Figure 13-10.Position of the horizontal stabilizer.
Figure 13-11.Helo recognition features
installed IFF (identification friend or foe) system,
which can be used to interrogate aircraft long before
the aircraft is in visual range. Exact names and
designations of aircraft not only may be hard to get but
also may prove unimportant. Personnel should be
taught to distinguish between the various classes of
aircraft: bombers, fighters, transports, and so forth.
LEARNING OBJECTIVE: Explain the
procedures for identifying naval ships,
including combatants, auxiliaries, and
Ship identification requires the same type of
instruction as for aircraft identification. It is possible
here to place more emphasis on on-the-job training,
because wide variations in ship types are encountered
in normal operations on the high seas.
Recognizing ships at sea is as important as
recognizing airborne aircraft. Since surface vessels
travel in two dimensions and are slower than aircraft,
they are much easier to identify visually. Ships
normally should be identified while they are still
distant enough to present only a silhouette to the
observer. The type/classes of ships should be
determined from their silhouette long before their hull
numbers or names can be distinguished. The first
determination to be made is whether the vessel is a
naval or merchant ship.
In general, naval ships do not appear as bulky as
merchant ships. The naval ships have flowing lines
and usually have less deckhouse and superstructure.
Virtually all maritime powers paint their naval ships
some shade of gray or blue-gray that blends easily with
the ocean background. When close enough for colors
to be distinguishable, merchant ships can easily be
identified because they are painted in a variety of
colors. During peacetime another indication of
naval-merchant character of a vessel is the presence of
visible weapons. The absence of guns may have little
significance, but their presence almost certainly
indicates a naval vessel. Merchant ship identification
will be covered later in this chapter.