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NATO Airborne Warning and Control aircraft landed at Zokniai airport


On Wednesday, 25 February NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force aircraft E-3 AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) was presented to the top management of the Lithuanian National Defence System and Command of the Lithuanian Armed Forces at Zokniai airport near the northern city of Siauliai.


Between 23-25 February the NATO aircraft was in Lithuania and Latvia. The aim of the visit was to introduce the NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force and its capabilities to the two future members of NATO.


The delegation was headed by the Commander of NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Force, Major General Gary Winterberger.


Minister of National Defence, Linas Linkevičius, Commander of the Lithuanian Armed Forces Major General Jonas Kronkaitis, and Commander of the Lithuanian Air Force, Colonel Edvardas Mažeikis flew on the aircraft for almost two hours and showed interest in the aircraft's possibilities. During a demonstration fly, no real surveillance of the Lithuanian territory was conducted and simulation programme was applied instead. The main radar was switched on for only an hour and during that period, guests were given a possibility to observe aircraft located in the Lithuanian air space on that particular time. After the aircraft landed at the airport, Minister Linkevičius said, " While Lithuania is integrating into NATO, its extremely important to get familiarised with the airborne early warning and control system available within the organisation".


The E-3 Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) represents the world"s standard for airborne early warning systems.


E-3 fills the needs of both airborne surveillance and command and control (C2) functions for tactical and air defense forces. It provides a highly mobile, survivable surveillance and C2 platform. The E-3 offers superior surveillance capabilities. Equipped with a "look-down" radar, the AWACS can separate airborne targets from the ground and sea clutter returns that confuse other present-day radars. Its radar "eye" has a 360-degree view of the horizon, and at operating altitudes can "see" more than 320 kilometers (200 miles). It also can detect and track both air and sea targets simultaneously.


In service since 1977, AWACS has earned the reputation as an international keeper of the peace in operation with the U.S. Air Force, NATO, United Kingdom, France and Saudi Arabia.


For more information, please visit http: beoing.com/defence-space/infoelect/e3awacs.



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