|A soldier from 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, braces himself against the downwash from a U.S. Marine Corps MV-22B Osprey during Talisman Sabre 2015.
Photo courtesy of Royal Australian Army/Lance Cpl. Kyle Genner
Australia’s defense helicopter fleet was put through its paces July 4-18 during Talisman Sabre 2015, a combined Australian/U.S. training exercise held in the north of the country.
This year’s exercise, the sixth, involved more than 30,000 Australian and U.S. defense personnel, 21 ships, 200 aircraft and three submarines. It also included New Zealand and Japanese defense personnel. Among the helicopters used were Australian S-70s, MRH90s, ARHs and the new MH-60R Seahawk. In addition, New Zealand NH90s and a SH-2G participated, as did U.S. Marine Corps MV-22s, CH-53s, UH-1Ys and AH-1Zs.
MV-22s from Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 265 (Reinforced) carried personnel and equipment to shore from the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard, and a CH-53 lifted two Australian Army M-777s from the Bradshaw Field Training Area.
Knowledge and capabilities were shared between the forces. For example, U.S. Air Force personnel demonstrated forward aerial refueling tactics to Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force personnel.
Talisman Sabre is designed to help Australian and U.S. forces plan and conduct combined task force operations to improve the combat readiness and interoperability between the forces.