United States Air Force (USAF) F-22 Raptors have flown alongside the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as part of an Enhanced Air Cooperation (EAC) exercise at Exercise Talisman Sabre 2019.
Group Captain Stephen Chappell, Commander of the Amberley based Australian-US task unit for the exercise, said training with the stealth fighter aircraft supported Australian fifth-generation integration and provided valuable training.
“Talisman Sabre builds on the regular exercises we do at Amberley, in the United States and the key training programs and exchanges with USAF and US Navy that we use to develop our tactics, techniques and procedures,” Group Captain Chappell said in a statement on Wednesday.
“Integration with the fifth-generation platforms like F-22 and F-35 are key to how we will do our job both now and in the future.”
Training with Raptors was undertaken annually and was part of a continuing process aimed at full air combat integration, Chappell said.
“For Talisman Sabre, we will be focusing on how we operate and train on our F/A-18 Classic Hornet, F/A-18F Super Hornet, EA-18G Growler and E-7A Wedgetail in the same theatre as this advanced F-22 Raptor stealth fighter jet.”
Aircraft deployed by the USAF in the exercise were:
- F-22 Raptor from 90th Fighter Squadron, a stealth fighter;
- E-3C Sentry, an airborne early warning and control aircraft derived from the Boeing 707, from the 962nd AACS;
- KC-10 Extender, an airborne refuelling tanker derived from the McDonnell Douglas DC-10, from the 6th Air Refueling Squadron; and
- B-52 Stratofortress bomber from the 69th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron.
Colonel Barley Baldwin, Amberley USAF Group Commander, 13th Expeditionary Air Force, said he was excited for the 90th Fighter Squadron to come back to Queensland where it first established a relationship with its Australian counterparts in 1942.
“Exercises and training opportunities like Talisman Sabre 19 foster stronger relationships and increase interoperability with our Australian allies, as well as enable our aircrew and support personnel to become familiar with conducting operations out of Royal Australian air bases,” Colonel Baldwin said.
Earlier in July, Australia’s Minister for Defence Senator Linda Reynolds said Exercise Talisman Sabre would involve more than 34,000 military personnel from the US and Australia.
As well as Australia and the US, there will be participation in some form from 18 nations either embedded with the Australian Defence Force (ADF), or as observers or participants in the international visitors program, Minister Reynolds said.
Exercise Talisman Sabre was scheduled to run from July 10 to July 24, 2019. Most of the activities will occur at the ADF’s Shoalwater Bay training area north of Rockhampton on Queensland’s central coast.
VIDEO: A Defence supplied video of the USAF F-22 Raptors at RAAF Base Amberley for Exercise Talisman Sabre 2019.