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V-22 Opsrey Deployment

VMM-161MCAS Miramar, CA12Oct 2009
VMM-162MCAS Miramar, CA12Aug 2006
VMM-163MCAS Miramar, CA12Dec 2011
VMM-165MCAS Miramar, CA12Apr 2011
VMM-166MCAS Miramar, CA12Jun 2010
VMM 764 [Reserve]MCAS Miramar12..
VMM-764Edwards AFB, CA....
VMX-22MCAS New River, NC..Aug 2003
HMX-1 MCAS New River, NC19..
VMM-164 MCAS New River, NC12..
VMMT-204MCAS New River, NC38Jun 1999
VMM-212MCAS New River, NC122019
VMM-261MCAS New River, NC12Apr 2008
VMM-263MCAS New River, NC12Mar 2006
VMM-264MCAS New River, NC12May 2009
VMM-266MCAS New River, NC12Mar 2007
VMM-362MCAS New River, NC122018
VMM-365MCAS New River, NC12Jan 2009
VMM-463MCAS New River, NC12..
VMM-561MCAS New River, NC12Dec 2010
VMM 774 [Reserve]NS Norfolk12..
VMM-268MCAS Kaneohe Bay, HI12..
VMM-363MCAS Kaneohe Bay, HI12
VMM-262 MCAS Futenma, Japan12
VMM-265 MCAS Futenma, Japan12
VMM = Medium Tilt-Rotor Squadron
U/I SOSYokota AB, JP..2017
7th SOSRAF Mildenhall....
8th SOS Duke Field, FL ..Oct 2006
20th SOS....Jan 2010
71st SOS....May 2005
CV-22B 45
MV-22 4

Transition Task Forces, chaired by HQMC Deputy Commandant for Aviation, oversees all USMC Type/Model/ Series transitions plans. The medium lift assault support fleet is transitioning from the CH-46E to the V-22. Beginning in 2003, this transition has been tracking to schedule and at the rate of two squadrons per year would be completed in 2017. Squadron transitions from CH-46E to V-22 take approximately 18 months from the time the HMM squadron stands down to the time the newly formed VMM is ready to enter predeployment training. V-22 deliveries are occurring on time and are supporting this transition. The East coast transition was complete with six fully operational VMMs. The transition was underway on the West coast with three fully operational squadrons and two more in transition. Additionally, one VMM stood up and was fully operationally capable in Okinawa, Japan. In 2013 Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1) took delivery of the first of twelve V-22s. These Ospreys replaced the CH-46E and were used in the “greenside” support role.

The Marine Corps stood up the first operational V-22 squadron, VMM-263, at MCAS New River. The Marines' MV-22 reached initial operational capability, meaning it is ready to deploy for combat, in summer 2007, though the squadron was airborne with its full complement of Ospreys at New River within the year. Initial operational capability for the Air Force's CV-22 was to follow in 2009.

The replacement of CH-46E helicopters with MV-22 aircraft would modernize the USMC medium lift fleet and improve the operational capabilities of the Third and Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing 8 (3D and 4th MAW) squadrons. The new MV-22 would replace seven CH-46E active duty squadrons (90 aircraft), one reserve CH-46E squadron (13 aircraft), and one reserve CH-53E squadron (11 aircraft) operated by the 3D and 4th MAW. These aircraft are currently authorized for basing at MCAS Camp Pendleton, MCAS Miramar, and Edwards AFB. Although the existing aircraft to be replaced are based at three different installations, the proposed MV-22 squadrons would be co-located at a single installation or would be split between a maximum of two aviation facilities.

The proposed action addressed in the 2009 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) would include: 1) basing up to ten squadrons (120 aircraft) of the MV-22 on the West Coast; 2) construction and/or renovation of airfield facilities necessary to accommodate and maintain the MV-22 squadrons; and 3) conducting MV-22 readiness and training operations and special exercise operations to attain and maintain proficiency in the operational employment of the MV-22. The proposed action would also replace nine helicopter squadrons (114 aircraft) currently authorized for basing on the West Coast.

The 2009 EIS addressed the following basing alternatives: 1) full basing at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar in San Diego County, California, 2) partial (i.e., “split”) basing at MCAS Miramar and MCAS Camp Pendleton in San Diego County, California, 3) partial basing at MCAS Yuma (Yuma County, Arizona) and MCAS Camp Pendleton (San Diego County, California), and 4) partial basing at MCAS Miramar (San Diego County, California) and MCAS Yuma (Yuma County, Arizona).

The EIS also evaluated proposed MV-22 operations at Marine Corps Base (MCB) Camp Pendleton (San Diego County, California), the Bob Stump Training Range Complex (Chocolate Mountain Aerial Bombing and Gunnery Range, Barry M. Goldwater Range [West], R-2510, and R-2512) (Yuma County, Arizona and Imperial and Riverside counties in California), Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center (MCAGCC) (San Bernardino County, California), and various Military Training Routes (San Diego, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, and Imperial counties in California and Yuma County, Arizona).

Regardless of the alternative chosen, the existing squadrons of CH-46E at MCAS Miramar and MCAS Camp Pendleton, as well as the CH-46E and CH-53E squadrons at Edwards AFB, would be removed. Therefore, the proposed action may result in a net decrease of aircraft and personnel at a given installation.

Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCB Hawaii) Kaneohe Bay proposed to construct facilities for an MV-22 Osprey aircraft squadron (including ten aircraft parking pads, hangar, wash rack and ancillary facilities) at an area near the southeast end of the MCB Hawaii Kaneohe Bay runway. This represents an approximately 3,000-foot shift in project location from the location analyzed in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Basing of MV-22 and H-1 Aircraft in Support of the Third Marine Expeditionary Force (III MEF) Elements in Hawaii (MV-22 EIS). This project is needed to provide facilities for the second MV-22 squadron that would be home based at MCB Hawaii Kaneohe Bay by 2018.

In April 2009, the MV-22 Osprey — the newest assault support transport aircraft in the Marine Corps inventory — completed an 18-month tour of duty at Al Asad Airbase, Iraq, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. During its continuous operation in theater, under three different units—Marine Medium Tilt- rotor Squadron (VMM) 263, VMM-162, and VMM-266—the Osprey contributed to a dramatic reduction in exposure of coalition forces to small-arms fire and road-side bombs. With its unique combination of rotary- and fixed-wing aircraft characteristics, the Osprey provided unprecedented operational flexibility to warfighters by transporting 45,000 passengers and more than 2.2 million pounds of cargo twice as fast and three times as far as the legacy assault support platforms it had replaced.

As of January 2012, the USMC had 97 MV-22B/Cs on inventory, and the USAF had 13 CV-22Bs in 3 Special Ops squadrons.

Lt. Col. Scott A. Craig, commanding officer of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 764 (HMM-764), relinquished command to Osprey pilot Lt. Col. David A. Weinstein during a change of command and re-designation ceremony at Edwards Air Force Base near Lancaster, CA, Jan. 12, 2013. After Weinstein took command, HMM-764 was re-designated to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM-764). The unit's move to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar was complete Jan. 18, 2013. VMM-764 is Marine Forces Reserve's first tiltrotor squadron.

The Third Marine Regiment (3d Regiment) is the major infantry command at MCB Hawaii Kaneohe Bay. It was the only infantry regiment within the Marine Corps that had not previously routinely trained with rotary-wing light-lift and attack support. Marine Aircraft Group 24 (MAG-24), the Aviation Combat Element (ACE) of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) at MCB Hawaii Kaneohe Bay, provides aviation support forces to the 3d Regiment.

The VMMT-204 Raptors have been leading the charge in training V-22 Osprey crews since Marine Corps aviation units began transitioning from the venerable CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter to the MV-22 in 2005. Having long outgrown some initial issues common to the introduction of an advanced, next-generation aircraft, the MV-22 Osprey is now fulfilling the vision forward-thinking Marine Aviation planners envisioned so many years ago.

The Raptors trace their roots to May 1972, when activated as Marine Helicopter Training Squadron 204 (HMT-204) for training both CH-46 Sea Knight and CH-53 Sea Stallion helicopter crews.

In 1988, HMT-302 assumed responsibility for CH-53 training. Several years later, HMT-204 became the sole fleet readiness squadron (FRS) training unit for the CH-46, becoming one of the largest squadrons in all of Marine Aviation. In 1999, the squadron underwent another change in operating the Osprey, thereby requiring a re-designation to VMMT-204. The squadron is currently part of MAG-26, 2dMAW.

VMMT-204 occupies a cavernous new hangar facility at MCAS New River, a growing air station and the premier facility on the east coast for Marine Corps rotary flight operations. On any given day, a large assortment of aircraft can be seen overhead including AH-1 Cobras, UH-1 Hueys, CH-53 Super Stallions, and MV-22 Ospreys. VMMT-204 is one of the largest tenants on base and possesses 21 aircraft, most of which are the older Block A variant. The squadron also has seven newer Block B aircraft.

The first Ospreys were delivered to the Marine Corps in late 2005, and in 2006, a HMM-263 was redesignated as VMM-263, becoming the service’s first Osprey squadron. The aircraft reached “initial operating capacity” in 2007, and VMM-263 left for the plane’s first deployment later that year. The Marine Corps has been slowly but steadily replacing Phrogs with Ospreys ever since. HMMT-164 reported 21 July 2014 that HMM-364 was turning in two of its aircraft to HMMT-164 without replacement - indicating that the last operational USMC CH-46 squadron has begun the process of transitioning to the MV-22B.

MV-22 Ospreys replaced the Marines’ last squadron of CH-46E helicopters 4/11/2015 , officially ending the Sea Knight’s 50-year run as the troop and supply transport workhorse of the Corps. Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 164 received the first Sea Knights assigned to the West Coast in early 1965 and introduced the medium-lift helicopter to combat in Vietnam in 1966. Parts of the squadron also flew missions in the evacuation of Saigon, making it the first in and last out of the Southeast Asian country. More than 600 CH-46s, affectionately known as “Battle Phrogs,” were produced over the years, but on Thursday, just two remained. One is destined to join dozens of others in the “boneyard,” a storage space for retired aircraft, while the other — a shiny green model that flew missions in Vietnam — will go to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, Va.

In 2015 two new squadrons were activated, one in southern California and another in North Carolina. Second, the service completed the transition of the last of its Vietnam-era CH-46 Sea Knights squadron personnel to tilt-rotors, having formally moved the last Phrog squadron to the VMM-designation in April 2015.

By 2015 there were thirteen full operational capable squadrons (FOC) in the active fleet. The units on the East Coast and Okinawa were complete with the transition, leaving the West Coast, Hawaii, and the reserve component to complete. Two active component squadrons were scheduled to relocate from Southern California to Hawaii in FY17 and FY18.

As laid out in the Marines' 10-year aviation plan, the transition of the two reserve squadrons began in the third quarter of FY13. VMM-764 relocated from Edwards Air Force Base to MCAS Miramar in 2013 and attained initial operational capable (IOC) in June 2014. The unit would reach FOC in the third quarter of FY16. HMM-774 re-designate to VMM-774 at NS Norfolk in the first quarter of FY15. This marked the last Marine CH-46E squadron. In the beginning of FY17, VMM-268 would relocate to Kaneohe Bay. They would be followed by VMM-363, beginning in the first quarter of FY18. A 17th active component squadron, VMM-362, would stand-up beginning in FY18 in Miramar, CA. In FY19, VMM-212 would stand -up in Jacksonville, NC to complete the active component transition.

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Page last modified: 15-06-2016 19:22:40 ZULU