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NEWS | Sept. 10, 2021

Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group and Air Wing of the Future operate in South China Sea

By Lt. John Lobkowicz, Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group Public Affairs

Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group (VINCSG) and their embarked Air Wing of the Future, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2, are operating in the South China Sea in order to uphold the free and open use of Indo-Pacific waters in support of security and stability in the region.

This marks the first time that a carrier strike group is operating in the South China Sea with the advanced capabilities of the F-35C Lightning II and Navy CMV-22B Osprey.

“When we deployed, we brought with us the unprecedented stealth, electronic warfare and vertical lift capabilities of the Air Wing of the Future and these platforms have delivered,” said Rear Adm. Dan Martin, commander, VINCSG. “Integrating emerging technologies to enhance capabilities and improve effectiveness has long been fundamental to strike group operations and using the new tools and technology of the Air Wing of the Future, to include the new sets of multispectral sensors and the information they provide, have increased our lethality and survivability. Leveraging tactics and training, we continue to establish innovative ways to use these new technologies to enhance our combined warfighting efforts.”

The strike group is providing fleet commanders the ability to project power in new and powerful ways. The Air Wing of the Future uses advanced and layered effects. With integrated passive and active sensors, it provides battlespace awareness for strike groups and fleet commanders.

"Safeguarding a free and open Indo-Pacific means understanding the space, electromagnetic, and information environment along this vital international maritime highway," said Capt. Tony Butera, VINCSG’s information warfare commander. "The operations we conducted recently enhanced our multi-domain understanding of this historic area, ensuring the information warfare teams onboard our ships can better support the carrier strike group's overall goals of maintaining security, promoting stability, and preventing conflict."

Prior to entering the South China Sea, VINCSG and CVW-2 conducted joint interoperability flights with U.K. Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 21 and participated in Large Scale Exercise 2021.

“We are now seeing the results of years of programming, planning, and training. Our enhanced multi-spectral maneuverability is a glimpse of what the future of Naval Aviation will bring to the fight,” said Capt. Tommy Locke, commander, CVW-2. “And, it’s not just about technology. Our maintainers and operators have the most experience taking our advanced Air Wing to sea. With their resilience, innovation, and determination, nothing will stop us. Our sailors, officers, and partners are our competitive advantage."

VINCSG provides a combat-ready force to protect and defends the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its regional allies and partners. Collectively, the VINCSG consists of more than 7,000 Sailors, capable of carrying out a wide variety of missions around the globe.

For more news from CSG 1, visit