Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoon aircraft have been playing their part in a multinational exercise to test NATO’s capability to command and control ground based systems to defend the skies.
RAF Typhoons are deployed to Romania as part of the NATO Enhanced Air Policing in partnership with Romania. However there are other dimensions to securing the skies above NATO and the RAF has been playing its part with training sorties to help the UK, Romanian and US forces deployed on Exercise Tobruq Legacy at Capu Midia firing range near Constanta.
In the work up before live firing exercises one of the Typhoon pilots from 3(F) squadron said: “We gave them two targets today. We came at them from different angles and from different heights. We fly directly towards them. It gives them a chance to use the system to lock onto our aircraft and then we do a couple of evasive turns to test them to their maximum ability.”
He added: “It’s not an opportunity they are going to get very often to get to try and track and target a Typhoon. It’s a good opportunity to work across the nations.”
Exercise Tobruq Legacy is an NATO exercise involving 2200 personnel and over 800 vehicles in Lithuania, Romania and the Czech Republic. The purpose is to improve the level of interoperability of multinational Surface-Based Air and Missile Defence systems forces.
3(F) Squadron from Coningsby in Lincolnshire is deployed to Mihail Kogalniceanu air base near Constanta in Eastern Romania as part of the RAF’s 135 Expeditionary Air Wing on a NATO mission to enhance Air Policing over Romania.
Enhanced air policing is part of the Assurance Measures introduced in 2014 to reassure members how NATO provides the cornerstone of collective defence.