MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho --
Members from across the 366th Fighter Wing completed their second Phase II exercise this month, to test each functional area’s capability and readiness during war operations through simulated chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear explosive incidents.
During this exercise, the central hub for wing-level situational awareness was the Wing Operations Center (WOC). The WOC is made up of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), the command post and the commander’s action team (CAT).
“The mission of the WOC is to command and control the forces, ensure mission generation and continue to oversee the operations of the air base,” said Lt. Col. Brandon “Bullet” Mackay, 366th Fighter Wing director of operations and plans (A3). “Decisions are only enhanced with good information, created by data collected from different areas across the battlespace to provide a common operating picture to the WOC.”
The WOC is the main location for integrating intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance assets, electronic warfare assets, combat search and rescue capabilities, and subject matter experts from around the base to support combatant commanders around the world. Not only is the location of operations important, but so is the capability to relay relevant information back and forth between Gunfighters on the ground and Gunfighters orchestrating the response.
In a Signal Magazine article, Gen. Mark Kelly, USAF, Commander of Air Combat Command noted, “Our bases are air power projection platforms that require real-time installation and resource awareness, as well as command and control capability. C2IMERA gives commanders the operational sight picture to execute the mission.”
C2IMERA, which stands for Command and Control Incident Management Emergency Response Application, is a software focused on reporting, planning, force generation, emergency management, and command and control monitoring and execution.
Also, the use of C2IMERA is a major component in the support of the Air Force’s agile combat employment (ACE), a force projection practice to combat the threat of near-peer adversaries. ACE is the dynamic movement of lean, agile and lethal forces and assets to contested environments around the globe, at a moment's notice.
Exercising forward air base sustainment and logistics support to bare base locations is critical so units are less reliant on infrastructure survivability. This makes units more agile to generate airpower from forward operating bases which is necessary to maintain air superiority.
“In the 366th Fighter Wing, we work hard to flatten the organizational hierarchy and push decision making down to the lowest level,” said Mackay. “So when it came to the generation of aircraft, we pushed decision making down to our directors of maintenance. With all of the information needed, they had the authority to release their Airmen to generate aircraft before receiving an all-clear from the WOC.”
Each member of the wing played a role in the successful completion of this exercise. Each unit worked quickly and efficiently to generate the aircraft for take off; this outcome was a direct result of multiple units playing their part in the mission.
“As a wing, we performed extremely well throughout the entire exercise, exceptional decisions made at the lowest level possible,” said Mackay. “We accomplished a week and a half worth of flying in only three days.”