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Carrier Air Wing 5 sharpens ASW skills during Keen Sword

04 November 2018

From MC3 Erwin Jacob Villavicencio Miciano, USS Ronald Reagan

Anti-submarine warfare (ASW) is among the many mission areas emphasized during exercise Keen Sword with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.

PHILIPPINE SEA - Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5 is participating in anti-submarine warfare (ASW) exercises aboard the Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) during Keen Sword 19.

Keen Sword 19 is a joint, bilateral field-training exercise involving U.S. military and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force personnel, designed to increase combat readiness and interoperability of the Japan-U.S. alliance.

Anti-submarine warfare or ASW is comprised of several essential components including information gathering, calculating environmental conditions, acoustic predictions and neutralizing targets. Some of the rates in the exercises included Intelligence Specialists, Aerographer’s Mates, Sonar Technicians (Surface), Operations Specialists and Naval Air Crewmen (Helicopter).

“We go out there. We work with the Japanese and they tell us what the problem is, where to go and what to search for,” Naval Air Crewman 3rd Class Ronald Pierpoint, from Eagle Rock, Calif., said. “It helps us grease our gears working with real submarines and, at the end of the day, we go over our training to get better and better.”

Keen Sword helps trains the ASW team for real world situations with JMSDF submarines. Ronald Reagan also worked with Japanese forces to locate and engage with potential enemies.

According to Task Force ASW, anti-submarine warfare will remain a core mission area for the United States Navy. Execution of that vital mission will be critical to protecting the strategic speed and operational agility of joint and coalition forces across the largest maneuver space in the world – the sea.

The squadrons that make up CVW-5 are the Strike Fighter Squadrons (VFA) 102, VFA-27, VFA-115, VFA-195, Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 141, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30, Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 77, Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 12 and Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 125.

Ronald Reagan, the flagship of Carrier Strike Group 5, provides a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interests of its allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region.

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