PACIFIC OCEAN – Multinational partners conducted a Multi-Area Sinking Exercise (SINKEX) in the Hawaiian Islands area of operation as part of Exercise Rim of the Pacific 2022 on Friday, July 22.
Air, land and sea units from Japan and the United States sank the decommissioned Austin-class amphibious transport ship ex-USS Denver (LPD 9) in waters over 15,000 feet deep and more than 50 miles sailors north of Kauai. Under the supervision and coordination of the combined multinational task force, SINKEX enabled partner nations to master tactics, targeting and live fire against a surface target at sea.
From land, the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force and the United States Army fired Type 12 surface-to-ship missiles and practice rockets.
Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF), Major General Shigeo Kaida, Director of the Operations Support and Training Department at the Ground Staff Office of the Japanese Ministry of Defense, spoke about the importance of the training opportunity offered by SINKEX.
“This sea immersion exercise demonstrates current operational capabilities and tactical skills, and provides a valuable opportunity to coordinate and collaborate between the Japanese Type 12 surface-to-ship missiles (SSM) and artillery rocket system at U.S. Army High Mobility (HIMARS) to conduct a comprehensive live-fire exercise,” Kaida said. “Alliances with partner nations are key to ensuring our regional stability and enhancing our deterrence and response capabilities. in the Indo-Pacific region.
From the air, US Navy F/A-18F Super Hornets assigned to Fighter Attack Squadron 41 fired a long-range anti-ship missile. US Army AH-64 Apache helicopters fired Hellfire air-to-surface missiles, rockets and 30mm cannons. US Marine Corps F/A-18C/D Hornets assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 232, Marine Air-Ground Task Force 7, fired an air-launched cruise missile, air-to-surface anti-radiation missiles, an air-to – anti-radiation land missile and joint direct attack munitions.
Royal Canadian Air Force Brigadier General Mark Goulden, Commander of Combined Force Air Component Command RIMPAC, is responsible for air domain operations throughout the exercise and discussed the challenges of a SINKEX and the amount of teamwork required to complete the assignment.
“SINKEX is more than the end result. It takes a team of capable and adaptable partners from different nations and disciplines to come together to find, repair, track, target, engage and assess with the agility and precision to place the right munitions in the right place, at the right time, every time,” Goulden said. “RIMPAC SINKEX provides us with a uniquely complex and challenging environment for partner forces to hone these important skills. Being able to work together was our goal, and SINKEX is a demonstration of our success.
U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Deputy Commander Pacific Brig. Gen. Joseph R. Clearfield is the Commanding General of Fleet Marine Force and oversees all Marine Corps forces assigned to EXERCISE RIMPAC.
“The role of Marine Corps aircraft, alongside our partner and allied forces in this SINKEX, is an impressive demonstration of the versatile combat power that combined force brings to the fight,” Clearfield said. “It was a bittersweet moment for me, having served aboard the USS Denver in my career. But what a way for her to come out! This exercise shows the power of partnerships in the region.”
Finally, from the sea, the US Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Chaffee (DDG 90) fired its Mark 45 5-inch gun.
Former Navy vessels used in SINKEX are prepared in strict accordance with regulations prescribed and enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency under a general permit the Navy holds under the Environmental Protection Act. , research and marine sanctuaries. Each SINKEX must sink the hull in at least 1,000 fathoms (6,000 feet) of water and at least 50 nautical miles from land. Surveys are conducted to ensure that humans and marine mammals are not in an area where they could be harmed during the event.
Before the vessel is transported to participate in a SINKEX, each vessel undergoes a rigorous cleaning process, including the removal of all polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), transformers and large capacitors, all small capacitors in as far as possible, waste, floatables containing mercury or fluorocarbons and elements containing easily detachable solid PCBs. Oil is also cleaned from tanks, piping and reservoirs.
Ex-Denver, the third United States Navy ship to be named after American pioneer James William Denver and the state capital of Colorado, was commissioned on October 26, 1968. During its history, the ship has played a significant role in several operations, most notably Operation Frequent Wind, the evacuation of Saigon, Vietnam in April 1975. The ship was decommissioned as the Navy’s oldest deployable warship after 46 years of service at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on August 14, 2014.
Twenty-six nations, 38 ships, three submarines, more than 170 aircraft, more than 30 unmanned systems and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 29 to August 4 in and around the Hawaiian Islands and California from South. The largest international maritime exercise in the world, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity while fostering and maintaining cooperative relationships among participants essential to keeping sea lanes safe and the world’s oceans safe. RIMPAC 2022 is the 28th exercise in the series which began in 1971.