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AIR FORCE December 10, 2009
By FLTLT Jaimie Abbott
THE first two Wedgetail Air-
borne Early Warning and Control
(AEW&C) aircraft have been deliv-
ered to 2SQN.
Hundreds joined CAF AIRMSHL
Mark Binskin at RAAF Base
Williamtown for the arrival of the new
2SQN will eventually operate six
Wedgetails, at a project cost of $4 bil-
lion.AEW&C Program Manager AVM
Chris Deeble said the capability is
extremely complex, given the cutting-
edge radar technology and range of
capabilities that will be incorporated
into each aircraft.
The project is approximately four
years behind schedule and, despite the
fanfare surrounding the Williamtown
arrival, there are still technical issues
which need to be addressed before full
operational capability is achieved.
"Development, test and evaluation
are ongoing with many hurdles still to
be overcome, particularly with respect
to radar, electronic support measures
and integrated system performance and
stability," AVM Deeble said.
"But when fully operational,
Wedgetail will enhance surveillance,
air defence, fleet support and force
The massive external radar mount-
ed on top of the fuselage is unlike
anything regularly seen before at
AVM Deeble said Boeing has
Wedgetail era begins
scheduled initial acceptance of the first
two aircraft for early 2010.
Just minutes after the ceremony
was over, it was straight to work for
2SQN, who will conduct familiarisa-
tion training over the next few months
while the remaining test program and
acceptance activities are completed.
"It's not just the aircrew who need
to be trained, but the support and main-
tenance crews also need to become
familiar with the aircraft. The initial
delivery of these aircraft will enable us
to start these important activities," CO
2SQN WGCDR Luke Stoodley said.
In preparation for the delivery,
2SQN personnel have carried out
maintenance training at Williamtown
for the past few months. The squad-
ron's Avionics Maintenance Officer,
FLTLT Simon Resch, said the training
using the aircraft simulator has been
"The technicians have covered eve-
rything from avionics, engines, air-
frames to electronic warfare and mis-
sion systems," he said.
The squadron's Senior Engineering
Officer, SQNLDR David Johnstone,
said: "Unlike current military air-
frames, there is no pre-existing expe-
rience so aircrew, technicians and
support staff have had to learn from
2SQN avionic technician SGT Greg
Wilson said the Wedgetail has new and
"A prime example is the Multi-role
Electronically Scanned Array radar.
No other aircraft have radars with the
power and complexity of this one,"
SGT Wilson said.
WOFF Engineering Craig Morris
said he was glad to see the aircraft
"It has been a long wait, but we
look forward to consolidating our
training and bringing the Wedgetail
into service," WOFF Morris said.
OC 42WG GPCAPT Stephen
Meredith said the Wedgetail capability
will play a key role in achieving the
ADF's network-enabled war-fighting
FAMILY PRIDE: From left, OC 42WG GPCAPT Stephen Meredith, CAF
AIRMSHL Mark Binskin and CO 2SQN WGCDR Luke Stoodley pose with
their new Wedgetail.
Photo: ACW Katharine Pearson
ENHANCEMENT: Right, AVM Chris Deeble addresses the guests.
Photo: CPL Dave Gibbs
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