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July 18, 2013
New housing at Edinburgh
NEW accommodation has been officially opened at
RAAF Base Edinburgh, resulting in 432 new units
for single members living on base. The accom-
modation features self-contained apartments
with secure storage, parking and recreational
facilities. Project Single Living Environment and
Accommodation Precinct Phase 2 will improve
the standard of accommodation across 14 bases
around Australia, delivering 3015 units nationally.
Boss Lift leaves Sollies
A GROUP of 28 employers deployed on the final
Exercise Boss Lift to the Solomon Islands from July
1 to 4, to see the contribution their staff made to
the Solomon Islands on Operation Anode. Over the
past 11 years, Defence has taken more than 1000
employers to the Solomon Islands. The drawdown
of ADF personnel from the region means the Boss
Lift focus has shifted to major domestic exercises.
Hawk contract awarded
BAE Systems UK, the original Hawk aircraft manu-
facturer, has been awarded a multi-million dollar
contract to upgrade the Lead-In Fighter Hawk fleet.
Defence Materiel Minister Mike Kelly said both
BAE Systems UK and BAE Systems Australia have
worked closely with Defence to define the scope of
the upgrade. "This provides a solid foundation for
the progression of aircrew onto the F/A-18 Hornets
and Super Hornets and the Joint Strike Fighter
when it is introduced into service," Dr Kelly said.
REFORMS to the maintenance of the 12 C-130J
Hercules have delivered the equivalent of an extra
aircraft being available for missions, by increas-
ing their availability by eight per cent. Head of
the Defence Materiel Organisation's Aerospace
Systems Division, AVM Colin Thorne, said the
changes made considerable savings in workforce
and maintenance costs. A review was launched in
2011 and Australian Aerospace has been approved
to increase servicing intervals from 30 to 38 weeks,
extending the full cycle of scheduled maintenance
from 480 to 608 weeks.
Lync up with colleagues
AN INSTANT messaging and video conferencing
tool called Microsoft Lync was expected to be made
available to all users of the Defence Restricted
Network as of July 15. Following an upgrade of the
Defence Secret Network to Microsoft Lync 2010 by
the Chief Information Officer Group in March this
year, a requirement for similar functionality on the
Defence Restricted Network was also identified.
Microsoft Lync provides users with an instant mes-
saging capability to enhance business communica-
tion between people and work groups. For further
information on Microsoft Lync 2010 and its func-
tionality on the DRN visit the Lync website http://
Talisman Saber 13 kicks off
UNMANNED Air Systems (UAS)
will play a pivotal role in Air Force's
ability to support Australia's national
security interests into the future,
according to CAF AIRMSHL Geoff
In a speech delivered to the
Williams Foundation Seminar earlier
this month, CAF provided a fresh
perspective on the moral and ethical
issues surrounding the use of UAS.
"Some pundits will argue that the
use of these systems is immoral,"
"Many media articles use phrases
like, 'drones have killed' -- it is as if
the platform has become an entity
and responsibility is being placed on
this inanimate object."
CAF said although the word
'drone' was commonplace in the
wider media, it was not a term used
in Air Force to describe UAS.
"UAS are not drones because
they are far more complex and sub-
ject to ground-based human control,"
"Unmanned Air Systems are
designed by humans, controlled by
humans, with operational decisions
made by humans."
CAF argued it was the responsi-
bility of the government of the day
and society to argue whether the
nation had the right to engage in war.
"So the moral argument is
whether it is justified to use violence
in the name of national security -- not
whether the use of Remotely Piloted
Aircraft (RPA) is right or wrong,"
"If it is determined a war is just,
then the question of the justness of
using RPA is one of ethics."
CAF said the introduction of the
Triton maritime UAS or an equiva-
lent, which is used in concert with
the future replacement of the AP-3C,
the P-8 Poseidon, replacing the
AP-3C, would "revolutionise mari-
But he acknowledged the most
contentious role for UAS, which he
said Australia does not possess, "is
that of strike".
CAF said he saw little difference
between the use of an armed RPA
and a manned platform, and said he
envisaged Australia would acquire a
UAS with strike capability.
"We have a duty to the population
to safeguard as best we can the men
and women we commit to conflict,"
"If it means obtaining a capabili-
ty that increases the protection of our
personnel then it would be negligent
not to consider UAS."
In a message to those who object
to the use of UAS because they are
"too cowardly" and "too removed
from scrutiny", CAF asked them "to
consider the safety of the sons and
daughters, or brothers and sisters, we
commit to combat".
"War is not a sporting contest
where the fairness of a level playing
field is sought," he said.
"We must have a balanced and
informed discussion on the use of
A link to CAF's speech can be found at
SURVEILLANCE: A US Navy MQ-4C
Triton unmanned aircraft system.
Photo: Alan Radecki, Northrop Grumman
SGT Dave Morley
AIR Lift Group is expecting to be well
in demand during Exercise Talisman
Saber 13 (TS13), taking place from July
15 to August 5 at Shoalwater Bay in
KC-30A tankers will put recent expe-
rience gained in Guam during Exercise
Cope North and Darwin during Exercise
Aces North into practice. They will con-
duct air-to-air refuelling support to Super
C-17A will conduct a cooperative air-
drop mission with their US Air Force
(USAF) counterparts, which is expected
to include delivery of container delivery
These systems, weighing up to
a tonne each, will be delivered to the
Shoalwater Bay Training Area from July
Richmond-based C-130Js will sup-
port ground forces in the form of airdrop
and airlift missions throughout the exer-
cise.Up to three C-130Js will support
Army's 3 Brigade's mass insertion of
troops to the SWBTA, also from July
King Air 350 light transports from
Townsville's 38SQN will provide a flexi-
ble transport solution, airlifting key exer-
cise personnel around Australia during
Combat Support Group (CSG) will
be kept busy as well.
CO 382 Expeditionary Combat
Support Squadron (ECSS) WGCDR
Andrew Lancaster said TS13 was
a unique opportunity for elements of
CSG to deploy in support of a Joint Task
Force (JTF), conducting combined force
entry operations in a hostile environ-
"CSG force elements, togeth-
er with personnel from the USAF 36
Contingency Response Group, are
responsible for opening and operating
the main air point of entry for ground
forces conducting the exercise," he said.
"The success of opening and main-
taining the air bridge is critical to the
overall success of the JTF mission and
showcases all CSG's enabling functions,
notably airfield engineering, communi-
cations, health support, logistic support
and base operations."
Personnel from 382ECSS will be
activating Williamson Airfield in the
SWBTA for the exercise.
SUPPORT: Top, C-17As will conduct a cooperative airdrop
mission with the USAF, which is expected to include delivery
of container delivery systems stores to Exercise Talisman
Saber at Shoalwater Bay in Queensland. Inset, KC-30As will
provide air-to-air refuelling support to Super Hornets during
the exercise. Photos: GNR Shannon Joyce and SQNLDR Paul Simmonds
IN the July 4 edition of Air Force News,
special coverage of the Combat Support
restructure incorrectly reported that all
security force personnel had been approved
to wear the Air Force blue beret. All security
force personnel except for explosive ord-
nance disposal technicians are approved to
wear the beret.
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