"In the coming years, the exercise Cope West is expected to be planned by taking into account various other platforms, including air refueling using a tanker plane,” Prasetyo noted in a written statement released on Friday.
He further highlighted the requirement to use the exercise as an opportunity to hone skills and groom TNI’s young pilots in need of experience to perform an air operation mission.
He also observed the Base Central Debrief System (BCDS) room. BCDS is an exercise facility used to monitor all aircraft movements while conducting air battle exercises, including when the plane conducts shooting, uses rockets and bombs, and sees the accuracy of shooting.
Commander of the Roesmin Nurjadin Air Base Air Commodore Andi Kustoro stated that BCDS can also display audio visually all those aircraft engaged in a real-time air battle exercise. This exercise facility is also used during the joint exercise code-named Cope West that lasted since June 14, 2021.
"Through the monitor screen at the BCDS room, the air battle exercise can be displayed as an input for conducting evaluation during the debriefing attended by exercise participants,” Kustoro noted.
TNI AU Exercise Director Colonel Jajang Setiawan remarked that the first Cope West was conducted in Medan, North Sumatra, in 1995.
He noted that the joint exercise held in Pekanbaru this time is related to Basic Fighter Maneuver (BFM), Air Combat Maneuver (ACM), and Air Combat Tactic (ACT).
The joint exercise, code-named Cope West 2021, is also included in long-distance air battle or Beyond Visual Range (BVR).
Materials for ACT with BVR can already be realized since TNI AU’s F-16s, which have been upgraded through the Falcon Star E_MLU program, are supported by adequate air-to-air guided missile technology and weaponry system.
Colonel Jajang remarked that during the exercise, participants stay disciplined in following health protocols. During the exercise, the TNI AU had sent several F-16s from Air Squadron 3 at the Iswahjudi Airbase, and Air Squadron 16 at the Roesmin Nurjadin Arbase.
"Meanwhile, the USAF had sent six F-16s from the 13th Fighter Squadron US PACAF based in Misawa, Japan," he remarked.
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