Armada Española, December 11, 2015 - This year, during an exercise with the fleet in the Bay of Cadiz, the Décima Escuadrilla (Tenth Squadron) of the Spanish Naval Aviation reached 50,000 flight hours.
To commemorate this significant milestone, a religious ceremony was held by the Vicar of the Navy and attended by Admiral of the Fleet F. Javier Franco Suanzes, authorities of the Bay of Cadiz and the families of the squadron crew.
These 50,000 hours have been conducted mainly from fleet ships such as the "Santa Maria" and "Álvaro de Bazán" frigate classes or from "Meteor" class patrol boats.
They majority of these hours were accomplished in operations such as the 1st Gulf War, "Sharp Guard" (former republics of Yugoslavia), "Active Endeavour", "Atalanta", "Enduring Freedom", "SO-SAN", "Alakrana", deployment off Lebanon, "Unified Protector" and "Ocean Shield" plus numerous NATO exercises.
Tenth Squadron currently has two embarked air unit (called UNAEMB, Unidades Aéreas Embarcadas) deployed in actual operations: "Atalanta" against piracy in the Indian Ocean aboard the frigate Victoria, and the Standing NATO Maritime Group One (SNMG1) that is participating in operation "Active Endeavour" to combat terrorism and arms trafficking in the Mediterranean aboard the frigate Blas de Lezo.
A third UNAEMB recently returned to their base in Rota after participate in operation "Sophia" of the European Union to combat illegal immigration mafias in the Mediterranean aboard the frigate Canarias.
The Tenth Squadron is based at Naval Station Rota, integrated into the Aircraft Flotilla, with their hangar on the west platform of the base. However, the squadron is also almost permanently deployed aboard the Navy ships.
In addition to these commissions at sea, the squadron also usually perform ground deployment for different exercises with the Marines and the Army.