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Giuseppe Garibaldi

Light aircraft carrier

Giuseppe Garibaldi aircraft carrier

The Giuseppe Garibaldi light aircraft carrier was designed to provide ASW support for naval task force

Entered service 1985
Crew 550 men
Aircrew ~ 275 men
Marines up to 600 men
Dimensions and displacement
Length 179 m
Beam 30.4 m
Draught 6.7 m
Flight deck length 173.8 m
Flight deck width 21 m
Hangar deck length 110 m
Displacement, standard 10 100 tons
Displacement, full load 13 139 tons
Propulsion and speed
Speed 30 knots
Gas turbines 4 x 80 000 hp
STOL and Helicopters 12 - 18 helicopters or 16 AV-8B Harrier II or combination
Missiles 8 x OTO Melara Teseo Mk2 SSM launchers, 2 x octuple Albatros launcher for Aspide SAM (48 missiles)
Torpedoes 2 x tripple 324-mm torpedo tubes for ASW torpedoes
Guns 3 x twin 40-mm Breda guns


   Designed as a gas turbine-powered helicopter carrier, the Giuseppe Garibaldi incorporates features suiting it for the carriage and operation of V/STOL fighters. The ship is named after Italian General Giuseppe Garibaldi.

   The Garibaldi was designed specifically to provide ASW support for naval task forces and merchant convoys, and as such is fitted with full flagship facilities plus command, control and communication systems for both naval and air force operations. In emergencies it can also carry up to 600 troops for short periods. The extensive weaponry fitted also allows it to operate as an independent surface unit. The carrier carries a bow-mounted active search sonar. To permit helicopter operations in heavy weather the vessel has been fitted out with two pairs of fin stabilizers, and the aircraft maintenance facilities are sufficient not only to service the ship's own air group but also the light ASW helicopters of any escorting warships.

   Commissioned in September 1985, the Garibaldi originally operated solely as an assault carrier with SH-3s and AB 212s embarked. After the Italian navy was given political clearance to operate fixed-winged types, AV-8Bs were acquired, although these have only been routinely embarked since December 1994. Under modernization, the Teseo Mk 2 SSM launchers are to be removed and replaced with SATCOM domes, and Aster 15 missiles will eventually replace Aspide.

   The flight deck is 173.8 m (570 ft 2 in) long and 21 m (68 ft 11 in) wide, and is fitted with a 6.5 ski-jump ramp. The hangar is 110 m (360 ft 11 in) long, 15 m (49 ft 3 in wide and 6 m (19 ft 8 in) high, and is built to accommodate 12 SH-3D or EH 101 ASW helicopters, or 10 AV-8B aircraft and one SH-3D, although the available height permits the embarkation of CH-47C helicopters if required. A maximum air wing comprising 18 helicopters (six on deck) or 16 AV-8Bs can be embarked. Two aircraft lifts are fitted (one forward and one abaft the island), and there are six marked flight deck spaces for helicopter operations.


Name Laid down Launched Commissioned Status
Giuseppe Garibaldi (551) 1981 1983 1985

active, in service



Video of the Giuseppe Garibaldi light aircraft carrier


Giuseppe Garibaldi aircraft carrier

Giuseppe Garibaldi aircraft carrier

Giuseppe Garibaldi aircraft carrier

Giuseppe Garibaldi aircraft carrier

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