HMS St Albans and Astute Conduct ASW Training in the Atlantic

February 25, 2019 – Two of the Royal Navy’s anti-submarine heavyweights carried out training in the Atlantic. Submarine HMS Astute and Type 23 frigate HMS St Albans faced tough weather conditions as they took advantage of working together on their anti-submarine warfare capabilities to do personnel transfer training. St Albans’ Merlin helicopter from 814 Naval Air Squadron – aka the Flying Tigers and normally based at Culdrose in Cornwall – flew between both vessels, winching submariners and sailors while battling wind and rain. Lieutenant Commander Andrew Mitchell, flight commander on…

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First test bombs dropped from HMS Queen Elizabeth’s F-35s

October 18, 2018 – The first bombs have been dropped from F-35 Lightning fighter jets conducting trials on board Britain’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. The inert GBU-12 Paveway II laser guided precision bombs were dropped off the east coast of the USA, marking another significant milestone in the carrier’s trials. Adding the 500lb bombs to the jets for take-off has enabled the trials teams to see how the jets behave when carrying various weights, gathering crucial test data. It is the first time the American-made bombs have ever…

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Culdrose Fast Jet Fliers of the future

Two young Royal Navy student pilots from the local area paid a flying visit to the station this week. S/Lt Jake Robertson & S/Lt Rob Trebilcock came down for an overnight stop, along with their 2 Naval Flying instructors, Lt Cdr Keiron Steen & Lt Adam Vines, as part of the Advanced Navigation Training phase of their course. Both Jake & Rob flew gliders with the Seahawk Gliding Club and took advantage of the Fleet Air Arm Officer’s Association Gliding Scholarship prior to joining the RN in November 2014. After…

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New Pilots Hone Skills on RFA Argus

A month at sea blooded 14 new aircrew in the art of naval aviation as they hunted down submarines and ships around the UK. An 88-strong detachment of air and ground crew from 824 Naval Air Squadron took three Merlin Mk2 helicopters aboard RFA Argus for four weeks of flying, first off the Cornish coast, then in the wilder waters off the Hebrides. The goal was to qualify five pilots, four observers (navigator/weapons specialists) and five Aircrewman (weapons specialists/winchmen) in the art of landing and taking off at sea, refuelling…

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