Air Force

August 29, 2014

Joint U.S. forces train together during integrated Green Flag exercise

Tags:
Airman 1st Class Thomas Spangler
99 Air Base Wing Public Affairs

An F-16 Fighting Falcon from the 309th Fighter Squadron, Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., taxis to the runway during Green Flag-West 14-10 at Nellis AFB, Nev., Aug. 21. Green Flag exercises give visiting units the opportunity to train in air-to-ground combat operations. Many of the training exercise scenarios call for providing air support to ground troops who are participating in ground combat exercises.

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — With the missions of tomorrow requiring joint forces to work together, integrated combat exercises between them are essential to ensuring U.S. forces are successful in current and future operations.

Green Flag-West 14-09 provided integrated combat scenarios with training missions requiring the Air Force to work with both the Army and the Navy.

Green Flag West exercises train participants in air-to-surface combat scenarios. The close air support and air-sea battle training is administered by the 549th Combat Training Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada and the 12th Combat Training Squadron at Fort Irwin, California.

Though no one can completely predict what future wars will fully entail, participants in this Green Flag emphasized U.S. forces need to be prepared for anything.

“What we need to be able to do is flex with whatever that war is going to look like; the best way to do that is to make sure we know how to work with each other,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Brandon Roth, chief of weapons and tactics, 309th Fighter Squadron, Luke AFB, Arizona.

Part of knowing how to work together is making sure all participants understand each other’s terminology and capabilities.

“Understanding what my Navy, Army, or Marine brothers are talking about can be a challenge because the terms are different,” Roth said. “It’s funny how we do very similar things but we speak about them differently.”

One piece of Green Flag 14-09 showcased the 309th FS F-16 Fighting Falcons providing air support to Soldiers who were participating in the ground combat training portion of the exercise at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California.

“We have the ability to strike targets several kilometers past the forward line of troops, places where the Army can’t necessarily reach but may need to coordinate [a strike] because friendly folks on the ground are in close proximity,” Roth said.

A vital component to any air campaign is the flow of information in the air and the management of air battle space, which is handled by the E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and Control System.

While coordinating air-to-ground attacks, the AWACS will spend a lot of time communicating with a Joint Terminal Attack Controller on the ground.

“Aircraft will check-in with us, we’ll make sure that they’re de-conflicted. After passing adversary threats and any mission updates, we pass them off to the JTAC for final control to their targets,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Wesley Brammier, instructor, air battle manager, 964th Airborne Air Control Squadron, Tinker AFB, Oklahoma.

Not only are the AWACS working with the Army and managing air assets, they’re also working closely with the Navy’s E-2C Hawkeye during Green Flag.

“[The Hawkeye’s] main roles would consist of getting a radar picture of the surface situation, identifying contacts far out from the carrier-strike group that they might not be able to see, and be able to generate situational awareness for the warfare commanders and the strike group,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Jeffrey Porwoll, assistant operations officer from Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 117, Naval Air Station Point Mugu, California.

The Air Force’s E-3 is learning the role of the Navy’s E-2 and how to integrate with the Navy in a joint environment.

“The E-3 is acting as the Maritime Air Controller, and they’re going to direct tactical assets to investigate or identify surface contacts that the [E-2] Hawkeye or other assets aren’t able to identify on their own,” Porwoll said.

Porwoll added, historically, it was normal for the branches to operate independently, but he stressed integrated warfare is the way of the future.

“Yes, we can operate in the middle of the ocean, but conflicts today are happening over land where you’re going to have to integrate with everyone else, so the ability to be able to do so is paramount,” Porwoll said.

No matter where or with whom tomorrow’s fight may be with, it is clear it will require all branches of the U.S. military to work flawlessly and in harmony with each other.

Green Flag helps create a smooth integration of U.S. forces within a contested, degraded, and operationally limited environment and ensures when real combat arrives, communication is clear and distinct.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
square

Luke Lightning strikes at Nellis

U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Thomas Spangler An F-35A Lightning II assigned to the 61st Fighter Squadron, Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., taxis to the runway for a training exercise at Nellis AFB, Nev., April 15. Maintaine...
 
 

CSAF discusses Air Force’s need to reset

WASHINGTON — The Air Force Association hosted its monthly Air Force breakfast with Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III in Arlington, Virginia April 2. During his speech, Welsh addressed many topics and issues in today’s Air Force, including hitting the “reset button.” “For the last couple of years what we have...
 
 

Ten seconds later, that picture still exists

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany — There is a conversation many teenagers have had with their parents or friends, me included. “Hey, don’t worry! It’ll be fine; all of the pictures I send disappear after 10 seconds. That’s how Snapchat works.” While many teenagers only share their silly, cross-eyed, quadruple-chinned faces with friends, there are a...
 

 

Becoming stronger through failure

ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. — Failing the Air Force physical training test was my greatest fear since joining the military. It is embarrassing to admit recently that fear came to fruition, but what I have learned through that failure has become one of my greatest strengths. After failing, I definitely felt like a weak...
 
 

‘Eye’ see you

U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Mikaley Towle Lisa Winkelman, 99th Aerospace Medicine Squadron optometry technician, simulates taking a vision test at the Optometry Clinic on Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., April 15. Getting an eye exam is important to ensure eye vision and pressure is good and in the normal range. For...
 
 

Nellis AFB goes green for Earth Day

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — The first Earth Day occurred April 22, 1970, and was introduced by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin. More than 20 million people and thousands of local schools and communities participated in the first Earth Day in the U.S. Across the Air Force today, installations are taking aggressive strides...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin