The Rota is the most important naval base in the United States Within the territory of Spain. A true show of military muscle is located exactly where the Mediterranean and the Atlantic meet. A geographic region that has been essential in the political, economic and military spheres for centuries and declares itself as one of the regions with the highest density of marine traffic in the world.
You just have to take a look to realize that. The United Kingdom with Gibraltar and the ever-controversial nuclear submarines, the Rota for the Americans and the Moroccan base of the Casharger; All within a very few miles radius. Due to the sensitivity of this area and the projection in others, the US Navy has a Rota A. An important detachment consisting of planes, ships and occasional submarine visits.
It is the warships in particular that usually attract the most attention and in which a very special complement has been found among all missile and electronic warfare systems that they equip. What’s more, ROTA is the reference base for some major operations such as the United States in the Black Sea. An area where military tension is always present and which has been the scene of some sensitive situations such as the interception of other Russian fighters by Spanish fighters without a published flight plan or operation of a transmitter and receiver.
The amount of objects – rare to unusual eyes – that can be found on the deck of a warship means that more advanced systems can go unnoticed. Something like this happened with the AN / SLQ-62, That during a period of more than precaution (several years) and in full view of all, it passed without pain or glory.
Behind this technical designation is one of the past Electronic warfare measures that the U.S. Navy incorporated into the Sixth Fleet, Highlighted in Rota, in which no one took into account because it is a relatively small device that can be “anything” without much significance. But the appearance of some photos published by the US Navy itself has been made War zone Immerse yourself in your analysis.
Information provided on the AN / SLQ-62 is really scarce. Declassified budget files only refer to the fact that they are Portable electronic warfare unit (garlic, Portable electronic warfare unit). It was also selected to outfit ships of the Sixth Fleet, while the AN / SLQ-59 is considered to be in the Seventh Fleet.
The documents indicate that these electronic warfare systems began to be deployed in 2014, without going into details on specific dates. While detailing an update and Improvement of the SLQ-62 – the Rota vessel model – in fiscal year 2017.
The systems are mounted on the edges of the USS Porter and USS Donald Cook destroyers’ cockpit, which they were Exercises in the Black Sea, As one of the largest US deployments in a long time, before returning to its base at Rota. Looking back, the small electronic warfare units have been around for a few years, the same ones that have been sailing since the ship’s last update – and the only one -.
The first image that there is evidence of The AN / SLQ-62 dates back to RIMPAC 2016 maneuvers, Which can be called Champions League Military naval exercises, which Spain has not been invited to on any occasion.
Equipment installed in the wings of the destroyer Arleigh Burke deployed forward at Rota. Kearney, Ross, Donald Cook and Porter were all installed within a few months of their arrival in Rota.https://t.co/KgXwFuNZj0https://t.co/aDU6mnC01nhttps://t.co/WHwN1GuRPWhttps://t.co/wiC4KH3M9p pic.twitter.com/Qf23dSJMnn
– Uruka (hone_hone_bone_) April 12, 2020
Finally, the only reference that goes beyond the budget document and photos is a guide for students who want access to Cryptologic Technician exams within the Navy. Indicates that the AN / SLQ-62 will be allocated to Anti-ship cruise missiles. Electronic countermeasure to repel attacks with Russian SS-N-26 missiles.
What the United States fears
The SS-N-26 is one of Russia’s crown jewels. The development of these missiles allowed them to be launched from practically any platform without the medium being a hindrance. Oniks, as they are known within the country, are supersonic missiles that can double the speed of sound and can be launched from a ship, submarine and even from the mainland.
With a range of around 300 kilometers in the old version, having a Rota-based ship owning the system that seeks to terminate it is more important than it might seem. For example, Syria was one of Russia’s preferred clients as they delivered a total of 72 units of My brother (Export version) in the 2000s and was also part of the supersonic anti-ship missile program implemented between India and Russia itself.
In 2019, it was announced that the manufacturer of Oniks was in the midst of improving missiles with the Increased range of up to 800 km And the possibility of attacking land targets. These characteristics make the Russian missile one of the best and most flexible in its range. And also as one of the possible weapons that will be used against the Sixth Fleet at Rota, which shares a “playing field” with the Russian in the Black Sea.
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