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Dynamic Manta is NATO’s premier Submarine Warfare Exercise.

The exercise has been going off the Sicilian coast since the 2nd of March and will finish on the 16th of March.

Due to the nature of anti-submarine warfare the exercise remains one of the most challenging exercises for NATO forces. It provides allied nations with an excellent opportunity for their forces to practice together in a pure joint environment and simultaneously provides NATO the ability to evaluate and further develop Allied Anti-Submarine tactics.

This year submarines from Canada, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and the United States, under the control of NATO Submarine Command (COMSUBNATO), will join 9 surface ships from Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, UK, and USA.

In total 10 Allied nations are converging their ships, submarines, aircraft and crews for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and anti-surface warfare (ASUW) training on the Central Mediterranean Sea. The host nation Italy is providing support from the Augusta Naval Base, Catania Harbour and the Sigonella Air Base in Catania.

To support the simulated multi-threat environment, 10 Maritime Patrol Aircraft and 8 Helicopters from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States will operate from Sigonella Air Base under the control of personnel from NATO Maritime Air Command.

HMS Duncan is one of the high-value targets submarines are after during Dynamic Manta 18. 814 and 829 Naval Air Squadrons and a pair of Merlin helicopters have been tasked to protect the warship.

HMS Daring is primarily an anti-air platform and as such, has limited ability to hunt submarines.

As well as anti-submarine warfare, a Royal Navy press release says there will also be surface attacks for the nine participating surface ships – from Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, UK, and USA – to fend off.

“As anti-submarine-warfare includes all three dimensions, special attention needs to be placed upon the air – it’s important for aircrews from various NATO nations’ to come and train together in this truly challenging environment,” explained Greece’s Commodore Andreas Vettos, overseeing the aerial element of the exercise.

“Our sailors study and work hard to develop their undersea abilities.  Dynamic Manta will give our airborne, surface, and submarine teams a valuable chance to test themselves during complex scenarios,” said Rear Admiral Andrew Lennon, the American in charge of NATO’s submarine forces – and the man in charge of the exercise.

“The long list of ships, submarines, and aircraft participating clearly shows NATO’s commitment to maritime training.”

 

7 COMMENTS

  1. Funny that a force would target a £1bn destroyer – that has barely any offensive weapons and certainly cant find a sub.

    The RN need to learn lessons, T26 with CEAFAR/Sampson will be better than a T45 and that is where our future fleet should be.

    • The Type 45 has one of the most advanced air defence systems in the world and is equipped with basically the same anti-ship capabilities as 80% of NATO. It is acting as a task force commander and has several frigates and anti-submarine aircraft under its command. It is also protecting the task force from air attack.

    • When the time comes for T45 replacement, unless AAW technology has completely changed and a frigate/destroyer-sized hull is no longer appropriate, I also hope that as much as possible of the T26 design effort and cost can be used for an AAW variant but the one thing that worries me is the radar.

      Maybe Gunbuster has a view here but I’ve read quite a lot of commentary that the dual radar setup of the T45, although it is claimed not to be strictly necessary (BAE claim that Sampson could also do the job of the S1850), is in reality a big plus for the platform since volume search can be passed off to the S1850 to leave Sampson free to concentrate on tracking and I presume also offers some redundancy.

      I’m not sure of the real life validity of what I read and how much more capable and/or robust an AAW platform becomes if it has separate tracking and volume search radars but if that is a highly desirable attribute then both Sampson and S1850, and hence presumably their successors, are big-ass radars in terms of size, weight, and I assume also the space envelope they probably need around them so that they aren’t interfered with and in turn they don’t interfere with other equipment. I worry just how much reworking of the existing T26 would be required to accommodate such dual big radars and whether it is so much as to be an almost total redesign.

  2. I am looking forward to see how our t45 and its air cover handle that one! I think that air cover includes p8 as well as merlin.

    A triumph for interoperability, and a perfect example of how the sum is greater than the parts.

    This is a serious fleet they have put together, we need enough escorts to be able to contribute to multiple endeavours like this while protecting the carriers and the GIUK gap.

  3. No wonder Russia can send its submarines around our coast when you look what our political masters have done to the Royal Navy.

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