The US Air Force's (USAF) F-22 Raptors have started taking part in training missions alongside the Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) F/A 18 Hornets.
The combined training is said to be the first Enhanced Air Cooperation (EAC) activity in Australia and forms a part of the US force posture initiatives.
The EAC builds on a range of air exercises and training activities already conducted by the US and Australia, according to a statement posted by the Australian Department of Defence.
RAAF 17 Squadron commanding officer Wing Commander Andrew Tatnell said: “The F-22 is one of the world’s most advanced fifth-generation fighter aircraft.
“Combined training activity will vastly enhance the RAAF’s ability to integrate with the USAF's fifth-generation aircraft while introducing fifth-generation operations to RAAF Base Tindal.
“The training is also important to the RAAF as the latest generation of aircraft and technology, including EA-18G Growler and F-35A Lightning II, come into service in the coming years.”
The F-22 Raptors from the USAF's 90th Fighter Squadron, 3rd Wing and the RAAF’s 75 Squadron F/A-18A/B Hornets will conduct defensive counter air missions and offensive counter air scenarios.
As part of the combined training activities, the F-22s and F/A-18A/B Hornets will also conduct short missions to RAAF Base Townsville.
Running until the end of this month, the exercise will also witness participation from other ground assets and personnel.
Image: A USAF F-22 aircraft arrives at RAAF Base Tindal. Photo: © Commonwealth of Australia.