DGS-4 Airmen finalize JADC2 capabilities during Red Flag 21-1

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Darnell T. Cannady

The 693rd Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group’s Airmen at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, participated in exercise Red Flag 21-1, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, between Jan. 25 and Feb. 12.

During RF 21-1, Distributed Ground System-4 Airmen demonstrated how multiple Analysis Exploitation Teams contribute to dynamic targeting operations in support of U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa by utilizing a Find, Fix and Track methodology to fuse data from airborne and space-based collection assets against mobile targets.

“Red Flag is an opportunity to train our entire workforce to deliver dynamic targeting combat capabilities to the combatant command,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Jordan Matthews, 450th Intelligence Squadron director of operations. “One of our primary goals in these exercises is to exercise our ability to take information from a theater or national collection sensor and get that information to joint fire units as quickly as possible.”

Historically, Red Flag exercises were conducted solely by forward deployed teams operating from the controlled environment of the Nevada Test and Training Range. However, a primary goal for DGS-4 AETs is to exercise the F2T method to rapidly fuse information from theater and space-based sensors, providing focused intelligence to the tactical data-link as rapidly as possible.

“The fact our AETs supported RF 21-1 from a geographically separated location demonstrates the ability to dynamically target adversary equipment from anywhere in the world,” said Matthews. “The U.S. military must be able to conduct full-spectrum operations across a distributed, geographically separated network to be survivable in future contingencies, and this is our chance to train under those conditions.”

“Over the last year, our top priority has been to hone our F2T mind-set and RF 21-1 was our chance to show what we bring to the fight and how we can integrate with mission partners across the globe,” said Staff Sgt. Jake Smith, 450th Intelligence Squadron fusion analyst. “Red Flag has given us the opportunity to validate how we integrate in combat operations and has really given our newer analysts confidence that they contribute to joint force’s success in combat.” 

Red Flag 21-1 was a keystone event for DGS-4 Airmen in preparation for the USAFE-AFAFRICA Combined, Joint All Domain Command and Control demonstration from Feb. 22 through Feb. 26, testing the commands’ F2T operations with live-fly operations.