HMS Diamond with Sea King Helicopter
A Sea King Mark 7 Airbourne Surveillance And Control (SKASAC) helicopter from 854 Naval Air Squadron takes off from the deck of a Type 45 destroyer for the first time.
Able to provide surveillance and early airborne warning, the Sea King Mark 7 can conduct maritime security operations while deployed on a maritime unit in the Arabian Gulf. It was in company with Portsmouth-based Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond, which is currently in the region.
The SKASACs are presently exercising with Royal Navy ships in the area. For the last few years units from the squadron have been deployed to Afghanistan, where their performance in providing airborne support to units on Op HERRICK has been of critical importance. Using the techniques honed from these deployments they are bolstering surveillance at sea by demonstrating their ability to detect even small contacts at range and report them to friendly units.
The exercises were carried out while Diamond was conducting maritime security operations in the Gulf Region. It was also a good experience for the aviation team in the ship to handle the requirements of a different class of aircraft
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Royal Navy Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond is pictured turning at speed during Exercise Joint Warrior off the coast of Scotland.
Exercise Joint Warrior is taking place during April 13-29 in the waters off, skies above and soil of Scotland. More than a dozen Royal Navy (RN) warships and submarines are committed to the annual war game. British warships are joined by more than 30 visiting warships, 40 fixed-wing aircraft and 30 helicopters.
Alongside RN, RAF and Army personnel taking part in Joint Warrior, forces from the Netherlands, Canada, France, Denmark, Belgium, Norway, Poland, Sweden and German are involved nearly 12, 000 military personnel in all.
Embarked onboard HMS Illustrious are Royal Marines from 42 Commando, Seakings from 845 Naval Air Squadron (NAS), a Merlin from 820 NAS, Chinooks from 27 Squadron RAF and Lynx helicopters from 659 Squadron Army Air Corps.
The scenario will cover a broad range of circumstances including evolving crisis and conflict situations which cover disputed territory, conventional and non-conventional maritime and amphibious threats such as counter-piracy and terrorist activity. The scenarios will develop over two weeks, increasing in tension and uncertainty into stimulated operations and potential state on state hostilities
Royal Navy Type 45 Destroyer HMS Daring
HMS Daring has participated in a Combined Maritime Forces focussed operation in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden, Operation Scimitar Anzac.
The Type 45 and her Ship's Company worked as part of Combined Task Force (CTF) 150, one of three Task Forces within the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), a 25 nation international partnership who coordinate their collective military and multi-agency assets to safeguard and build capacity in Maritime Security operations in the Gulf Region.
CTF 150 is currently made up of Royal Navy, Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Pakistani Australian New Zealand, and Yemini Naval Forces. The group is presently led by a combined Royal Australian and New Zealand Navy Battle staff The next rotation will see the Pakistani Navy take the lead.
Focussed Operation Scimitar Anzac saw the task force, made up of HMS Daring, HMAS Parramatta, PNS Babur and the RFA Wave Knight, operating together.
HMS Daring is currently deployed for a seven-month deployment to continue the Royal Navy's long-term presence East of the Suez.
The ship will be acting as part of the Royal Navy's standing commitment in the Middle East, providing a range of capabilities from counter piracy to reassurance of the UK's allies in the region. The area of operations is huge, covering the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Gulf.
Pictured: HMS Daring steams into position to line up for the photex with the rest of the ship's taking part in Operation Scimitar Anzac
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