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Aircraft versus Submarine: Coastal Command During WW2

2 months ago

Aircraft versus Submarine: Coastal Command During WW2

18 Jan 2024

The Atkinson

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A Talk by Wing Commander Steve Chaskin, OC 611 Sqn RAuxAF, RAF Woodvale.

This talk will cover, in approximately 60 minutes, the technological developments which transformed Coastal Commands ability to hunt submarines from the air in World War 2.  The aim will be to examine the development which occurred from the first faltering steps to delivering the sophisticated and deadly submarine hunters which were operational at the end of World War 2. 

This development was the result of a massive concentration of scientific and physical resources which is rarely possible except in time of war.  Ahead of the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Normandy it is important to acknowledge success in the Battle of the Atlantic was critical to delivering Overlord

Wing Commander Steve Chaskin joined the RAF in 1980 and trained as a Navigator at RAF Finningley. Qualifying in 1983 he joined the Air Defence community flying F4 Phantom aircraft; following tours with 43(F) Sqn at RAF Leuchars, Fife and 23(F) Sqn in the Falkland Islands he was posted to 19(F) Sqn RAF Wildenrath. In 1989 he was posted as an instructor to the newly formed Tornado F3 Operational Conversion Unit (OCU) at RAF Coningsby.

Having completed his tour with the OCU he joined 25(F) Sqn, at RAF Leeming, as the Executive Officer in 1998. During his time with 25(F) Sqn he led the Sqn on a number of operational detachments to the Middle East in support of Op Southern Watch, policing the no fly zone over Iraq.

Post his flying career, he completed staff tours in the Air Warfare Centre (working as part of a team developing countermeasures to man-portable heat seeking missiles) and 2 Group as the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance capability manager (key responsibility to introduce the Sentinel reconnaissance aircraft into service as part of the ASTOR battlefield surveillance system).

Before leaving the RAF in 2016 his final project was to introduce the RC-135W Rivet Joint, associated ground systems and infrastructure into operational service. Upon retiring Chaskin was selected to transfer to the Royal Auxiliary Air Force and took up post as the Officer Commanding 611 (West Lancashire) Sqn RAuxAF on 4 Apr 16 at RAF Woodvale.

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