius of 25 feet (7.7 meters) for High Explosive, 3D6x10 to a blast radius of 6 feet (2 meters) for High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 4D6x10 to a blast radius of 25 feet (7.7 meters) for Plasma. Rocket projectiles: 2D4x10 to a blast radius of 20 feet (6.1 meters) for High Explosive, 2D6x10 to a blast radius of 4 feet (1.2 meters) for High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 3D6x10 to a blast radius of 20 feet (6.1 meters) for Plasma. Use the statistics for 105 mm artillery warheads (Go to Battlefield Artillery for Rifts for more information - standard or rocket assisted as appropriate) when using artillery rounds.

    Rate of Fire: Five (5) shots per cannon per melee round.

    Payload: 500 rounds total. Ship normally carries usually carries 100 High Explosive, 150 High Explosive Armor Piercing, 100 Plasma, 50 Rocket Propelled High Explosive, 50 Rocket Propelled High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 50 Rocket Propelled Plasma rounds. The ship will carry special rounds when employed in artillery roles.

  2. One (1) Strike Length 48 Cell Vertical Launch System: Mounted behind the five inch gun mount, this forward launcher has 48 cells able to fire a variety of missiles. As these are the longer strike version of the missile launcher, they can carry the longer cruise missile. From the beginning, the launchers have been found to be very flexible and adaptable. The launcher was originally designed for the Tomahawk and Standard SM-2 Missile. In later service,, these launchers have been adapted to hold one cruise missile, two long range missiles, or four medium range missiles per cell. Cruise missiles are usually used against hardened fixed targets, long range missiles are normally used against aircraft and other large targets, and medium range missiles are normally used against closer targets such as incoming missiles. Anti-Submarine rocket launched torpedoes also can be fired from the launcher (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)

    Maximum Effective Range: As per cruise, long range, or medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per cruise, long range, or medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), sixteen (16), or twenty-four (24) missiles for both launchers per melee and can be fired at multiple targets at the same time.

    Payload: Forty-eight (48) cells for missiles in forward VLS launcher (possible total of 96 long range missiles). One (1) cruise missile, two (2) long range missiles, or four (4) medium range missiles may be carried per cell. Ship carries no reloads. The ship will often have sixteen cells loaded with thirty-two (32) long range missiles and thirty-two cells loaded with one hundred and twenty-eight (128) medium range missiles, for a total of one hundred and sixty (160) missiles.

  3. Eight (8) Mk 141 Long Range Missile Canister Launchers: These launchers are special canisters with four on each side of the ship’s superstructure. They mount on the deck of the vessel and are effectively bolted on. While the launchers are reusable, they are still inexpensive and are easily jettisoned if damaged. Originally designed for the RGM-84 Harpoon missile but adapted for a larger variety of ordnance. While any long range missile type can be carried, usually special surface skimming missiles will be carried in launchers and are used against surface targets only.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (Surface skimming missiles have 25% less range than normal long range missiles, see revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire long range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) long range missiles with all launchers operating together.

    Payload: One (1) long range missile each launcher for a grand total of eight (8) long range missiles (Has no missiles in storage for reloads.)

  4. One (1) GDC Mk 49 Rolling Airframe Missile Launcher: This is a Pre-Rifts missile launcher originally designed to fire the RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) but later modified to fire a wider variety of short range missiles. Has a total capacity for twenty-one short range missiles and designed to act as inner anti-missile point defense and is considered effective in dealing with incoming cruise missiles. Short Range Missiles are usually a mixture of 50% Armor Piercing and 50% Plasma. Launchers can lock onto multiple targets at the same. The systems missile launchers can target up four targets and can fire a volley up to twice per melee round.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire short range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) short range missiles and can be used up to twice (2) per melee round.

    Payload: Twenty-one (21) short range missiles each.

  5. Two (2) Mk 32 Dual 12.75 inch (324 mm) Medium Torpedo Launchers: There is one twin launcher on each side of the ship. Each twin torpedo launcher has two torpedo tubes and tubes are 12.75 in (324 mm) wide. Torpedoes are normally used against submarines but can be targeted against surface targets as well. Interceptor torpedoes are also available for launchers / tubes to use against incoming torpedoes. Ship carries twelve reloads for torpedoes. For the most part torpedo warheads are equal to medium range missile warheads.

    Maximum Effective Range: 20 miles (17.4 nautical miles / 32 km) for standard torpedoes.

    Mega-Damage: By medium torpedo warhead type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire medium torpedoes one at a time or in volleys of two (2) medium torpedoes per side. Reloading tubes requires two (2) full melee rounds.

    Payload: Two (2) medium torpedoes each launcher for a grand total of four (4) medium torpedoes. Has twelve (12) torpedoes for reloads.

  6. Two (2) Chaff / Decoy Launchers: Located on the superstructure of the ship, they are designed to confuse incoming missiles. Both launchers must be operated or effects will be reduced. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies missiles due to technological differences. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles) and reduce effects of launchers by 10% per launcher not used (Add +10% to rolls per launcher not used.) Only useful against missiles, not useful against torpedoes underwater.

    Range: Around Ship.

    Mega Damage: None.



    Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.



    Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)



    No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.

    Payload: Twenty-four (24) each for a total of forty-eight (48) canisters.

  7. Four (4) SLQ-52B Naiad Advanced Towed Torpedo Decoys: The vessel carries four advanced towed decoy drones. They are each a small automated vehicle that creates a false sonar image designed to mimic the vessels. The decoy is dragged behind the frigate using a cable. If decoys are not destroyed, they can be recovered and repaired. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies guidance and targeting systems due to technological differences.

    M.D.C.: 20 each.

    Range: Not Applicable although decoy is deployed approximately 1,000 feet (304.8 meters) from the vessel.

    Effects: The decoy has an 80% chance of fooling ordinary non military sonars and non smart guided torpedoes, the decoy has a 50% chance of fooling military level sonars (like those of the Coalition) and non “smart” torpedoes, and the decoy has a 25% chance of fooling advanced military sonars (Like those of the New Navy and Triax) and “smart” torpedoes.

    Rate of Fire: One can be deployed at a time and requires two (2) minutes to deploy (reel out) another decoy.

    Payload: Four (4) towed decoys.

Special Systems:

The ship has all systems standard on a robot vehicle plus the following special features:

[ Altarain TM, Bandito Arms TM, Brodkil TM, Chipwell Armaments TM, Coalition States TM, Cyber-Knight TM, Federation of Magic TM, Free Quebec TM, Golden Age Weaponsmiths TM, Horune TM, Iron Heart Armaments TM, Kankoran TM, Kittani TM, Kydian TM, Larsen’s Brigade TM, M.D.C. TM, Mechanoids TM, Mega-Damage TM, Megaversal Legion TM, Millennium Tree TM, Mutants in Orbit TM, Naruni Enterprises TM, Naut’Yll, New Navy TM, New Sovietskiy TM, NGR TM, Nog Heng TM, Northern Gun TM, Phase World TM, Psyscape TM, Rifter TM, SAMAS TM, S.D.C. TM, Shemarrian TM, Splugorth TM, Stormspire TM, Sunaj TM, Tolkeen TM, Triax TM, Wellington Industries TM, Wilk’s Laser Technologies TM, Xiticix TM, and Zaayr TM are trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

[ Beyond the Supernatural®, Heroes Unlimited®, Nightbane®, Ninjas & Superspies®, Palladium Fantasy®, and Rifts® are registered trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

Image drawn and copyrighted by Mischa (E-Mail Mischa) with slight revisions by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Mischa has no art home page at present but many other items on my site.

Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2011 & 2018, Kitsune. All rights reserved.