The world’s largest Maritime exercise has officially begun
with elements of the Australian Navy, Army and Air Force joining the military
forces of 21 other nations in Hawaii.
Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2012 has brought
together 25 thousand sailors, soldiers and airmen who will spend the next five
weeks participating in a series of complex and realistic warlike scenarios.
For the first time in the history of RIMPAC, Australia
will lead the maritime component.
The Commander of the 1100 strong Australian contingent, Commodore Stuart Mayer says it’s the first time the United States
has provided another country with the opportunity to plan and execute the maritime
aspect of this exercise.
“The opportunity to command the maritime force is a tribute
to the trust in which the Australian Navy is held. It is also a great personal
challenge,” Commodore Mayer said.
is coordinating an extraordinary number of assets including seven Combined Task Forces consisting of 40 surface ships and six
The RAN frigates HMAS Darwin and Perth will participate in the exercise, which will give each ship a real opportunity to test their
The submarine, HMAS Farncomb, will conduct a range of missions with
Australian Navy Clearance Divers will be in action in Hawaii conducting a wide
range of underwater activities, including mine
Australian Clearance Divers will also be commanding
four other nations during aspects of the RIMPAC exercise to be conducted on the US
mainland in San Diego.
Two Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion aircraft and a
RAAF Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) Wedgetail aircraft are also
taking part in antisubmarine warfare and surveillance evolutions.
On land, approximately 150 Townsville-based Army members
from the 1st Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment (1 RAR) will take part.
A Special Purpose Marine
Group Task Force from the
ADF’s 3rd Brigade, will work with the US to further develop the ADFs amphibious capability.