Secondary Sergeant Chief Derek Cox is responsible for training Mark 6 patrol boat operators for the 2nd Squadron of the U.S. Coastal River Force. He said, I told the crew that you have to look like porcupines with thorns.
The Mark 6 patrol boat is an alternative to the River Command Boat (RCB). Three years ago, Iran seized two American RCBs that had strayed into Iranian waters near Fars Island in the Persian Gulf. Mark 6s firepower is twice as high as RCBs, and may even be twice as high, Cox said.
The Mark 6 patrol boat carried two MK-50 12.7mm heavy machine guns. The system is equipped with stabilization module and optical sighting device, which can fire remotely. In addition, it is equipped with two MK-38MOD2 25mm naval gun weapon systems (also operated remotely through advanced optical systems) and two 12.7mm machine guns operated by sailors.
Mark 6 patrol boat trained in Guam waters in April this year (US Navy website)
The U.S. Navy Expeditionary Operations Command is the superior command unit of the coastal rivers force. The command requires the force to redirect its focus to the tasks of port and infrastructure security, high-value unit escort, anti-terrorism, and supporting its own forces.
Major Admiral Brian Brack, head of the U.S. Navy Expeditionary Operations Command, is taking charge of this new focus and the new Mark 6 platform, focusing on the current new challenge of big power competition.
He said: Our mission into the coastal areas can help the U.S. Navy release space for some important equipment and let them perform other tasks. Thats the direction I want to go.
The communication suite of the new Mark 6 patrol boat equipment is far superior to RCB. It can communicate with the fleet through the Link-16 data link system. It also has high-frequency, ultra-high-frequency and satellite communication systems, so that shore controllers will not lose track of the speedboat as they did in the Fars Island incident. The boat is 85 feet long (about 26 meters), has a maximum speed of more than 40 knots and a maximum range of 500 miles (about 800 kilometers).
The boat has a regular crew of 10, and can carry up to 20 people - RCB can carry up to 15 people.
The possibilities Blake is exploring include using the Mark 6 patrol boat as the mother ship, carrying out cluster operations with the newly equipped 40-foot patrol boat, operating unmanned aerial vehicles for over-the-horizon reconnaissance missions, and operating unmanned motorboats in different missions.
The ship has been equipped with a launching chute for the release of unmanned surface vehicles, which means it can perform anti-mine missions in coastal areas. Blake said the ability to release unmanned surface vehicles is an area that needs to be improved but has potential.
Source: Global Times - Global Network Responsible Editor: Ding Xunwei_NBJS8671