NATO AWACS in Trident Juncture - Oct 2015

Published on Nov 6, 2015
NATO acquired a fleet of E-3 AWACS jets similar to those operated by the USAF, UK, and a few other countries. AWACS is a proven platform for observing an aerial battlefield scenario. The E-3 AWACS derived from the commercial Boeing 707-320 series of jetliners. During NATO's Trident Juncture Exercise, these quick scenes of AWACS inside and out were shot in October 2015. This NATO news video B-roll was shot by Laurence Cameron. The accompanying NATO news release says: "NATO’s AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System), a highly mobile and powerful aerial radar system, flies over Southern Europe during exercise Trident Juncture, providing an invaluable link between NATO’s many air assets and commanders on the ground.
Made up of an international crew, the AWACS fleet has been continually updated since it was first launched in 1980, and is a vital part of any large scale NATO exercise.
The AWACS based in Trapani, in Sicily, are from the E-3A Component of which there are 17 E-3A aircraft. These modified Boeing 707s are easily identifiable from the distinctive radar dome mounted on the fuselage. The E-3A usually operates at an alltitude of around 10 km. From this altitude a single E-3A can constantly monitor the airspace within a radius of more than 400 km and can exchange information – via digital data links – with ground-based, sea-based and airborne commanders. By using pulse Doppler radar, an E-3A flying within NATO airspace can distinguish between targets and ground reflections and is therefore able to give early warning of low- or high-flying aircraft operating over the territory of a potential aggressor".

Climb aboard a NATO AWACS jet; notice the electronic displays of Italy's unmistakable outline as crewmembers monitor exercise air traffic for Trident Juncture.