Defense Helicopter Command exercise 'Joint Falcon' near Twente Airport

On Tuesday, December 12 and Wednesday, December 13, the Defense Helicopter Command (DHC) exercise 'Joint Falcon' will take place during the day near Twente Airport. During this exercise, in which flying units and ground units are involved, the integration and cooperation of these units is central.

On the days mentioned above, two Cougar and two Chinook transport helicopters of the Defense Helicopter Command (DHC), among others, will train in cooperation with some 150 soldiers of 11 Air Mobile Brigade (11LMB) in a fictitious scenario, in which an offensive operation (air assault) is carried out to, for example, form a bridgehead (deep) in enemy territory or overpower an object. 

The helicopters depart daily from Gilze-Rijen Air Base and fly at low altitude toward the eastern Netherlands. Various scenarios are carried out in the vicinity of Enschede. In these exercises, helicopter crews train tactical flight movements close to the ground to stay out of simulated enemy radar systems. The helicopters return daily to Gilze-Rijen Air Base.

Purpose of exercise: flying under increased threat

Under conditions of increased threat, flying at altitude is not an option. Helicopters must therefore stay low to hide. They take cover at a low altitude behind obstacles such as a row of trees, a forest or a hill. This allows them to carry out their mission unseen and stay out of the opponent's radar range. Flying low and taking advantage of terrain cover is a way of self-protection for helicopter pilots. However, this requires specific training and experience so that they can act correctly in any situation and environment during deployment. To practice these tactical procedures a temporary low flying area has been applied for, the decisions for these areas can be found here.

Information and notifications flight movements

This exercise will not take place at Twente Airport, but on and around the grounds of Vliegveld Twenthe Evenementenlocatie. On www.luchtmacht.nl/vliegbewegingen, you can find more information about this exercise and the flight movements. On the Defense website, any complaints can be reported via the online complaint form.

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