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    52nd Combat Communications Squadron

    Agile Flag 21-1 52d Combat Communications Squadron

    Photo By Capt. Margaret Kealy-Machella | U.S. Air Force Capt. William Bearden Jr., network systems flight commander, 52d Combat...... read more read more



    Story by Capt. Margaret Kealy-Machella 

    366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

    “When I first heard the concept of operations for AGILE FLAG 21-1, I expected a challenging environment where we would have to provide communications that enabled proper command and control of geographically dispersed assets. When we got to Tyndall Air Force Base, we found this to be the case, with many challenges. That being said, the Airmen of my team displayed unparalleled work ethic and dedication when setting up and taking down equipment critical to AGILE FLAG 21-1. We were responsible for roughly four times the amount of base operating support equipment than we usually use. Despite this fact, my team was still able to set it up and tear it down exceptionally quickly. One of our biggest challenges was ensuring a proper Primary, Alternate, Contingency, and Emergency (PACE) plan for communications. This is especially difficult when it involves three geographically separate sites and multiple communication mediums across the spectrum of classifications. Having these different communication channels is absolutely critical to creating resilient networks and ensuring that users can still communicate when one method of communication fails. I also found that Murphy’s Law is always in effect, especially during operations. During the experiment, we had two different generators that were powering communications equipment at a geographically separated site fail. Thanks to anticipation on the part of the Airmen at that site and the flexibility of the 366th Fighter Wing A4 staff, we were able to fix the issue before it impacted the mission. Through this experiment, we proved that we can provide communications to enable command and control across geographically separated units, supporting the agile combat employment concept in action. We also gained valuable experience and perspective on what future operations may look like and were able to provide valuable insight to drive the resourcing and employment of assets across the combat communications community. I am very proud of my team’s professionalism and innovation. Whether it was engineering a network solution to enable a common operating picture for our aircrew and planners on the fly, or shooting a microwave shot to a hardened building in order to extend the network because a hurricane is on its way, they overcame every problem they faced. It was an honor and a privilege to support the inaugural AGILE FLAG as we explore what agile combat employment means for our Air Force and work to ‘Accelerate Change’ in our Air Force.”

    -Capt William Bearden, Commander, Network Systems Flight, 52nd Combat Communications Squadron



    Date Taken: 10.27.2020
    Date Posted: 11.02.2020 22:21
    Story ID: 382255
    Location: TYNDALL AFB, FL, US

    Web Views: 465
    Downloads: 2