Spain. Aircraft carrier Numancia (Príncipe de Asturias class)
The history of the ship is inspired in the AU "Mancomunidad Hispanica" (only available in Spanish). In it, Spain avoids participation in the Napoleonic wars and preserves its empire, fragmenting the "reinos" (kingdoms) similar to the Commonwealth domains.
The Numancia was the second of the Prince of Asturias class (Prince of Asturias, Numancia and Real) and the first to be commissioned. It was named after the ironclad Numancia, Méndez Núñez's flagship in the battle of Callao, and the first ironclad to go circumnavigating the globe. Numancia was an Iberian city that fought against the Romans in the second century B.C.; like Masada, but the siege endured for ten years. In Spanish, "resistencia numantina" (numantine resistance) means heroic struggle to the end.
The Prince of Asturias class was ordered in response to the Japanese naval expansion, to complement the Glorious class (Glorioso, Dédalo, Lepanto). They were "auxiliary aircraft carriers" that could be built in civilian shipyards, as the military were overloaded with new constructions. They were to carry the machinery of the heavy cruisers of the Balearic class (8 Yarrow boilers) but with two set turbo-electric drive ant two shafts.
The Prince of Asturias was launched in 1938 and the Numancia in 1939, but the beginning of the war stopped the works, when the Prince was 70% finished and the Numancia 55%. The work resumed in 1943, with a modified project to take lessons of the war experience. As Numancia was more delayed, it required less modifications, and could be the first to be completed. Although initially they were going to be very similar to the Glorioso, on the Numancia the elevators were relocated on the starboard side, to increase the space in in hangar and deck. The flight deck was enlarged and modified catapults of higher power were installed. Instead of the original armament (120mm and 37mm guns), it carried eight semi-automatic double towers CETME with 60L55 guns. The secondary artillery was 34 25 mm machine guns in single and double mounts. It was unarmoured, except for the 25 mm steel flight deck. Carried up to 54 aircraft (30 Hispano Aviación HA-50 fighters, 18 CASA C-103 bombers, and 6 Aerotécnica AC-10 helicopters).
The Numancia was commissioned in November 1944 and after her shakedown cruise she conducted neutrality patrols in the Atlantic. In February 1945 a pro-Japanese coup d'état in Manila took place, and Spain declared war against Japan. The Numancia was included in the Far East squadron, along with the Glorioso and Dédalo, participating in the recapture of the Philippines. In 1948 she returned to Spain, being used as a training aircraft carrier. He passed to the reserve in 1953, but in 1967 he was reactivated as LPH, with Nova N-30 helicopters, and later with VSTOL CASA C-107 fighters. However, its machines were in poor condition, and the Numancia was withdrawn in 1979. It’s preserved in Valencia.
Displacement: 31.700 t light; 32.500 t standard; 47.000 t full load
Dimensions: Length 213 m, beam 25 m, draught 6 m
Machinery: 8 boilers Yarrow, 2 turbo – electric drive, 2 shafts. 100.000 sph. Speed: 27 knots.
Armament: 8 x 2 60L65 guns, 23 25L90 machine guns.
Aircraft carried: 54.
Sorry for my poor English.