The US Navy’s Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) has successfully completed a live-fire exercise of its complete range of gun weapon systems as part of the composite training unit exercise (COMPTUEX) with the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group.
USS Porter’s ordnance officer ensign Lauren Chatmas said that the destroyer aimed at a moving target at a distance of 4nm by firing 47 blank load and powder rounds, along with three illumination rounds, from the MK-45 5in/54 calibre lightweight gun. As part of the exercise, 55 rounds from the MK-38 25mm machine gun, 300 rounds from the M2 .50 calibre machine guns, 600 rounds from the M240 machine guns and 200 rounds from the MK-15 20mm close-in weapons system (CIWS) were also successfully fired.
Porter’s commanding officer commander Martin Arriola said that the live-fire training exercises were intended to improve crew proficiency at countering manoeuvrable, smaller sized, asymmetric threats, especially when the ship is mobile at a speed of 15 knots.
"For the Sailors, the immediate feedback of seeing rounds impact manoeuvring targets is immeasurably important and builds tremendous confidence," Arriola added.
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Commissioned in March 1999, USS Porter is the 28th Arleigh Burke-class destroyer and has an overall length of 510ft, displacement capacity of 9,000t, a cruising speed of 30 knots and can be armed with over 90 missiles. The vessel is scheduled to undergo a modernisation programme during fiscal year 2013, wherein its RIM-161 Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) capability will be upgraded by the Missile Defense Agency to function as part of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System.