Monday, February 29, 2016

Bombers receive warm welcome for Cold Response

A B-52 Stratofortress sits on the ramp at Morón Air Base, Spain, after recently arriving from Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Feb. 27, 2016. Three B-52s will participate in Cold Response 16, a large-scale NATO military exercise involving maritime, ground and air operations. The exercise’s location in the Trøndelag region of Norway will provide an extreme-cold environment in which a dozen allied and partner nations will jointly develop tactics, techniques and procedures. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Joseph Raatz)
By Senior Airman Joseph Raatz,  2nd Expeditionary Bomb Group Public Affairs

MORÓN AIR BASE, Spain  -- B-52 Stratofortresses from Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana arrived in Europe Saturday, Feb. 27, in preparation for their participation in a large-scale NATO training exercise.

This year's iteration of the biennial Cold Response NATO military training and exercise program will be held in the central Trøndelag region of Norway and feature air, ground and maritime operations. Approximately 16,000 troops from a dozen nations will participate in the exercise, working together to collectively develop tactics, techniques and procedures for combat operations in an extreme cold-weather environment.

"We appreciate the opportunity to take part in such a large multinational exercise at the invitation of our Norwegian allies, and we are especially thankful for the opportunity to test our skills in such unique cold weather conditions," said Lt. Col. Dennis Cummings, 2nd Expeditionary Bomb Group commander.  "The ability to train bomber aircrews in different geographic combatant commands is essential to maintaining a strong, credible bomber force that enhances the security and stability of our allies and partners. Our ability to smoothly and effectively conduct these multinational missions is heavily indebted to the hospitality of Spain and fantastic support we are receiving from U.S. Air Forces in Europe."

The B-52s will conduct multiple sorties over the course of the exercise, engaging in simulated strikes against ground targets inside the training area. As the U.S. Air Force's premier nuclear-capable, strategic heavy bomber, the B-52 is capable of delivering a large payload of precision nuclear or conventional ordnance over long distances while also providing decision makers the ability to rapidly project military power.

"Bomber participation in joint military exercises like this one are an expression of the U.S. commitment to supporting our allies and partners, demonstrating our shared dedication to promoting global security and stability," said Maj. Matt Spinelli, 2nd EBG assistant director of operations.

The B-52s will join with KC-135 Stratotankers and F-16 Fighting Falcons to serve as the American air component for the duration of Cold Response 16. A number of C-130 Hercules will also be on hand to provide support to ground forces.

"This exercise provides a great opportunity for allies to train together and better understand how we each operate and communicate," Cummings said. "The increased understanding and cooperative efforts between our countries enable us to work together effectively, while also addressing any and all security challenges that may arise in the region or other parts of the world."

Cold Response 16 is scheduled to run through March 9.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

B-52s to the AOR

From the Air Force Magazine at

​The Air Force will deploy B-52 Stratofortresses to take the fight to ISIS in the spring, placing bombers back in the US Central Command area of responsibility, service officials said. B-52s will deploy in April to take part in Operation Inherent Resolve, taking the spot of B-1B Lancers that returned back to the US in January, said Gen. Hawk Carlisle, commander of Air Combat Command, at AWS16. Lt. Gen. Charles Brown, the commander of Air Forces Central Command who oversees the air war for Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, said they are working to “bring B-52s to town” to assist in the fight. The coalition has two aircraft carriers deployed to assist in the fight to make up the gap after B-1s left in January to receive large-scale upgrades, and the coalition is planning long in advance to address any gaps in assets available to the coalition, Brown said. Those B-1s will return to the fight in the summer after having been recently upgraded.​

Live-Mode-S Weekly Military Mode-S Updates 24 Feb 2016

here is the latest Military Mode-S updates from our friend Albert posted to his Mode-S forum board at Thank you Albert for sharing that with the rest of us. This update was dated 24 Feb 2016

Code ICAO Country Registration Operator Source
0A03F2 A400 Germany 5402 LTG-62 LMMS
0D01BA DH8D Mexico AMT-230 Mexican Navy PM
0D04C2 G450 Mexico AMT-205 Mexican Navy private mail
0D0546 C295 Mexico AMT-250 Mexican Navy sbs analysis
0D0547 C295 Mexico AMT-251 Mexican Navy sbs analysis
0D05AE C295 Mexico FAM-3201 Mexican Navy private mail
0D05AF C295 Mexico FAM-3202 Mexican Navy private mail
0D05E6 C295 Mexico AMT-252 Mexican Navy private mail
0D05E7 C295 Mexico AMT-253 Mexican Navy private mail
0D0612 CN35 Mexico AMP-122 Mexican Navy private mail
0D0613 CN35 Mexico AMP-123 Mexican Navy private mail
0D0614 CN35 Mexico AMP-124 Mexican Navy private mail
0D0615 CN35 Mexico AMP-125 Mexican Navy modes
0D065F LJ60 Mexico AMT-200 Mexican Navy private mail
32001C AW139CP Italy MM81892 --- Filling
32001D AW139CP Italy MM81897 --- Filling
33FE02 TOR Italy mm…xx 155° Gruppo
33FE04 H47 Italy MM81779 --- Filling
33FFC1 A319 Italy MM62209 AMI | 31 Stormo | 306 Gruppo
359284 AS32 Spain HU.27-xx --- LMMS
35A520 ------ Malaysia M48-81 Malaysia Air Force LMMS
3AAADA AS.532UL France 2369 ALAT Armée de Terre Filling
3AABD1 AS555 France 5529 ALAT Armée de Terre LMMS
3AAC22 AS.350BA France 1953/JCK Gendarmerie callsign
3B762B AJET France E-166 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B762D AJET France E-164 --- Filling
3B762E AJET France E-163 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B762F AJET France E-162 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B7630 AJET France E-94/E-158 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B7637 AJET France E-xxx --- LMMS
3B7642 AJET France E-137 --- LMMS
3B7647 AJET France E-130 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B764C AJET France E-124 --- LMMS
3B7655 AJET France E-114 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B7665 AJET France E-95 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B7666 AJET France E-94 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B766A AJET France E-88 EPAA20.300/PdF LMMS
3B766F AJET France E-83 --- LMMS
3B7670 AJET France E-82 --- Filling
3B7688 AJET France E-35 --- LMMS
3B7691 AJET France E-22 --- callsign
3B7692 AJET France E-20 --- Filling
3B769C AJET France F-160 --- LMMS
3B76C4 AS555 France 5457 --- Filling
3B76DD AS55 France 5361 --- PBN
3E824A EUFI Germany 3024 TaktLwG-31 LMMS
3E87B7 TOR Germany 4567 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3E8CD7 EUFI Germany 3140 WTD-61 LMMS
3E8CF6 EUFI Germany 3072 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3E959B EUFI Germany 3137 TaktLwG-31 [mode s]
3E9809 TOR Germany 4588 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3E9AFF EUFI Germany 3063 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3E9F31 EUFI Germany 3065 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3EA77B TOR Germany 4656 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3EA9BE TOR Germany 4479 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3EB8A6 EUFI Germany 3076 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3EBA98 TOR Germany 4635 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F40C4 EUFI Germany 3057 TaktLwG-31 LMMS
3F42D5 EUFI Germany 3108 TaktLwG-31(R) pm
3F457E EUFI Germany 3133 TaktLwG-31 LMMS
3F474C C160 Germany 5061 --- LMMS
3F4DCA NH90 Germany 7xxx --- LMMS
3F4F86 TOR Germany 4640 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F4FA3 EUFI Germany 3092 TaktLwG-73 LMMS
3F53D9 EUFI Germany 3085 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F558E C160 Germany 5109 LTG-61 LMMS
3F5A92 AS532 Germany 8203 FBSBMVg LMMS
3F5AC4 TOR Germany 4429 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F6496 EUFI Germany 3055 TaktLwG-73 LMMS
3F6A8F EUFI Germany 3047 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F6BBD EUFI Germany 3099 TaktLwG-73 LMMS
3F6D74 TOR Germany 4416 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F6D87 EUFI Germany 3040 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3F6E2D TOR Germany 4624 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F711A TOR Germany 4473 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F728D TOR Germany 4561 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F741D EUFI Germany 3080 TaktLwG-31(R) LMmS
3F7421 TOR Germany 4615 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F7701 EUFI Germany 3071 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F788A EUFI Germany 3082 TaktLwG-31 private mail
3F7D01 EUFI Germany 3080 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F8198 EUFI Germany 3109 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3F81B9 TOR Germany 4464 ??? TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F8300 C160 Germany 5110 --- LMMS
3F8472 EUFI Germany 3083 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F8571 TOR Germany 4458 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F8B1F TOR Germany 4624 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F8F44 EUFI Germany 3068 TaktLwG-74 LMMS
3F8F57 EUFI Germany 3087 WTD-61 LMMS
3F908F TOR Germany 4650 ??? TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F9125 EUFI Germany 3064 TaktLwG-73 LMMS
3F94BA EUFI Germany 3107 TaktLwG-31 LMMS
3F9B92 TOR Germany 4519 TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3F9C11 EUFI Germany 3075 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F9E9C EUFI Germany 3050 TaktLwG-73 LMMS
3F9EEA EUFI Germany 3106 TaktLwG-31(R) LMMS
3F9F2A TOR Germany 4635 ??? TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3F9FB9 EUFI Germany 3105 TaktLwG-31 LMmS
3FA0A8 TOR Germany 4635 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
3FA349 UH1 Germany 7073 THR-30 LMMS
3FBD75 EUFI Germany 3078 TaktLwG-31 LmmS
3FBE04 TOR Germany 4423 ??? TaktLwG-33 LMMS
3FBE81 TOR Germany 4577 WTD-61 LMMS
3FBF96 TOR Germany 4623 TaktLwG-51 LMMS
43C767 AW159 United Kingdom ZZ526 --- LMMS
43C768 AW159 United Kingdom ZZ527 --- Filling
43C769 AW159 United Kingdom ZZ528 --- callsign
43C7D8 H47 United Kingdom ZK561 RAF | Odiham Wing LMMS
447D3E AB212 Austria 5D-HV --- LMMS
44F863 AJET Belgium AT33 11sm LMMS
45F42B EH10/C30J Denmark M-515/B-583 ESK721 PM
505FAE L39 Slovakia 5253 --- callsign
505FBA L39 Slovakia 4711 --- LMMS
7103D3 C30J Saudi Arabia 3207 RSAF | 32 Sqn Filling
7103D4 C30J Saudi Arabia 3208 RSAF | 32 Sqn LMMS
853186 G450 Mexico AMT-205 Mexican Navy private mail
87C400 LR-2 Japan 23051 JGDSF LMMS
87C402 LR-2 Japan 23053 JGDSF LMMS
87C404 LR-2 Japan 23055 JGDSF LMMS
87C82C C30 Japan 9055 61 Kokutai LMMS
8967D8 B412 United Arab Emirates DU-326 --- Trubb
AE0387 K35R United States 59-1472 AFRC | 452AMW | 336ARS [KRIV] callsign
AE040B C30J United States 165739 USMC | VMGR-234 [KNFW] [MODE S]
AE047E K35R United States 59-1492 USAF | callsign
AE04E9 K35R United States 61-0272 AFRC | 434ARW | 72ARS [KGUS] callsign
AE04F6 K35R/BE20 United States 58-0050/84-0167 USAFE | 100ARW | 351ARS [EGUN] private mail 84-0167 conf KGJT
AE059B K35R United States 60-0323 AFRC | 434ARW | 72ARS [KGUS] private mail
AE07DC C17 United States 93-0602 HI ANG | 154Wing | 203ARS [PHIK] BSI_26122005
AE0B10 H60 United States 96-26704 --- callsign
AE0D3F H60 United States 79-23302 USArmy radio call
AE0FA6 H47 United States 92-00293 USARMY callsign
AE1055 H47 South Korea 88-00081 --- Filling
AE1283 C130 United States 64-14862 USAF | 53ECG [KDMA] forum
AE16E7 F16 United States 90-0829 USAFE | 52FW | 480FS [ETAD] LMMS
AE191F A10 United States 79-0146 103rdFS  LMMS
AE1920 A10 United States 79-0147 422ndTES callsign
AE1B9F F18 United States 166898 USNavy LMMS
AE29CE C30J United States 08-6201 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] private mail
AE29CF C30J United States 08-6202 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE29D1 C30J United States 08-6204 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE29D2 C30J United States 08-6205 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE29D3 C30J United States 08-6206 USAF | 58SOW | 415SOS [KIKR] callsign
AE29D4 C30J United States 09-6207 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] foiru
AE29D5 C30J United States 09-6208 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE29D7 C30J United States 09-6210 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE47E8 H60 United States 07-20043 --- callsign
AE4B00 C30J United States 08-5697 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] LMMS
AE4BE5 C30J United States 09-5711 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] PM
AE4BE6 C30J United States 09-5713 USAF | 27SOW | 9SOS [KCVS] PM
AE51CF H60 United States 11-20419 --- callsign
AE56D6 H60 United States 13-20622 --- LMMS
AE57BE P8 United States 168858 USN | callsign
AE57BF P8 United States 168859 USN | LMMS
AE57C0 P8 United States 168860 USN | LMMS
AE58DE TEX2 United States 166237 ??? --- LMMS
AE58DF TEX2 United States 166238 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E0 TEX2 United States 166239 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E1 TEX2 United States 166240 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E2 TEX2 United States 166241 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E3 TEX2 United States 166242 ??? --- Filling
AE58E4 TEX2 United States 166243 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E5 TEX2 United States 166244 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E6 TEX2 United States 166245 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E7 TEX2 United States 166246 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E8 TEX2 United States 166247 ??? --- LMMS
AE58E9 TEX2 United States 166248 ??? --- LMMS
AE58EA TEX2 United States 166249 ??? --- LMMS
AE58EB TEX2 United States 166250 ??? --- LMMS
AE595C C30J United States 14-5788 USAF | 19AW [KLRF] LMMS
C87F0E NH90 NEW ZEALAND NZ3302 3 Sqn/RNZAF callsign
C87F14 NH90 NEW ZEALAND NZ3308 3 Sqn/RNZAF callsign
E20022 C30 Argentine TC-69 GT1A PM
E400B3 ERJ 145 Mexico FAM-4111 Mexican Navy callsign
E400B4 ERJ 145 Mexico FAM-4101 Mexican Navy callsign

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Mode-S/ADS Milcom Intercepts 22-26 Feb 2016 - Brasstown NC

Here is the latest round of Mode-S/ADS-B intercepts and selected ATC call signs logged from here on the radio ranch in WNC. All dates/times are UTC and list is sorted in Mode-S address order.

0BAFA1 FAH-001   ---  2016-02-25 16:17:43 ERJ-135 Honduras Honduras Air Force 
15407E RA-82046  VDA4805 2016-02-26 22:22:41 An-124-100 Russia Volga-Dnepr Airlines 
43C6B8 ZZ177     RRR6381 2016-02-25 19:52:26 C-17A United Kingdom RAF | 99Sqn 
7103D5 3209      FIXER55 2016-02-24 15:29:09 KC-130J Saudi Arabia RSAF | 32 Sqn  0000  23000   
83AEFC 84-24378  PAT048 2016-02-23 18:36:06 C-12U United States USARC | C/2-228 AVN (TA) [KFBG] 
A04ECF N119NA   ---  2016-02-24 19:19:10 757-223 United States US DOJ 
A1F496 N225LH    N225LH 2016-02-25 16:24:29 C-12C Huron United States ---  
A8657E N640CS    7371 2016-02-22 15:58:40 737-400 United States US DOJ 
ADD445 N990ST    NRG90 2016-02-23 13:05:33 737-4Y0 United States National Nuclear Safety Administration 
ADD445 N990ST    NRG90 2016-02-24 21:26:16 737-4Y0 United States National Nuclear Safety Administration  
ADFCF1 94-0146   ---  2016-02-25 18:40:31 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS 
ADFCF3 94-0148   ---  2016-02-22 23:06:52 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS 
ADFD76 91-0506   ---  2016-02-22 19:09:15 C-26E United States CO ARNG | OSACOM DET-33 [KBKF] 
ADFDD0 92-3328   PAT168 2016-02-25 19:23:13 C-12R United States USARC | A/2-228 AVN (TA) [KWRI ]  
ADFDD0 92-3328   PAT633 2016-02-25 19:23:13 C-12R United States USARC | A/2-228 AVN (TA) [KWRI ]  
ADFDD5 95-6711   ANVIL60 2016-02-23 15:15:01 C-130H United States WV ANG | 130AW | 130AS [KCRW] 
ADFE68 91-1237   DERBY 30 2016-02-23 18:22:45 C-130H United States KY ANG | 123AW | 165AS [KSDF]  0000  22000   
ADFE69 91-1238   DERBY 03 2016-02-22 18:31:34 C-130H United States KY ANG | 123AW | 165AS [KSDF] 
ADFE69 91-1238   DERBY 03 2016-02-23 22:43:38 C-130H United States KY ANG | 123AW | 165AS [KSDF]  0000  24000   
ADFE70 92-1533   MAFFS 3 2016-02-26 15:28:19 C-130H United States WY ANG | 153AW | 187AS [KCYS] 
ADFE93 95-0094   PAT364 2016-02-25 21:05:12 C-12R+ United States USARMY  
ADFEC9 84-0182   PAT224 2016-02-22 19:53:29 C-12U United States ARMY 
ADFEC9 84-0182   PAT543 2016-02-24 20:27:07 C-12U United States ARMY  
AE015E 59-1512   DIXIE93 2016-02-23 18:16:39 KC-135T United States MI ANG | 127WG | 171ARS [KMTC]  7266  28100   
AE017A 84-0142   SPAR687 2016-02-26 14:22:03 C-21A United States MI ANG | 110FW | 172AS [KBTL]  
AE01A1 86-0374   ALLIED 1 2016-02-22 18:18:55 C-21A United States CO ANG | 140WG | 200AS [KCOS] 
AE01DD 79-1712   OPEC78 2016-02-25 15:34:47 KC-10A United States USAF | 305AMW [KWRI]  
AE021B 84-0188   HOIST93 2016-02-25 21:19:45 KC-10A United States USAF | 305AMW [KWRI]  
AE0222 85-0030   TEAM15 2016-02-25 20:26:08 KC-10A United States USAF | 305AMW [KWRI]  0000  28600    
AE026D 62-3576   DIXIE47 2016-02-26 22:24:25 KC-135R United States NH ANG | 157ARW | 133ARS [KPSM]  0000  31800   
AE02C7 89-9103   VADER03 2016-02-26 17:28:22 C-130H United States AFRC | 910AW | 757AS [KYNG] 
AE030E 74-1671   ---  2016-02-22 16:05:41 C-130H United States MO ANG | 120AW | 186AS [KGTF] 
AE0313 74-1679   ---  2016-02-22 15:58:44 C-130H United States USAF | 19AW | 53AS [KLRF] 
AE0318 74-1691   POSSE69 2016-02-26 15:00:37 C-130H United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF] 
AE0364 60-0347   EDDIE61 2016-02-25 16:11:47 KC-135R United States OH ANG | 121ARW [KLCK] 
AE0384 59-1458   E91458 2016-02-26 13:54:34 KC-135R United States OH ANG | 121ARW [KLCK]  0000  0   
AE03FA 84-0146   ---  2016-02-25 17:55:21 C-12U United States Det8/NH-ArNG 
AE0419 164407    GOTO FMS 2016-02-26 20:02:25 E-6B United States USN | SCW-1 [KTIK]  ---  23000    
AE04AD 99-0104   ---  2016-02-25 18:38:20 UC-35a1 United States USARC | A/2-228 AVN (TA) [KWRI ] 
AE04CF 62-3537   LUCKY21 2016-02-23 14:19:35 KC-135R United States AFRC | 507ARW | 465ARS [KTIK] 
AE04CF 62-3537   REGAL41 2016-02-25 16:06:31 KC-135R United States AFRC | 507ARW | 465ARS [KTIK] 
AE04DE 57-2597   SODA81 2016-02-26 14:34:24 KC-135R United States TN ANG | 134ARW | 151ARS [KTYS] 
AE0501 59-1504   DIXIE46 2016-02-26 22:04:02 KC-135T United States PA ANG | 171ARW [KPIT]  0000  32200   
AE055E 85-0001   RCH317 2016-02-24 21:49:15 C-5M United States USAF | 436AW | 9AS [KDOV] 
AE058A 87-0045   RCH553 2016-02-23 15:22:36 C-5M United States USAF | 436AW | 9AS [KDOV] 
AE0596 59-1460   STEEL71 2016-02-23 16:03:35 KC-135T United States PA ANG | 171ARW [KPIT]  0000  27000   
AE05DE 87-9281   SHARK67 2016-02-22 15:17:03 C-130H United States AFRC | 914AW | 328AS [KIAG] 
AE066B 62-3554   ---  2016-02-25 21:35:58 KC-135R United States USAF | 22ARW [KIAB] 
AE07DF 94-0065   RCH634 2016-02-25 22:04:15 C-17A United States TN ANG | 164AW | 155AS [KMEM]  
AE07F1 96-0007   RULER45 2016-02-26 21:29:19 C-17A United States MS ANG | 172AW | 183AS [KJAN]  0000  35000   
AE080B 99-0165   ---  2016-02-25 22:28:57 C-17A United States AFRC | 445AW | 89AS [KFFO] 
AE080F 99-0169   ---  2016-02-25 16:58:28 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS] 
AE0817 00-0181   RCH380 2016-02-25 14:50:54 C-17A United States WV ANG | 167AW | 167AS [KMRB] 
AE087E 01-0028   ---  2016-02-26 13:42:37 C-37A United States USAF | 6AMW | 310AS [KMCF] 
AE08E0 01-1935   BATON81 2016-02-26 15:51:45 EC-130J United States PA ANG | 193SOW | 193SOS [KMDT] 
AE08FC 84-24379  WING78 2016-02-22 13:42:38 C-12R United States USARC | A/2-228 AVN (TA) [KWRI ]  0000  27950   
AE08FD 84-24380  PAT965 2016-02-25 22:24:22 C-12U United States USARC | A/2-228 AVN (TA) [KWRI ] 
AE093B 00-1052   ---  2016-02-25 10:27:02 UC-35B United States US Army | OSACOM PATD [KADW]  0000  40000   
AE093B 00-1052   ---  2016-02-26 23:29:04 UC-35B United States US Army | OSACOM PATD [KADW]  0000  43000   
AE10BD 01-0194   BOE94 2016-02-23 17:34:22 C-17A United States AFRC | 445AW | 89AS [KFFO] 
AE10C1 01        C101 2016-02-26 14:19:09 C-37A United States USCG | CGAS Washington [KDCA]  
AE10C1 01        C101 2016-02-26 20:23:09 C-37A United States USCG | CGAS Washington [KDCA]  
AE117E 02-1112   RCH141T 2016-02-23 15:55:20 C-17A United States MS ANG | 172AW | 183AS [KJAN] 
AE11EE 81-0005   SNTRY03H 2016-02-22 13:03:49 E-3G United States USAF | 552ACW [KTIK] 
AE1236 03-3125   RCH488 2016-02-22 13:31:24 C-17A United States USAF | 305AMW | 6AS [KWRI] 
AE12C4 87-0126   TALON11 2016-02-25 02:20:14 MC-130H United States USAF | 1SOW | 15SOS [KHRT] 
AE13D1 04-1778   ---  2016-02-22 20:26:23 C-37B United States USARMY | OSACOM PATD [KADW] 
AE13D1 04-1778   R1778 2016-02-26 09:11:07 C-37B United States USARMY | OSACOM PATD [KADW]  
AE13D1 04-1778   R1778 2016-02-26 16:54:34 C-37B United States USARMY | OSACOM PATD [KADW]  
AE143A 166715   ---  2016-02-26 19:24:18 UC-35D United States USMC | VMR-1 [KNKT] 
AE1458 06-6154   RCH588 2016-02-22 01:42:13 C-17A United States USAF | 60AMW | 21AS [KSUU] 
AE1466 06-6168   ROYAL12 2016-02-25 03:08:52 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV] 
AE1467 07-7169   ROYAL90 2016-02-22 17:54:16 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV] 
AE1467 07-7169   ROYAL90 2016-02-25 19:59:40 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV] 
AE1467 07-7169   ROYAL90 2016-02-26 15:40:50 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV] 
AE1472 07-7180   TURTLE2 2016-02-23 16:11:27 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS] 
AE148B 92-3290   LEGEND4 2016-02-26 15:56:37 E-8C United States GA ANG | 116ACW [KWRB]  0000  31000   
AE149C 160840   ---  2016-02-26 19:56:32 T-44A United States USN | TW-4 | VT-31 [KNGP] 
AE17EF 05-0730   AVLN35 2016-02-26 21:24:34 C-40C United States AFRC | 932AW | 73AS [KBLV] 
AE1BF0 07-4637   RCHA612 2016-02-25 18:30:37 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF] 
AE1BF3 07-46310  GLEAN24 2016-02-24 21:59:22 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF] 
AE1BF3 07-46310  GLEAN24 2016-02-26 17:52:15 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF] 
AE20C4 07-7183   RCH561 2016-02-22 05:19:39 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS]  0000  31000   
AE29FD 166694    CNV4321 2016-02-23 23:19:24 C-40A United States USNR | VR-56 [KNTU] 
AE2FA3 08-8191   RCH207 2016-02-25 15:12:22 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS] 
AE49C3 09-9207   ---  2016-02-23 12:18:46 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS] 
AE4A60 166696    CNV4962 2016-02-22 22:25:49 C-40A United States USNR | VR-56 [KNTU]  0000  37025   
AE4BE3 10-5716   KING86 2016-02-25 16:24:41 HC-130J United States USAF | 563RQG | 79RQS [KDMA] 
AE4E13 11-5745   RCH1745 2016-02-24 19:43:49 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF] 
AE4E16 11-5719   KING86 2016-02-24 19:17:55 HC-130J United States USAF | 563RQG | 79RQS [KDMA] 
AE54B3 10-0223   RCH528 2016-02-25 13:03:26 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS] 
AE5772 10-00256   ---  2016-02-23 18:11:30 C-12V United States --- 
AE57B5 168849    VVLL829 2016-02-23 05:09:19 P-8A United States USN |  7154  33400   
AE57B5 168849    VVLL829 2016-02-23 16:42:25 P-8A United States USN |  7154  33400   
AE596E 13-5785   KING21 2016-02-23 22:15:13 HC-130J United States USAF | 23 Wing | 71RQS [KVAD]  0000  18975   
AE596E 13-5785   KING21 2016-02-24 00:04:09 HC-130J United States USAF | 23 Wing | 71RQS [KVAD]  0000  18975   

The Spectrum Monitor Review of the International Call Sign Handbook, 4th Edition

Blog Editor Note: This is a review of my new e-book that appeared in the May edition of The Spectrum Monitor e-zine. The Spectrum Monitor ® is published monthly by Ken Reitz KS4ZR at 1403 Holland Creek Road, Louisa, Virginia 23093. You can order your subscription to TSM at

New International Call Sign Handbook: Government and Military EditionBy Larry Van Horn N5FPW
Teak Publishing $6.99
Fourth Edition Kindle e-book 608 pages
Reviewed by Ken Reitz KS4ZR

Anyone who had read Monitoring Times magazine over the last few decades will be familiar with the topic of government and military radio call signs that appeared every month in the Milcom column, written by Larry Van Horn N5FPW. While MT ceased publication with the December 2013 issue, Larry maintained his interest in this subject and has just released the massive fourth edition of the International Call Sign Handbook (Government/Military Edition).

And, if you’ve been reading Hugh Stegman and Mike Chace-Ortiz’s columns in TSM, you’ll know that there are hundreds of frequencies on which you might hear any of these call signs. You can’t tell the players without a scorecard and Larry’s just published the definitive call sign scorecard.

At more than 600 pages, he has left nothing out. And, if you are not familiar with this fascinating subject, he includes a thorough tutorial on the subject to bring you up to speed. Call signs for every branch of the US military, known and arcane federal agencies, and many nongovernmental organizations are also listed. He has also included international call signs for other countries.

You’ll also learn how to set up your listening post to be able to monitor Mode-S ADS/B, a data stream that is sent automatically by most civilian and military aircraft, that IDs each craft as it comes within communications reach of your receiver; a hobby within the air monitoring hobby. Larry includes active links to all the websites you’ll need to go to for software downloads and detailed instructions on tuning in.

It’s difficult to emphasize what a bargain this book is: $6.99 (that was the cost of one issue of Monitoring Times, if you could find it on the bookstore shelves!) for 600 pages of military and federal call signs (in its last year the entire MT magazine was only 62 pages each month and the Milcom column was only two pages each month!).
This book has an active Table of Contents that makes finding your way around in this enormous publication a breeze.

The International Call Sign Handbook is available only as a Kindle e-publication, but you don’t need a Kindle product, iPad, or smartphone to read this publication. Any desktop or laptop computer can display any Kindle e-book. Just download the free app for your device, order the book and start reading. Go here to find out more about Kindle apps:

Go here to buy or read a sample of this book:

And, while you’re at it, check out the other publications released recently by Teak Publishing (also found on the TSM Bookshelf):

Teak Publishing 2015 Air Show Guide (By Larry Van Horn)
International Shortwave Broadcast Guide (By Gayle Van Horn)

QSLing the World (By Gayle Van Horn)
And, don’t forget Larry and Gayle’s excellent blogs for up to date information on shortwave listening and military communications:

Milcom Monitoring Post and Shortwave Central

Friday, February 26, 2016

Truman CSG Operating in Arabian Sea

Aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) participates in a replenishment-at-sea with fleet replenishment oiler USNS Pecos (T-AO 197). Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group is deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, maritime security operations, and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Bobby J Siens/Released)

Buddy Wing 16-2 takes flight over Osan skies

Pilots from the South Koreas air force’s 237th Fighter Squadron at Wonju Air Base watch an A-10 Thunderbolt II take off during Buddy Wing 16-2 on Osan Air Base, South Korea, Feb. 23, 2016. Buddy Wing 16-2 is the second in a series of joint training, combat exercises to be conducted during 2016 across the peninsula. The exercises strengthen the South Korean and U.S. alliance. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Kristin High)
By Senior Airman Kristin High, 51st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

OSAN AIR BASE, South Korea (AFNS) -- The 51st Fighter Wing hosted Buddy Wing 16-2 at Osan Air Base Feb. 22-25, showcasing Airmen from the 25th Fighter Squadron and Aircraft Maintenance Unit.

South Korean air force pilots and maintainers from the 237th FS at Wonju Air Base, traveled to Osan AB in a continued effort to support the alliance.

“The Buddy Wing exercise creates an opportunity to share knowledge and discuss and improve processes that can be tactically developed by both (South Korean air force) KA-1 and U.S. Air Force A-10 (Thunderbolt II) pilots,” said Maj. Hwang, Jung-hwan, a 237th FS pilot. “This Buddy Wing will grant an opportunity for us to prepare and be ready to cope with unexpected situations we have never experienced in person by performing practical training where our (South Korean air force) may lack.”

Members participating in Buddy Wing 16-2 trained to build relationships and broaden their knowledge of working in a joint environment with continued training operations aimed at deterring enemy aggression.

U.S. Air Force A-10s from the 25th FS integrated with South Korean air force KA-1 Woongbi fighter aircraft from the 237th FS to perform close air support missions.

“Buddy Wing is conducted quarterly to integrate and conduct joint, combined missions,” said 1st Lt. Samantha Latch, a 25th FS A-10 pilot. “As we fly and train together, not only are we getting to know them, but we’re increasing our capability to work together.

After 62 years, the South Korean and U.S. alliance continues to be one of the longest standing and successful alliances in modern history. Exercises such as Buddy Wing, along with other combined operations and training events, add to the continued success.

“The exercise promotes mutual understanding and motivation to maintain a strong alliance between (South Korea) and U.S.,” Hwang said.

Buddy Wing 16-2 is the second in a series of joint training, combat exercises conducted in 2016 across the peninsula.

Leap Frogs Conduct Sunrise Training Session at Homestead

Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Trevor Thompson, member of the U.S. Navy parachute team "The Leap Frogs," flies the American flag during a sunrise training demonstration at Homestead Air Reserve Base. (U.S. Navy photo by Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Trevor Thompson/Released)

USAF 17SOS MC-130J aircraft conduct unit wide training exercise

MC-130J Command IIs assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron fly in formation Feb. 17, 2016, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. The 17th SOS conducted a unit-wide training exercise which tasked the entire squadron with a quick-reaction, full-force sortie involving a five-ship formation flight, cargo drops, short runway landings and takeoffs, and helicopter air-to-air refueling. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Peter Reft)
KADENA AIR BASE, Japan (AFNS) -- Instead of the usual howl of jet engines, members of Kadena Air Base heard the growl of 120 turboprop blades chopping the air as the 17th Special Operations Squadron’s MC-130J Commando IIs dominated the airfield scene Feb. 17.

Within an hour of standing by at stations, the aircraft took to the skies during the Pacific region's first five-ship formation flight involving the new specialized mobility aircraft.

The formation was part of the 353rd Special Operations Group's training exercise that tested the 17th SOS and the 353rd Special Operations Maintenance Squadron to launch a short-notice, large-scale tasking.

"We routinely fly two ships, but we mobilized five ships to test our ability to generate aircraft in full force, to make sure our maintenance can support that, and to make sure we can do the planning in case we are ever asked to fly a large formation," said Maj. Brad Talley, the 17th SOS assistant director of operations.

As part of that assessment, team members evaluated their formation flying and short runway landings; combat systems operators tested their cargo air drop timing; and loadmasters tested their cargo delivery system rigging abilities.

"We mobilized all available personnel in the squadron to execute this mission, while all five planes were able to accomplish all cargo drops, land in a small landing zone, maintain formation, and return safely," Talley said.

Though the team successfully accomplished the exercise objectives, it wasn't a simple process. Despite complex procedures, the 17th SOS Jakal team members overcame the challenges to ensure mission completion.

"The most difficult portion was the planning and safe execution of the mission, since most of our squadron isn't used to that level of de-confliction complexity," said Senior Airman Zach Harmon, a 17th SOS MC-130J Commando II loadmaster.

To Talley, the best part of the mission was seeing the whole team fly together and build camaraderie.

"My favorite part was flying in close formation with all my Jakal brethren, exploring various formation geometries, and seeing how well each crew flew," Talley said.

The 17th SOS was activated as a permanent unit at Kadena AB on Aug. 1, 1989, and is instrumental in carrying out wartime and contingency operations in support of U.S. and allied special operations forces.

The 17th SOS began the transition from the MC-130P Combat Shadows to the MC-130J Commando IIs in Dec. 2014, with the latest aircraft arriving on Kadena in Oct. 2015. Technological advances allow the Commando II to set new standards for safety and accuracy in executing clandestine missions.

The new aircraft specializes in nighttime, low-level infiltration/exfiltration and resupply of special operations forces as well as air refueling missions for special operations’ vertical lift aircraft.

The 353rd SOG, made up of more than 800 Airmen, is the only Air Force Special Operations Command unit in the Pacific and is integral to AFSOC. The group conducts wartime and contingency operations planning and execution as well as humanitarian and relief operations, all the while maintaining global mobility readiness for special forces around the world.        

MC-130J Commando IIs assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron fly in formation Feb. 17, 2016, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. The 17th SOS conducted a unit-wide training exercise which tasked the entire squadron with a quick-reaction, full-force sortie involving a five-ship formation flight, cargo drops, short runway landings and takeoff, and helicopter air-to-air refueling. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Peter Reft)

Air Force reveals B-21 Long Range Strike Bomber

By Mike Martin, Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James revealed the first rendering of the Long Range Strike Bomber, designated the B-21, at the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium Feb. 26 in Orlando, Fla., and announced the Air Force will be taking suggestions from Airmen to help decide the name of the bomber.

“This aircraft represents the future for our Airmen, and (their) voice is important to this process,” James said. “The Airman who submits the selected name will help me announce it at the (Air Force Association) conference this fall.”

While there are no existing prototypes of the aircraft, the artist rendering is based on the initial design concept. The designation B-21 recognizes the LRS-B as the first bomber of the 21st century.

The reveal comes just weeks after both James and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III delivered the fiscal year 2017 posture statement before the Senate Appropriations Committee, making it clear modernization is a top priority for the Air Force.

“The platforms and systems that made us great over the last 50 years will not make us great over the next 50,” Welsh said during his testimony on Capitol Hill Feb. 10. “There are many other systems we need to either upgrade or recapitalize to ensure viability against current and emerging threats… the only way to do that is to divest old capability to build the new.”

James said the B-21 will allow the Air Force to operate in tomorrow's high end threat environment, and give the Air Force the flexibility and the capability to launch from the continental United States and deliver airstrikes on any location in the world.

James also explained why the B-21 shares some resemblance to the B-2.

“The B-21 has been designed from the beginning based on a set of requirements that allows the use of existing and mature technology,” James said.

The program recently entered into the Engineering and Manufacturing Development phase and the Air Force plans to field the initial capability of the aircraft in mid-2020s.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

HSM-37 Operating in the Philippine Sea

 An MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter of the Helicopter Maritime Squadron (HSM 37) lands on the flight deck of the guided-missile destroyer USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93). Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, Chung-Hoon is operating as part of the John C. Stennis Strike Group and Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Marcus L. Stanley/Released)

AF rapid response unit enhances their skills during Patriot Sands

A C-17 Globemaster III is prepared for departure during training exercise Patriot Sands Feb. 17, 2016, at Hunter Army Airfield, Ga. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Senior Airman Jonathan Lane)
By Senior Airman Jonathan Lane, 315th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, Ga. (AFNS) -- The distinct sound of helicopters hovering, mixed with the roar of jet engines and automatic weapons fire from a nearby range, filled the air on a cool, sunny day in southeast Georgia.

Members from the 315th Airlift Wing’s Airlift Control Flight (ALCF) took part in Patriot Sands, a training exercise that kicked off Feb. 17 at Hunter Army Airfield.

The exercise incorporated the resources of several ALCF units, as well as affiliate agencies such as the FBI’s Rapid Response Team and the Coast Guard Maritime Security Response Team.

ALCF is a rapid response unit comprised of experienced airlift and operations team members. This includes Airmen from nine Air Force career fields, who manage, coordinate and control air mobility assets in austere locations under combat conditions. Unit members are ready to deploy to any part of the world in 36 hours.

“Exercises like Patriot Sands are essential to our mission,” said Maj. John Ramsey, the 315th ALCF commander. “The pilots get to experience heavier loads than they normally do. The aerial porters get to work away from their home station, which helps them develop their skills. The loadmasters get operational experience with rolling stock, which isn’t normal to their everyday mission. And finally, we get the chance to practice and train on our mission set, which is setting up an airfield where we are able to handle the command and control of aircraft.”

For 315th ALCF members, the exercise started at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina, where they loaded a C-17 Globemaster III, piloted by a crew from the 317th Airlift Squadron, and flew to Hunter AF.

“This type of training is an excellent example of how we stay mission ready and mission focused,” said Col. Caroline Evernham, the 315th Operations Group commander. “The ALCF works hard with their affiliates to ensure they are trained and ready to prepare their equipment for transport at any time. The efficiencies gained from this week's training will help us when we really need it."

One of the main items loaded onto the C-17 for the training was a large, tan-in-color container -- a hardside expandable light air mobility shelter (HELAMS).

The HELAMS, once set in its desired location, transforms from a plain box to a fully expanded and functional command and control center with doors, windows and electricity. This workspace is then used to house the communications equipment and gear needed for ALCF’s operational readiness.

Other than the hands-on training that ALCF receives from setting up their equipment during the exercise, team members also benefit from the affiliate agencies that they have partnered with to accomplish their training objectives.

“We make sure that the sister services and Department of Defense affiliates are current and ready for a real-world missions,” said Master Sgt. Mark Schmidt, 315th ALCF Operations NCO in charge.

ALCF teaches the FBI and other affiliate agencies to properly prepare their equipment for air mobility, Schmidt said. This includes the standardization of weighing, fueling, packing, cleaning, inspecting and sorting of their equipment so that it’s ready to load when the aircraft gets on station.

Patriot Sands is an annual Air Force Reserve Command exercise for ALCF to train in accordance with their designed operational capability mission statement to deploy as a contingency response element. The exercise is scheduled to last for five days.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Stennis CSG sailing through Philippine Sea

USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) sails through the Philippine Sea. Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, Stennis is operating as part of the Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Cole C. Pielop/Released)

USS John S. Stennis Operating in 7th Fleet AOR

Aviation Boatswain's Mate (Handling) 2nd Class Emmanuel Bonsu, from Accra, Ghana, directs an F/A-18E Super Hornet assigned to the Tophatters of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 14 on USS John C. Stennis' (CVN 74) flight deck. Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, Stennis is operating as part of the Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kenneth Rodriguez Santiago/Released)

Mildenhall KC-135s support French operation

Airmen arrive at Istres-Le Tubé Air Base, France, in support of Operation Juniper Micron Feb. 21, 2016. Since 2013, the U.S has been supporting the French government in Operation Juniper Micron by providing air refueling and airlift support of French operations in Mali and North Africa. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Erin Trower)
By Capt. Lauren Ott, U.S. Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa Public Affairs

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (AFNS) -- Three KC-135 Stratotankers, along with 50 Airmen from the 100th Air Refueling Wing at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, temporarily deployed to Istres-Le Tubé Air Base, France, in support of Operation Juniper Micron.

The U.S. has been supporting the French government in Operation Juniper Micron at their request since 2013, providing air refueling and airlift support of French operations in Mali and North Africa.

Since December 2015 alone, the 100th ARW has flown more than 750 sorties, refueled more than 2,900 French aircraft, and off-loaded nearly 28 million pounds of fuel while supporting French operations.

The strategic decision to temporarily deploy the KC-135s to Istres is the result of the continual evaluation of how to best support French ally forces in the air and on the ground.

The long-standing relationship between the U.S. and France enables operational success by allowing a forward-based presence of U.S. Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa assets and the ability to move forward quickly in support of French operations.

493rd FS, NATO allies develop lasting, effective partnerships during Real Thaw

by Senior Airman Dawn M. Weber, 48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

2/23/2016 - BEJA AIR BASE, Portugal -- More than 100 Airmen from the 48th Fighter Wing reported to Portugal to train with Portuguese, Belgian, Danish, French, Dutch, Norwegian, Spanish and other NATO ally forces, Feb. 22 - March 3.

Real Thaw is a Portuguese-led, large joint and combined forces exercise that
trains participating forces on a vast range of battlefield missions sets.
Forces participating will execute training missions aimed to merge and fully
employ different platforms covering defensive and offensive counter air
operations, high value air assets protection and close air support.

"It's an incredible opportunity to be here in Portugal," said Lt. Col. Rob
Fowler, 493rd Fighter Squadron operations supervisor. "We're excited to be
here working side by side with our NATO allies honing our joint air
inoperability as well as tactical skills."

Aircraft participating in the exercise include NATO E-3A aircraft, F-15C
Eagles from the 48th FW, C-130J Super Hercules from the 86th Airlift Wing,
Ramstein Air Base, Germany, as well as other partner aircraft.

"Real Thaw gives us the opportunity to train and learn from other countries
experiences," said "Buzzer," 301st Portuguese Air Base 5 F-16M pilot. "Here
we are able to effectively learn how to use each other's assets and how to
play together if there is ever a time we come together in a deployed

"Working with our NATO allies is crucial to joint inoperability." Fowler
said. "It's a good opportunity to plan, train and execute these missions in
a non-combat location so we're prepared if the day comes and we deploy with
our ally forces."

Participating in exercises like Real Thaw are an important component to
remaining "Forward, Ready, Now," for the 48th FW.

Real Thaw offers training opportunities for Liberty Airmen to train and hone
operational skills in a non-combat zone.

"We expect everyone involved to leave a better version of themselves.
Everyone; pilots, maintainers and anyone participating, we all need to leave
here with a better understanding of joint air inoperability and having
become more tactically proficient to keep the 48th FW and our NATO allies,
'Forward, Ready, Now", Fowler said.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

USS Milwaukee Arrives in Mayport

Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Milwaukee (LCS 5) transits Naval Station Mayport Harbor on its way into port for a maintenance period. While in Mayport, it will take on equipment for underway testing this spring, before eventually arriving in its San Diego homeport. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Timothy Schumaker/Released
By Commander, Naval Surface Force Public Affairs

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) -- USS Milwaukee (LCS 5), a San Diego-based littoral combat ship (LCS), arrived at the BAE shipyard in Mayport, Florida, Feb. 19.

 Milwaukee left Norfolk, Feb. 17, after having completed initial engineering repairs on her propulsion system.

 An investigation has been ongoing since Milwaukee experienced a loss of propulsion while underway in December. The current focus of the investigation indicates a likely failure of an emergency stop event in response to a loss of fuel pressure to both the port and starboard gas turbine engines that occurred while operating in combined diesel and gas turbine (CODAG) mode.

 Though Milwaukee is a San Diego-based ship, she is currently manned with a Mayport-based team -- LCS Crew 108. After successful completion of required certifications, they executed a crew swap late last year at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story.

 "Crew 108 Sailors are thrilled to finally arrive in our new homeport and reunite with our families," said Cmdr. Kevin Ralston, Milwaukee's commanding officer. "It's been a long journey to get here, but I couldn't be happier with my crew's performance and their efforts to get Milwaukee ready for sea."

 In addition to a support staff ashore, Milwaukee will be fully manned with about 50 personnel who will leverage modern voyage navigation and engineering control technology. At the BAE shipyard, she will take on equipment for underway testing this spring, before eventually arriving in her San Diego homeport.

 Mayport is scheduled to be the home of eight Freedom-variant littoral combat ships and 12 LCS crews, starting with USS Little Rock (LCS 9).

 The Freedom variant features high-speed, agile, shallow-draft, and networked surface ships that are open-ocean capable, but are designed to defeat growing littoral threats and provide access and dominance in the coastal water battlespaces. These ships bring great capability and flexibility to the surface fleet.

Blue Ridge Departs for Patrol in 7th Fleet AOR

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kevin A. Flinn, USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) Public Affairs

YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) -- U.S. 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) departed Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Feb. 22, to patrol the 7th Fleet area of operations, strengthening and supporting strong relationships and partnerships throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific region.

 Forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan, for 36 years, Blue Ridge provides advanced communications and command and control capabilities to 7th Fleet, enabling theater security cooperation and the coordination of fleet engagements within the Pacific.
 "A lot of the work we did in selected restricted availability (SRA) was to ensure that the ship is ready to go to sea and able to do the necessary tasks to allow us to have a forward presence," said Master Chief Charles Ziervogel, Blue Ridge's command master chief.

 Blue Ridge recently completed sea trials, allowing the crew to verify and ensure the operational readiness of the ship after an SRA maintenance period, undergoing repairs and the installation of new equipment.

 "Maintenance requires a lot of coordination with outside entities and it really removes us far from underway requirements and training," said Cmdr. Jason Eckhardt, Blue Ridge's executive officer. "It takes a great effort from all hands to understand that we are entering a much more dynamic and autonomous phase in the ship, where we are relying upon ourselves to ensure we operate safe and ensure mission accomplishment."
 Blue Ridge is currently manned by more than 900 crew members, including embarked 7th Fleet staff, the "Golden Falcons" of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 12 and Marines from Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team Pacific (FASTPAC).

 FASTPAC Marines plan on participating in many joint exercises with foreign militaries while Blue Ridge visits foreign ports providing training in hand-to-hand combat and visit, board, search and seizure demonstrations.

 "They will also be learning from their counterparts," said Ziervogel. "This is why there are joint exercises; so we can learn from each other. That, in itself, will not only help strengthen ties in foreign countries, but it will also give them the trust and confidence they need to know that we're there to help them."

 While on patrol in the Pacific, Blue Ridge will not only be available to foreign militaries, but will also increase interaction within local communities. Blue Ridge and embarked 7th Fleet staff will continue to solidify regional relationships through community service events, as well as theater security cooperation engagements.
 "We're here for 7th Fleet," said Ziervogel. "We are here for the Navy. We have become ambassadors to Pacific countries. Not only do we live and work on the ship, but we're going to take the place we live and work and show it to other countries. It's important that every single Sailor and Marine on board understands what our mission is. It's not just 7th Fleet's mission. It's what the bottom line is. It's the mission of everyone on board. We all have a part to play."

 As the flagship for Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, Blue Ridge is committed to strengthening and fostering relationships within the Indo-Asia Pacific region.

USS Ashland Embarks Marines for Patrol

 Marines with Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 262 practice landing the MV-22B Osprey and taking off from the USS Ashland (LSD 48), during Cobra Gold 16 test flights at Utapao, Thailand. The MV-22B Osprey is a joint service multirole combat aircraft that is capable of moving troops or cargo at a high speed rate. Cobra Gold is designed to improve the quality of life and building on the commitment to bettering the Indo-Asia-Pacific. Marines are with VMM-262, Marine Aircraft Group 36, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, III Marine Expeditionary Force. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Jessica N. Etheridge/Released)
By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Kelsey L. Adams, Commander Amphibious Squadron 11 Public Affairs

SOUTH CHINA SEA (NNS) -- Sailors aboard amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD 48) embarked the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Jan. 28-29 for a patrol of the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations.

 During the onload, Ashland Sailors worked alongside the Marines to load vehicles and equipment necessary to conduct amphibious operations and participate in multinational exercises throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.

 "Ashland is at its highest readiness to embark Marines," said Lt. Kyle Reckler, first lieutenant aboard Ashland. "The splash and recovery of the amphibious assault vessels (AAV) was a great example of positive flexing from both the Navy and Marine Corps to load the AAVs in a safe and efficient manner."

 While Ashland Sailors have been preparing for this patrol for the past few months aboard the ship, the 31st MEU has been busy training for the upcoming exercises on the shore.

 "The 31st MEU does a good job of making sure we understand our mission set and capabilities," said 1st Lt. Andrew Powell, the team embarkation officer for the 31st MEU. "When we are preparing for what we could possibly do across the range of military operations. The MEU conveys the message and gives realistic training to make sure we are mission ready."

 The blue-green team is currently en route to participate in exercise Cobra Gold (CG) 2016.

 CG is a Thai-U.S. co-sponsored joint exercise designed to advance regional security by exercising a robust multinational force from nations sharing common goals and security commitments in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.

 Ashland is one of three ships that comprise the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group and is scheduled to meet up with amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) and amphibious dock landing ship USS Germantown (LSD 42) at a later date.

Minot tests Minuteman III with launch from Vandenberg AFB

An unarmed LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile launches during an operational test Feb. 20, 2016, at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Michael Peterson)
 By Air Force Global Strike Command Public Affairs

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (AFNS) -- A team of Air Force Global Strike Command Airmen from the 91st Missile Wing at Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, and the 625th Strategic Operations Squadron at Offutt AFB, Nebraska, aboard the Airborne Launch Control System, launched an unarmed LGM-30G Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile equipped with a test reentry vehicle Feb. 20 from Vandenberg AFB.

The ICBM's reentry vehicle, which contained a telemetry package used for operational testing, traveled approximately 4,200 miles to the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands. Test launches verify the accuracy and reliability of the ICBM weapon system, providing valuable data to ensure a continued safe, secure and effective nuclear deterrent. All Minuteman III test launches are supported by a team from the 576th Flight Test Squadron at Vandenberg AFB.

"The flight test program demonstrates one part of the operational capability of the ICBM weapon system,” said Col. Craig Ramsey, the 576th FLTS commander. “When coupled with the other facets of our test program, we get a complete picture of the weapon system's reliability. But perhaps most importantly, this visible message of national security serves to assure our partners and dissuade potential aggressors."

Minot AFB is one of three missile bases with crew members standing alert 24/7, year-round, overseeing the nation’s ICBM alert forces.

"It has been an amazing experience for the operations and maintenance members of Team Minot to partner with the professionals from the 576th FLTS, 30th Space Wing and 625th STOS,” said Maj. Keith Schneider, the 91st MW Task Force director of operations. “Everyone involved has worked hard and dedicated themselves to the mission.”

The ICBM community, including the Defense Department, the Energy Department and U.S. Strategic Command uses data collected from test launches for continuing force development evaluation. The ICBM test launch program demonstrates the operational credibility of the Minuteman III and ensures the United States’ ability to maintain a strong, credible nuclear deterrent as a key element of U.S. national security and the security of U.S. allies and partners.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Russia has just deployed its most advanced spyplane to Syria

From the Aviationist Blog By David Cenciotti

A Russian Air Force Tu-214R is about to land at Latakia, Syria.

The Tu-214R is a Russian ISR (Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance) aircraft. In other words, a quite advanced spyplane.

As we have already explained here in the past, it is a special mission aircraft equipped with all-weather radar systems and electro optical sensors that produce photo-like imagery of a large parts of the ground: these images are then used to identify and map the position of the enemy forces, even if these are camouflaged or hidden.

The aircraft is known to carry sensor packages to perform ELINT (Electronic Intelligence) and SIGINT (Signal Intelligence) missions: the antennae of the Tu-214R can intercept the signals emitted by the enemy systems (radars, aircraft, radios, combat vehicles, mobile phones etc) so as it can build the EOB (Electronic Order of Battle) of the enemy forces: where the enemy forces are operating, what kind of equipment they are using and, by eavesdropping into their radio/phone communications, what they are doing and what will be their next move.

The aircraft is built by KAPO (Kazan Aircraft Production Association) and flown from the company?s airfield in Kazan.

On Feb. 15, the Tu-214R registered RA-64514, serial number 42305014, the second of the two examples of this kind of aircraft built under contract with Russia?s Ministry of Defense, flew from Kazan to Latakia airbase, Syria.
Image credit:

With its ADS-B transponder signals broadcast in the clear and detected by Flightradar24 collecting stations, the aircraft could be tracked as it followed the eastern corridor from Russia, to the Caspian Sea and then to Syria via the Iranian and Iraqi airspaces. It?s not clear whether the aircraft has already been delivered to the Russian Air Force, even though it is quite weird that a developmental aircraft is deployed abroad (unless the reason is testing it at war in a real scenario?).

While it was still under development, the same Tu-214R aircraft flew what appeared to be an operative mission on Jun. 18, 2015, when it flew from Kazan to Crimea and back, closely following the border between Russia and Ukraine, most probably testing some of its sensors against real targets.

Previously, the aircraft was spotted flying near Crimea.Interestingly, while over the Caspian Sea, approaching the Iranian airspace, the Tu-214R performed a couple of 360 degree  turns at 33.000 feet (weird, while enroute): maybe it was working on the diplomatic clearence to enter Iran?

Image credit: Rimma Sadykova/Wiki

Russia wants to fly over US with advanced digital camera


WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia will ask permission on Monday to start flying surveillance planes equipped with high-powered digital cameras amid warnings from U.S. intelligence and military officials that such overflights help Moscow collect intelligence on the United States.
Russia and the United States are signatories to the Open Skies Treaty, which allows unarmed observation flights over the entire territory of all 34 member nations to foster transparency about military activity and help monitor arms control and other agreements. Senior intelligence and military officials, however, worry that Russia is taking advantage of technological advances to violate the spirit of the treaty.

Russia will formally ask the Open Skies Consultative Commission, based in Vienna, to be allowed to fly an aircraft equipped with high-tech sensors over the United States, according to a senior congressional staffer, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the staff member wasn't authorized to discuss the issue publicly.

The request will put the Obama administration in the position of having to decide whether to let Russia use the high-powered equipment on its surveillance planes at a time when Moscow, according to the latest State Department compliance report, is failing to meet all its obligations under the treaty. And it comes at one of the most tension-filled times in U.S.-Russia relations since the end of the Cold War, with the two countries at odds over Russian activity in Ukraine and Syria.

"The treaty has become a critical component of Russia's intelligence collection capability directed at the United States," Adm. Cecil D. Haney, commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, wrote in a letter earlier this year to Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., chairman of a House subcommittee on strategic forces.

"In addition to overflying military installations, Russian Open Skies flights can overfly and collect on Department of Defense and national security or national critical infrastructure," Haney said. "The vulnerability exposed by exploitation of this data and costs of mitigation are increasingly difficult to characterize."

A State Department official said Sunday that treaty nations had not yet received notice of the Russian request, but that certification of the Russian plane with a "digital electro-optical sensor" could not occur until this summer because the treaty requires a 120-day advance notification. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to discuss the issue publicly.

The official also said that the treaty, which was entered into force in 2002, establishes procedures for certifying digital sensors to confirm that they are compliant with treaty requirements. The official said all signatories to the treaty agree that "transition from film cameras to digital sensors is required for the long-term viability of the treaty."
In December, Rose Gottemoeller, undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, sought to temper concerns about Russian overflights, saying that what Moscow gains from the observation flights is "incremental" to what they collect through other means.

"One of the advantages of the Open Skies Treaty is that information — imagery — that is taken is shared openly among all the treaty parties," she said at a joint hearing of the House Foreign Affairs and Armed Services committees in December. "So one of the advantages with the Open Skies Treaty is that we know exactly what the Russians are imaging, because they must share the imagery with us."

Still, military and intelligence officials have expressed serious concern.

"The open skies construct was designed for a different era," Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart, director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, told lawmakers when asked about the Russian overflights during a congressional hearing. "I'm very concerned about how it's applied today."

Robert Work, deputy secretary of defense, told Congress: "We think that they're going beyond the original intent of the treaty and we continue to look at this very, very closely."

Steve Rademaker, former assistant secretary of state for the bureau of arms control and the bureau of international security and nonproliferation, told Congress at a hearing on security cooperation in Europe in October that Russia complies with the Open Skies Treaty, but has "adopted a number of measures that are inconsistent with the spirt" of the accord.

The treaty, for instance, obligates each member to make all of its territory available for aerial observation, yet Russia has imposed restrictions on surveillance over Moscow and Chechnya and near Abkhazia and South Ossetia, he said. Russian restrictions also make it hard to conduct observation in the Kaliningrad enclave, said Rademaker, who believes Russia is "selectively implementing" the treaty "in a way that suits its interests."

Mode-S/ADS Milcom Intercepts 20-21 Feb 2016 - Brasstown NC

Here is the latest round of Mode-S/ADS-B intercepts and selected ATC call signs logged from here on the radio ranch in WNC. All dates/times are UTC and list is sorted in Mode-S address order.
00000A Various   ---  2016-02-21 15:24:58 Various Various --- 
0D0978 ---   XAMBC 2016-02-21 19:15:25 --- Mexico ---  
A1ECBD N223GA   N223GA 2016-02-20 04:35:09 Gulfstream V United States US DOJ  ---  41000    
A82698 N624RH   ---  2016-02-21 20:23:25 707-338C United States OMEGA AIR 
ADFCC4 93-0644   ---  2016-02-21 16:18:50 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 71FTW | 32FTS [KEND]  
ADFDEC 94-6707   DAWG 07 2016-02-21 18:32:26 C-130H United States WV ANG | 130AW | 130AS [KCRW]  0000  21000   
ADFE4C 94-0320/95-0099   PAT749 2016-02-21 16:03:05 C-12V United States US Army | B/6-52 AVN (TA) DET-1 [KFTK]  ---  26000    
ADFE4C 94-0320/95-0099   PAT749 2016-02-21 18:44:56 C-12V United States US Army | B/6-52 AVN (TA) DET-1 [KFTK]  ---  26000    
AE015E 59-1512   DIXIE38 2016-02-20 16:35:16 KC-135T United States MI ANG | 127WG | 171ARS [KMTC] 
AE0418 164406   GOTO FMS 2016-02-21 08:10:08 E-6B United States USN | SCW-1 [KTIK]  
AE0489 63-8007   DIXIE39 2016-02-21 15:10:30 KC-135R United States AL ANG | 117ARW | 106ARS [KBHM] 
AE04D8 165830   CNV4564 2016-02-20 00:18:53 C-40A United States USNR | VR-59 [KNFW]
AE056B 86-0014   ---  2016-02-21 20:58:12 C-5B United States AFRC | 439AW | 337AS [KCEF] 
AE05DF 87-9282   ---  2016-02-21 17:53:57 C-130H United States AFRC | 440AW | 95AS [KPOB] 
AE0624 89-1055   PITT55 2016-02-21 17:55:08 C-130H United States AFRC | 914AW | 328AS [KIAG] 
AE08F8 84-24375   PAT044 2016-02-20 14:21:13 C-12U United States USARC | C/2-228 AVN (TA) [KFBG] 
AE0940 166374   ---  2016-02-21 17:58:22 UC-35D United States VMR DET [KADW] 
AE1444 05-8158   HOBBY35 2016-02-21 16:52:50 C-130J-30 United States AFRC | 403AW | 815AS [KBIX] 
AE1EA6 08-3937   ---  2016-02-21 16:43:08 T-6A United States --- 
AE4C61 10-0739   ---  2016-02-20 12:40:38 MC-12W United States USAF | 9RW | 489RS [KBAB] 
AE4E05 02   C102 2016-02-20 09:19:01 C-37A United States USCG | CGAS Washington [KDCA] 
AE5774 10-00259   ---  2016-02-21 14:19:55 C-12V United States ---  0000  27000   

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Mode-S/ADS Milcom Intercepts 17-19 Feb 2016 - Brasstown NC

Here is the latest round of Mode-S/ADS-B intercepts and selected ATC call signs logged from here on the radio ranch in WNC. All dates/times are UTC and list is sorted in Mode-S address order.

0D090F ---       ---  2016-02-18 03:02:42 --- Mexico ---
0D0978 ---      XAMBC 2016-02-17 23:42:53 --- Mexico ---
29CBB8 various   ---  2016-02-17 14:36:28 various various Various
A18143 N1963N   N1963N 2016-02-18 17:40:18 G450 United States Water Force One LLC
A68426 N519PC   ---  2016-02-17 15:08:28 PC-12/45 United States USAF  0000  20000   
A68426 N519PC   ---  2016-02-17 19:33:20 PC-12/45 United States USAF  0000  20000   
AD5AF4 07-0793   ---  2016-02-18 22:07:39 PC-12/47 United States USAF | 27SOW | 318SOS [KCVS]
ADFCF4 95-0040   ---  2016-02-18 14:39:29 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS
ADFCF4 95-0040   ---  2016-02-19 20:03:38 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS  0000  13750   
ADFCF4 95-0040   ---  2016-02-19 23:24:29 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS  0000  13750   
ADFCF7 95-0043   ---  2016-02-18 18:47:13 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS
ADFD02 95-0054   ---  2016-02-18 19:00:53 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS
ADFD10 95-0068   ---  2016-02-18 15:30:22 T-1A Jayhawk United States USAF | 14FTW | 48FTS
ADFE62 91-1231   DERBY 85 2016-02-19 16:37:04 C-130H United States KY ANG | 123AW | 165AS [KSDF]
ADFE68 91-1237   DERBY 30 2016-02-19 17:46:41 C-130H United States KY ANG | 123AW | 165AS [KSDF]
ADFE73 92-1536   TETON36 2016-02-17 16:58:29 C-130H United States WY ANG | 153AW | 187AS [KCYS]
ADFE85 92-0550   COBB50 2016-02-17 00:04:25 C-130H United States AFRC | 94AW | 700AS [KMGE]
ADFE86 92-0551   RCH265 2016-02-18 22:56:08 C-130H United States AFRC | 94AW | 700AS [KMGE]
ADFEAC 83-0081   HOIST91 2016-02-17 20:55:50 KC-10A United States USAF | 305AMW [KWRI]
ADFEB8 98-0002   AF 2 2016-02-17 14:23:44 C-32A United States USAF | 89AW | 1AS [KADW]
ADFF7D 67-14850   ---  2016-02-19 16:09:23 T-38C United States 50thFTS
ADFF8C 68-8162   ---  2016-02-18 16:25:04 T-38C United States 50thFTS
AE0171 84-0079   SPAR591 2016-02-18 12:44:13 C-21A United States USAF | 375AW | 457AS [KADW]
AE0171 84-0079   SPAR591 2016-02-19 19:48:52 C-21A United States USAF | 375AW | 457AS [KADW]
AE0210 82-0191   XTNDR85 2016-02-18 14:20:26 KC-10A United States USAF | 60AMW [KSUU]
AE0248 96-8154   BATON91 2016-02-19 20:57:15 EC-130J United States PA ANG | 193SOW | 193SOS [KMDT]
AE036E 98-0008   ---  2016-02-19 15:40:11 UC-35A United States US Army
AE0371 59-1483   EDDIE42 2016-02-19 15:59:08 KC-135R United States OH ANG | 121ARW [KLCK]
AE0371 59-1483   EDDIE42 2016-02-19 16:45:28 KC-135R United States OH ANG | 121ARW [KLCK]
AE0408 165736    RAIDR20 2016-02-18 19:37:22 KC-130J United States USMC | VMGR-352 [KNKX]
AE0428 62-3511   EDDIE41 2016-02-19 15:59:03 KC-135R United States OH ANG | 121ARW [KLCK]  0000  27000   
AE0470 57-1428   SODA81 2016-02-19 14:58:24 KC-135R United States TN ANG | 134ARW | 151ARS [KTYS]
AE049C 59-1517   ---  2016-02-18 23:41:39 KC-135R United States TN ANG | 134ARW | 151ARS [KTYS]
AE049C 59-1517   SODA91 2016-02-18 22:08:38 KC-135R United States TN ANG | 134ARW | 151ARS [KTYS]
AE04D9 165831    RY831 2016-02-18 19:06:37 C-40A United States USNR | VR-59 [KNFW]
AE04D9 165831    RY831 2016-02-18 19:37:03 C-40A United States USNR | VR-59 [KNFW]
AE04D9 165831    RY831 2016-02-18 20:07:16 C-40A United States USNR | VR-59 [KNFW]
AE04D9 165831    RY831 2016-02-18 20:33:53 C-40A United States USNR | VR-59 [KNFW]
AE058F 58-0045   STEEL71 2016-02-18 16:22:09 KC-135T United States PA ANG | 171ARW [KPIT]  0000  27000   
AE05E2 87-9287   ROGUE34 2016-02-19 14:48:40 C-130H United States AFRC | 914AW | 328AS [KIAG]
AE0631 ------   ---  2016-02-17 13:50:07 RC-12K United States USAF
AE06D8 163560   ---  2016-02-18 19:41:17 UC-12F United States USN| AOD Atsugi
AE07A1 58-0099   E80099 2016-02-19 15:07:35 KC-135T United States PA ANG | 171ARW [KPIT]  0000  32000   
AE07E7 95-0104   ELVIS66 2016-02-19 19:18:44 C-17A United States TN ANG | 164AW | 155AS [KMEM]
AE07ED 96-0003   HARD41 2016-02-19 20:36:15 C-17A United States USAF | 62AW [KTCM]  0000  36000   
AE0800 98-0054   RCH803 2016-02-17 14:45:37 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS]
AE093B 00-1052   ---  2016-02-18 01:41:03 UC-35B United States US Army | OSACOM PATD [KADW]
AE0940 166374   ---  2016-02-18 20:13:40 UC-35D United States VMR DET [KADW]  00  41000   
AE0940 166374   ---  2016-02-18 23:50:56 UC-35D United States VMR DET [KADW]  00  41000   
AE10BA 01-0191   ---  2016-02-19 21:52:05 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV]  0000  22600   
AE1176 02-1104   BOE04 2016-02-19 19:31:11 C-17A United States USAF | 62AW [KTCM]
AE118A 02-1863   R1863 2016-02-19 12:39:13 C-37A United States US Army
AE119C 03-3119/03-3126   RCH102 2016-02-19 18:47:01 C-17A United States MS ANG | 172AW | 183AS [KJAN]
AE11E4 78-0576   SNTRY51H 2016-02-19 18:10:40 E-3G United States USAF | 552ACW [KTIK]
AE11F8 02-0042   JUVAT80 2016-02-18 22:20:17 C-40B United States USAFE | 86AW | 76AS [ETAR]
AE1211 03-0726   ---  2016-02-18 14:28:46 UC-35C United States USARC | 2-228 AVN
AE1240 04-4135   ---  2016-02-19 15:34:45 C-17A United States USAF | 305AMW | 6AS [KWRI]
AE1240 04-4135   RCH4135 2016-02-18 17:24:29 C-17A United States USAF | 305AMW | 6AS [KWRI]  0000  27000   
AE1240 04-4135   RCH4135 2016-02-18 18:56:22 C-17A United States USAF | 305AMW | 6AS [KWRI]  0000  27000   
AE1252 165836    CNV4342 2016-02-19 00:16:55 C-40A United States USNR | VR-57 [KNZY]
AE128F 85-0011   ---  2016-02-17 04:02:47 MC-130H United States USAF
AE128F 85-0011   ---  2016-02-18 03:01:32 MC-130H United States USAF
AE1444 05-8158   HOBBY35 2016-02-19 21:58:19 C-130J-30 United States AFRC | 403AW | 815AS [KBIX]
AE146D 07-7175   RCH138T 2016-02-17 22:13:19 C-17A United States USAF | 436AW | 3AS [KDOV]
AE1471 07-7179   RCH109T 2016-02-19 19:47:23 C-17A United States USAF | 60AMW | 21AS [KSUU]
AE1479 166767    VM767 2016-02-19 15:23:27 UC-35D United States MAW-4
AE1488 86-0416   PEACH98 2016-02-17 03:05:36 TE-8a United States 330thCTS
AE189C 05-0932   SPAR10 2016-02-17 15:58:59 C-40C United States AFRC | 932AW | 73AS [KBLV]
AE18E7 78-0693   693 2016-02-18 16:38:17 A-10C United States MD ANG | 175WG | 104FS [KMTN]  0000  20000   
AE1BF5 07-6312   GLEAN40 2016-02-18 14:47:10 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF]
AE2FA3 08-8191   RCH207 2016-02-19 21:26:37 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS]
AE4A60 166696    CNV4044 2016-02-18 21:11:31 C-40A United States USNR | VR-56 [KNTU]
AE4A60 166696    CNV4286 2016-02-19 11:46:25 C-40A United States USNR | VR-56 [KNTU]  0000  40000    
AE4AF8 08-5683   ---  2016-02-19 02:31:15 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 317AG [KDYS]
AE4E10 11-5736   RCH1941 2016-02-18 15:28:29 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF]
AE4E11 11-5738   GLEAN40 2016-02-18 14:44:32 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF]
AE4EC6 168761    PELCN11 2016-02-18 13:46:50 P-8A United States USN |
AE4EC6 168761    PELCN11 2016-02-18 15:09:34 P-8A United States USN |
AE4EC8 168763    LANCR24 2016-02-18 18:46:31 P-8A United States USN |
AE54B3 10-0223   RC528 2016-02-19 18:45:55 C-17A United States USAF | 437AW [KCHS]
AE54D5 12-5773   KING21 2016-02-18 03:05:32 HC-130J United States USAF | 23 Wing | 71RQS [KVAD]
AE57B5 168849    VVLL818 2016-02-18 23:28:35 P-8A United States USN |
AE57BB 168855    VVLL812 2016-02-18 21:43:26 P-8A United States USN |  ---  36000    
AE57D7 3361      ---  2016-02-18 21:05:01 C-12V United States ---
AE595C 14-5788   ---  2016-02-18 17:19:51 C-130J-30 United States USAF | 19AW [KLRF]

CTF 55 Conducts Iraqi Bilateral Exercise in the Arabian Gulf

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Torrey W. Lee

ARABIAN GULF (NNS) -- U.S. maritime forces aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Russell (DDG 59) and the Island-class Coast Guard cutter USCGC Monomoy partnered with an Iraqi navy Swift Boat (P-310) to complete a monthly bilateral exercise in the Arabian Gulf, Feb. 14-15.

 The exercise provided a surface warfare experience with the partnering nations by exchanging subject matter experts (SME) and conducting live-fire exercises in a tactical environment.

 "The goal of this exercise is to build interoperability and work together with Iraq," said Lt.j.g. Samuel Ross, a bilateral liaison assigned to Commander, Task Force 55. "The relationships we build through these bilaterals are what allow the Navy to grow and be able to operate in the Arabian Gulf."

 U.S. forces in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations have been conducting various Iraqi bilateral exercises over the past 18 months. Each exercise introduces a variety of elements from surface and air warfare, to visit,, board, search, seizures (VBSS) and interdiction operations.

 "An important factor in our operations is communications," said Ross. "In the maritime domain, which is the Arabian Gulf, communications help us level the playing field and work together as a cohesive unit."

 Continuing the theme of strong communication, SMEs from the U.S. and Iraqi maritime forces worked together, going from ship to ship, demonstrating tactics, and synchronizing weapons systems to promote combined-joint interoperability.
 "Having similar weapons systems, we can share the knowledge with our allies so that we both can use our weapons effectively and safely," said Gunner's Mate 1st Class Christopher Lamotte, Russell's armory lead petty officer. "With technology always changing, we can rely on our partners. If they have a new system, we can share the knowledge, and this is what makes us into a stronger Navy."

 During the two-day exercise, coalition forces performed weapons synchronization, maritime infrastructure protection exercises (MIPEX), and combined-joint gun exercises.

 "MIPEX provides an opportunity to practice our force protection tactics with joint and international partners," said Lt. Andrew Corwell, U.S. Coast Guard Patrol Forces Southwest Asia's current operations officer. "The U.S. Coast Guard understands coastal operations, and this helps our ability to interact with various navies and coast guards in this area that are uses to these coastal environments."

 Coalition partners completed live-fire exercises, from basic to more advanced operations. The three ships involved were capable of integrating formation tactics in targeting a simulated surface contact.

 "This bilateral was a big success. We reached all of our mission objectives," said Ross. "We were able to complete multiple scenario-based exercises, and we were able to build on our existing relationship with Iraq. This was a big Bravo Zulu to all of the joint-combined units, and we look forward to our next monthly exercise."

 Commander, Task Force 55 controls surface forces including U.S. Navy coastal patrol craft and U.S Coast Guard patrols boats in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. U.S. 5th Fleet continues to expand its relationship with the Iraqi navy through key leader engagements, professional exchanges and by conducting exercises in the Arabian Gulf.

VFA-113, NAS Lemoore Say Goodbye to the F/A-18C Hornet

 An F/A-18F Super Hornet assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, flown by Lt. Cmdr. Warren Tomlinson and Lt. j.g. Josh Raymond, and an F/A-18C Hornet assigned to VFA-113, flown by Cmdr. Craig Sicola, join a formation of aircraft from Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 during a mission flown from the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). Carl Vinson and CVW 17 are deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class James R. Evans/Released)
By Ensign Timothy Cole, Strike Fighter Squadron 113 Public Affairs Officer

LEMOORE, Calif. (NNS) -- The "Stingers" of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 113 conducted the last flight of a fleet F/A-18C Hornet based at Naval Air Station (NAS) Lemoore Feb. 17.

 The flight was conducted by VFA-113's Maintenance Officer Lt. Cmdr. Kristen "Dragon" Hansen.

 VFA-113 completed the transition from the A-7E Corsair II to the F/A-18A Hornet Dec. 14, 1983, making the Stinger's the Navy's first fleet operational combat ready strike fighter squadron, and establishing the squadron motto of "First and Finest." In 1989, VFA-113 accepted delivery of the upgraded F/A-18C hornet. In March, VFA-113 will begin transitioning to the F/A-18E Super Hornet.

 In August 2014, the squadron embarked on its final combat deployment with the F/A-18C and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). The Stingers performed exceptionally on deployment, flying 367 combat missions in support of Operation Inherent Resolve.

 "The legacy F/A-18 has served the Navy brilliantly as a supersonic fighter for over 30 years," said Cmdr. Eric C. Doyle, the commanding officer of the Stingers. "While we remain proud of all the good work we have done with the F/A-18C, we are excited to begin transitioning to some brand new F/A-18E super hornets."

 "It has been an honor and a privilege to fly the F/A-18C Hornet across the Lemoore flight line for the last 10 years," said Hansen. "Although I am excited about receiving our new jets, the 'Charlie' has served me and the majority of the Lemoore Hornet community well over the course of our careers. Our maintainers have done a spectacular job of keeping these aging aircraft combat ready despite the many challenges associated with high-flight hour jets. I'll appreciate the extra gas, but admit that I'll be a little sad when I have to say 'Rhino Ball' vice 'Hornet Ball' behind the boat!"

 After the completion of carrier qualifications for the pilots of VFA-113, the final step in the transition process to the F/A-18E being certified as "Safe-for-Flight." Part of that process involves the loading and delivery of live ordnance. Strike Fighter Weapons School Pacific will conduct the Conventional Weapons Technical Proficiency Inspection (CWTPI) for VFA-113 at the beginning of June. Following the completion of CWTPI, the Stingers will become the newest member of the Super Hornet community, making NAS Lemoore an all super hornet flight line.

 Aviation Electrician's Mate Second Class David Shimizu is looking forward to the benefits of the transition as well.

 "As we think of the word 'transition,' we think of strenuous and difficult times, but in reality, it is our opportunity to purge and rethink our priorities and be intentional about new habits," said Shimizu. "As individuals we set out new goals to be our personal best whether if it is in the work environment, or life in general. We as a team have always pushed ourselves to strive to be the best at any task put forth. Now as we close one chapter of our lives and open a new one, we have the opportunity to make our new normal anything we want."