20 Juni 2014
RAAF C-130J Hercules (photo : RAAF)
The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) personnel are participating in the multi-national air-to-air combat training exercise, code-named Red Flag 14-2, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) in Anchorage, Alaska, US.
The RAAF contingent includes 68 personnel and a pair of C-130J Super Hercules aircraft.
The Australian contingent will showcase a recently upgraded electronic warfare (EW) self-protection system during the exercise.
The three-week exercise involves participation of armed forces from Japan, and the US as well.
RAAF No. 37 Squadron commanding officer wing commander Darren Goldie said Red Flag Alaska serves as an important training opportunity for personnel, by replicating modern battlefield with simulated missiles, enemy radar systems, as well as 'aggressor' fighter jets.
"Everyone who comes to Red Flag Alaska gets something from this, including our maintenance personnel, logistics and supply workforce, and personnel capability specialists," Goldie said.
"We'll be flying Hercules on tactical airlift missions as part of a wider group of aircraft that includes strike jets, fighters and surveillance aircraft."
Goldie said: "The aircrew have been developing techniques to use these systems, but Exercise Red Flag Alaska will provide a suitably complex training environment before we ever have to employ it in the real world."
Exercise Red Flag 14-2 is scheduled to conclude on 27 June.
Held four times annually, Red Flag is a US Pacific Air Forces Command (PACAF)-led large force employment exercise designed to train pilots and other flight crew members from the US, Nato and other allied countries for real air combat situations.
Divided into two teams, namely Blue Forces and Red Forces, the participants perform counter air, precision strike and offensive air support in packages of up to 100 aircraft during each exercise.