Read Time2 Minute, 34 Second
30 NOV 2015
POGGIO RENATICO, Italy – Exercise Ramstein Dust II 2015 (RADT II-15) has wrapped up and units are back at their home bases.
The exercise, which began on 20 October and concluded on 29 November, was designed to evaluate the deployment/re-deployment of the Deployable Air Command and Control Centre’s Recognized Air Picture Production Centre and Sensor Fusion Post (DARS) and the ability to operate at a deployed site outside its host nation of Italy. Through two road moves of more than 2500 kilometers each way, the DARS, part of the Deployable Air Command and Control Centre (DACCC) housed in Poggio Renatico, Italy, made its way from its garrison location to Lielvarde AFB, Latvia.
As the first impression reports are being published, it is safe to say, RADT II-15 can be considered one of many stories of triumph for the DARS as it makes its way to full operational capability. Through the exercise of convoy operations, system set-up, radar integration, recognized air picture contribution and live aircraft control, DARS was able to fully meet established objectives. In addition to internal DACCC liaison, significant planning and coordination also occurred throughout, between the DARS and external NATO agencies.
DARS personnel were commended numerous times by all levels of command for their professionalism and adaptability during the exercise. “Sometimes, especially where testing is concerned, it is necessary for personnel to find a workable solution to a problem. We are extraordinarily fortunate that we have people that are not only subject matter experts in their field, but are also committed to reaching solutions and promoting NATO mission success in all aspects” said Deployment Commander Sqn Ldr Rob Hames.
In an address to DARS personnel, the Commander DACCC, BGen Roberto Di Marco said, “I am proud of the men and women of this unit. You are an extremely positive reflection on the DACCC and excellent examples of the professionals from many countries that NATO employs. As the DARS continues to grow and improve, your hard work will ensure the success of future missions.”
Work does not stop however, when an exercise concludes. If anything, it is the catalyst of the next set of improvements and modifications. DARS Director, Col Klaus Nolte, has great plans for leading the DARS into the future, testing its own real life support systems, and assisting NATO with different mission sets. “It is my vision to continuously improve the capabilities of the DARS system and the proficiency and experience of all DARS personnel to meet future challenges and requirements as AIRCOM’s spearhead for air command and control power capabilities when needed.”
Now that the convoy has returned and the equipment is reset on the DARS’ garrison platform, it is clear that with appropriate real life and technical support, the DARS is able to deploy and operate worldwide.
L. J. De Rothschild