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Guardian Conducts Mine Sweep Simulated Training

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070902-02
Release Date: 9/2/2007 12:14:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (AW) Frank Andrews, American Forces Network Det. Sasebo

SASEBO, Japan (NNS) -- Sailors aboard the mine countermeasures ship USS Guardian (MCM 5) conducted mine sweeper training on the Mine Neutralization Vehicle (MNV) 48 and the SSQ-94 Aug. 24 to increase operational readiness.

The SSQ-94 is a computer program that simulates underwater mine sweeping. It is used in conjunction with the MNV-48. The simulator is used by minemen to sharpen their maneuverability skills and improve their accuracy of finding and neutralizing underwater mines.

“It hones our skills as pilots and monitor pilots of the [MNV]-48 system and also our sonar skills in finding contacts,” said Mineman 2nd Class Bradley Derum, pilot operator of the SSQ-94 and the MNV-48.

During training, mineman ran through a complete scenario of underwater mine sweeping that is actually the same as their real evolutions conducted off the coast off Thailand and Korea. The crew trains two times a week for about four hours.

“[Conducting] training twice a week really helps us know how the other work stations function, their capabilities and how their progressing, so if we get into a mine field we know we’re ready to go in, and who’s the best for the job,” said Derum.

Mineman Seaman Coy Tully is co-pilot of the SSQ-94 simulator and works alongside the pilot informing him of his bearings so he can maneuver without making unnecessary contact with the mines.

“As a whole I think it’s actually good for the team because it gives us the chance to work with each other on a weekly basis, so we actually know how far everyone is on it, where they stand and how well their able to do their job,” said Tully.

Although Tully is new to the mineman rate, he’s confident the training he is receiving on Guardian will better his skills.

“I haven’t yet had the opportunity to fly the MNV-48,” said Tully. “I’m looking forward to it, but right now I’m learning the principals and how everything works.”

Guardian is a mine countermeasures ship forward-deployed to Sasebo, Japan. Guardian and USS Patriot (MCM 7) serve under Task Force 76, which is the U. S. 7th Fleet’s mine countermeasures arm in forward-deployed operations.

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