VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Expeditionary Exploitation Unit One (EXU-1) is the expeditionary lead for investigating and recovering battlefield forensics. They recently were able to showcase this skillset while participating with other EOD units during the U.S. Navy’s Crab Exercise (CrabEx) in late April at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek- Fort Story, Virginia Beach, Virginia.
EXU-1 is an operationally deployable Type II, Echelon V command aligned under Naval Surface Warfare Center Indian Head Division (NSWC IHD). The unit hosts a variety of platoons task organized to collect, process, exploit and analyze conventional and improvised threats, advanced weapons systems, munitions, ordnance, unmanned systems, and strategic infrastructure on land and sea to provide technical intelligence to the Fleet and joint commanders, Intelligence Community, Interagency, allies and partner nations. While deployed, EXU-1 forces can collect and process evidence of value through various methods. These efforts often lead to the identification and exploitation of hostile networks, as well as attribute malign activities to state and non-state actors.
“Exercises such as CrabEx provide vital operational training for us. To be able to work with the other EOD forces to simulate real life scenarios where we would interact on an operational basis against the adversary is invaluable,” said EODCS Justin Brown, EXU-1’s Training Leading Chief Petty Officer. “This was our first time attending this particular exercise, but the lessons learned interacting with the EOD units in these scenarios are vital to improving our training to meet future operations.”
Hosted by Explosive Ordnance Disposal Training and Evaluation Unit 2 (EODTEU-2), CrabEx is a training exercise requiring U.S. Navy EOD units to clear a range of simulated explosive threats during full mission profile drills using special operations mobility tactics and advanced technologies. During the two-week exercise, teams ran full mission profiles to detect, locate, and render safe a variety of explosive threats.
“This event highlighted EXU-1’s unique ability to bridge the operational EOD mission with the technical community. During this event, our team performed exceptionally while conducting exploitation of threat items on the battlefield, as well as leveraging NSWC IHD’s EOD Technical Support Center through reach back support to enable more advanced actions. These tactical operations yield strategic value and will be critical in the strategic competition environment or in future conflicts.” said EXU-1 Commanding Officer Cmdr. Eric Hui.
Located at Naval Support Facility Indian Head, Maryland, EXU-1 was commissioned in June 2018 as an Echelon V Command. NSWC IHD Commanding Officer Capt. Eric Correll serves as the immediate superior in command to EXU-1.
NSWC IHD — a field activity of the Naval Sea Systems Command and part of the Navy’s Science and Engineering Establishment — is the leader in ordnance, energetics, and EOD solutions. The Division focuses on energetics research, development, testing, evaluation, in-service support, and disposal; and provides warfighters solutions to detect, locate, access, identify, render safe, recover, exploit, and dispose of explosive ordnance threats.