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NATO Holds Seminar at Langley

NATO Holds Seminar at Langley

By Captain Todd Fleming, Aerospace Command and Control & Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Center Public Affairs.

Langley Air Force Base, Virginia -- June 22, 2001 (ACCNS) -- About 100 ambassadors, generals, and other distinguished visitors from NATO visited Langley AFB June 21 as part of a seminar hosted by the Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic.

The seminar brought the leadership of NATO together to discuss Alliance issues and see some of America’s defense capabilities.

The theme of the seminar was "Succeeding against the Mobile Target – Synchronized Combat Operations" and the discussions focused on the challenges of developing a common operational picture and attacking mobile targets on the battlefield.

"This seminar provided a great exchange of information between us and our NATO allies," said Col. Dusty Rhoades, director of staff for Headquarters Air Combat Command. "We are working a lot of the same issues as we grapple with command and control and time-critical targeting challenges. This brought us one step closer to developing joint solutions."

The Langley portion of the seminar, hosted by Air Combat Command, was highlighted by a tour of the Combined Aerospace Operations Center – Experimental and a flightline visit to see a Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle and other ACC aircraft.

A Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle awaits fueling after its early-morning arrival at Langley AFB, Va., June 21. The aircraft flew non-stop from Edwards Air Force, Calif., to Langley as part of a NATO seminar hosted by the Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic.

Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Jack Braden

CAOC-X is an experimental air operations center designed to quickly deliver the latest technologies and processes to the military’s air operations centers, the facilities used to command aerospace power in combat.

While at CAOC-X, the delegation witnessed the use of a "datawall" in a mock scenario in which the AOC staff found, tracked and destroyed a mobile surface-to-air missile launcher. The datawall is a series of large screens receiving live feeds from various sources, such as the Predator unmanned aerial vehicle and E-8 Joint STARS (Surveillance Target Attack Radar System) surveillance aircraft. It displays the important information about the battlefield, enabling commanders to perform the difficult task of time-critical targeting, finding and destroying high-threat mobile targets.

The goal is to convert the demonstration they viewed into a real capability later this summer through a development process that brings warfighters, developers, and testers together to develop a capability.

"This visit provided us a great opportunity to show NATO the direction we are going in developing a datawall for our commanders and to demonstrate the importance it could play in future Alliance operations," said Lt Col Charles Welch, CAOC-X deputy director.

Lt. Col. Matt Mckeon of the 49th Fighter Wing at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., discusses the capabilities of the F-117 stealth fighter with delegates to a NATO seminar held at Langley AFB, Va., June 21. It was attended by 100 delegates from 18 countries.

Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Jack Braden

"We were able to show the Alliance that we are serious about creating an AOC weapon system that delivers the latest technologies and processes to our standardized AOCs," added Col Craig Lightfoot, CAOC-X director.

In addition to the glimpse into the operational level of war, the NATO visitors also got a chance to see the Global Hawk on its maiden voyage to Langley. Global Hawk is a high-altitude, high-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle being developed as a reconnaissance platform.

The Global Hawk flew in from Edwards AFB, Calif., on a ten-hour flight. Maj. Chris Jella, a Global Hawk pilot working in the Aerospace Command and Control & Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Center, took control of the flight on the last leg of its trip and landed the aircraft at Langley.

The visitors also got an up-close look at other ACC aircraft, including the B-1, B-2, and B-52 bombers; the F-15 Eagle and F-117 Nighthawk fighters; the E-3 AWACS command and control aircraft; and the E-8 Joint STARS and RC-135 Rivet Joint reconnaissance aircraft.


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Directeur de la publication : Joël-François Dumont
Comité de rédaction : Jacques de Lestapis, Hugues Dumont, François de Vries (Bruxelles), Hans-Ulrich Helfer (Suisse), Michael Hellerforth (Allemagne).
Comité militaire : VAE Guy Labouérie (†), GAA François Mermet (2S), CF Patrice Théry (Asie).