Magazine article Sea Classics

Mk V SOC: Special Operations Craft

Magazine article Sea Classics

Mk V SOC: Special Operations Craft

Article excerpt

Fast, sleek, low profile coastal vessels offer Navy SEALS the ideal platform for stealth operations. A

The impressive Mark V Special Operations Craft (SOC) is a high-performance combatant with the speed and firepower necessary to perform demanding Naval Special Warfare (NSW) missions. Intended mainly to insert and extract Special Operations Forces (SOF) - mostly US Navy SEALs - over medium ranges, it can also be used in other roles such as coastal patrol and interdiction.

Built by Halter Marine,_Inc., of Gulfport, Mississippi, the versatile SOC features aluminum construction for strength and lightness. Powered by two diesel engines producing a combined total of 4,770-- horsepower and driving two waterjets, it can achieve a maximum speed of more than 50 knots over a range of 500-plus miles. The distance can be increased by refueling at sea from support ships along the way. Such speed and range enhance the capabilities of special operations and allow a large area to be covered quickly - an important advantage when time is of the essence during a critical mission.

Armament is considerable for the 82-foot vessel and the exact arrangement depends on the task at hand. The following is an example of what can be carried aboard: 25mm chain guns, 7.62mm single and twin machine guns, .50-caliber machine guns, 40mm grenade launchers, and Stinger antiaircraft missiles. All-- around, 360-degree protection increases effectiveness.

The SOC is manned by five Special Warfare Combatant Crewmen (SWCC) and can carry up to 16 SEALs or other SOF personnel along with four Combat Rubber Raiding Craft. …

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