Sunday, July 12, 2020

U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer launches missiles during SWATT

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The U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS James E. Williams (DDG 95) launched missiles during a Missile Exercise (MSLEX) as part of Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training (SWATT), according to a recent service news release.

According to a news release, USS James E. Williams launched two Standard Missiles (SM) 2 at the first series of aerial targets launched from Wallops Flight Facility, Sept. 10-12.

SWATT is an exercise with other U.S. Navy warships coordinated through the Surface and Mine Warfare Development Center (SMWDC). James E. Williams and other Surface warships assigned to Carrier Strike Group 10 are participating in the exercise in the Atlantic Ocean to maintain readiness, proficiency and lethality.

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“SWATT is a total-ship evolution which requires the seamless integration of all ship functions,” said Cmdr. Christopher Norris, James E. Williams’ executive officer. “We prepare for this event by training the crew through a myriad of drills and scenarios, writing and revising our warfighting doctrines and challenging our own assumptions in an effort to build not just Sailors who can fight the ship, but Sailors who can also rapidly apply critical thinking to combat an ever-changing adversary.”

Cmdr. Jason Tumlinson, senior mentor at SMWDC, explained that SWATT not only integrates the functions of a ship, but also integrates the functions of the strike group as well.

“MSLEX scenarios ensure that systems and weapons function as designed, contributing to lethality and proficiency needed for deployment,” said Tumlinson. “SWATT is the bridge that enables ships to successfully transition from the basic phase of training to the integrated phase, in which multiple units operate together in complex scenarios like MSLEX.”

Four ships fired supersonic and subsonic missiles at aerial targets that took the participation from multiple departments and expertise over the course of two days.

“From the air, power and water, strike group communications to the fine tuning of the Radar, none of this would be possible without everyone doing their part,” said Chief Fire Controlman (AEGIS) Sean O’Carroll.

More than a dozen warfare tactics instructors (WTIs) from SMWDC and other organizations are underway on 6 ships with CSG 10 leading SWATT in the Virginia operating area.

“WTIs are the center of gravity in the execution of SWATT,” said Tumlinson. “They bring tactically relevant training to ships in order to assist in preparing them for the ever-changing fight.”

SWATT involves multiple events that support the ‘Live, Virtual, and Constructive’ fleet training concept, and the MSLEX evolution specifically by providing the crew live training in a real environment, operating real equipment.

“Shooting live targets with live missiles is the most amazing evolution this warship can do,” said O’Carroll. “It’s a remarkable experience to witness the reactions of the team throughout the evolution. As a chief, the most rewarding part is reminding our Sailors that their sacrifice and diligence make it possible for the ship to execute her duties.”

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Executive Editor

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