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845 Naval Air Squadron

845 Naval Air Squadron primarily provides 3 Commando Brigade of the Royal Marines with tactical troop transport and load lifting helicopters. Together with all elements of the Commando Helicopter Force it is based at Royal Naval Air Station Yeovilton in Somerset.

845 NAS operate the Sea King Mk 4 which has a clear cabin space to minimise weight and to maximise the size of cargo carried. It is capable of carrying underslung loads of up to 6000 pounds such as 105mm guns, Land Rovers and air defence missile systems. 26 troops can be accommodated in the cabin. On the Squadron’s return from Iraq, the Sea King Mk 4 required upgrading to enable it to operate in Afghanistan. So within days the first Sea King began a modification programme to both improve the aircraft’s performance for the hot and high conditions of Afghanistan and to enhance its capability to deliver effect on the battlefield.  This meant fitting a new design of rotor blades, a high performance tail rotor, an updated Defensive Aids Suite, an improved avionics and radio suite to detect and deter anti-aircraft radar, missiles and guns and a new Display Night Vision Goggle capability. This large package of modifications resulted in the Sea King Mk 4 becoming the Sea King Mk4+.  This work, concurrent with Pre-deployment Training and other commitments, placed immense demands upon the engineers on the squadron, but working to an exceptionally tight schedule that had no margin for error, they did a sterling job to get the first batch aircraft ready to deploy on time.

The Squadron can perform many other secondary roles. These include: Search and Rescue, Casualty Evacuation, Special Forces operations, Humanitarian operations, Ground force suppression, Abseiling, Parachuting, Assistance in Combat Search and Rescue.

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