DARWIN: An open day was held at the Australian Air Force base in Darwin on Saturday as part of Exercise Pitch Black. The exercise aims to foster international co-operation between 15 participating partner forces through the development of capabilities such as intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance.
It is a biennial three week multi-national large force employment exercise that is being conducted from Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base in Darwin and RAAF Base in Tindal. Exercise Pitch Black 2018 commenced on 27 July and will end on 17 August 2018.
An open day was held at @Aus_AirForce base Darwin as part of #ExPitchBlack18.
Exercise Pitch Black aims to foster international co-operation between 15 participating partner forces through the development of capabilities such as intelligence, reconnaissance & surveillance. pic.twitter.com/ZVt6lQXo0W
— Defence Australia (@DeptDefence) August 12, 2018
During the exercise, a range of realistic, simulated threats are being dealt with which can be found in a modern battle-space environment. It is being viewed as an opportunity to test and improve the integration of the forces.
The exercise is hosting up to 4000 personnel and up to 140 aircraft from around the globe including participants from Australia, Canada, France (New Caledonia), Germany, Indonesia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, India, Malaysia and the United States.
As part of the exercise, the Australian skies on August 9 witnessed a miraculous display of might when 60 jets took off in just 90 minutes from its air base. Among the jets which were part of the mass take off were fast-jet, mobility, and air-to-air refueling aircraft.
These jets belonged to the Australian Air Force, Indian Air Force, Indonesian Air Force, Singapore Air Force, United States Air Force, French Air Force, Royal Malaysia Airforce and Thai Air Force.
An Indian Air Force (IAF) contingent member was also seen flying French Rafale fighter aircraft, as part of the exchange sorties during the Integration Training week. The IAF on Saturday said, "We are working together as a team & learning from each other." It also tweeted pictures of the member inside the fighter jet.