The RAN’s NUSQN725 MH-60R Romeo Seahawk training unit embedded with US Navy training squadrons at NAS Jacksonville in Florida has started dipping sonar operations.
The unit has received, installed and calibrated its first Airborne Low Frequency Sonar System (ALFS), and has been conducting trials in an exercise area off the Florida coast. The ALFS comprises the dipping transducer, a reeling machine, and onboard processors.
“This is what it’s all about,” Chief Petty Officer Aircrewman Nathan Minett told Navy News after the first sortie. “This is one of the primary roles of the aircraft and it’s great to see the system operating as advertised.”
Added unit executive office LCDR Todd Glynn; “This system, in concert with others, will give the Romeo a tactical anti-submarine advantage and I look forward to seeing it doing the business for the Fleet. I was lucky enough to be part of 817 SQN (Sea Kings) when they had a dipping capability and it’s incredible to see how the systems have developed over the years.”
NUSQN 725 is due to start a “phased return” to Australia from October where it will be commissioned at its home base of HMAS Albatross near Nowra before Christmas.