Allied Air Command
November 21, 2022
From November 14 to 18, Bulgarian Air and Land Forces participated in joint Ramstein Guard 2022 training drills under Electronic Warfare (EW) conditions on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria.
Embedded in NATO’s long-established EW Force Integration Programme and controlled by the NATO Combined Air Operations Centre in Torrejon, Spain, Bulgarian air defence forces and assets had to operate under conditions of radio-frequency interference. The MiG-29 fighter jets, radar sites and Ground-Based Air Defence units demonstrated their capability to survive and operate in a degraded electromagnetic environment.
For many years, the routine and recurring Ramstein Guard training has been conducted under overall aegis of the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), overseen by Allied Air Command and controlled by the Combined Air Operations Centres. SHAPE has assigned the EW capabilities to civilian contractor DRAKEN Europe who deployed one Dassault Falcon 20 aircraft with EW capabilities in support of the event in Bulgaria. The Joint Electronic Warfare Core Staff based in UK – another facilitator of the Ramstein Guard series – deployed several of their ground-based jammers to create the degraded electromagnetic environment.
“The Ramstein Guard exercise series is designed to improve the effectiveness and capability of the NATO Integrated Air and Missile Defence System (NATINAMDS) when operating in a challenging electronic warfare environment, and our forces have demonstrated their capability to do so,” Colonel Donchev added….
Allied Air Command
November 17, 2022
A Royal Air Force A400M Atlas transport aircraft conducted trials in Romania to rapidly deploy NATO capabilities, using a Romanian mobile artillery rocket system.
The week-long trials started on November 8 and involved an Atlas A400M aircraft crewed by 30 air mobility specialists that flew out of RAF Brize Norton to test the ability to load and transport the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) weapons system. The expeditionary character of the test was underscored by conducting all activities at Mihail Kogălniceanu Air Base in Romania and using a HIMARS operated by the 8th Tactical Operational Missile Brigade of the Romanian Army.
The trials concluded with the weapons system being loaded, flown, unloaded to then fire a simulated missile strike, before reloading and returning to base. Also taking part as advisors were personnel from the United States Special Operations Command Europe.
Currently in service with several NATO Allies, the M142 HIMARS is a light multiple rocket launcher developed in the late 1990s for the United States Army and mounted on a medium tactical truck. The system carries one pod with six Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System rockets.
The successful trial once also demonstrated that the RAF Air Mobility Force has the capability to operate at range with NATO allies to rapidly move unfamiliar equipment from other nations if called upon to do so. It also showcases NATO’s ability to draw on the Allies’ cooperation and combined capabilities to safeguard and protect Alliance territory, populations and forces flexibly and responsively.
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