The Singapore Armed Forces has reached another chapter in terms of Command Post Operations (CPO), with lessons learnt from Exercises over 12,000km apart, in Exercise Wallaby and Exercise Forging Sabre.
Complex Air Combat Command (ACC) exercise at Forging Sabre has come a long way since 2005, and now it is running like clockwork between the RSAF Commands and Army components.
A milestone of XFS 2015 was the inclusion of the IAI Heron 1 from 119 and 128 SQN which provided battlefield surveillance and lasing in engagement. With the help of the UAV, six moving targets were destroyed by a single F-15SG bomb run.
To clearly understand the value and the breakthrough of the simultaneous strike, one would have to understand that traditionally, any fighter would only be able to lase and drop a bomb for a single target at any one time, ie: four F-15, despite carrying a combined 60 L-JDAM is only able to destroy four targets.
XFS showcase the ability of a F-15SG formation to utilise their Link-16 datalink to coordinate and assign targets for each aircraft. At the same time, two Heron 1 UAV lased two moving targets alongside the formation of four F-15SG, and with the ‘bomb-platform’ to key in the six laser codes and release all six Laser JDAMS.
One can only imagine the flexibility once the F-16C/D are upgraded with the Link 16.
A valuable quote by Exercise Air Director, SLTC Liew Boon Ping said “You are no longer tied to your system to make it precise, you can actually leverage on other platform / person to make your weapon precise. We have effectively de-linked our scope of operation. ”
In Ex Wallaby 2015, the RSAF has moved away from the airport setting and set up camp at Warriors Camp, with its independent CP.
Sitting side by side with Army battlestaff, the RSAF planned and executed Participation missions supporting the ground campaign. Despite a more rudimentary set up at Warriors Camp, the XWB CP exercised the ability of the RSAF to function in a ‘’outfield’’ command and control, and the ability to launch and recover rotary assets in harsh conditions.
Imagine the possibility of both CP setup in a single exercise, and lessons learnt form over 20 years of Wallaby and a decade of Forging Sabre applied in a single drill, the outcome will be at the forefront of service integration and a sight to behold.