Text & Pictures: Jan de Clercq ©sbap 2021
 
History

Since April 2014, the U.S. Army Europe has led the Department of Defence's Atlantic Resolve land efforts by rotating units based in the United States to Europe. There are 4 different types of U.S. Army Atlantic Resolve rotations - armored, aviation, sustainment task force and division headquarters. The Atlantic Resolve is funded by the European Deterrence Initiative, which enables the United States to enhance deterrence, increase readiness and support NATO.

Announcement

The United States Department of the Army announced on the 8th October that the 1st Cavalry Division Combat Aviation Brigade will be deployed to Europe in order to participate in the rotation of Atlantic Resolve.
The 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, which is stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, will replace the 1st Infantry Division Combat Aviation Brigade to support the United States commitment to Atlantic Resolve. The 1st Cavalry Division stands resolute in its 100th year to provide combat ready forces capable of conducting Unified Land Operations anywhere in the world.

Arrival

Ca 40 Black Hawks, Apache and Chinook helicopters arrives on October 25th, 2021 at the Verbrugge facilities in Vlissingen, Netherlands by the ARC Endurance ship. Another ship with the second part of helicopters will arrives on October 26th, 2021 at Alexandroupolis, Greece to support the rotation exercise in Bulgaria, Romania.
At Verbrugge facilities are prepared for flying, after which they are deployed to various places in East Europe. In addition to helicopters, they brought more then 400 soldiers and more then 900 vehicles to Europe for the next Atlantic Resolve mission.
On October 26th, 2021, the U.S. Army, Nederlands Ministerie van Defensie and Verbrugge terminals invite the press for a short visit to unload the ship and preparing the material for flying to Woensdrecht airport in the next coming days. Different U.S. soldiers (Command SPOE (Sea Port of Embarkation)) explain us how they organize the temporary military base, unload the ship and prepare the helicopters.
For example: They calculate 3 - 4 hours to prepare a Chinook helicopter in flying modus (install blades, mechanical check …), an Apache and Black Hawk takes 2 hours to finish the installation. When all helicopters are prepared into flying modus, they will travel to Illesheim, Germany. During their travels they plan to stop in Woensdrecht Air Base, Netherlands.

 
Overview flying route Interview with US Army technicians
(Jan de Clercq©)
First 3 Apaches in flight mode
(Jan de Clercq©)
Apache ground check
(Jan de Clercq©)
Atypical parking place
(Jan de Clercq©)
View inside Medevac
(Jan de Clercq©)
First Medevac rolling out of the hangar
(Jan de Clercq©)
Side view Medevac Blackhawk
(Jan de Clercq©)
Engine test
(Jan de Clercq©)
Blackhawks in transport mode
(Jan de Clercq©)
Chinook blade
(Jan de Clercq©)
Preparing a Chinook to flight mode
(Jan de Clercq©)
Very important... installing the blades
(Jan de Clercq©)
Towing
(Jan de Clercq©)
Frontview Chinook
(Jan de Clercq©)
Towing another big machine
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Time to leave the hangar
(Jan de Clercq©)
Mounting a Chinook Blade
(Jan de Clercq©)
Lifting the last forward blade
(Jan de Clercq©)
Heavy work requiring precision despite everything
(Jan de Clercq©)
Busy to secure the blades to the rotorhead
(Jan de Clercq©)
Thorough inspection before the first test flight
(Jan de Clercq©)
Not only flying material arrived at Vlissingen harbor
(Jan de Clercq©)
(Jan de Clercq©)
(Jan de Clercq©) (Jan de Clercq©)

The press officer in charge
(Jan de Clercq©)
General leader in Europe for Atlantic Resolve rotations
Campaign Maintenance Operation Control Centre (MOCC)
(Jan de Clercq©)
 

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