Leading Aircraftwoman Rebecca Hay and Corporal Thomas Geraghty raise the transportable air operations tower, at RAAF Base Scherger in Queensland, to commence operations on Exercise Talisman Sabre 2021. *** Local Caption *** Exercise Talisman Sabre 2021 (TS21) is the largest bilateral training activity between Australia and the United States, commencing on 14 July 2021.
Held every two years, TS21 aims to test Australian interoperability with the United States and other participating forces in complex warfighting scenarios. In addition to the United States, TS21 involves participating forces from Canada, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.
The exercise includes a Field Training Exercise incorporating force preparation (logistic) activities, amphibious landings, ground force manoeuvres, urban operations, air combat and maritime operations. Activities will peak from 18 - 31 July across Queensland.
TS21 is a major undertaking for all attending nations and demonstrates the combined capability to achieve large-scale operational outcomes within a COVID-19 safe environment.
The first Transportable Air Operations Tower (TAOT), originally delivered in 2012, has rolled out of the Rohde & Schwarz Australia Systems Integration Facility following its major upgrade.
It will be delivered to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) with completely modernized systems including internet protocol (IP) based voice communications and recording, airfield monitoring and control, network and time synchronization. Other enhancements include an upgrade to IP radios, security hardening, provisioning of new interfaces, and new uninterrupted power supplies, air conditioning, and smoke detectors.
We delivered the TAOT’s impressive capability to Air Force as prime systems integrator so we’re very proud to be continuing our relationship, ensuring that capability remains at the cutting edge of air traffic control technology. I’m especially proud of our team who have managed to complete this complex upgrade despite significant resource constraints and supplier issues imposed by COVID-19.
The TAOTs will continue to be modernized as part of a spiral upgrade program to assure the capability and extend their service life to 2030 and beyond
Gareth Evans, Rohde & Schwarz Australia Managing Director
This upgrade will be rolled out across the TAOT fleet and forms the first tranche of the TAOT mid-life upgrade program.
A TAOT unit was recently deployed to RAAF Base Scherger in Far North Queensland during the biennial multinational exercise ‘Talisman Sabre’ 2021. During Operation ‘Bushfire Assist’ in summer 2019-20 a TAOT assisted civilian and military aircraft conducting remote firefighting and humanitarian aid missions (Australian Dept of Defence video).
For more than three decades, Rohde & Schwarz Australia has designed and delivered highly secure and reliable mission-critical communications capabilities for air navigation service providers and Defence users within the region.