US 6th Fleet-led Exercise At Sea Demo/Formidable Shield concludes

June 7, 2021 (Last Updated June 7th, 2021 14:24)

Formidable Shield was conducted by Naval Striking and Support Forces Nato (STRIKFORNATO).

US 6th Fleet-led Exercise At Sea Demo/Formidable Shield concludes
The Spanish Navy’s ESPS Cristobal Colon warship serves as the exercise’s flagship. Credit: US Navy.

The US Sixth Fleet-led live-fire integrated air and missile defence (IAMD) exercise, At Sea Demo/Formidable Shield 2021 (ASD/FS21), has successfully concluded.

Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, the UK, and the US participated in the exercise.

Conducted by Naval Striking and Support Forces Nato (STRIKFORNATO), the exercise was held at the Hebrides range off Scotland and the Andoya training site off Norway.

STRIKFORNATO deputy commander and Royal Navy rear admiral James Morley said: “It has been a privilege to lead the team here in Portugal responsible for the planning and conduct of At-Sea Demonstration / Formidable Shield 21, one of the most complex and intensive integrated Air and Missile Defense events ever undertaken in the European theatre.

“This exercise has taken place across the maritime, air, and space domains, involving 150 warfare training serials and live events, demonstrating the resolve and capability of the Nato alliance to provide collective defence.”

A total of 16 ships, dozens of aircraft, and around 3,300 personnel took part in the exercise that began on 15 May.

The Spanish Navy’s ESPS Cristobal Colon ship served as the exercise’s flagship.

During the exercise, several participating platforms demonstrated highly technical and complex capabilities in tracking and engaging subsonic, supersonic, and ballistic missile targets.

In addition, the US Navy noted that the Maritime Theater Missile Defense Forum (MTMD-F) successfully completed its operations phase for the ASD/FS exercise.

ASD/FS MDA mission director Dave Morton said: “The MDA is dedicated to furthering the warfighter’s understanding of the ballistic missile threat, and how to negate it.

“No training can replace actually detecting, tracking, and negating a ballistic missile. The more exercises of this type MDA can support, the more confident and proficient the warfighter will become in using our defensive weapon systems.”

In May 2019, the US and eight partner nations took part in Formidable Shield.