HMS Northumberland’s crew honed their anti-submarine warfare skills during a four-day “fight” in the fjords on Norway.
The Royal Navy say here that the frigate tested her mettle against the Norwegian Navy – in waters its submariners know like the back of their hands.
“Ahead of her security duties at the G7 summit in Cornwall, Northumberland was invited to join the hosts for Exercise Grüner Aal, played out in the confined waters around Bergen.
The war games provide a key training environment for the Norwegian Navy to practise live firing of torpedoes at various depths against realistic manoeuvring targets… and for surface vessels to practise their counter-measures.
The pandemic limited participation this year from international vessels, but Northumberland was able to join the host’s support ship Magnus Lagabøte, tug HS4 Mjølner. Doing its best to get Northumberland in its sights was the diesel-electric submarine HMNoS Uredd.
She’s tiny by comparison with Britain’s hunter-killer boats – but operating in home waters with a highly-skilled crew of only 21, being a small and very quiet submarine, she was an elusive target.”
The Royal Navy add that Mohawk Flight from 814 Naval Air Squadron at Culdrose used her sonobuoys (listening devices dropped in the ocean) and her ‘dipping’ sonar, lowered beneath the Merlin, “to locate and successfully track the Uredd’s movements throughout the exercise – and conducted simulated attacks to defend Northumberland”.