American air power shows up
AVIATION fans might be lucky enough to spot some of America’s finest pieces of defence equipment as 13 state-ofthe-art planes and helicopters landed in Darwin this week.
The planes came with the Air Combat Element of the 2017 Marine Rotational Force Darwin (MRF-D) which arrived in the Top End as part of the sixth rotation of US Marines to Darwin.
With them were four MV-22 Osprey aircraft as well as five AH-1W SuperCobra and four UH-1Y Huey helicopters from Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 367.
The MV-22 Osprey is designed to combine the functionality of a helicopter with the long-range, high-speed cruise performance of a turboprop aircraft while the AH-1W SuperCobra is a twin-engine attack helicopter.
Deputy Commander Northern Command Captain Bryan Parker RAN said the Air Combat Element would operate from RAAF Darwin.
The MV-22 Ospreys have self-deployed to Darwin using the World War II route from Hawaii via Wake Island and Guam. About 1250 US Marines will be in Darwin until October.
Four MV-22 Ospreys with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 268 touched down in Darwin on Friday, the first trans-Pacific flight for the Osprey in history