ATLANTIC OCEAN (NNS) -- The guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG 56) led an air defense exercises with the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (Ike CSG) during a sustainment exercise (SUSTEX), April 10.
San Jacinto provides the strike group with integrated air and missile defense (IAMD).
"In addition to the Navy's core combat capabilities, the mission of the AMDC cruiser is to provide air and missile defense of the entire strike group, ensuring the carrier's freedom of operations," says Capt. Dennis Velez, the carrier strike group's Air and Missile Defense Commander and Commanding Officer of San Jacinto.
Participating units includes F/A-18E Super Hornets assigned to the Sidewinders of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 86 and Gunslingers of VFA-105, F/A-18C from the Wildcats of VFA-131, F/A-18F from the Fighting Swordsmen of VFA-32, the guided-missile cruisers San Jacinto and USS Monterey (CG 61) and the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69)(Ike).
The goal of this exercise is to test the combat readiness of San Jacinto and strike group components as well as their ability to achieve mission success throughout the spectrum of combat operations at sea.
Daily exercises exposed the crew to advanced, near-peer threats that naval forces may encounter on a deployment.
During this underway, San Jacinto successfully defended the carrier against multiple simulated hostile air and surface threats, ensuring freedom of operations in support of national interests.
San Jacinto, part of the Ike CSG, is underway participating in the sustainment exercise designed to maintain deployment readiness as part of the Navy's Optimized Fleet Response Plan (OFRP).
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