The RAAF At Red Flag 2018


Prior to its deployment to Nellis, the RAAF issued this article on its participation on RF 2018-1.From 29 January–16 February 2018 around 340 Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) personnel will deploy to Nevada to train in the world’s most complex air combat environment during Exercise Red Flag 18-1.

The RAAF personnel will support and participate in missions during the premier air combat exercise alongside counterparts from the United States and the United Kingdom, reconstructing a modern and complex battlespace.

Four EA-18G Growler’s, an AP-3C Orion, and a E-7A Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft will also participate in Red Flag, along with a Control and Reporting Centre from 41 Wing to support airborne personnel and aircraft.

During the exercise, participants will practice planning and executing day- and night-time missions, using large numbers of aircraft and ground systems, coordinated to overcome a considerable simulated adversary.

This includes a range of air power roles for RAAF personnel, from Air Superiority and Strike; and Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance to Electronic Warfare – providing a comprehensive training environment for aircrew, maintenance and support personnel alike.

Established in 1980 by the US Air Force, Exercise Red Flag provides personnel with an opportunity to experience a complex, modern and dynamic combat landscape.

During its time at Red Flag, one of the RAAF Growlers had a two engine failure as the plane was preparing for take off.

A January 28, 2018, Australian Aviation piece focused on the incident.

An apparent engine failure has seen an RAAF EA-18G Growler catch fire after an aborted takeoff from Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada on Saturday morning US time.

“Defence can confirm an incident involving an EA-18G Growler at Nellis Air Force Base during Exercise Red Flag.

 Royal Australian Air Force personnel are safe and no serious injuries have been sustained,” a Department of Defence statement released shortly before midday on Sunday (Australian time) confirmed.

 “Defence is currently working with the United States Air Force to investigate and will provide an update with further details once known.”

 The Growler’s crew, comprising a pilot and an electronic warfare officer, were able to exit the jet on the ground without ejecting…..

 Australia has taken delivery of 12 EA-18G Growlers, with the RAAF the only operator outside the US Navy to have the advanced electronic warfare platform in service.

The first aircraft were accepted into RAAF service in 2016 and all 12 jets were delivered to RAAF Base Amberley in mid-2017.

This is the RAAF Growler’s first Red Flag appearance.

The photos in the slideshow are credited to the RAAF and include RAAF as well as allied aircraft involved in RF 2018-1.