An Overview on Red Flag 17-1: USAF, RAF and RAAF Perspectives on the Evolution of Airpower


2017-02-03 Red Flag 17-1 Commanders discuss changes to this exercise with participation from the F-35A.

A number of key perspectives are provided throughout, ranging from the key role of the reserves, to the important role of the Wedgetail, to the F-22 squadron having already learned from the Marines with regard to F-35 integration when the F-35Bs came last year, to the Typhoon pilot discussing the role of 4th-5th gen integration and off board targeting.

The sound quality is not always great; but the discussion is quite interesting talking about fifth generation aircraft, 4th-5th gen integration and the key role of Wedgetail working the air battle management across the spectrum of operations.

The USAF could cut the Gordian knot of AWACS replacement simply by buying the Wedgetail and option the UK is looking at currently.

Red Flag 17-1 from on Vimeo.

One key take away was the discussion of how a 4th gen force would focus on KNOWN ground based SAMs versus a fifth generation enabled and redesigned concept of operations.  

That discussion really highlighted not simply the difference in technology but above all the concepts of operations.

It is crucial to learn leaning forward rather than training in yesterday’s concepts of operations.


Video by Airman 1st Class Christina Ensley and Tech. Sgt. Scott Olguin

99th Air Base Wing Public Affairs


Editor’s Note: In our earlier visits to Nellis, we discussed with squadron pilots the evolution towards what is now being seen in Red Flags.

And in a briefing done in Copenhagen at the Williams Foundation-Centre for Military Studies (University of Copenhagen) seminar on airpower, Ed Timperlake encapsulated the Nellis way ahead.