Ample Strike exercise of air controllers has finished

 25. 09. 2019      category: Army of the Czech Republic
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Sixteen teams of forward air controllers (FAC) carried out 340 successful homings at the International Exercise Ample Strike with the air support of 24 airplanes that flew over 200 hours with the pilots.  About 750 soldiers from six countries, including the Czech Republic, took part in this training. An American unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9 Repaer also participated in the exercise for the first time. 

Picture: Multi-purpose unmanned aerial vehicle General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper | Wikimedia Commons

The 22nd Helicopter Air Force Base in Sedlec, Vícenice at Náměšť nad Oslavou hosted the exercise Ample Strike for the sixth time. The soldiers trained in the military training areas in Boletice and Vícenice. The task of the forward air controllers was to guide the air support pilots to enemy targets. The JAC teams practiced various complex scenarios, including the ones with live ammunition. The American unmanned aerial vehicle MQ-9 Reaper has appeared in the Czech airspace for the first time.  The aircraft, which is 11 meters long, flew from a military base in Poland to the Czech Republic for the needs of AMSE19. The advantage of this machine is its great endurance in the air. It can fly up to 30 hours without a break.

Picture: Task of the forward air controllers was to guide the air support pilots to the enemy targets |

As part of the Alliance Cooperation, the US Air Force also provided refuelling aircraft KC 135 and a B-52 strategic bomber from the American military base in Louisiana, which flies from the Great Britain for the needs of the exercise. The Czech Army involved two Gripen fighters JAS-39, four airship destroyers L 159 Alca and two combat helicopters Mi-24/35 in the exercise. Furthermore, the Slovak fighter jets L 39, Hungarian helicopters Mi-24 or German aircrafts EF-2000 Typhoon and PA-200 Tornado participated in the exercise.

Picture: Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker is a military aircraft designed to refuel other aircrafts in the air | Wikimedia Commons

Apart from the field training, soldiers also trained homing in a mobile simulator from the Great Britain that meets NATO Standards.  It is the first JAC simulator, which is completely mobile. The simulator can simulate various situations in a virtual environment for the controllers, including real communication with the pilot of the guided aircraft. The simulator was created for the British Artillery (1st Artillery Brigade), which members took part in the training itself. The simulator was supplied by the company Ebit Systems UK. It has been operated by the company D3A, which team includes former JAC instructors and pilots. 

Picture: Helicopter Mi-24 |

It was an interesting experience for our soldiers thanks to the deployment of M2-9 Reaper. There are repeated voices from the mouth of our top officials about the need to buy the drones. The Czech Republic, or the Army of the Czech Republic may acquire large drones with the possibility of carrying ammunition in the future. The current drones used by the soldiers are designed for exploration without the possibility of armament.

Picture: Czech air controllers belong to the world ‘s elite |

 Author: Martin Šiška

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