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Around The Fleet

Developing Foreign Partnerships

CSCS trains domestic and foreign fleets

Just south of the District of Columbia, in Dahlgren, Virginia, sits the Center for Surface Combat Systems (CSCS). Its main focus is developing and delivering surface ship combat systems training to both domestic and foreign fleets.

"Our mission is training sailors basically to operate and maintain equipment," said Darrell Tatro, Director of International Programs, CSCS. "We specifically train our allies on the systems that we sell them under foreign military sales cases and that's to facilitate our alliances, particularly in this case with Australia."

The course is comprised of classroom and laboratory work covering the AN/SPQ-9B, a two-dimensional anti-ship missile defense radar, which will eventually be installed on Royal Australian navy's new Hobart class of Air Warfare Destroyers (AWDs).

Commander Matthew Carroll, RAN, who is currently serving at Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Dam Neck, attended the graduation and discussed the special partnership between RAN and the U.S. Navy.

"It is good to see Australian and U.S. students working together, sharing ideas, and learning from each other as we introduce this new capability to the Royal Australian navy," Carroll said.

For RAN Petty Officer Luke Brewer, being in America is fun and exciting, but the main takeaway is the invaluable training he is going to take back home with him.

"The training received here, myself and my counterparts have formed the keystone or the cornerstone of the technical mastery required to maintain, operate and ultimately employ the Hobart-class destroyer," said Brewer.

The mission of the Royal Australian navy's Hobart-class air warfare destroyer is sustained maritime operations around the world. The ships have the capabilities to destroy or neutralize any air, surface or submarine threats to itself or any of its accompanied allied ships.

"I'm looking forward to taking the knowledge back, consolidating it and making an active contribution to the build program of the air warfare destroyer, the test and trials package, and the ultimate goal of operational testing, evaluation and operational acceptance," said Brewer.

As the leader in surface combat systems training, the Center for Surface Combat Systems headquarters' staff oversees 14 learning sites, including CSCS Unit Dam Neck, and provides almost 70,000 hours of curriculum for close to 700 courses a year to more than 40,000 Sailors. CSCS Unit Dam Neck provides many different curriculums, and is a primary training facility for several Navy combat systems ratings.