MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho --
The 366th Fighter Wing hosted members from Eglin and Nellis Air Force Base during Combat Shield, June 21-25.
Combat Shield is a training assessment that tests the effectiveness and functionality of a units’ aircraft electronic warfare systems. There are two teams in Combat Shield: a Maintenance team which tests the electronic warfare functionality and a Cyber team which inspects the software in the support equipment.
“Each year the Combat Shield team comes out to hook up their test equipment to all of our aircraft individually and support equipment,” said Tech. Sgt. Bryce Tenney, 366th Fighter Wing A4 wing avionics manager. “We get a pass or fail rating for each aircraft that adds up to a final grade for the readiness of the Wing when in a combat area that has radar related threats.”
This year, however, they’ve added a new component to the assessment.
“One of the newer things that they are doing out here is the cyber portion,” said Maj. Richard Allred, 391st Fighter Squadron wing electronic warfare officer. “When we load our software into the jets there’s possibilities of introducing viruses into the system. So, they test the cyber portion of it to make sure we are not introducing viruses into our systems.”
The electronic warfare systems the team tested was a Radar Warfare Receiver (RWR) and the Joint Services Electronic Combat System Tester (JSECST). An RWR is a Defensive suite in a jet that warns the pilot of incoming air-to-air and air-to-ground threats, and a JSECST tests the RWR and the cables to make sure they are working properly.
Once they have all the data from the tests, the 366th Fighter Wing looks over the results and adjust to what may need to be improved.
“We typically have a good result, especially after the last eight years,” Tenney said. “Last year I believe our final out was a 94 percent pass rate and we’re hoping to get something like that again this year.”