USAF employs EC-130H Compass Call aircraft against ISIS
The US Air Force (USAF) employs the EC-130H Compass Call aircraft, a modified version of the C-130 Hercules, in its fight against ISIS.
The modified aircraft, with an electronic countermeasures system, air refuelling capability and associated navigation and communications, has the ability to perform tactical command, control and communications countermeasures.
The Compass Call makes use of noise jamming to prevent communication or degrade the transfer of information essential to command and control of weapon systems and other resources, the USAF said in a statement.
USAF 43rd Expeditionary Electronic Attack Squadron commander lieutenant colonel Josh Koslov said: “When the Compass Call is up on station supporting our Iraqi allies, we are denying (ISIS) ability to command and control their forces, to coordinate attacks.”
The aircraft employs around 12 airmen, including a standard C-130 flight crew on the flight deck, a contingent of electronic warfare officers and linguists in the rear of the aircraft.
Koslov further added: “(The linguist’s) weapon is language.
“They help us to efficiently find, prioritise and target (ISIS). They prioritise the signals we’re targeting from the strategic (level) through the tactical level and they also help the electronic warfare officer make jamming decisions in order to provide the effects desired by the ground force commander.”
The EC-130H makes ISIS fighters ineffective by inducing massive confusion and friction.
The USAF currently operates a fleet of 14 EC-130Hs for electronic warfare, suppression of enemy air defences and offensive counter information.
Image: An EC-130H Compass Call taxis at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia. Photo: courtesy of US Air Force photo / Senior Airman Andrew Park.