The American and British naval and air forces sank the decommissioned guided missile frigate USS Boone during a multi-domain training exercise in the North Atlantic.
The “Atlantic Thunder 22” exercise was held to improve the countries’ proficiency in tactics, targeting, and live-firing against a surface target at sea.
During the drill, a Royal Navy Wildcat helicopter fired Marlet air-to-surface missiles at the US vessel, decommissioned in February 2012 after 30 years of service.
“The helicopters provided inaugural laser targeting for fixed-wing UK Royal Air Force Typhoons using Paveway IV precision guided munitions,” the US Navy said in a statement.
All that naval power 💥
Ships and aircraft from the United Kingdom and the United States conducted a long planned multi-domain sinking exercise (SINKEX) called Atlantic Thunder 22 in the North Atlantic, Sept. 7, 2022.#NavyPartnerships
— U.S. Navy (@USNavy) September 24, 2022
US Air Force F-15E Eagles released maritime joint direct attack munitions, while the US Navy P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft fired a long-range anti-ship missile.
The USS Arleigh Burke guided-missile destroyer also discharged a Standard Missile 6, and the UK’s HMS Westminster fired an RGM-84D Harpoon missile salvo that finally sank the vessel.
“Ex Atlantic Thunder has demonstrated that UK and US naval and air forces can integrate to deliver an end-to-end kill chain against a maritime target at long range,” British Commander Ed Moss-Ward said.
“The integration of high end weapons, sensors and communications with our NATO allies is key to the collective war fighting capability of the Alliance demonstrated by the sinking exercise. The firings have supported the development of the Royal Navy’s targeting and weapon capabilities, and afforded [the] opportunity to conduct realistic training to validate tactics and operating procedures.”