Gliders Assist Exercise PROUD MANTA 11
The gliders are to support experiments related to operational employment of autonomous vehicles as part of a larger operation. Also tested will be the use of these vehicles to collect in-situ three-dimensional environmental data to support improved ASW planning and decision-making tools.
The exercise will take place in the Ionian Sea to the Southeast of Sicily. Forces are provided by Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Six submarines from Greece (1), Italy (1), Spain (1), Turkey (2) and the United States of America (1) are scheduled to join the exercise. Each submarine will have the opportunity of being a hunter as well as the hunted. NATO surface ships from Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 (with an Italian flagship and a German frigate), a Belgian frigate, a French destroyer, an Italian destroyer, and frigate, an Italian auxiliary ship, and a US destroyer will participate in the exercise.
The exercise will demonstrate NATO's determination to maintain proficiency and improve interoperability in coordinated anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, and coastal surveillance operations using a multi-national force of ships, submarines and aircraft. Furthermore it will aim to provide operational training in potential NATO Response Force (NRF) tasks, roles and missions as well as exercising the procedures for current or future operations. The units will also be exercised in defence against terrorism operations.
Maritime Patrol Aircraft and ASW Helicopters will operate from Air Bases in Sicily, and are contributed by Canada, France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom and The United States. Over 100 air missions are planned, and on average this will result in a crew briefing every three hours, day and night, throughout the exercise. The exercise will be controlled from the co-located multi-national Headquarters of the Commander Submarines Allied Naval Forces and the Commander Maritime Air Naples located in Naples, Italy.