The biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2018 exercise is set to begin on 27 June in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California, US.

RIMPAC 2018 will see the participation of 26 nations, 47 surface vessels, five submarines and 18 national land forces, as well as more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel.

The US Navy’s Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) has sailed from San Diego to participate in the international maritime exercise.

CVN 70 features a crew of 5,000 sailors and is set to join a fleet of naval vessels in order to participate in a variety of training events, both on-shore and at sea.

"RIMPAC 2018 is being hosted by Commander, US Pacific Fleet and represents the 26th iteration of the maritime exercise, which originally started in 1971."

USS Carl Vinson commanding officer captain Matthew Paradise said: “This is a chance for us to showcase what we do and strengthen relationships with our international partners.

“There are a lot of opportunities to build camaraderie.”

The vessel will undergo training relating to amphibious operations, gunnery, missile, anti-submarine and air-defence activities during the event, in addition to military medicine, humanitarian assistance and disaster response trials.

Participating units will also receive training in counter-piracy, mine clearance operations and explosive ordnance disposal, as well as diving and salvage operations.

RIMPAC 2018 is being hosted by Commander, US Pacific Fleet and represents the 26th iteration of the maritime exercise, which originally started in 1971.

This year’s exercise will include forces from Australia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, South Korea, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, the UK, the US and Vietnam.

Brazil, Israel, Sri Lanka and Vietnam are participating in the RIMPAC exercise for the first time this year.

Events scheduled to take place during the exercise include a live firing of a long-range anti-ship missile (LRASM) from a US Air Force aircraft and the launch of surface-to-ship missiles by the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force, along with the firing a naval strike missile (NSM) from a launcher on the back of a Palletized Load System (PLS) by the US Army.

RIMPAC 2018 will be led by US 3rd Fleet commander vice-admiral John D Alexander, who will serve as the combined task force (CTF) commander during the event.