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    Vella Gulf Trains for Anti-Submarine Warfare

    Vella Gulf Conducts Operations in the Gulf of Aden

    Photo By Petty Officer 3rd Class Andrew Waters | 200522-N-PI330-0116 GULF OF ADEN (May 22, 2020) Operations Specialist 2nd Class...... read more read more

    (GULF OF ADEN) – Sailors aboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72), in coordination with a MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter from the “Guardians” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 48 and a P-8A Poseidon attached to the “Red Lancers” of Patrol Squadron (VP) 10, conducted an anti-submarine warfare exercise in the Gulf of Aden May 22, 2020.

    Guided-missile cruisers are capable of multiple forms of warfare to meet a wide spectrum of potential mission requirements. Regular training in surface-to-surface, surface-to-air, and surface-to-subsurface enables Sailors to be proficient in each of these areas and allows crews to maintain a high readiness level for any tasking the Navy requests.

    During this exercise, an Expendable Mobile ASW Training Target (EMATT) was put in the water to act as a submarine decoy.

    “We got a lot of training value out of the EMATT because it performed very similarly to how a real submarine would,” said Lt. Erik J. Nordgaard, Vella Gulf’s anti-surface warfare officer. “The drone emitted realistic acoustics and allowed us a chance to react to actual issues such as what to do when wildlife showed up. The training also enabled us to cross-check what we were seeing against what the Poseidon and Sea Hawk were seeing.”

    Throughout the exercise, various forms of sensors were used such as sonar buoys from the P-8A Poseidon, the tactical towed array sonar from Vella Gulf, and a dipping sonar from the Sea Hawk.

    “The three components [ship, P-8, and MH-60R] conduct anti-submarine warfare differently,” said Lt. Daniel McCarty, a MH-60R helicopter pilot embarked aboard Vella Gulf. “We all have our strengths and proficiencies, and it’s highly effective when we all work together seamlessly.”
    In order to successfully complete the training objectives, Sailors on board the Vella Gulf had to manage incoming information from these three sources to gain critical and accurate battlespace awareness.

    “It was intense,” said Senior Chief Sonar Technician (Surface) James D. Burns, the single-ship acoustic supervisor and the combat acoustics leading chief petty officer aboard Vella Gulf. “All watch standers had to be on the same page and prioritize the correct information to arrive at a creative solution so that the ship could outmaneuver the submarine contact and accomplish the training objectives.”

    After working with each other throughout the exercise, Vella Gulf, the MH-60R, and the P-8 were able to track the submarine decoy and maneuver appropriately in response. As a result, Vella Gulf maintains her multi-mission capabilities and is fully mission-ready for national tasking.

    Vella Gulf is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central Region, connecting the Mediterranean and Pacific through the Western Indian Ocean and three critical chokepoints to the free flow of global commerce.



    Date Taken: 05.22.2020
    Date Posted: 05.31.2020 17:05
    Story ID: 371145
    Location: GULF OF ADEN

    Web Views: 160
    Downloads: 1