USS RONALD REAGAN, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group (CSG) completed Silent Forces Exercises (SIFOREX), July 5, after four days of Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) tactics with the Peruvian Navy.
USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) is in the midst of Summer Pulse '04, the simultaneous deployment of seven carrier strike groups demonstrating their ability to execute the Navy's Fleet Response Plan.
Ronald Reagan CSG is the first group to foster a relationship with Peru through SIFOREX, which was created to provide the Navy with necessary ASW training specifically for diesel submarines, according to Capt. William Hoker, commodore, Destroyer Squadron 7.
"This is a United States and Peruvian exercise created solely for the U.S. Navy to provide us with extensive diesel ASW practice," said Hoker.
The Peruvian Navy was chosen for the exercise based on their expert use of diesel subs and their reputation as the best submariners in South America, according to Hoker.
"The primary concern for the U.S. Navy is diesel powered subs; the majority of the world uses diesel instead of nuclear power," said Hoker.
During the exercise, Ronald Reagan CSG used several different ASW tactics to locate Peruvian subs.
SH-60B Seahawks were used to detect the magnetic signature a submarine gives off. Technology also exists for spotting periscopes and detecting electronic emissions should an enemy submarine choose to use its radar.
The entire CSG provided support tracking and spoting submarine movement.
"The whole airwing pitched in. I even have a picture of a periscope that was taken on the Carrier On board Delivery (C2)," said Hoker. "The primary resources for accomplishing our mission were the helos and our escorts: USS Thomas S. Gates (CG 51), USS Benfold (DDG 65), USS Mustin (DDG 89) and USS Camden (AOE 2)."
According to Hoker, Ronald Reagan performed well in this exercise due to previous exercises with the Brazilian Navy.
"In this exercise, Ronald Reagan practiced its evasive maneuvers similar to those used by the Brazilian navy and conducted flight operations during a period of submarine threat. That was very important," said Hoker.
The Peruvian navy provided more submarines, training, personnel and equipment for the exercise than was originally expected.
"They provided us with four submarines, which was unheard of," said Hoker. "We had round-the-clock diesel ASW with our ships and aircraft."
Peru also provided four surface warfare ships, some fixed-wing aircraft and helicopter assets making this a multi-threat environment exercise, according to Hoker.
Like Ronald Reagan, the Peruvians learned from these exercises. Ronald Reagan CSG provided Peruvian ships with simulated attacks by aircraft.
"The Peruvians gained confidence because they don't get the opportunity to operate against this level of ASW on a day-to-day basis," said Hoker.
"This was an important event for the U.S. and Peruvian Navies and will go a long way toward fostering future relationships, increasing our professional interoperability and furthering the engagement strategy of the United States," said Hoker.
Summer Pulse '04 is the simultaneous deployment of seven aircraft carrier strike groups (CSGs), demonstrating the ability of the Navy to provide credible combat power across the globe, in five theaters, with other U.S., allied, and coalition military forces. Summer Pulse is the Navy's first deployment under its new Fleet Response Plan (FRP).
For more information about Summer Pulse '04, visit the CFFC Web site at www.cffc.navy.mil/summerpulse04.htm or visit the Summer Pulse '04 Navy NewsStand site at www.news.navy.mil/local/pulse04.
For related news, visit the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn76.