Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Navy prepares computers for DST Change Issues

Here is the information on how the US Navy will handle DST issues for Windows and Outlook Express users. Are you ready for the new DST changes on your PC?

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Beginning this year, Daylight Saving Time (DST) will start earlier and run longer than it used to, giving us a total of one more month of DST than in previous years. For most of the United States, DST will begin on the second Sunday in March and will run until the first Sunday of November. The new dates were set in the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

While this new change will provide us with more usable hours of daylight and could possibly help us to conserve more energy, it could also lead to some technological glitches. That's because computers, cell phones and PDAs with internal clocks are programmed to automatically make the necessary changes on the dates in April and October when DST used to start and end.

“Like most computers, NMCI desktops and laptops are running Windows operating systems, which are programmed for the old daylight-saving time,” said Marie Greening, NMCI program manager. “To fix this, the NMCI enterprise will distribute a patch to the Windows operating system and Microsoft Outlook to ensure the time zone settings for the NMCI computer’s system clock and Outlook calendar are correct.”

The patch will be distributed via a Radia push in a phased approach between Feb. 26 and March 5. As a reminder, NMCI users do not have to leave their computer on at night to receive this patch. In addition to the patch, NMCI will distribute the Outlook Time Zone Update Tool. This tool only needs to be run if users operate their calendar from an Outlook personal folder (.pst) or for users with a Science & Technology or Thin Client seat. For more detailed information, read the full NMCI User Alert at

While this patch is designed to ensure that the computer’s system clock is correct, it is a good practice during the extended daylight-saving time period (between March 11 and April 1) to include the time zone in the subject line of all meeting requests. This will help ensure that all participants whether on the NMCI network or not, have the correct start time for meetings during this extended period only.

Cell phones, BlackBerries, PDAs (Personal digital assistants) and other handheld devices do not need a patch. Service providers will directly, and automatically, update the devices to ensure the correct date and time are displayed.

Please note that some NMCI sites do not recognize daylight-saving time. Hawaii, Arizona and Japan will not be affected.

LCACs Part of Blue-Greens

For Josh and the SoCalMilcom gang:

Three Landing Craft Air Cushions (LCAC) prepare to enter the well deck of the amphibious dock landing ship USS Tortuga (LSD 46) after conducting LCAC maintenance turns. Tortuga and the Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ESXARG) are currently conducting blue-greens as the first phase of their spring patrol. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Brandon Myrick)

BHR’s ACE Conducts FAC-A Training

By MCSN Mark Patterson II and MC2 Dustin Mapson, USS Bonhomme Richard Public Affairs

USS BONHOMME RICHARD, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Bonhomme Richard’s (LHD 6) (BHR) Air Combat Element (ACE) conducted Forward Air Command Airborne (FAC-A) training on San Clemente Island on Feb. 22.

One UH-1 Huey, three AH-1W Super Cobras and four AV-8B Harriers completed multiple strikes on various targets located at the Shore Bombardment Area (SHOBA) on San Clemente Island during the training evolution.

“One of the major missions of the AH-1s and UH-1s is to provide close air support as an airborne extension of the terminal air control party on the ground,” explained Maj. Roger A. Hardy, the AV-8B weapons and tactics instructor. “They do this via a forward air controller (FAC).”

According to Capt. Travis L. Patterson, the AH-1W weapons and tactics instructor, a FAC is typically a person positioned forward on the ground who controls aviation assets and target strikes, whereas a FAC-A does virtually the same job from the air.

“If for some reason the FAC on the ground is unable to see the target, or is on the move, he can pass control to a FAC-A,” said Patterson, “Once control is passed and before a FAC-A can attack, they must first have approval from the FAC on the ground.”

According to Patterson, a FAC-A supports ground commanders by pin-pointing enemy locations and either taking them out completely or marking the target for further air support from accompanying Harriers.

“Targets can be marked a few ways,” said Patterson. “A visual mark like smoke, guns or rockets can be used, but the preferred way that we do it is by using a laser.”

“We have sensors on board harriers that can pick up the laser energy,” said Hardy, “Once the target is picked up, we can then tie it to the weapon system and drop the bomb.”

“FAC-As provide great flexibility for the ground commanders to be able to provide fire anywhere in his battle space while minimizing collateral damage,” added Hardy. “We need a very detailed understanding of what is going on and the FAC-As provide that integration, that link between the ground forces and the shooting platforms. The idea is we are going to put a 500- to 1000-pound bomb or a Hellfire missile very close to where friendly forces are operating because they need that kind of firepower right up close to them.”

According to Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW/FMF) Derrick Smith, putting a mission like this together is almost like preparing a meal at a fine restaurant.

“We look at the munitions being dropped as the final plated version of the meal,” said Smith. “But before that meal came out, a lot of specialized work went into preparing that meal. Aviation Ordnanceman are kind of like prep cooks on the line. You never see the work they do, but if your food doesn’t come out right, you know something went wrong.”

Smith said these types of missions require a collective effort.

“Our role is making sure the weapon is properly made and ready for delivery when mission requirements call for it,” said Smith. “If the end result of the mission is a successful strike, then we know that the entire team, from the ordnanceman up to the pilots, did their job correctly.”

Hardy added the FAC and FAC-A combine to offer forward armed reconnaissance that is fully adaptable to the situation on the ground.

This training evolution not only allowed the pilots of BHR’s ACE to practice their proficiency on the range, but gave them a look at what may be to come.

“This is what’s going on in Operation Iraqi Freedom,” said Hardy, “We are training for that mission setting.”

BHR and its embarked Marine Corps elements are currently underway as part of Expeditionary Strike Group 5’s participation in Composite Training Unit Exercise in preparation for an upcoming deployment.

Fair Winds and Following Seas to USS Ogden

Tugboats guide the transport dock ship USS Ogden (LPD 5) into its homeport at Naval Station San Diego. Ogden, part of Expeditionary Strike Group Three (ESG-3), returned to San Diego after successfully completing a sixth month deployment in support of the global war terrorism and maritime security operations (MSO). U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Damien E. Horvath

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Patrick M. Kearney, Fleet Public Affairs Center Pacific

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The San Diego-based Austin-class amphibious transport dock USS Ogden (LDP 5) was decommissioned during a ceremony Feb. 21 at Naval Base San Diego.

Speakers for the decommissioning ceremony included Cmdr. James Hruska, Ogden’s current commanding officer and Capt. Pete Morford, Commodore of Afloat Training Group Pacific. Guest speaker John Patterson, deputy mayor of Ogden, Utah declared February 21, 2007 as USS Ogden Day.

“USS Ogden is a great representative of our city,” said Patterson. “It was an honor to be a part of today’s ceremony.”

Ogden’s keel was laid down February 4, 1963 by the New York Naval Shipyard. She was launched June 27, 1964 and received her commission at New York City June 19, 1965.

Information Technician 3rd Class Nathaniel Rees, a resident of Ogden, Utah, served on the Ogden as part of its final crew.

“Being on board was a really good experience,” said Rees. “Seeing a lot of the old crew members coming back for the ceremony was very exciting.”

While under the command of Cmdr. James Hruska, Ogden deployed for the last time February 14, 2006, as part of Expeditionary Strike Group 3. While deployed, Ogden performed maritime security operations in the Persian Gulf as well as provided training to the Iraqi navy.

Ogden’s inactivation began shortly after their return from deployment.

AF Reserve wing at Scott receives first C-40 aircraft

Airmen in the Air Force Reserve Command's 932nd Airlift Wing received the first new C-40C transport (right) during a special ceremony Feb. 26 at Scott Air Force Base, Ill. The plane on the left is a C-9C, also flown by 932nd aircrews. Both planes are used for the distinguished visitor mission. The wing currently has three C-9C planes and will receive two more C-40Cs later in 2007. (U.S. Air Force photo/ Mr. Marv Lynchard)

by Tech. Sgt. Chris Stagner
375th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

2/27/2007 - SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (AFNEWS) -- The Air Force Reserve Command's 932nd Airlift Wing here welcomed a new aircraft into its inventory Feb. 26 with the arrival of its first of three C-40Cs.

The wing, the only Air Force Reserve unit in the state of Illinois with a flying mission, will use the aircraft to augment its mission of transporting distinguished visitors. Before Feb. 26, the 932nd AW performed the transcontinental DV transport mission with C-9C aircraft.

"The mission of the C-40 is important to the Air Force and the nation," said Lt. Gen. John Bradley, Air Force Reserve Command commander. "Its ability to fly missions of 10 or more hours brings a new capability to flying long-distance missions."

The long-distance flights aren't the only bonus of the aircraft, according to the general.

"This aircraft has a phenomenal capability and is a dream to fly," he said. "It [will be] a great treat for the pilots who fly it and the (maintenance Airmen) who will keep it in top shape."

The new aircraft is a milestone for the 932nd AW, but its arrival at Scott AFB was an important day for everyone, according to Col. Al Hunt, 375th AW commander, the base's active-duty host unit.

The colonel said it took leadership and Airmen at all levels to make this day a reality for the 932nd AW and the joint total force.

"A lot of folks talk the talk, but [Joint Total Force] Scott makes it happen everyday," said Colonel Hunt. "This is just another example of how that (joint total force) partnership will continue."

Col. Maryanne Miller, 932nd AW commander, concurred with Colonel Hunt's assessment.

"This was a total effort by the 932nd and the 375th crews from the beginning," she said. "Being fully integrated in the DV mission has been and will continue to be the most effective way to provide full support to the customer."

From 1969 to 2003, Airmen in the 932nd and 375th worked side-by-side performing aeromedical evacuation missions aboard the now retired C-9A Nightingale. When the 932nd changed its mission to DV airlift in 2003 with three new C-9C aircraft, the close relationship between the two wings was put on hold.

With the C-40C, Air Force Reserve and active-duty crews once again will work together performing the same mission and revitalizing what has always been a close relationship, said Colonel Miller.

The 375th AW will have an active associate unit working with the 932nd. This means some of the flight attendants, pilots and crew members on the 932nd AW's aircraft will be active-duty Airmen from the 375th Operations Group.

Together, Airmen from the two wings will support the mission of transporting such dignitaries as the first lady, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, senators, congressmen and other high-ranking government and military officials.

Though there are 16 total C-40 aircraft in the government inventory, the aircraft delivered to Scott has a few upgrades to accommodate the DV mission compared to other C-40s , according a Boeing official.

Unlike the other C-40s, the aircraft delivered here has the upgraded avionics rewired to handle classified communications, and auxiliary fuel tanks which allow nonstop flight to Hickam AFB, Hawaii, or Ramstein Air Base, Germany.

According to Colonel Miller, Feb. 26 marked the beginning of a great new era not only for Scott AFB but for the U.S. Air Force as well.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Proposed Legislation - CAP Air Support for Border Security

From the CAP website - to parents: "CAP is the volunteer, non-profit auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force. Its three missions are to develop its cadets, educate Americans on the importance of aviation and space, and perform live-saving humanitarian missions."

Now do you want your children and grandchildren chasing Coyotes and Drug Smugglers along the US-Mexico Border? Counter-Narco missions, government classified missions? If a republican congressman from Pennsylvania Charles Dent has he way, your loved ones will be at risk flying border support missions along the US-Mexico Border (see below).

When will this insanity with the CAP and other civilian volunteer groups end? This is suppose to be an volunteer educational program for young people, not a government sponsored militia outfit. Guess you can now understand why their frequencies are FOUO and some of their programs such as Archer are classified.

This is just another example of the government run amok after 9/11 with the formation of the Department of Homeland Security. CAP, MARS, SHARES, NTCN, NCC, and many more failed communications programs that are conducting mission outside their original charter, redundant or do nothing, and suck up valuable HF spectrum. Guess it is time for another Monitoring Times editorial.


Congressman Dent introduces legislation to provide air support for border security

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Rep. Charlie Dent (PA-15), a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, today announced the introduction of his bill, the “Civil Air Patrol Homeland Security Support Act of 2007,” to bolster efforts at securing America’s borders. Congressman Dent made the announcement at Queen City Municipal Airport in Allentown, surrounded by volunteer pilots and cadets of the Civil Air Patrol.

“This bill will authorize the Department of Homeland Security to enlist Civil Air Patrol (CAP) assets to help in the fight to keep our borders secure,” Congressman Dent said. “This bill emerged in part from what I learned on a Congressional delegation trip to the U.S.-Mexico border at Laredo, Texas.”

Congressman Dent’s legislation authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security to utilize CAP assets in two important kinds of homeland security missions. First, they can be deployed to protect against illegal entry, as well as against “trafficking in goods, currency, people, and other substances.” Second, they can also be utilized in response to an act of terrorism or natural disaster by assisting in damage assessment, search and rescue, evacuations, and the transportation of essential materials.

“While at Laredo I was disturbed and surprised to learn that the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) does not have access to enough aviation assets to help them counter the influx of illegal aliens migrating across the Rio Grande,” Congressman Dent said. “This legislation would help CBP increase its aerial surveillance capabilities at the border by enlisting the aid of the Civil Air Patrol.

“Our local CAP officials have informed me that they are eager to participate in America’s homeland security mission. The cost of flying and maintaining CAP aircraft is relatively inexpensive, the pilots are experienced, and the need for their assistance is great.”

CAP is the official civilian auxiliary of the United States Air Force. Congressman Dent said CAP has authorized a “Concept of Operations,” which provides the mechanism for CAP assets to be used for missions not specifically directed by the Secretary of Defense. Congressman Dent’s bill would formalize that arrangement between the Air Force and the Department of Homeland Security.

“I believe that by bringing CAP into the homeland security equation, this legislation will help in our fight against illegal immigration and will become an integral part of our nation’s strategy to maintain border security.”

Congressman Dent, who serves as Ranking Member (minority chairman) of the Subcommittee on Emergency Communications, Preparedness and Response, intends to submit the legislation immediately upon Congress’ return to legislative business on 27 February.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Danish Air Force HF Net

Here is the latest information I have on the Danish Air Force HF ALE net. Looking for any updates of addresses or frequencies.

Frequencies: 6717.0 9035.0 11217.0 kHz

ALE Addresses:
STANORD Nord Kap Prins Knud, DNK

More Fengyun 1C Debris Cataloged - 856 Pieces Now

And the number one debris producing explosion in space is ... Fengyun 1C!

As of this morning there are 856 pieces associated with the ASAT test conducted last month by the Chinese. Debris catalogued since the test ranges from Intl designator 1999-025E/SSC #29716 to 1999-025ALV/30579.

Here are the top space explosion debris events:

Rank / SSN / Int Designator / Pieces
4 / 27721 / 1965-082UT / 474
3 / 27596 / 1986-019VN / 493
2 / 29036 / 1994-029AET / 714
1 / 30579 / 1999-025ALV / 856

What a mess the Chinese have made in polar orbit. Of course, this story quickly made a news cycle of two and the public and our government have moved on after a small fuss up. Basically they have let the Cinese off the hook again. But this is a hit that keeps on hitting (or potentially will at some point).

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

March MT Express Now Available

MT Express subscribers - the March issue with our exclusive air show guide is now available. I want to thank all of you who contributed frequencies and information to this year's guide, our 8th annual edition. I think it is the best we have put together so far. And I would like to ask that any of my readers of this blog, please send along your frequency reports for any air show that you attend in 2007. Even if we already have the frequencies you hear on our list, please send them along anyway. I use these reports to verify information we have in our guide.

Of course stay tuned to this blog for updates, schedules and frequency changes as the season moves on.

Fort Huachuca Requesting New UHF TRS

On 21 Dec 2006, Fort Huachuca, Arizona, made a solicitation request for a new six channel Motorola P25 trunk radio system that will support operations on their Electronic Proving Ground (EPG). Based on the system specs this will probably be another 406-420 MHz TRS like the existing system on the base. The current mixed mode TRS at the Huachuca operates on the following frequencies: 406.3625c 406.7750c 407.5625 407.8875c 408.1000 408.4250c 408.7625 409.1250 409.3250 409.3500 409.6375.

Reports from the area are requested and always appreciated.

New DC Area EDACS Trunk System Uncovered

One of the radio hobby's most knowledgeable scanner monitors, Alan Henney reported overnight (2/21) on the Scan-DC newsgroup that he has found a new three channel EDACS trunk system in the Washington DC area. Alan theorizes that his new discovery is a US Navy trunk system and it has been on the air for the past year or so. He noted in his Sacn-DC post that unlike the Naval District Washington (NDW) EDACS system that operates in the 138-150.8 MHz frequency range, this new system is all digital.

138.2375 LCN01
138.6125 LCN02
138.7125 LCN03

All three frequencies are dedicated trunk system frequencies under the new narrow band 138-150.8 MHz band plan that DoD is transitioning to. If you have any additional information on this system, please drop me some email at larryvanhorn @

Stennis Carrier Strike Group Arrives in 5th Fleet

By Lt. Nathan Christensen, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet

USS JOHN C. STENNIS, At Sea (NNS) -- The USS John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group (JCSSG) entered the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO) Feb.19 to conduct Maritime Security Operations (MSO) in regional waters, as well as to provide support for ground forces operating in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Led by Rear Adm. Kevin Quinn, Commander, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 3, the strike group includes the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON)21, the guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), guided-missile destroyers USS O’Kane (DDG 77) and USS Preble (DDG 88), and the fast combat-support ship USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10). More than 6,500 Sailors and Marines are assigned to JCSSG.

“The USS John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group is here to help foster stability and security in the region,” said Quinn. “We look forward to working with our coalition partners to provide support for ground forces operating in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as conducting maritime security operations that help provide a safe environment for shipping within the region. We are ready, we are sustainable, we are flexible and we provide significant capabilities that contribute to regional peace and security.”

MSO help set the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment, as well as complement the counter-terrorism and security efforts of regional nations. These operations deny international terrorists use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material.

U.S. 5th Fleet’s AOO encompasses 2.5 million square miles of water and includes the Arabian Gulf, Arabian Sea, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman and parts of the Indian Ocean.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Spacecoast Logs

Here is a few active frequencies logged by an anonymous contributor on the Florida Spacecoast.

120.700 Daytona International Airport Tower
265.775 Probable VFA-106 air-air
289.400 Key West NAS Approach
303.950 Eglin AFB 33rd FW F-15C 4x air-air at Daytona for NASCAR event fly by
319.000 Miami Center - Vero Beach
348.700 Miami Center - Melbourne
357.000 Unid air-air
380.300 Miami Center - Ft Myers
387.000 Daytona International Airport Approach

If you have something to share with our blog readers you can pass it along by contacting me at larryvanhorn @ You can remain anonymous on the material posted to the blog, but I will not use any submission from anonymous contributors.

More Super Bowl XLI Frequencies Reported

Richard Shah checks in with some additional milair frequency information from Super Bowl XLI.
Pitman was the last group of Combat Air Patrol aircraft after half-time, but the first group was originally CAESAR 51, They originated from Eglin and was the first on scene before half-time. He came up on the JAX ARTCC (Panama City, RCAG) on 346.350 MHz in the early evening advising ATC that he was "Air support for Dolphin Stadium TFR." They came down the west coast of Florida using:

327.300 JAX ARTCC-H @FL270

307.200 JAX ARTCC-Tallahassee -H

380.300 MIA ARTCC-Pahokee-H

285.500 MIA ARTCC-Avon Park where they went diagonally from the Florida west to east coast.

307.100 MIA ARTCC-Pahokee-L where they started to descend

291.600 MIA ARTCC-Pahokee-L where they asked for a discrete squawk code for CAESAR 55/56. Setup was done on this freq before switching to their CAP freq. CAESAR was told that the control point was at Homestead VOR radial 010 60 DME.

255.4 FSS St Petersburg was used by CEASAR for weather info at the stadium.

260.9 Combat Air Patrol frequency, aircraft would switch to 320.600 MHz for refueling

320.6 "Tankers XX" was CAP designated tankers. I heard "Tanker 11" being called by CAESAR

260.9 PITMAN took over during the half-time period. CAESAR called "BIGFOOT"(???-LVH) (Huntress) and asked for New Orleans weather for the return flight. Skipped over some of the freqs above on the way back. At this time it was dark and ARTCC consolidates many of their sectors. Again they refueled on 320.600 MHz. This was the "boom freq" because I heard the operator asked about the receiver's model designation "C" or "D," and he was giving istructions to the boom. CAESAR said he was a "C" model. MacDill AFB was the source of some tankers because "Lightening OPS" on 311.000 MHz was active with tankers giving takeoff/arrival info heading to Miami. OKIE 42 (AWACS) from MacDill also was on scene.

Thanks for the report Richard. I am sure my MT Milcom blog readers will find it useful. If you have something to share with our blog readers you can pass it along by contacting me at larryvanhorn @ You can remain anonymous on the material posted to the blog, but I will not use any submission from anonymous contributors.

First F-22 Raptors arrive at Kadena

The first two F-22 Raptors arrived at Kadena Air Base, Japan, Feb. 16 for their first overseas deployment. The remaining aircraft will follow in the coming days.

A software issue affecting the F-22's navigation system was discovered while the aircraft were en route to Kadena Feb. 10, which delayed the arrival for almost a week. F-22 engineers and maintainers rapidly updated the software and, after successful testing, the aircraft departed Hickam.

The Air Force is deploying 12 F-22 Raptors and more than 250 members from the 27th Fighter Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Va., to Kadena as part of a regularly-scheduled U.S. Pacific Command rotation of aircraft to the Pacific.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

2007 US Navy Aerial Event Support Sked, Pt 1

February - July (Partial) 2007 Event Support
Below are the eligible Naval Aviation Events current scheduled (as of 2/14/2007). Due to inclement weather and other unforeseen problems, events may be *Cancelled* or rescheduled. These events listed below are eligible for Naval Aviation Support. HOWEVER that "does not guarantee" that Naval Aircraft will be present at the event. The ability of units to participate will depend on operational and training requirements at the time of the event. Blue=Blue Angels, Green=Leap Frogs

17-18 Whitehorse YT / Yukon Sourdough Redezvous Air Display / Static Displays & Fly-In
18 Daytona Intl Speedway FL / NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Daytona / Flyover
24 Jerabek Park, San Diego CA / Scripps Ranch Little League Opening Day
24 California Speedway, Fontana CA / NASCAR Stater Brothers 300 / Flyover
24 Univ of South Florida, Tampa FL / NROTC Field Meet / Static Display & Flyover
25 California Speedway, Fontana CA / NASCAR Auto Club 500 / Flyover
25 Fredericks TX / Grand Opening of the Adm Nimitz Museum / Flyover

03 Vero Beach Municipal Airport FL / Vero Beach Aviation Day / Static Display & Fly-In
10 Auburn-Opelika Airport AL / 4th Annual Heros Take Flight / Static Display & Flyover
10 NAF El Centro CA / NAF El Centro Annual Air Show / Air Show
10-11 Brownsville IAP TX / Air Fiesta 2007 / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
16-18 Space Coast Regional Airport FL / TICO Warbird Air Show 2007 / Air Show
17 Atlanta Motor Speeedway, Hampton GA / NASCAR Nicorette 300 / Flyover
17-18 Davis-Monthan AFB AZ / Aerospace & Arizona Days 2007 / Air Show
17-18 Columbus MAP GA / Thunder in the Valley Airshow / Air Show
18 Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hampton GA / NASCAR Atlanta 500 / Flyover
19-20 Travis Field, Savannah GA / Aviation Awareness Day 2007 / Static Display & Fly-In
23-24 Van Voorhis Airfield, Fallon NV / NAS Fallon Air Show 2007 / Air Show
23-26 Luke AFB AZ / Luke AFB 2007 Air Show / Air Show
24 Tyndall AFB FL / Gulf Coast Salute 2007 / Air Show
24 Homestead-Miami Speedway FL / Satelite Radio Indy 300 / Flyover
24-25 Charlotte County Airport FL / Florida Intl Air Show / Air Show
24-25 Vero Beach MAP FL / 2007 Vero Beach Wings N' Wheels / Air Show
30-31 Riverside MAP CA / Riverside Airport Air Show 2007 / Air Show
31 Raytheon, El Segundo CA / West Coast Natl JROTC Drill Comp / Flyover & Static Display [Leap Frogs Requested]
31 NAS Point Mugu CA / NAS Point Mugu Air Show / Air Show
31 MacDill AFB FL / MacDill Airfest 2007 / Air Show
31 Slidell MAP LA / 2007 Slidell Open House & Air Show / Static Display & Fly-In

01 NAS Point Mugu CA / NAS Point Mugu Air Show / Air Show
01 MacDill AFB FL / MacDill Airfest 2007 / Air Show
01-02 Riverside MAP CA / Riverside Airport Air Show 2007 / Air Show
02 Angel Stadium of Anaheim CA / Angels Baseball Opening Night / Flyover
02 US Cellular Field, Chicago IL / Chicago White Sox Opening Day / Flyover
02 Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia PA / Phillies Opening Day [Leap Frogs Requested]
03 Buckeye MAP AZ / 2007 Air Fair & Airport Open House / Static Display & Flyover
03 AT&T Park, San Francisco CA / 2007 Baseball Season Opening Day (San Francisco Giants) / Flyover
06-08 NAS Meridian MS / Wings Over Meridian / Air Show
07 PETCO Park, San Diego CA / San Diego Padres Military Opening Night
07 Slidell MAP LA / 2007 Slidell Open House & Air Show / Air Show
07-08 Eglin AFB FL / 2007 Eglin AFB Open House & Air Show / Air Show
09 McAfee Coliseum, Oakland CA / Oakland A's Major League Baseball Opening Night (Oakland A's) / Flyover
09 Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles CA / Los Angeles Dodgers 2007 Opening Day Pre-Game Celebration
09 Shea Stadium, Flushing NY / 2007 Mets Opening Day / Flyover
12 San Jose MAP CA / San Jose Gaints Opening Day / Flyover
13-15 NAS Corpus Christi TX / 2007 South Texas Shootout / Air Show
14-15 Gainsville RAP FL / Heart of Florida Air Show / Air Show
15 Shoreline Drive, Long Beach CA [Waterfront] / Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach / Flyover
17 Mallory Square, Key West FL / 2007 World Sailfish Championship — Flyover
17-23 Lakeland Linder RAP FL / Sun 'n Fun Fly-In, Inc. / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
21 Ohio Rivier, Louisville KY [Waterfront] / Thunder Over Louisville / Air Show
21 Charleston AFB SC / Charleston Air Expo 2007 / Air Show
21-22 Wilimgton IAP NC / Coastal Carolina Air Show / Air Show
21-22 MCAS Beaufort SC / 2007 Lowcountry Blues Festival / Air Show
27-29 NAS Lemoore, CA /2007 Central Valley Lemoore Air Show / Air Show
27-29 AeroPuerto Rafael Hernandez, Aguadilla PR / Puerto Rico Air Extravaganza / Flyover
28 Skagit County Airport, Burlington WA / Skagit Tulip Fly-In Air Show / Air Show
28-29 Vidalia RAP GA / Vidalia Onion Festival Air Show / Air Show
28-29 Galveston IAP TX / 17th Annual Spirit of Flight Air Show / Air Show
29 Patrick AFB FL / Patrick AFB Air & Space Expo 2007 / Air Show
29 Kansas Speedway, Kansas City KS / Kansas Lottery Indy 300 / Flyover

04 Langley AFB VA / Air Power over Hampton Roads / Air Show
04-05 Spaceport in Sheboygan, Shebogan WI / Rockets for Schools / Flyover
04-06 MCAS Cherry Point NC / MCAS Cherry Point 2007 Open House & Air Show / Air Show
04-06 Draughton-Miller Central Texas Regional, Temple TX / Central Texas Air Show / Air Show
05 Decatur Airport (KLUD) TX / Decatur MAP Open House — Flyover & Static Display
05-06 Oceanfront, Fort Lauderdale FL / Fort Lauderdale Air & Sea Show / Air Show
05-06 Offutt AFB NE / Offutt AFB Open House & Air Show / Air Show
09-10 Billings Logan Airport, Billings MT / Laurel Aviation & Technology Awareness Week & Air Show / Air Show
12 Seymour Johnson AFB NC / Wings Over Wayne Air Show 2007 / Air Show
12 Dyess AFB TX / Big County Appreciation Day / Air Show
12 128ARW Gen Mitchell IAP WI / 2007 Milwaukee Armed Forces Week Military Display / Static Display
12-13 McGuire AFB NJ / McGuire/Ft Dix/Lakehurst Joint Base Open House 2007 / Air Show
18-19 Hilton Field, Fort Jackson SC / 2007 Celebrate Freedom Festival / Air Show
18-20 Torrance Blvd, Torrance CA /Armed Forces Day Parade / Air Show
18-22 Andrews AFB MD / DOD Joint Service Open House / Air Show
19 Hart High School, Newhall CA / Special Olympics Santa Clarita / Flyover
19 Noel Field Area, Ft Bliss TX / 2007 Armed Forces Day Open House / Air Show
19-20 Ft. Myers Beach FL / Ft. Myers Beach Air Show / Air Show
19-20 Barksdale AFB LA / Defenders of Liberty Open House & Air Show / Air Show
19-20 Central Nebraska RAP NE / Armed Forces Weekend / Static Display & Flyover
19-20 Silver Springs Airport MAP / Lyon County Fly In & Air Fest / Air Show
19-20 NAS JRB Willow Grove PA / Philadelphia Area 'Air Fest 2007' Air Show / Air Show
19-20 La Crosse MAP WI / Deke Slayton Airfest 10th Anniversary / Air Show
22-25 USNA Memorial Stadium, Annapolis MD / USNA Commissioning Week / Flyover [Blue Angels 23rd only]
25 Whitewater/Fairgrounds, Fayetteville GA / Memorial Day Weekend Celebration / Flyover
25-27 Watsonville MAP CA / Watsonville Fly-In & Air Show / Air Show
26 Ameriquest Field, Arlington TX / Texas Rangers Baseball Game / Flyover
26-27 Cancun International Airport Mexico / Alextremo Air Show Cancun 2007 / Static Display
26-27 Columbia Regional Airport MO / Memorial Day Weekend Salute to Veterans Celebration / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
26-27 Millville Airport, Millville NJ / 2007 Wheels & Wings Air Show & Car Show / Air Show
26-27 Florence Regional Airport, Florence SC / May Fly Air Show / Air Show
27 US Cellular Field, Chicago IL / Chicago White Sox Memorial Day Event / Flyover
27-28 Jones Beach State Park, Wantagh NY / New York Air Show at Jones Beach State Park / Air Show
28 The American Village, Montevallo AL / 3rd Annual "Blue Star Salute" to our Nation's Active Military / Flyover
28 27501 S. Western Ave., Rancho Palos CA / Green Hills Memorial Park 22nd Annual Memorial Day Observance / Flyover

01-02 Mcready Field (MCE) CA / 50th Annual Merced West Coast Antique Fly-In / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
01-02 Southport Airport, Portage La Praire MB / Manitoba Air Show / Air Show
01-03 Davenport MAP IA / Quad City Air Show 'Festival in the Sky' / Air Show
02 Carson City Airport NV / Carson City Airport Open House / TACDEMOS Requested
02 Myrtle Beach SC / Sun Fun Festival Air Show / Air Show
02-03 Travis AFB CA / Travis Air Expo / Air Show
02-03 Greater Rockford Airport IL / 3rd Annual Rockford Air Show / Air Show
02-03 Smyrna/Rutherford County Airport TN / The Great Tennessee Air Show / Air Show
02-03 Danville RAP VA / Southside Sky-Fest / Air Show
02-03 Manitowoc County Airport WI / Thunder on the Lakeshore / Air Show
03 Kennedy Park Waterfront NJ / 2007 Atlantic County Day at the Bay Festival & Air Show / Flyover
05 Corry Station, Pensacola FL / Corry Station Battle of Midway Commemoration / Flyover
08-10 Southern Wisconsin RAP WI / Southern Wisconsin Air Fest / Air Show
09 Sharp County RAP (KCVK) AR / Air Show, Openhouse & Fly-In / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requsted
09-10 Fayetteville MAP AR / Airfest 2007 / Air Show
09-10 Mather Field, Sacramento CA / The California Capital Show / Air Show
09-10 Oklahoma River Okie City OK / Oklahoma Riverfest 2007 / [Leap Frogs Requested]
09-10 Tinker AFB OK / Star Spangled Salute / Air Show
10 Aalborg Air Base (EKYT) Denmark / Royal Danish Air Force Air Show / Air Show
15-16 Volkel AB Netherlands / Royal Netherlands Air Force Open Days / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
15-17 Delaware County Airport IN / 2007 Muncie Summer Heat Air Festival / Air Show
16-17 San Carlos Airport CA / Vertical Challenge / Air Show
16-17 Carp Airport ON / Air Show Ottawa / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
16-17 Hector IAP ND / Fargo Air Show 2007 / Air Show
16-17 Akron Fulton Airport OH / Aero Expo 2007 Defenders of Freedom Air Show / Air Show
16-17 911AW Pittsburgh IAP, Coraoplis PA / Wings Over Pittsburgh 2007 / Air Show
16-23 Scott AFB IL / Scott AFB Open House / Air Show
22-24 Sawyer IAP MI / Sawyer Experience Air Show / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
22 Ameriquest Field, Arlington TX / Texas Rangers Baseball Game vs. Houston Astros / Flyover
23 Lake in the Hills Airport IL / Lake in the Hills Air Expo 2007 / Flyover & Static Display [Leap Frogs Requested]
23-24 Ramona Airport CA / Ramona Air Show / Air Show
23-24 St. Thomas Airport, London ON / Wings & Wheels SouthWestern Ontario / Air Show
23-24 Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport IL / Springfield Air Rendezvous / Air Show
23-24 Quonset State Airport RI / Rhode Island National Guard Open House & Air Show / Air Show [and Leap Frogs]
29-30 Yuba County Airport CA / Golden West EAA Regional Fly-In & Air Show / Air Show
29-30 Ohio River - Downtown, Evansville IN / 2007 Evansville Freedom Festival / Air Show
30 Goshen MAP IN / Goshen Freedom Festival / Air Show
30 Strother Field KS / Strother Field Day / Air Show
30 Binghamton Airport NY / 2007 Binghamton Air Show / Air Show
30 W.K. Kellogg Airport MI / Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show / Air Show
6/30 Joplin RAP MO / Joplin Airfest 2007 / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested

01 Yuba County Airport CA / Golden West EAA Regional Fly-In & Air Show / Air Show
01 W.K. Kellogg Airport MI / Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show / Air Show
01 Joplin RAP MO / Joplin Airfest 2007 / Flyover & Static Display-TACDEMOS Requested
01-04 Ohio River - Downtown, Evansville IN / 2007 Evansville Freedom Festival / Air Show

Friday, February 16, 2007

F-22s make mark at Red Flag

by Tech. Sgt. Russell Wicke
Air Combat Command Public Affairs

2/15/2007 - NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. (AFNEWS) -- The F-22 Raptor flew in its first Red Flag exercise that started Feb. 3 here, showcasing its stealth, super cruise and other advantages absent in legacy fighters.

Pilots from the 94th Fighter Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Va., are flying F-22s against Red Flag aggressors, with pilots from the Royal Australian Air Force of Australia, and the Royal Air Force of England.

The 94th FS deployed 14 Raptors and 197 Airmen to participate in the Red Flag exercise. Including the F-22s, more than 200 aircraft are participating. Among the foreign aircraft involved are the RAF's GR-4 Tornados and RAAF's F-111 Aardvark. In addition, the F-22s are flying with the B-2 Spirit, F-117 Nighthawk, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Fighting Falcon and more.

The F-22 pilots are experiencing tremendous success flying against the aircraft representing the enemy -- most of which are F-16s and F-15s, said Lt. Col. Dirk Smith, the 94th FS commander. The aggressor forces represent the most lethal threat friendly forces would ever face.

"The training provided by the Red Flag adversaries is like no other on earth," Colonel Smith said. "Our pilots are experiencing a tremendous learning curve."

The F-22's debut at the prominent Red Flag exercise is a significant milestone for the jet, Colonel Smith said. Red Flag is an advanced, realistic combat training exercise designed for fighter pilots, conducted over the Nellis Range Complex which measures 60 by 100 nautical miles. The exercise was established in 1975 because aerial-combat statistics suggested a pilot's survival and success increased significantly after the first 10 sorties. In Red Flag exercises, the Blue Forces represent friendly forces, while Red Forces simulate the enemy.

In addition to aerial combat, Blue Forces also train in various tactics to engage ground targets such as mock airfields, convoys, and other ground defensive positions. However, exercises at Red Flag often provide other unique training opportunities. Training with the B-2 and F-117 is "unprecedented" because the F-22 enhances the lethality of other Air Force aircraft, Colonel Smith said. The same principles apply with Air Force pilots who are practicing engagement with U.S. allies.

Because the United States usually doesn't engage in combat without coalition forces, Colonel Smith said training with the RAF and RAAF at Red Flag provided valuable experience for all involved.

"This exercise is a great chance for us to learn what (sister and coalition forces) can do, and for them to learn what we're capable of," he said. The addition of RAF and RAAF players makes the training more diverse and valuable for all pilots involved. The main idea is not just about the F-22, but how it enhances the overall Air Force package.

But the overall expected result for the F-22s' involvement at Red Flag is to foster and maintain an "unfair advantage" over the enemies of the United States, said Maj. Jack Miller, a Langley AFB spokesman. "Our joint forces don't want a fair fight, we want every fight we enter to be patently unfair -- to the other guy."

Despite the F-22s' "unfair advantage," Colonel Smith said flying against the Red Force aggressors of the 414th Combat Training Squadron is not an easy task. Aggressor pilots are made up of F-16 and F-15 pilots specially trained to replicate tactics and techniques of potential adversaries according to the 414th CTS/Red Flag fact sheet.

"These scenarios are not made to be easy," Colonel Smith said. "These (Red Forces) pilots are well trained and good at their job."

In addition, Red Forces aren't limited to aggressor pilots. There is no shortage of ground threats at Red Flag. These include electronically simulated surface-to-air missiles, anti-aircraft artillery, and communications jamming, according to 414th CTS officials.

Northrop Grumman Integrates Antennas On Flight Payload

From Hilary courtesy of MT editor Rachel Baughn.

Northrop Grumman Integrates Phased Array Antennas On Advanced EHF Flight Payload
The uplink and downlink phased array antennas developed by Northrop Grumman Corporation for its first advanced extremely high frequency (EHF) military satellite communications payload have been integrated onto the first flight structure, and their performance has been verified alongside other essential payload components. Delivery of the payload to Lockheed Martin, the prime contractor for the Advanced EHF program, remains on track.

Using phased array antennas, advanced microelectronics, extremely high data rate (XDR) waveforms and efficient protocols, Advanced EHF will deliver an increase in capacity and connectivity over the legacy Milstar system.

"The performance verification of our phased array antennas on the flight structure is a key achievement in the integration and test of the first Advanced EHF flight payload," said Gabe Watson, vice president of the Advanced EHF payload program for Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector. "Successful development and production of the AEHF phased array antennas are essential to our ability to deliver higher capacity, highly secure communications to the U.S. military."

The phased array antennas Northrop Grumman has developed for Advanced EHF are directly applicable to the next-generation transformational satellite communications system (TSAT), which will ultimately replace the Milstar and Advanced EHF programs. The company is teamed with Lockheed Martin in the competition to build TSAT, and this accomplishment also represents a reduction in risk and cost to the TSAT program, Watson noted.

More than 40 separate tests were run on the Advanced EHF payload's three phased array antennas, consisting of one uplink antenna and two downlink antennas, as they were integrated successfully into the payload. These were part of the 231 tests of the Advanced EHF Flight 1 payload test suite.

The antennas also completed an additional series of tests which verify the operation of each individual antenna element. The phased array antennas will be the first of their kind to operate at 20 GHz and 40 GHz in space.

Test results verified that the performance of all three antennas exceed gain and coverage requirements and that they successfully interfaced with all applicable components in the payload, including critical digital processing and the RF subsystems.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

HF ALE Milcom Frequencies 2-15-2007

Here are a few HF Milcom frequencies reported in the last 24 hours on the various HF newsgroups.

3192.0 Russian Navy RMP-Kaliningrad CW
4451.0 US Army 3-227 AVN ALE/USB
5075.0 Algerian Mil ALE/USB
5135.0 US Army 2-135 AVN ALE/USB
5179.5 Polish Mil ALE/USB
5220.0 Polish Mil ALE/USB
5236.0 Algeria Ministry of Interior/MIL ALE/USB
5260.0 Uzbekistan Army ALE/USB
5270.5 Uzbekistan Army ALE/USB
5555.0 Algerian Mil ALE/USB
5762.0 Hu8ngarian Mil ALE/USB
6486.0 US Army 3-25th AVN, Camp Speicher/Tikrit (Iraq) ALE/USB
6715.0 Spanish Air Force USB
6753.0 Russian Mil RFFN-Net CW
6775.5 Polish Mil ALE/USB
6860.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
6906.0 US Army 1-108 AVN ALE/USB
6921.0 Israeli Air Force ALE/USB
6985.0 US Army COOP Net ALE/USB
7003.0 US Army (T01147) ALE/USB
7455.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
7705.0 Algeria Ministry of Interior/MIL ALE/USB
7785.0 Algeria Ministry of Interior/MIL ALE/USB
7813.0 Morocco Mil ALE/USB
7890.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
7938.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
7965.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
8060.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
8062.0 Singapore Navy ALE/USB
8130.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
8521.0 US Army ALE/USB
8521.0 Israeli Air Force ALE/USB
8714.0 US Army (TC1111/TC2135) ALE/USB
8875.0 Morocco Mil ALE/USB
10380.0 Unknown Possible Military ALE/USB
10536.0 CanForce CFH-Halifax RTTY/FAX
11047.6 US Army (TC1111) ALE/USB
11130.0 Morocco Mil ALE/USB
11155.0 Russian Navy RIT-Northern HQ Fleet Severomorsk CW
12160.0 Morocco Mil ALE/USB
14550.0 Morocco Mil ALE/USB
16333.0 Brazilian Mil ALE/USB
16345.0 Brazilian Mil ALE/USB

3277 kHz Exercise Update

Due to very heavy adjacent channel QRM it was quite difficult to monitor the 3277 kHz that I reported on last evening on this blog and UDXF. So we didn't hear some of the other english accents that were operating on this net. According to our overseas reporter, "judging from the accents and from the "scholastic" english of some of the operators, this is probably an interforce exercise, including Italians and Germans."

Callsigns heard were: U0G 5CW O0G 1NI UKF UKG

Our reporter notes, "many received messages included the words "Information Unit Alfa-Delta-Alfa."

944FW Closes Chapter in Their History

Reservists from the 944th Fighter Wing here bid farewell to the last three F-16 Fighting Falcons after almost 20 years. The unit's F-16s are being reassigned to other locations on the recommendations of the Base Realignment and Closure Commission.

"This is like a family that's moving on," said Lt. Col. Donald Lindberg, the 302nd Fighter Squadron commander. He compared the emotions of the event to sending a child to college.

The 302nd Fighter Squadron, which traces its roots to the Tuskegee Airmen, will be inactivated at Luke AFB but will return to the Air Force Reserve Command when it stands up as an F-22 associate unit at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska.

The 944th FW will continue its mission of training F-16 pilots.

Red Flag turns stealthy

2/14/2007 - A B-2 Spirit lands after a Red Flag mission Feb. 12 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. All three of the Air Force's stealth aircraft models, the B-2 Spirit, F-117 Nighthawk and F-22, are taking part in Red Flag, which sharpens aircrews' warfighting skills in realistic combat situations. Crews are flying missions during the day and night to the nearby Nevada Test and Training Range where they take part in highly realistic aerial combat. The Air Force and Navy, along with Australia and the United Kingdom militaries, are participating in this Red Flag. (U.S. Air Force photo/Mike Estrada)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Mil Exercise on 3277?

I have just received a report from a Euro reporter of a lot of mil activity on 3277 kHz USB. Stations in this net are using trigraphs (i.e. U0G, etc) and there are frequent messages - in english - and are not in "clear" form. Based on what my reporter has submitted this looks like a naval Composite Warfare (CWC) net. Does anyone have any details on what is happening in the Med on 3277 kHz? I do not have anything in my database from this part of the world. I just checked the frequency at DXTuners and it definitely sounds like a US Navy CWC net. Lots of interference from an adjacent frequency.

USAF ACC Aerial Events Schedule Feb 2007

Here is the latest schedule through the end of February for the ACC Flight Demo Teams.

NOTE: The F-15E Strike Eagle Demo Team will be represented as F-15E SE in the schedule below. The F-15 West Team will now be represented as F-15C West. There is no F-15 East Team.

Date / Location / Event / Aircraft
15 / Moody AFB, GA / CSAA / CSAR Demonstration / 2 x HH-60 Tactical Demonstration
17-18 / Lima, Peru / Air Show / F-16 West (pending airlift)
18 / Daytona Beach, FL / NASCAR Daytona 500 / 4 x F-15 Flyover
22 / Shaw AFB, SC / Chaplains Day / F-16 East
24 / Yuma, AZ / Air Show / A-10 West

Hurricane Hunters track Pacific winter storms

A WC-130J Hercules, also known as a Hurricane Hunter, takes off with an aircrew from the 815th Airlift Squadron and support members from the 403rd Wing at Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi. Airmen and two Hurricane Hunters from Keesler AFB are on a month-long mission to support the winter storm reconnaissance program in Anchorage, Alaska. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Here is a heads up to my west coast readers, especially my readers in Alaska, you may have an opportunity to monitor the world famous hurricane hunters on the HF-GCS net over the next month of so. Listening closely for the Teal ## callsign.

The current station list for the HC-GCS net is as follows:

Andersen AB, Guam (Voice call Guam Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz

Andrews AFB, Maryland (Voice call Andrews Global) HC-GCS CNCS
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 8058.0 11053.0 11159.0 11181.0 11214.0 11220.0 13960.0 14863.0 18015.0 kHz

Ascension Island (Voice call Ascension Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 9043.0 11159.0 11226.0 14497.0 kHz

Croughton AB, United Kingdom (Voice call Croughton Global)
4724.0 6712.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 4894.0 5708.0 5117.0 6728.0 6731.0 6993.0 7567.0 7933.0 8032.0 9025.0 10648.0 11118.0 11129.0 11180.0 11181.0 11220.0 11226.0 11232.0 11271.0 13822.0 15042.0 15091.0 kHz

Diego Garcia NS, Indian Ocean (Voice call Diego Garcia Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 9012.0 11181.0 11226.0 11244.0 11269.0 13254.0 15095.0 20910.0 kHz

Elmendorf AFB, Alaska (Voice call Elmendorf Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz

Hickam AFB, Hawaii (Voice call Hickam Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 11181.0 13242.0 kHz

Lajes AB, Azores (Voice call Lajes Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequencies: 11220.0 13440.0 14896.0 23265.0 kHz

McClellan, California (Voice call McClellan Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz

Offutt AFB, Nebraska (Voice call Offutt Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz
Discrete Frequency: 10589.0 11053.0 11159.0 11181.0 12087.0 kHz

Salinas, Puerto Rico (Voice call Puerto Rico Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 Khz
Discrete Frequencies: 7690.0 9006.0 10648.0 11056.0 11220.0 11484.0 15087.0 kHz

Sigonella NS, Sicily, Italy (Voice call Sigonella Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz

Yokota AB, Japan (Voice call Yokota Global)
4724.0 6739.0 8992.0 11175.0 13200.0 15016.0 kHz

Hurricane Hunters track Pacific winter storms by Tech. Sgt. James B. Pritchett
403rd Wing Public Affairs

2/13/2007 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. (AFNEWS) -- While most people flee when a pending storm is coming, Keesler AFB Airmen go right into the heart of storms to provide detailed information about storms to warn people of hazardous weather.

Airmen and WC-130J Hercules aircraft, also known as Hurricane Hunters, left here Feb. 12 for Anchorage, Alaska, for a month-long mission in support of the 2007 winter storm reconnaissance program.

In addition to two WC-130Js, Air Force Reserve Command's 403rd Wing officials put together a team composed of aircrew, operations, maintenance, aerial port and other specialties. Like tropical reconnaissance missions, winter storm routes can keep crews in the air more than 12 hours at a time.

The National Centers for Environmental Prediction, part of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, directs the operations. When a tasking for a flight comes into the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron's deployed operations center at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska, a crew is alerted and aircraft maintainers prepare an aircraft for the sky.

Showtime and pre-flight are similar to the Hurricane Hunters' normal missions except, depending on weather, maintenance teams de-ice the aircraft just prior to take off.

Winter missions require crews to fly at higher altitudes than they normally fly in tropical weather systems, above 30,000 feet. The new WC-130 J-model is an improvement over the previous WC-130H in that it can fly much higher, allowing for collection of more data and thereby improving the forecast models even more than in the past.

"On average, the data we provide along with the NOAA aircraft lead to a 10 to 20 percent reduction in error in the targeted forecasts," said Lt. Col. Roy Deatherage, the mission commander for the 53rd WRS and an aerial reconnaissance weather officer since 1988. "As a result, numerical forecast guidance issued 48 hours prior to the events become as accurate as 36-hour lead time forecasts."

Use of weather reconnaissance aircraft have improved the forecast models more since 1999 than the previous 25 years of satellite data, according to the NCEP.

Unlike in tropical storms, on a winter mission the crew is not trying to pinpoint the center of the storm, in fact, there may not even be a "storm."

"Often, the crews are flying from one to four days in advance of a potential storm system in the Pacific that appears headed for either Alaska or the continental United States," Colonel Deatherage said.

On board the aircraft, the aerial reconnaissance weather officer and weather reconnaissance loadmaster take atmospheric observations at predetermined points along a flight track where the measurements are expected to have the greatest chance of improving the forecasts.

The weather reconnaissance loadmaster drops highly sensitive devices called dropsondes, which fall at about 2,500 feet per second, in areas of the atmosphere as requested by NCEP. As they fall toward the ocean, the dropsondes measure temperature, wind speed, humidity and pressure. Aircraft follow what are called synoptic patterns, huge ovals sometimes more than 3,000 miles round-trip.

Colonel Deatherage said during a typical tropical mission, dropsondes are released at certain points defined by the National Hurricane Center. This is usually four drops every time the aircraft passes through the eye with an additional four to eight per mission in the most significant wind bands. In contrast, Pacific winter missions average 16 to 22 sondes dropped. For impending Atlantic winter missions the average is lower, closer to five.

The information collected is checked onboard and then relayed by satellite to the NOAA Weather Service supercomputer, which incorporates it into the agency's numerical prediction models. This information helps "fill-in-the-blanks" or bolster the data in computer climate models that forecast storms and precipitation for the entire United States.

"The goal is to make a good forecast so cities can be prepared with snowplows, and other snow removal and mitigation equipment to diminish the impact of a winter storm on a city," Colonel Deatherage said. "If they are better prepared, like we've seen with several cities already this year, they can recover more quickly. That can be crucial for residents living in harm's way. These forecasts provide people in the path of the storms with warnings that can save lives."

While the Hurricane Hunters are patrolling the northern part of the Pacific Ocean, NOAA is using its Gulfstream G-IV aircraft to fly missions from Honolulu. Between the two units, they are able to cover the parts of the Pacific Ocean that directly affect the United States.

Each year, the 53rd WRS and NOAA rotate deployed locations to better improve the forecasting models. The G-IV flies higher and collects a slightly different data set than that of the WC-130J. Since 1996, the two organizations have been flying these frosty missions in support of the NCEP.

People taking part in the first half of the deployment, about 57 of them, left for Anchorage Feb. 12 for two weeks. Another rotation departs about halfway through with all expected to return by March 13.

This project does not cover all of the 53rd WRS's winter taskings. Due to an unusually warm winter so far this year, the unit has only received minimal taskings for the East Coast of the United States to assist forecasters with pending Nor'easters.

The Hurricane Hunters normally fly several of these missions in support of the National Weather Service each season beginning Dec. 1 and ending April 30.

In seasons past, the tropical storm season, beginning June 1 and officially ending Nov. 30, has crossed over into the winter storm season. In 2005, the Hurricane Hunters flew winter storm missions and tropical missions at the same time. That year, the final storm of the hurricane season was recorded in early January.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Kings Bay 380-400 MHz LMR TRS Reported

I have a field report that three new 380-400 MHz TRS frequencies have been monitored in the Kings Bay, Georgia, Naval Station area. All three channels were P25 encrypted. The three frequencies are 385.0125, 385.2125, and 386.1875 MHz. No control channels have been reported as of this writing.

Additional field reports are welcomed and appreciated from the Kings Bay area.

New Florida 380-400 MHz System Uncovered

My close friend Robert Wyman has found a new 380-400 MHz TRS control channel in the Jacksonville, Florida, area. Robert said his 996 was reporting SID 014 Ch-0113 and the frequency was 386.225. No TGs reported yet.

I believe this is part of the Phase 4 USMC 380-400 MHz system deployment and this TRS is located at Blount Island, Florida. I am seeing all these system using the system ID of 14c.

If you are near the following bases please check out the 380-400 MHz LMR subband for one of these new systems.

Phase 1 MCB Camp Lejeune, NC; MCAS Cherry Point, NC
Phase 2 MCAS Yuma, AZ; MCMWTC Bridgeport, CA; MCAGCC 29 Palms, CA
Phase 3 MCAS Beaufort, SC; MCRD Parris Island, SC; MCLB Albany, GA; Henderson Hall, VA
Phase 4 MCLB Barstow, CA

There will also be deployable UHF LMR systems at Camp Pendleton and Camp Lejeune.

If you are in any of the areas above please do a search in the 380-400 MHz band (nfm, 12.5-kHz spacing) and let us know what you have found. I believe there are new trunk radio systems at the bases above.

United Kingdom Coast Guard MSI Broadcast

You can find details about the United Kingdom Coast Guard MSI HF broadcast on my personal blog - The Btown Monitoring Post at

Ronald Reagan Strike Grp Enters 7th Fleet

The USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Carrier Strike Group (RRSG) entered the U.S. 7th Fleet’s area of responsibility (AOR) Feb. 9, as part of a surge deployment to promote peace, cooperation and stability in the region.

Led by Rear Adm. Charles W. Martoglio, the Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group will be filling the role of USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63), the Navy’s only permanently forward deployed aircraft carrier, which is undergoing scheduled maintenance in Yokuska, Japan.

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group is comprised of CCSG 7, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 14, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7, the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan, the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG 57), the guided-missile destroyers USS Russell (DDG 59) and USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60), and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit 11, Det. 15. More than 6,000 Sailors are currently assigned to RRSG.

The squadrons of CVW-14 include the “Redcocks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, the “Fist of the Fleet” of VFA-25, the “Stingers” of VFA-113, the “Eagles” of VFA-115, the “Black Eagles” of Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 113, the “Cougars” of Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VAQ) 139, the “Providers” of Carrier Logistics Support (VRC) 30, and the “Black Knights” of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 4.

Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet is permanently embarked aboard USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), which is forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan. The 7th Fleet AOR includes more than 52 million square miles of the Pacific and Indian oceans -- stretching from the international date line to the east coast of Africa, and from the Kuril Islands in the north to the Antarctic in the south.

Roosevelt-Truman Underway in Atlantic

Sailors from the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) attach a cargo pendant to an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter during a vertical replenishment (VERTREP) with USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75). Roosevelt is underway in the Atlantic Ocean maintaining qualifications in support of the Fleet Response Plan. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Javier Capella

Iron Thunder Roars Through Shaw

by Senior Airman John Gordinier
20th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

2/12/2007 - SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. (AFNEWS) -- Thunder was heard throughout the Carolinas in early February as more than 100 Air Force, Navy, Marine and Royal Air Force aircraft participated in Exercise Iron Thunder.

The four-day, multiservice and multinational exercise, hosted by the 77th Fighter Squadron here, prepared participants for future contingency operations by offering a chance for players to be exposed to missions identical to those faced in combat.

Participating aircraft included B-1 Lancers from Dyess AFB, Texas, F-15E Strike Eagles from Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C., E-8 Joint STARS from Robins AFB, Ga., F/A-18 Hornets from both Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., F-16 Fighting Falcons from the 77th, 79th and 55th Fighter Squadrons here and the Alabama Air National Guard in Montgomery, Ala., and KC-135 Stratotankers from RAF Mildenhall, England, as well as refueling tankers from all over the Southeast and Northeast.

An E-3 Sentry airborne warning and control system from Tinker AFB, Okla., and a British E-3 from RAF Waddington, England, participated in the exercise as well, said Capt. Kevin Pugh, the 79th FS weapons and tactics large force exercise officer.

The E-3 from Britain participates in many American exercise scenarios to include Iron Thunder and Red Flag, said RAF Squadron Commander Gary Coleman, an 8th Squadron pilot.

"It is a benefit for us to get the chance to train with coalition aircraft," the squadron commander said. "Training and getting familiar with the way coalition forces operate helps us when we assist in operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom."

Iron Thunder had suppression of enemy air defense and air-to-air combat scenarios, Captain Pugh said. There were two phases in the exercise. One phase had blue air protecting a target from red air, the aggressors. The other had blue air attacking an enemy target. Who flew blue or red air during the exercise, which was off the North Carolina coastline, was determined each day.

On a typical day during Iron Thunder, the E-3 and about six or seven tankers took off, then the fighters rolled out to the coastlines between Myrtle Beach, S.C., and Charleston, S.C. They flew north toward the North Carolina coastline and received fuel from tankers. The fighters were approximately 120 miles off the coast of North Carolina when the first phase of exercise play began, Captain Pugh said. There are approximately 85 blue air aircraft, which includes escorts, versus about 15 red air aircraft. Blue air, which targets were along the coastline, headed west and red air headed east. Blue air performed simulated attacks toward red air until the threat was destroyed.

For the next phase, blue air attacked an enemy location on the North Carolina coastline, he said. They simulated dropping bombs.

"Iron Thunder trains our pilots and coalition pilots to perform better for future contingencies," Captain Pugh said. "That way, when we are all called upon to fight, we can successfully fight together."

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Raptors Invade Nevada

For my monitoring friends in the Las Vegas area - heads up!

An F-22 Raptor flies off after being refueled by a KC-135 Stratotanker during the Red Flag exercise Feb 7 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The two KC-135 Stratotankers from the 319th Air Refueling Wing at Grand Forks Air Force Base, N.D., make up the lead tanker unit during the exercise. Red Flag is an exercise designed to hone the warfighting skills of Air Force pilots for conflicts. (U.S. Air Force photo/1st Lt. Randi Norton)

German Radio Callsign List

You will find a pretty comprehensive list of German Radio callsigns, both civilian and military, posted on my personal blogsite, the Btown Monitoring Post at I hope you will find the list useful.

Orbcomm sat with USCG AIS will launch in 2007

The US Coast Guard plans to launch a new space based Automatic Identification System (AIS) in 2007.

The Coast Guard has been studying the feasibility of receiving maritime automatic identification system (AIS) signals from space since 2001. In May 2004 the Coast Guard contracted with ORBCOMM, a satellite data communications company, to develop and build the capability to receive process and forward AIS signals from space via an AIS receiver onboard a communications satellite. In addition, ORBCOMM will provide the ground systems capable of processing the AIS signals and relaying the collected messages to the Coast Guard.

"This line of sight system was originally designed as a collision avoidance tool, but Coast Guard engineers and scientists quickly realized that significant ship tracking capabilities could be accomplished far out to sea if a receiver were placed on a spacecraft," said Dana Goward, director of the Coast Guard's maritime domain awareness program.

Studies conducted at Johns Hopkins University in 2003 indicated this concept was feasible, but it was not proven until a Dec. 16, 2006, launch by the Department of Defense of the TACSAT-2 satellite, which was equipped with an automatic identification receiver.

The Coast Guard's ORBCOMM CDS-3 (Concept Demonstration Satellite-3) satellite is scheduled to launch in the first or second quarter of 2007, and ORBCOMM has announced plans to include automatic identification system receivers in future communications satellites.

This Orbcomm-CDS 3 satellite will provide standard ORBCOMM service, and will also have a U.S. Coast Guard payload to support their Automatic Identification System (AIS). This satellite will receive signals emitted from vessels, enhancing U.S. Coast Guard monitoring techniques as part of their homeland security initiatives. This satellite is scheduled to be launched on board the russian Kosmos-3M carrier rocket from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

In addition to assisting the U.S. Coast Guard receive the AIS transmissions, this launch is the first of a planned series of replenishment satellites.

In addition to performing the same communications tasks as ORBCOMM's existing satellites, the new satellites, like the U.S. Coast Guard concept validation satellite, will be able to receive the Automatic Identification System (AIS) signals for global maritime monitoring.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

The USAF ACC "Raymond" Callsign

From time to time I am asked about the old USAF TAC callsign - "Raymond." Yes, it is still used and reported on various newsgroups occasionally. So as a special for my Milcom blog readers here is my latest list of confirmed USAF ACC "Raymond" callsigns. You will most likely hear these callsigns used on 311.0, 321.0 and 381.3 MHz. If you have a new confirmed Raymond callsign or update to share with our readers, please pass it along to larryvanhorn @

Please no old list, etc. I am looking for what has been heard recently.

Raymond 01 / ACC Headquarters Command Post - Langley AFB, VA [Has not been reported in quite some time and will be removed from my list unless someone has heard it recently]
Raymond 06 / *2BW Command Post - Barksdale AFB, LA
Raymond 07 / *27FW Command Post - Cannon AFB, NM
Raymond 08 / *355 Wing Command Post - Davis Monthan AFB, AZ
Raymond 11 / *33FW Command Post - Eglin AFB, FL
Raymond 12 / *5BW Command Post - Minot AFB, ND
Raymond 14 / *49FW Command Post - Holloman AFB, NM
Raymond 16 / *1FW Command Post - Langley AFB, VA
Raymond 18 / *56FW Command Post - Luke AFB, AZ
Raymond 19 / *93ACW Command Post - Robins AFB, GA
Raymond 21 / *55 Wing Command Post - Offutt AFB, NE
Raymond 22 / *57 Wing Command Post - Nellis AFB, NV
Raymond 23 / *388FW Command Post - Hill AFB, UT
Raymond 24 / *552ACW Command Post - Tinker AFB, OK
Raymond 25 / *4FW Command Post - Seymour Johnson AFB, NC
Raymond 26 / *20FW Command Post - Shaw AFB, SC
Raymond 27 / *366 Wing Command Post - Mountain Home AFB, ID
Raymond 31 / 9RW Command Post Beale AFB, CA
Raymond 33 / *28BW Command Post - Ellsworth AFB, SD
Raymond 36 / *102FW/101FS Command Post Otis ANGB, MA [This entry listed in official publications is suspect. I believe based on good monitoring by Matt Cawby and others in the Pacific NW that this callsign is not used by Otis, but by Fairchild]
Raymond 36 / 92ARW Command Post Fairchild AFB, WA
Raymond 37 / *7BW Command Post - Dyess AFB, TX

Listing marked with an asterisks have been confirmed through listings in official sources (i.e. DoD IFR Sup, etc).

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Late breaking - NORAD exercise planned for Washington D.C. Today

Information courtesy of Alan Henney and the SCAN-DC newsgroup.

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. – The North American Aerospace Defense Command and its geographical component, the Continental United States NORAD Region (CONR), will conduct Exercise Falcon Virgo 07-05 Thursday in the National Capital Region (Washington, D.C.).

This exercise comprises a series of training flights held in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Capital Region Command Center, the Joint Air Defense Operations Center, Civil Air Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard, and NORAD's Northeastern Air Defense Sector.

Exercise Falcon Virgo 07-05 is designed to test NORAD's intercept and identification operations. Civil Air Patrol aircraft, Cessna's, US Air Force, F-16's and C-38, and the US Coast Guard, HH-65 helicopter will participate in the exercise. Residents in the area can expect flights to occur during the late night and early morning hours.

In the event of inclement weather the exercise will push to the next day, until all exercise requirements are met.

These exercises are carefully planned and closely controlled to ensure NORAD's rapid response capability. NORAD has conducted exercise flights of this nature throughout the U.S. and Canada since the start of Operation Noble Eagle, the command's response to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

As the Continental United States (CONUS) geographical component of the bi-national command NORAD, CONR provides airspace surveillance and control, and directs air sovereignty activities for the CONUS region. CONR and its assigned Air Force assets throughout the country ensure air safety and security against potential air threats.

Since Sept. 11, 2001, NORAD fighters have responded to more than 2,100 possible air threats in the United States, Canada and Alaska, and have flown more than 42,000 sorties with the support of Airborne Warning and Control System and air-to-air-refueling aircraft.

F-15s kept 'eye on the sky' during Super Bowl

2/7/2007 - HOMESTEAD AIR RESERVE BASE, Fla. (AFNEWS) -- In the days leading up to Super Bowl XLI, Airmen from the Florida Air National Guard's 125th Fighter Wing at Jacksonville were ready to switch on engine power to their fighter aircraft in an instant.

While thousands of fans streamed into Miami, the wing's F-15 Eagles stepped up patrols, flying low-level patrols over local airports and Dolphin Stadium.

"Miami is one of the most heavily populated areas in the southeast," said Lt. Col. John Black an alert pilot assigned to the 125th FW. "With the Super Bowl, we just want to make sure we have the right things in place -- to take care of our people."

The alert mission allowed nearly 150 million spectators to keep an eye on the game Feb. 4, as the 125th FW Airmen kept an eye on the sky.

"Any time you can do something that makes sure our country continues to operate the way it is supposed to, it's good to be a part of that," Colonel Black said.

The U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, the Thunderbirds, flew over the stadium at the completion of the national anthem at the Super Bowl. The team was also recognized on the pre-game show and during the game.

And here are a few of the many frequencies monitored during the Super Bowl and thanks to our South Florida Monitoring Team who forwarded their intercept info from the event.

139.825 PITMAN CAP Interplane (20FW/55FS Shaw AFB, SC)
143.850 Thunderbirds Flight Demo Group (AM)
235.250 Thunderbirds Flight Demo Group (AM)
260.900 NORAD CAP
279.550 Homestead Tower
291.600 Miami ARTCC Center (Pahokee RCAG)
307.100 Miami ARTCC Center (Pahokee RCAG)
320.600 NORAD CAP Aerial Refueling
345.000 US Coast Guard Primary
354.100 Miami Approach Control
413.275 Thunderbirds Comm Cart at Stadium (DCS 431)

And remember the March 2007 Monitoring Times magazine is in final production and it will include my new 8th annual air show guide, articles on attending/monitoring the Andrews AFB air show, and an exclusive look at the 193rd SOW. This issue always sells out so you might want to get your subscription started right now so you don't miss this or any other issue of Monitoring Times - the world's No. 1 radio hobby monitoring magazine.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Interim Polar System reaches full operational capability

2/6/2007 - LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. (AFNEWS) -- Air Force officials announced Feb. 6 the successful launch and delivery for operational service of the second Interim Polar System payload.

With this placement of the second of three planned IPS payloads, the extremely high frequency constellation is at full operational capability, providing 24-hour EHF communications coverage of the northern polar region.

"The capabilities provided by the Interim Polar System will give U.S. forces located in the polar region a critical asset for seamless communications with both CONUS-based combatant commanders and separate force elements located above the Arctic Circle," said Brig. Gen. Ellen Pawlikowski, the Military Satellite Communications Systems Wing commander.

The system provides secure EHF communications connectivity for support of peacetime, contingency and wartime operations. The payloads are produced by Boeing Satellite Systems in El Segundo, Calif., and hosted on a classified platform in a highly elliptical orbit. Initial operational capability of the IPS was achieved in 1998 with the launch of the first payload, which is still providing uninterrupted service. The third payload will replace the first payload to maintain full operational capability of the system.

Author's Notes: Project 4052 - Interim Polar System
IPS or Polar Milsatsom provides protected communications (anti jam, anti scintillation, and low probablillity of intercept) for tactical users in the north polar region. Project 4052, Polar Satellite Communications, consist of scaled-down low data rate Milstar packages on three classified host satellites as an expedited, interim solution to protected communications requirements in the north polar region.

Polar MILSATCOM is studying the feasibility of maintaining some sort of Interim Polar communications capability beyond the original three host satellites.

These studies have involved the Enhanced Polar System (EPS) which will provide joint, interoperable and protected satellite communications in the northern polar region to user terminals compatible with the Advanced EHF satellite system, which is now in flight production.

The new military satellite communications system would replace the current Interim Polar System, which is limited to Milstar-compatible low-data rate service.

The EPS payload, using Advanced EHF's advanced XDR waveforms, will provide much higher data rates, extended high-gain coverage and will be interoperable with next-generation Advanced EHF-compatible sea-based, ground and airborne user terminals.

The existing IPS payloads provides EHF low data rate (75 bps to 256 kbps) communications to users above 65 degrees north latitude by using satellites in high elliptical orbit (HEO) or known as Molniya orbits. IPS supports combatant commands and NATO missions with C2, DISN, and essential targeting information.

Based on information in the public domain and my DoD Satellite database here is the data on the satellites I believe are carrying the IPS EHF package.

USA 137 / 1998-005A / 25148 / SDS III-1/Capricorn 1
Launched 1/29/1998 at 18:37 UTC from ETR LC36A aboard an Atlas 2A rocket.

The second satellite launch that is the subject of this press release above by the USAF is a bit of a mystery. Based on a quick review of all my sources this morning, there was no launch from the ETR yesterday (Feb 6) despite what this article implies.

My best guess is that the IPS payload mentioned above was carried on a HEO milsat launched last year that is just now coming online for operation. The only satellite platform that fits this bill is USA 184 NROL-22/SBIRS HEO-1, 2006-027A 29249 launched on June 28. 2006.

DOD to establish U.S. Africa Command

by Jim Garamone, American Forces Press Service

2/6/2007 - WASHINGTON (AFNEWS) -- The U.S. military will establish a separate U.S. Africa Command to oversee military operations on the African continent, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced during congressional testimony Feb. 6.

"The president has decided to stand-up a new unified, combatant command, Africa Command, to oversee security cooperation, building partnership capability, defense support to non-military missions, and, if directed, military operations on the African continent," Secretary Gates said in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The command will enable the U.S. military to have a more effective and integrated approach than the current command setup, Secretary Gates said.

Responsibility for operations on the African continent is currently divided among three combatant commands: U.S. European Command, which has responsibility for most of the nations in the African mainland except in the Horn of Africa; U.S. Central Command, which has responsibility for Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia and Kenya; and U.S. Pacific Command, which has responsibility for Madagascar, the Seychelles and the Indian Ocean area off the African coast.

The secretary called this arrangement an "outdated arrangement left over from the Cold War."

He added Department of Defense officials will consult closely with Congress and European and African allies to implement the effort.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

GPS upgrade will require 'complicated choreography'

by Staff Sgt. Don Branum
50th Space Wing Public Affairs

1/31/2007 - SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Space professionals with the 2nd Space Operations Squadron have a daunting task ahead of them this summer: replacing the command-and-control system for GPS without any loss of "on-time, on-target" service to military or civil users.

The new system, called the Architecture Evolution Plan, will provide 2nd SOPS with the tools to command upcoming generations of GPS satellites, said 1st Lt. Robert Kaegy, who is assigned to 2nd SOPS' AEP migration program.

The upgrade consists of hardware and software to replace the original command-and-control system, which has operated since GPS' inception, said Capt. Brian O'Connell, GPS Modernization Flight commander.

"The system will be capable of commanding and controlling the GPS constellation much as we do today, but planned software drops will also allow us to control the new II-F block of satellites when they're ready to fly," Captain O'Connell said.

The system also lets operators link directly into the Air Force Satellite Control Network, more than doubling the number of sites they can use for satellite command and control.

"This provides us with a greater capability to command our satellites, reduce commanding visibility gaps and potentially reduce our anomaly response time," Captain O'Connell said.

The transition process won't be as simple as turning off one system and turning on another, however.

"The core of the system is something called the Kalman Filter," Captain O'Connell said. "This system takes in data from our monitoring stations worldwide and uses this data to predict where each of the satellites will be in the future. This model is constantly updated, and the model in turn is uploaded to each vehicle."

The Kalman Filter makes sure each GPS satellite is broadcasting a precise navigation and timing signal. The new system will have a new Kalman Filter--which means the system will have to be carefully aligned with the current system's Kalman Filter.

"If we didn't do this, and we began uploading satellites with data from the AEP Kalman Filter, those vehicles would tell you that you're in a different place than the vehicles that still contain 'legacy' uploads," Captain O'Connell explained. "Clearly you wouldn't want your GPS receiver trying to tell you that you're in two different places."

In addition, each GPS ground antenna and monitoring station must migrate to the new system.

"This is a complicated piece of choreography," the captain said.

The process of converting the constellation and ground system takes about five days.