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Westland Wessex

Westland Wessex

Westland Wessex (Warpaint Series 65)
By Charles Stafrace

Publisher: Warpaint Books Ltd 2007 61 Pages

With the end of the Second World War and the bitter experience of the success of German submarines against Allied shipping, the United States Navy began serious evaluation of the use of helicopters for anti-submarine war-fare. This came about when it was discov-ered that a sonar transducer lowered from a helicopter and dipped into the sea could detect the presence of a nearby submarine. By the time of the Korean War helicopters had joined the US fleet in limited anti-sub-marine warfare, rescue work, plane guard, medical evacuation and other utility tasks. By 1955 HSS-I helicopters of the US Navy, better known as the Sikorsky S-58 operating from aircraft carriers and other warships, were carrying dipping sonar, homing torpedoes and a four-man crew for submarine hunting operations. Similar interest was being shown by the British Royal Navy, which was experimenting with indigenous types.

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