Royal Navy Merlin Helicopter
A Royal Navy Merlin helicopter taking part in an exercise over the south of England.
Merlin Mk1 the world's most potent submarine hunting helicopter. The Merlin Mk1 have been in service with the Fleet Air Arm since the late 1990s and, after thorough testing and evaluation, the helicopters have been on the front line since 2000.
Our job is to find and if necessary destroy enemy submarines using our state-of-the-art sonar buoys which we drop into the ocean and Sting Ray torpedoes. Beyond searching for submarines, we carry out traditional maritime helicopter duties: anti-piracy/drug-running patrols, surveillance and reconnaissance, search and rescue, and passenger and load transfers.
There are more than 40 Merlins in service with the Fleet Air Arm in training and front-line squadrons. Most of these are in the middle of a £750m upgrade to turn the Merlin Mk1 into the Merlin Mk2 which has more powerful computer systems and is easier for aircrew to operate.
This image was an entry to the Peregrine Trophy 2013 Royal Navy Photographic Competition
Hms Lancaster at Sea
Pictured is HMS Lancasterat sea.
HMS Lancaster was built on the Clyde as the fourth of the Type 23 frigates joining the Fleet in 1992. This versatile multi-role ship can typically be deployed drug-busting in the Caribbean or East of Suez on maritime security patrols.
All the ships in the Type 23 class are named after Dukes, in this case, the Duke of Lancaster - who is also better known as Her Majesty the Queen. The British Monarch is the ship's very special sponsor and Her Majesty takes a keen interest in Lancaster's activities around the globe.
In 2013, HMS Lancaster spent seven months in the North Atlantic and Caribbean, successfully seizing drugs worth a total street value of £160m. During six raids, the ship intercepted 1.2 tonnes of cocaine and almost 1.5 tonnes of cannabis. 23 drug runners were detained, effectively disrupting the distribution of drugs throughout the region.
Lancaster visited all six of the British Overseas Territories in the region and the Commonwealth states of Jamaica, Belize and Barbados while also making calls into the islands of Curacao, Martinique and visiting Columbia in South America. The ship also took part in Exercise Unitas a multi-national exercise involving 16 warships and submarines from nine nations ranging from Canada to Chile.
On returning from her deployments HMS Lancaster is often greeted, wherever possible, by a Lancaster bomber of the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, which provides a fly past over Portsmouth harbour. *** Local Caption *** Pictured is HMS Lancaster afer her last Replenishment at sea (RAS) with RFA Gold Rover
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RAF Chinook Carrying Army Land Rover
A Royal Air Force Chinook helicopter is pictured carrying an Army Land Rover as part of Exercise Wessex Thunder.
RAF Chinooks from RAF Odiham taking part in Exercise Wessex Thunder (Ex WT) on Salisbury Plain. Ex WT saw 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment (2 PARA) working with the Omani Western Frontier Regiment from the Royal Omani Army over a 2 week lonf exercise which concluded in a co-ordinated attack on the urban warfare training facility at Copehill Down. 2 PARA launched the initial assault with the Omani troops arriving by two Chinook's to reinforce the paras and complete the capture of the village.
The Chinook's also moved vehicles around the plain as underslung loads.
Royal Air Force Odiham is situated in North Hampshire, 46 Miles south west of London . The nearest large town is Basingstoke, 7 miles to the West. The working population of the Station is about 2, 000, of which around 100 are civilians.
Royal Air Force Odiham operates three Support Helicopter (SH) squadrons and one Army Air Corps (AAC) Lynx squadron. A conversion flight is incorporated in one of SH squadrons. The flying units are supported by Forward Support Wing, which provides 2nd line aircraft, equipment engineering and logistics support, and by Base Support Wing, which manages the Station infrastructure, finance, welfare and other support tasks. Ops Wing is responsible for co-ordinating all aspects of operational and logistic output and also manages the airfield services.
Nos 7, 18 (B) and 27 squadrons, equipped with the Chinook HC2, HC2A and HC3 and No 657 Squadron (AAC) with its Lynx AH7s, operate in support of NATO and UK interests worldwide, providing direct support to the Army. No 18 (B) Squadron additionally operates a training flight to convert pilots and crewmen to fly the Chinook. The Joint Helicopter Support Squadron is also based at Royal Air Force Odiham and deploys with the squadrons to provide specialist underslung load support and landing site management in
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