Text: Jozef Vanden Broeck - Pictures: Jozef Vanden Broeck & Bart Rosselle  © sbap 2014

To keep up a high level of proficiency, be it in sports or professional matters, training is a necessity.

For the Air Force pilots, training is mandatory to perfect their dexterousness in a real environment and put into practice everything the learned throughout their courses.

The exercise "Rainbow Warrior" was elaborated with this purpose in mind. The exercise aiming at improving the knowledge of our pilots within the “Electronic Warfare” scene, was held during the week of November 24 till 27, 2014 mainly at the firing range of the North Sea. This latter is a reserved zone off the coast abeam the military quarters of Lombardsijde.

It was a detachment of pilots from the the 17th Squadron multi-role helicopters, flying three Agusta A109BA (H22 - H40 - H45), that took part in this exercise, supported by operational and technical means from the 1 Wing at Beauvechain.

During tactical flights in hostile territory, various signals were simulated to warn the crews through the Radar Warning they were locked-on or had their communication systems “jammed” by the enemy. A swift and adequate reaction to the threat is mandatory, which can be done by f.e. releasing flares.

To enhance the realism of this exercise, participants beneficiated from the collaboration of JAMCAR from the Koninklijke Luchtmacht allowing, through various on-board electronic systems, to generate and simulate any kind of radar- and communication jamming.

The exercise was most successful and after an intense and active week, the crews and personal went back to their home base at Beauvechain with a new baggage of experiences and ready for their next missions in hostile territory.

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