HomeNewsArticle Display

Spangdahlem AB Airmen integrate in joint multinational exercise Astral Knight

A U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons during an airborne refueling exercise over Poland, Sept. 24, 2020. The KC-135 refueled F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft from the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem Air Base numerous times during sorties as part of joint multinational exercise Astral Knight. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alison Stewart)

A U.S. Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons during an airborne refueling exercise over Poland, Sept. 24, 2020. The KC-135 refueled F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft from the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem Air Base numerous times during sorties as part of the joint multinational exercise Astral Knight. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alison Stewart)

A U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender refuels a U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle over Poland, Sept. 22, 2020. The F-15s, based out of RAF Lakenheath, participated in exercise Astral Knight along with fighter aircraft from Spangdahlem Air Base, Poland and other members of NATO. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alison Stewart)

A U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender refuels a U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle over Poland, Sept. 22, 2020. The F-15s, based out of RAF Lakenheath, United Kingdom, participated in exercise Astral Knight along with fighter aircraft from Spangdahlem Air Base, Poland and other members of NATO. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Alison Stewart)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany (AFNS) --

As part of joint multinational exercise Astral Knight, a KC-10 Extender refueled multiple Polish and U.S. aircraft while over Polish airspace Sept. 22 and 24.

Despite the obvious complications presented by a global pandemic, the U.S. Air Force mission never stops. Astral Knight is an integrated air and missile defense exercise focused on conducting defense of key terrain. Training involved a combination of flight operations and computer-assisted scenarios.

“We are participating in Astral Knight to extend our forces and partner forces throughout the exercise,” said Capt. Hannah Riddle, 305th Air Mobility Squadron KC-10 pilot. “It demonstrates how quickly and effectively we can respond and show that we are ready to support our allies anywhere in the world.”

Astral Knight demonstrated the capabilities of land, air, and sea interoperability between multinational forces. The exercise also tested the Patriot missile system provided by the 10th Army Air and Missile Defense Command. Patriot is a highly mobile surface-to-air missile system that provides a coordinated, secure, integrated, mobile air defense system to USAFE.

“There are a number of countries that are all working together in order to make sure we understand how to command and control, which is to tell the aircraft where to go and how to orchestrate a battle,” said Col. David Epperson, 52nd Fighter Wing commander.

The aircraft utilized a KC-10 to refuel numerous times after performing sorties over Polish airspace. The KC-10 is capable of delivering more than 200,000 pounds of fuel to other aircraft, which included U.S. and Polish fighters over the duration of the exercise.

U.S. participation in multinational exercises enhances professional relationships and improves overall coordination and interoperability with allied and partner militaries.

U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa have a strong relationship with the 10th Air and Missile Defense Command. Exercises like Astral Knight allows the Air Force to assess and improve the tactics and procedures in a realistic environment.

“Communication with Polish forces and airspace controllers has been a good experience for us,” Riddle said. “It’s important to practice with our partners to build our relationships and improve coordination.”

During Astral Knight, operating areas included the airspace in central and northeast Poland and locations in Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.

Engage

Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: CBRNE defense course keeps Airmen prepared (Story by the @910AW) #ReserveReady #ReserveResilient https://t.co/U94z9LjpYA
Twitter
RT @WILLROP3R: Last month @usairforce put #AI in charge of a U-2 radar. This month we're training for electronic warfare. In algorithmic wa…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Thank you #Airmen & #Guardians! Whether teaming on the ground with our allies & partners, roaring through the skies, or…
Twitter
Pentagon staff bid farewell to @SecAFOfficial Barbara Barrett as she exits the Pentagon for the last time as SECAF.… https://t.co/UcEDbNt7qN
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Although tomorrow marks my final day as Secretary of the Air Force, my admiration and respect for #Airmen & #Guardians w…
Twitter
Iron sharpens iron. @RamsteinAirBase's CMSgt Jeremy Unterseher graduated from the Command Senior Enlisted Leaders… https://t.co/CZ17oIe3rn
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Incredibly proud of the readiness and professional focus of the men and women supporting the upcoming inauguration. https…
Twitter
Screamin' Eagle The F-15E Strike Eagle is a dual-role fighter designed to perform air-to-air and air-to-ground mis… https://t.co/0gkqBohUj6
Twitter
Supporting international partnerships and deterring adversaries. #AimHigh https://t.co/ktC0QF19sa
Twitter
A1C Olivia Vargas performs maintenance on a B-1B Lancer at Andersen Air Force Base in support of a Bomber Task Forc… https://t.co/FQo2egYXuN
Twitter
Equality for all. Today we reflect on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy and what he stood for. King dreamed of a… https://t.co/SrZbBhwSt4
Twitter
Go Falcons! The @AF_Falcons played against the Boise State University Broncos during a home game at Clune Arena, i… https://t.co/TYFkhh367H
Twitter
Airmen at @RamsteinAirBase proudly show their reasons for receiving the #COVID19 vaccine. #WhyIVax 📸 by SrA Jenni… https://t.co/D8xD5VZEWw
Twitter
Give @GenCQBrownJr a follow for the latest on how he's leading the charge to accelerate change throughout the… https://t.co/vGbMwtkjNY
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: This achievement is an important milestone toward the @AFResearchLab objective of developing & adapting quantum technologies f…
Twitter
Remembering Operation Desert Storm Desert Storm was the first conflict in history to make comprehensive use of ste… https://t.co/Roncc8toL7
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,315,358
Follow Us