Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dyess B-1s participate in multi-service exercise

by Airman 1st Class Charles V. Rivezzo
7th Bomb Wing Public Affairs

1/30/2013 - DYESS AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- B-1 Bombers from Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, participated in a combined training unit exercise, or COMPTUEX, Jan. 24-29, in support of the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) Strike Group.

COMPTUEX is a series of training scenarios designed to certify the HSTSG as a deployment-ready fighting force capable of completing operations in overseas theaters. The exercise incorporated a myriad of missions to include air defense, maritime interdiction and anti-submarine warfare.

7th Bomb Wing aircrews participated in the exercise by providing joint maritime defense for the carrier strike group.

The COMPTUEX scenario involved a friendly ally at war in a highly-volatile area prone to terrorism. Training vessels and personnel played the role of hostile forces within each scenario.

"Our role during these types of exercises is kind of like what we've been doing in OEF for well over a decade, providing a convoy armed overwatch, but in this case, it's a carrier strike group," said Capt. Alicia Datzman, 337th Test and Evaluation Squadron. "The area you're protecting in a JMD type role is extremely vast and part of that tactical problem is finding where those threats are and protecting our assets."

Currently, the 337th TES is writing a bulletin on JMD tactics, techniques and procedures specifically using their current communications (pre Link-16) structure and soon-to-be-fielded Advanced Targeting Pod-Sensor Enhancement.

According to Datzman, JMD is a mission that aircrews deployed to the Middle East could be tasked to support, directly impacting the B-1's current mission-set.

"Participating in these types of exercises is huge for us, because we are operating in an environment that is unfamiliar to the B-1 community," said Maj. Brian Baker, 77th Weapons Squadron. "Little things that you can't practice or stress until you are actually in that environment, such as communications, make a big difference when working in a joint-service operation.

"The mistakes and lessons learned in these exercises get propagated out to the rest of the B-1 community. Not everyone is going to get a chance to participate in these types of exercises," added Baker. "The few times we get to participate in these large force exercises, we need to get every single lesson learned that's possible, because the next time someone is a part of a mission like that, it could be for real."

This multi-service exercise is part of a new Department of Defense initiative known as the Air-Sea Battle concept.

The ASB concept guides the services as they work together to maintain a continued U.S. advantage against the global proliferation of advanced military technologies and anti-access/area denial capabilities. Air-Sea Battle is designed to leverage military and technological capabilities that reflect Navy, Marine and Air Force collaboration, cooperation, integration and resource investments.

"When you think of joint-integration in tomorrow's war with country X, Y, or Z, that's how we are going to have to fight," Datzman said. "It's essential to train the way we fight."

No comments: