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August 16, 2012
SPECIAL LIFTOUT ON RIMPAC
-- SBLT TIM CRAIG
RIMPAC provided us with a chance to practise our proficiencies
in weapon delivery, in a layered attack with contribution from
lti le partners. It was an awesome experience.
LEUT Kelli Lunt
HMAS Darwin received high praise
from the US Navy rear admiral in
charge of the USS Nimitz car rier
strike group for its vital role in the
protection of his f leet from multiple
"threats" during RIMPAC.
The commander of carrier
strike group 11, USN RADM Pete
Gumataotao, addressed Darwin's
ship's company during a recent visit.
"Darwin has been doing an out-
standing job during RIMPAC," he said.
"When I look at the value of the
coalition force, I know I can always
tu rn to this ship to get things done."
One of the key tasks for Darwin
was to provide air defence coordina-
tion for Nimitz, a role usually delegat-
ed to USN cr uisers. Several Darwin
p ersonnel cross-decked to USS
Princeton for training in the role.
"Of course the biggest threat I am
always concer ned about is subma-
rines," he said.
"If you look at all of Darwin's
capabilities, you have a very capable
anti-submarine warfare suite here and
a very, very experienced team."
In another cross-deck exercise,
Darwin person nel boarded HMCS
Ottawa during a challenging day of
Boarding party officer LEUT
Andrew Willett said the exercise pro-
vided his people with an invaluable
test of skill.
"It's not often that we conduct
training by boarding a foreign ship,
review ou r procedu res, then put those
new skills into action so quickly
again," he said.
"Working with people from other
countries gives us valuable experience
in overcoming language barriers, unfa-
High praise for
TEAMS: A boarding party from HMAS Darwin prepares to board HMCS
Ottawa. The approach, below, took place around the islands of Hawaii.
Photos: CPL Christopher Dickson
RADM Gumataotao also had high
praise for Dar win's a nti-subm a rine
miliar ships, and other challenges th
prepare the team more thoroughly fo
LEUT Kelli Lunt
HMAS Darwin successfully exer-
cised complex ship and air launched
torpedo delivery during RIMPAC.
Darwin fired one Mk46 torpedo
while two Mk46 torpedoes were shot
from embarked Seahawk "Valkyrie",
demonstrating a combined ability to
detect and counter a simulated sub-
Two serials also involved a
Canadian Sea King from HMCS
Algonquin, as well as air support from
the US and Japan.
LSCSO Nicholas Miller launched
Darwin's torpedo and said it was a
"I was on HMAS Newcastle dur-
thought that it would be the only time
I would be involved," he said.
"Returning again and being actu-
ally able to fire the torpedo, for me
was a privilege.
"I was both excited and relieved
that it was a success -- all the training
and hard work for the team involved
in the process paid off."
Valkyrie tactical coordinator SBLT
Tim Craig also conducted a career
first when he released the Mk46 tor-
pedo from the helicopter.
"Conducting a simulated anti-
submarine warfare battle was a great
experience to practise our core busi-
ness," SBLT Craig said.
"RIMPAC provided us with a
chance to practise our proficiencies
in weapon delivery in a layered attack
CO Darwin CMDR Brian
Schlegel, who also commanded and
coordinated the anti-submarine war-
fare serial for two ships and five air-
craft, said it highlighted the profes-
sionalism and capability of Darwin's
personnel to work effectively with its
"This was a significant achieve-
ment for the crew of Darwin, we
achieved our objective of three tor-
pedo engagements with successful
results," CMDR Schlegel said.
"The serials highlighted great
teamwork. Our people ensured the
safe undertaking of weapons deliv-
ery, effective communication, coor-
dination of procedures for both the
helicopter and the ship launches, all
while working with our coalition part
READY TO FIRE: Electronic technicians prepare to fit the Mk46 torpedo to Valkyrie before the air-launched
Photo: CPL Christopher Dickson
ng RIMPAC 2010 when they suc-
essfully launched a torpedo andd
in weapon delivery, in a layered attack
with contribution from multiple part-
ners. It was an awesome experience."
while working with our coalition part-
ners Canada, Japan and the
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