Atlantic Thunder 22 SINKEX Sinks 450ft-Long Warship- UK's Royal Navy and Royal Air Force Teamed Up With the USN and USAF

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Recently, high-powered weaponry was used in the north Atlantic to sink a decommissioned warship, the USS Boone. Ships from the United Kingdom and the United States collaborated to conduct a well-planned multi-domain sinking exercise (SINKEX) called Atlantic Thunder 22. [i]
The Wildcat HelicopterThomas Newdick/The Drive

The exercise occurred on Sep. 7, 2022. The sunk USS Boone was a "decommissioned guided missile frigate." The SINKEX was conducted to "develop combined proficiency in tactics, targeting and live-firing against a surface target at sea." The exercise also creates opportunities for nations to exhibit how powerful combined forces can be. [ii]

Martlet air-to-surface missiles were deployed from Wildcat helicopters. These helicopters are attached to "the Type 23 frigate HMS Westminster" and provide laser targeting for the UK's Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoon with Paveway IV precision-guided munitions. Watch below as a Wildcat helicopter fires a Martlet missile. [iii]

The Martlet lightweight multirole missile (LMM) boasts multi-mode guidance and is intended to provide "an offensive and defensive capability against small boats and maritime targets." The Wildcat helicopter can carry up to 20 Martlets and carries out "force protection, counter-piracy, and anti-submarine warfare" missions. [iv]

During SINKEX, the US Navy P-8 Poseidon, a multi-mission maritime patrol craft, shot "a long-range anti-ship missile." At the same time, the US Air Force F-15E Eagles "dropped maritime strike joint direct attack munitions." These actions were in addition to the US Navy's USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) striking the USS Boone with a Standard Missile 6 (SM-6) [v]
The P-8 PoseidonBoeing

The P-8 Poseidon can fly up to 41,000 feet with a top speed of 490 knots, roughly 563 mph. Its missions include support for humanitarian efforts and search and rescue missions. Additionally, the aircraft excels at "anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, and intelligence, surveillance & reconnaissance. [vi]
The F15EUS Air Force

The US Air Force's F-15E Strike Eagle performs air-to-air and air-to-ground missions. The aircraft can fly at low altitudes with its two-person crew. The F-15E uses the APG-70 radar system to detect ground targets from long distances. Also aboard the aircraft is LANTIRN, a "low-altitude navigation and targeting infrared for night." Watch the video below to see an F-15 takeoff from an air base in Iceland. [vii]


[i] US Naval Forces Europe-Africa Public Affairs, UK and US conduct SINKEX during Atlantic Thunder 22, (Sep. 23, 2022)

[ii] Id.

[iii] Id.

[iv], Martlet Lightweight Multirole Missile (LMM), (2022)

[v] US Naval Forces Europe-Africa Public Affairs, UK and US conduct SINKEX during Atlantic Thunder 22, (Sep. 23, 2022)

[vi] Boeing, P-8: A Proven Multi-Mission Maritime Patrol Aircraft, (2022)

[vii] US Air Force, F-15E Strike Eagle, (2022)

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Currently pursuing a Juris Doctor at Western State, writer Charnell Gilchrist is writing her way through law school.

Aliso Viejo, CA

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