US Navy’s Ike carrier strike group concludes missile firing exercise

20 March 2016 (Last Updated March 20th, 2016 18:30)

The US Navy's Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKECSG) has concluded a multi-ship, live-fire exercise employing the Standard Missile (SM-2) in the Atlantic Ocean.

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The US Navy's Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKECSG) has concluded a multi-ship, live-fire exercise employing the Standard Missile (SM-2) in the Atlantic Ocean.

The fleet was comprised of six combatant vessels, including USS San Jacinto (CG 56), USS Monterey (CG 61), USS Mason (DDG 87), USS Roosevelt (DDG 81), USS Stout (DDG 55) and USS Nitze (DDG 94).

The exercise is said to prepare the strike group to participate in the composition training unit exercise (COMPTUEX), which assesses the mission-readiness of all the strike groups.

“We have always worked to evolve our training, including live firing exercises against high-speed targets during and shortly after the Cold War.”

Led by the carrier strike group's air and missile defence Commander and San Jacinto commanding officer, captain Dennis Velez, the exercise is said to have displayed the navy's efforts to train for the contemporary war fighting scenario.

Velez said: "We have always worked to evolve our training, including live firing exercises against high-speed targets during and shortly after the Cold War.

"And here we are once again adapting and demonstrating our tactical proficiency. With this shoot specifically, we're seeing our sailors operate their weapons systems successfully against advanced threats in contested battlespace environments."

During the exercise, the participating fleet had practised a range of tactical techniques and procedures, including cooperative tracking before firing the SM-2.

The ships were said to have scored kills as measured by the missile and target instrumentation, and had managed two direct hits, which had also marked the functionality of the Aegis weapons system pitted against high-end threats.

Meanwhile, eight sailors on board the Norfolk, Virginia, US-based aircraft carrier USS Dwight D Eisenhower (CVN 69) were injured following seperation of arresting gear during a routine landing of an E-2C Hawkeye aircraft.

The sailors are reported to be stable and are recuperating, with non-fatal injuries.


Image: The SM-2 missile launched during the exercise. Photo: courtesy of US Navy video/Released.