Refurbished BSURE improves U.S. Navy undersea training

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    Refurbished BSURE improves undersea training
    UNITED STATES - 19 MAY 2011

    NAVAL AIR SYSTEMS COMMAND, PATUXENT RIVER, Md. — Naval Aviation Training Systems (PMA-205) completed the Barking Sands Underwater Range Expansion (BSURE) refurbishment off the coast of Kauai, Hawaii, in November.

    “The team outdid itself in the development of a state-of-the-art undersea training system,” said Capt. John Feeney, PMA-205 program manager. “The new system will greatly enhance training capabilities of all those engaged in undersea warfare.”

    BSURE comprises the biggest part of the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) — the largest underwater tracking range in the world.

    The newly refurbished BSURE is proving to be a boon to naval undersea training, according to Jim Hager, the PMRF underwater systems manager. A recent submarine commanders course (SCC) tested BSURE’s capabilities, which it passed “with flying colors,” said Hager. The new system supported the SCC 24 hours per day for several days.

    Once in place, tested and evaluated, the refurbished BSURE’s capabilities were found to be so reliable that it has become the primary source of data, although the current system is still in place, Hager said.

    The refurbished BSURE system has more than twice the number of hydrophones as the current system, greatly improving the reliability of the track. Most of the new hydrophones are like microphones and only receive acoustic signals, allowing the shore system to generate tracks of submarines, targets, torpedoes, and submarine voice transmissions, according to Hager.

    The range also has nearly three times the number of acoustic projectors spread throughout the area, greatly improving the ability of PMRF to transmit voice communications to submarines using the range, said to Hager.

    Hager said training exercises using the new system have “absolutely” been a positive experience.

    Navy training exercises at the range are diverse and can encompass submarines, ships and aircraft. In February, BSURE was the site of a Chief of Naval Operations-sponsored research and development project that tested new software changes to the latest MK-48 torpedo.

    “All in all, the new BSURE has performed exceptionally well, due to the commitment of highly experienced people on both the Navy and L3-Maripro sides,” said Hager. “We took advantage of many decades of experience, and that’s why we were successful. I think it’s a real tribute to the people involved.”

    The new system is expected to fully replace the current one this fall.


    A Los Angeles class submarine surfaces while participating in a week-long Submarine Command Course exercise at the Barking Sands Underwater Range Expansion (BSURE) off the coast of Kauai, Hawaii late February. Naval Aviation Training Systems program office (PMA-205) refurbished BSURE, which comprises the largest portion of the Pacific Missile Range Facility’s underwater range.

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    Source: U.S. Naval Air Systems Command
     
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