Posts tagged ‘Navy’

FRIDAY FOTO (May 15, 2015)

Human Need, Human Support.

U.S. Marine Corps photo by Gunnery Sgt. Ricardo Morales

U.S. Marine Corps photo by Gunnery Sgt. Ricardo Morales

U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Jessica Gomez-Hickman holds a young earthquake victim before loading her into an ambulance at a medical triage area at Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, Nepal. U.S. Joint Task Force 505, along with other multinational forces and humanitarian relief organizations, is providing aid after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal April 25. U.S. Pacific Command sent JTF 505, at Nepal’s request, to provide unique assistance capabilities — including helicopter search and rescue and mobile emergency medical facilities. (Click on the photo to enlarge the image).

A Marine Corps UH-1Y “Huey helicopter from  Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 469 went missing May 12 near Charikot, Nepal, while conducting humanitarian assistance. Six Marines and two Nepalese service members were aboard the aircraft, which crashed in the rugged terrain. Wreckage was spotted by Nepalese troops Friday and it is not believed there are any survivors of the accident, according to the Associated Press.

U.S. Marines, airmen, soldiers and sailors have been providing search and rescue, logistical, medical, communications and transportation support to the shattered area along with U.S. AID and State department workers and civilian urban search and rescue teams from California and Virginia. For more details on this humanitarian relief effort, click here.

To see more photos, click here, here and here.

 

 

 

 

May 15, 2015 at 9:22 am Leave a comment

FRIDAY FOTO (April 24, 2015)

Double the Fun.

U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Commander Darin Russel/

U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Commander Darin Russel

Two Navy F-35C Lightning II aircraft fly in formation over the Sierra Nevada mountain range with to two F/A-18E/F Super Hornets from Naval Air Station Lemoore, California.

The flight is part of a six-day visit by the Grim Reapers of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 101 he bottom two aircraft  to NAS Lemoore, the future basing site for the F-35C. The F-35C, the military’s newest fighter aircraft, will complement the capabilities of the Super Hornet, which is the Navy’s premier strike fighter.

April 24, 2015 at 1:37 am Leave a comment

UNMANNED AIRCRAFT: First-Ever Unmanned Aerial Refueling

Navy Drone Makes History.

X-47B successfully completes the first autonomous aerial refueling demonstration over the Chesapeake bay on April 21.  (Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy)

X-47B successfully completes the first autonomous aerial refueling demonstration over the Chesapeake bay on April 21.
(Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy)

Aviation history was made over Chesapeake Bay yesterday (April 21) as the Navy and Northrop Grumman completed the first-ever refueling  in flight by an autonomous unmanned aircraft.

Northrop Grumman and the Navy announced the first successful demonstration of aerial refueling by the tailless, bat-shaped X-47B.

We reported last week at the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Expo that the aircraft, officially known as the  Unmanned Combat Air System Demonstration (UCAS-D) aircraft was expected to test this procedure soon.

It wasn’t the first time the X-47B made history. In 2013 became the first unmanned aircraft to autonomously launch from and recover aboard an aircraft carrier. The X-47B — there are actually two of them — is nearing the end of its program. The Navy is not asking for any additional funding in fiscal 2016.

The next step will be the Navy’s Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) program, to introduce an unmanned carrier-based strike fighter into the fleet.

In addition to Northrop Grumman, several other major defense contractors are competing for the contract including Boeing, Lockheed Martin and General Atomics.

Here’s another photo of the operation.

X-47B prepares to engage with an Omega K-707 tanker drogue and complete the first autonomous aerial refueling demonstration over  Chesapeake Bay on April 21. (Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy)

X-47B prepares to engage with an Omega K-707 tanker drogue and complete the first autonomous aerial refueling demonstration over Chesapeake Bay on April 21. (Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy)

 

 

April 22, 2015 at 5:54 pm Leave a comment

MARITIME DOMAIN: Navy Unmanned Aircraft; Railgun Testing; Securing the Hemisphere

News Ahoy!

XB47B unmanned aircraft on board the aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman. (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of Northrop Grumman by Alan Radecki)

X-47B unmanned aircraft on board the aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman. (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of Northrop Grumman by Alan Radecki)

The Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Exposition at the Gaylord Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland draws to a close Wednesday (April 15).

Your 4GWAR editor has been helping out the Seapower magazine team with their daily show news publication.

Here’s a sample of what we’ve been seeing.

The Navy’s unmanned demonstrator aircraft for showing how drones could be integrated into the busy flight deck of an American aircraft carrier is facing its last challenge.

Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) says that unmanned aircraft system (UAS), known as the X-47B, (see photo above) will soon start testing its ability to refuel in the air.

To see the full story, click here.

*** *** ***

Here are some other stories on the Seapower website:

Electromagnetic Railgun’s First at-Sea Test Set for Summer 2016

The first at-sea test firing of the Navy’s electromagnetic railgun is slated for late summer 2016, a Naval Sea Systems Command official said April 14.

The rail gun, which uses high-powered electromagnetic pulses instead of chemical propellants to fire projectiles that can move at seven times the speed of sound, will be mounted on a joint high-speed vessel to fire over the horizon at a target anchored in the water, said Capt. Mike Ziv, program manager for Directed Energy and Electric Weapons Systems.

To read the rest of the story, click here.

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Larger Fire Scout a ‘Great Fit’ for the Navy

The larger version of the MQ-8 Fire Scout unmanned helicopter has completed 297 test sorties and is slated to begin initial operational testing and evaluation in 2016, the Navy program manager said April 13.

The Northrop Grumman MQ-8C Fire Scout, is larger, faster, longer and farther-flying than the MQ-8B, with increased endurance and will reduce the burden of manned aircraft, Capt. Jeff Dodge told a briefing at the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Exposition.

To read the rest of the story, click here.

*** *** ***

Coast Guard Sees Combatting Crime Networks as Key to Hemispheric Security

The U.S. Coast Guard says it’s not enough to seize thousands of pounds of cocaine at sea or even arrest the people transporting illegal drugs by boat. Instead, it’s crucial to defeat the transnational organized crime (TOC) networks behind the illicit commerce in narcotics and people, according to the Coast Guard’s Western Hemisphere Strategy.

“Last year alone. the Coast Guard took 91 metric tons of cocaine out of the [trafficking] stream,” Lt. Cmdr. Devon Brennan told a briefing on the first day of the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Exposition. He noted that is three times the amount of drugs seized by all U.S. law enforcement agencies “including along the southwestern border.”

To read more of this story, click here.

Cocaine seized in Central American waters.  (U.S. Navy photo)

Cocaine seized in Central American waters.
(U.S. Navy photo)

April 14, 2015 at 11:47 pm Leave a comment

MARITIME DOMAIN: Sea-Air-Space Expo This Week

Three-Day Maritime Conference.

(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Paul Kelly)

(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Paul Kelly)

Future challenges and current needs for the sea services – the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Coast Guard – will be the hot topics this week at the Navy League’s Sea-Air-Space Expo at National Harbor, Maryland.

Top officials, including Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Jonathan Greenert, Admiral James Winnefeld Jr., the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Paul Zukunft, Marine Corps Commandant General Joseph Dunford and naval commandants from Singapore, Australia and Japan will be among the speakers at the three-day event that starts Monday (April 13) across the river from Washington, D.C.

Big names in the defense and maritime industries like Northrop Grumman, Boeing, L-3, General Dynamics, Huntington Ingalls Industries, Austal and BAE Systems will exhibiting their latest products for the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.

Components of the services like the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) and Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) will also ne detailing their plans and equipment requirements in the coming fiscal year.

Your 4GWAR editor will be there too, as part of the small army of reporters covering the goings on for the Navy League’s Seapower magazine and its daily show publication. We’ll be focusing on unmanned aircraft and the Coast Guard’s strategic plan for the Western Hemisphere among other assignments.

If you can’t make it to the Gaylord Convention Center, you can catch the latest news at the Seapower website and on Twitter at @seaairspace and @SeapowerMag

U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Ed Early

(U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Ed Early)

April 13, 2015 at 12:12 am Leave a comment

FRIDAY FOTO (March 27, 2015)

A Study in Lighting.

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kevin V. Cunningham

U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kevin V. Cunningham

Sometimes the Friday Foto illustrates a military operation or training exercise. Sometimes it shines a spotlight on unsung heroes like para-rescue men and under-appreciated military skill sets like sappers and hospital corpsmen.

And sometimes we just feature an arresting, beautifully-composed photo by one of the services’ many photographers. This is one of those times. This sailor, waiting to take off in an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter, has been caught in what appears to be a shaft of sunlight caused by the rotating helicopter engine blades. This shot was taken on the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard in the East China Sea on March 24.

BTW, the sailor is a naval aircrewman assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 25. Make sure you click on the photo to enlarge it and get the full effect.

March 27, 2015 at 12:59 am Leave a comment

SPECIAL OPERATIONS: Navy Commando Medic Awarded Silver Star for Heroism in Afghanistan

Corpsman Up!

Petty Officer 1st Class Kevin D. Baskin, special amphibious reconnaissance corpsman, 3d Marine Special Operations Battalion, was decorated with the Silver Star Medal for his actions in Afghanistan April 25, 2013.  (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Sgt. Scott A. Achtemeier)

Petty Officer 1st Class Kevin D. Baskin, special amphibious reconnaissance corpsman, 3d Marine Special Operations Battalion, was decorated with the Silver Star Medal for his actions in Afghanistan April 25, 2013.
(U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Sgt. Scott A. Achtemeier)

The U.S. Marine Corps doesn’t have medics per se. Instead, their medical emergency needs aboard ship, back at base or on the battlefield are handled by sailors known as Hospital Corpsman.

These highly skilled and highly respected personnel don’t get as much attention as they should from this blog. But today is different.

Today (March 25) we learned one corpsman, Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Kevin Baskin, was recently awarded the Silver Star Medal for valor during combat actions in Afghanistan.

A special amphibious reconnaissance corpsman (SARC) assigned to the 3rd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Baskin was awarded the Silver Star — the third-highest U.S. military decoration for valor — after saving the lives of four members of his unit, according to to U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (MARSOC). SARCs are special operations-skilled trauma specialists who are trained in many of the commando skills of MARSOC operators including combatant scuba diving and parachute insertion.

Baskin was attached to Marine Special Operations Team 8224 with 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion during the unit’s 2013 deployment to Herat province, Afghanistan, according to Marine Corps Times. On April 24, 2013, Baskin and his team members came under a barrage of enemy fire from insurgents near Kushe Village, in South Zereko Valley.  Disregarding his own safety, he ran through enemy fire, to provide aid to a wounded teammate. After stabilizing the wounded Marine and loading him into an evacuation vehicle, Baskin himself was shot in the back.

Baskin’s award citation reads, “Although wounded, he continued treating casualties while refusing medical treatment for his own injuries. Under intense fire, while simultaneously directing the evacuation of the wounded Marines, [Afghan National Army] partner forces and himself, he laid down suppressive fire until every team member had evacuated the kill zone. His actions ultimately saved the lives of four of his teammates.” 

SARC insignia (RekonDog via wikipedia)

SARC insignia
(RekonDog via wikipedia)

No matter where they serve, the Navy rating of hospital corpsman is the most decorated in the U.S. Navy with 22 Medals of Honor, 174 Navy Crosses. 31 Distinguished Service Medals, 949 Silver Stars and 1,582 Bronze Stars, according to wikipedia. Twenty naval ships have been named after hospital corpsman.

It is noteworthy that this all happened during Baskin’s second tour of duty in Afghanistan. His first tour, with the 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, was cut short when he was wounded by fragments from a rocket-propelled grenade — earning him the first of two Purple Heart medals for wounds sustained in combat.

March 25, 2015 at 11:58 pm Leave a comment

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