An Air Force E-7A Wedgetail in April deployed to the United States to take part in Exercise Pacific Edge 21 with coalition partners in Hawaii.
The E-7A operated by No. 2 Squadron based at RAAF Base Williamtown provided airborne early warning support to aviators in the 199th and 19th Fighter Squadrons, which are associate units of the Hawaii Air National Guard and operate the F-22A Raptor aircraft.
Detachment Commander Squadron Leader Derek Cox said the E-7A Wedgetail provided Air Force and Australia’s allies with a capability edge.
“Equipped with high-powered long-range surveillance radar, secondary radar, passive detection surveillance receivers as well as tactical and strategic voice and data communications systems – the E-7A Wedgetail is one of the most advanced air battlespace management capabilities in the world and we’re proud to have the opportunity to showcase its capabilities in complex joint training activities in deployed environments,” Squadron Leader Cox said.
“Exercise Pacific Edge provided a key opportunity to integrate with allied capabilities to test, evaluate and fine-tune our tactics – focusing on F-22 and E-7 integration against advanced threats.”
With F-16 Fighting Falcons from the 442nd Training and Evaluation Squadron joining the fight in an adversarial role, the exercise scenarios provided the opportunity to practise a wide range of combat encounters, with the E-7A Wedgetail playing a critical role in exercise mission scenarios.
“The E-7 demonstrated its ability to deliver that force multiplier effect for allied nations as it can share information with other coalition aircraft, providing the joint force with situational awareness to command, control and co-ordinate a joint air, sea and land battle in real time,” Squadron Leader Cox said.
“I am incredibly proud of the performance of our personnel during the exercise.
“They have clearly demonstrated their ability to fully integrate with our partner nations – building on the strength of our cohesive and highly effective team environment.
“Operating with fifth-generation platforms in this context is a valuable experience and provides important learning outcomes that also translate to our operations with the F-35A back home.”
Exercise Pacific Edge 21 was held to enhance air-combat proficiencies through the integration of allied units to further the interoperability between bilateral aircraft.
More Exercise Pacific Edge 21 Imagery can be found here.