726th ACS prime communication capabilities
By Senior Airman Tyrell Hall, 366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published July 19, 2019
MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho -- The 726th Air Control Squadron employed mobilization training by setting up communication equipment at the Mobile Operating Air Base (MOAB) for the 726th ACS Hardrock Exercise 19-2 July, 2019.
To ensure communication capabilities, the 726th ACS focused on quickly and efficiently establishing Radio Detection and Ranging (RADAR) systems, satellite relays and short range communication equipment.
Communication is the bulk of the 726th ACS mission and with their communication systems they are able to help maintain air superiority.
“With our systems we are able to communicate with everyone within our airspace,” said Tech. Sgt. Jacob Jacques, 726th ACS radar systems technician.
To ensure the operability of this equipment, they worked around the clock to build up the radar and communication systems site.
The Ground Multiband Terminal (GMT), one of the first pieces of equipment they established, is used for long-haul information, or communication beyond line of site.
“The GMT bounces communication off of satellites,” Jacques said. “With this system we’re able to send information almost to the other side of the world.”
For the purpose of the exercise, the 726th ACS used satellite relays to simulate sending signals over a great distance.
However, they use Tropo Satellite Support Radios (TSSR) to communicate within closer distances. It is designed to be quickly deployable and easily set up.
“The TSSRs are used to conduct short wave communications within our line of sight,” said Airman 1st Class Giovanna Gonzalez, 726th ACS radar systems technician.
They are able to track all aircraft within the RADAR, granting them full visibility and enabling them to respond appropriately.
To protect this system, the 726th ACS drove three nine-foot rods into the ground and connected them with circuit wires to the radar. This grounding-rod configuration is called a Delta.
“The rods protect the radar from electrical surges,” Jacques said. “Any surge of electricity is sent directly to the Delta and into the ground.”
Airman 1st Class Miles Swammi, 726th ACS radar systems technician explained if the equipment isn’t set up correctly, they may experience problems, hindering their ability to support the mission.
“If the Delta isn’t set up, we can’t power any of the equipment,” Swammi said. “It enables the generators to circulate power through the systems.”
When all systems were established and the radar scanned the skies, it was evident that the Airmen of the 726th ACS executed excellence and attention to detail in their preparation.
The 726th ACS plays a vital role in the Air Force air superiority and these Airmen recognized the importance of protecting communication capabilities. They continue to ensure they are ready to mobilize with accuracy and efficiency when duty calls.