More than 1,600 members of the Australian Defence Force have successfully completed RIMPAC 2018, the world’s largest multinational maritime exercise.
Exercise RIMPAC 2018 culminated this week in a major multi-national amphibious landing activity, following four weeks of gunnery, missile, anti-submarine and air-defence exercises, as well as maritime interdiction and vessel boardings, explosive ordnance disposal, diving and salvage operations, and mine clearance operations.
Minister for Defence Marise Payne said Exercise RIMPAC 2018 had tested and proven the ADF’s capabilities and improved its interoperability with partner nations.
During the exercise, Australian personnel demonstrated a wide range of capabilities from humanitarian assistance and disaster response to maritime security operations and complex war fighting alongside their peers from 25 nations.
The significant milestones achieved during Exercise RIMPAC 2018 were:
- A Royal Australian Air Force P-8A Poseidon aircraft from 92 Wing firing a live Harpoon missile for the first time, successfully striking a surface target and collecting important operational data;
- HMAS Adelaide embarking US Marine Corps Amphibious Assault Vehicles for the first time and carrying a record number of personnel from nine different nations;
- Frigates HMAS Melbourne and HMAS Toowoomba successfully firing missiles against moving targets at sea in company with ships from the US, Canada and Singapore; and
- Soldiers from the 2nd Battalion Royal Australian Regiment successfully testing their interoperability within a multi-national amphibious readiness group, boosting their standing as Australia’s amphibious force.
The next RIMPAC is planned for the Hawaiian islands in 2020.