In an unusual air training mission, two 317th Airlift Group C-130Js successfully conducted evasive maneuvers against an F-16 Fighting Falcon, practicing tactics they may need during the upcoming Red Flag-Alaska exercise. The two Super Hercules relied on tight aircrew coordination to prevent an intercept by the nimble fighter, according to an Aug. 1 release. The C-130s’ loadmasters sat with their heads in the bubble windows above the flight deck, relaying information to the pilots on the F-16’s position and maneuvers, enabling them to counter the fighter’s moves. “The aircrews learned how to work as a team and to defend their aircraft should an aggressor impose an attack,” said Maj. Aaron Webb, 39th Airlift Squadron assistant director for tactics. “In the state of current events, it’s absolutely imperative to train our aircrews to be prepared for any threat.” A1C Jacob Betts, a 49th AS loadmaster, said the training “was educational and helped me realize there’s more to being a loadmaster than what we normally do.”
March 4, 2024
The Air Force has published images of an operational hypersonic Air-Launched Rapid-Response Weapon (ARRW) in Guam; a disclosure possibly meant to send a message to China but which raises questions about the future of the ARRW, which the Air Force insists it is not planning to procure in quantity.