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Royal Navy Seaking Mk4 Helicopters Over Northern Norway
Royal Navy Seaking Mk4 helicopters from 845 Naval Air Squadron conducting Arctic flying training over the snow covered mountains of northern Norway.
Situated some 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle at the Joint Helicopter Command (JHC) training facility near Bardufoss, Northern Norway, the JHC base known as 'Clockwork' provides survival and operational training and support facilities to enable aviation capable units arms to survive, operate and fight in extreme cold weather environments.
JHC 'Clockwork' has provided Commando Helicopter Force (CHF) with an Arctic base for over 40 years the training provided by the facility is as relevant today as it has always been. It enables CHF to prepare for future operations and is fundamental to the delivery of littoral manoeuvre for the Royal Navy given the geography and excellent facilities that exist in the local area.
150 Naval personnel from Commando Helicopter Force normally based at the Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton in Somerset will take part in their annual winter training exercise in Northern Norway. Aircrews, engineers and support staff from 845 Naval Air Squadron flying Royal Navy Sea King Mk4 helicopters will conduct essential Environmental Training (ET) and Pre-Deployment Training (PDT) in preparation for future deployments.
At the same time around 50 Naval personnel attached to 28 Squadron Royal Air Force from RAF Benson will also conduct Arctic flying training with the Augusta Westland Merlin Mk 3 helicopter.
This image was a winner in the 2014 RN Peregrine Trophy Competition
© Crown copyright
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Royal Navy Replenishment at Sea
Three Royal Navy ships take part in a Replenishment at Sea or RAS. From left RFA Fort Austin, RFA Fort Victoria and HMS Illustrious are pictured transferring stores and fuel.
HMS Illustrious undertook a Replenishment At Sea (RAS) this morning. What was unusual about this RAS was the fact that there were 3 ships involved. Normally it is just one ship supplying another, but in this instance two supply ships were connected together along with Lusty.
RFA Fort Austin was transferring stores to RFA Fort Victoria by passing them under lines between the two ships, whilst at the same transferring stores to HMS Illustrious by helicopter. RFA Fort Victoria was also pumping fuel over to HMS Illustrious.
HMS Illustrious is currently deployed on Cougar 13. Cougar is the annual deployment of the UK Armed Forces Maritime Response Force Task Group to the Mediterranean and East of Suez. The deployment serves to protect the free, safe and lawful use of the sea and to promote UK interests by developing international partnerships. Cougar allows the UK's maritime assets to exercise with multinational forces in the Gulf region, enhancing our interoperability
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Pictured is the first of the UK's F-35B Lightning II jets to be flown to the UK
Pictured is the first of the UK's F-35B Lightning II jets to be flown to the UK.
Accompanied by two United States Marine Corps F-35B aircraft from their training base at Beaufort, South Carolina.
The F-35B Lightning II will place the UK at the forefront of fighter technology, giving the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy a true multi-role all weather, day and night capability, able to operate from well-established land bases, deployed locations or the Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers.
The Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will be known in UK service as the Lightning II. Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor but the UK is the only Level 1 partner with the US. A number of British companies, including BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce will have significant industrial work-share in construction and development of the aircraft. The Lightning II will provide UK Defence with a 5th Generation (low observable, supersonic, enhanced data fusion), multi-role, all weather, day and night aircraft that will have the ability to operate from land bases as well as the Queen Elizabeth Class carriers, the first of which is due to accept Lightning II onto her deck in 2018. This basing flexibility will give UK Defence a truly joint expeditionary Combat Air capability well into the 2030's. The RAF is the lead service for the operation of Lightning II and, like the Harrier before, the Joint Lightning II Force will be manned by both RAF and RN personnel