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03 28 2024

AIRCOM and NCI Agency celebrate joint annual Air Command and Warfighting Symposium

From 26 to 27 March 2024, the annual NATO Allied Air Command (AIRCOM) and NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency) Warfighting Symposium took place at the AIRCOM Headquarters in Ramstein, Germany. The forum brought together the Air operational community, connecting leadership from the NCI Agency and AIRCOM to discuss current priorities and increase awareness of programmes affecting air and space domain activities.

The symposium is designed to educate, inform and synchronize efforts across both organizations by presenting operational briefs, Agency technical and programmatic updates, to drive strategic discussions. This year, the main themes were operational capabilities and challenges, enhancing information sharing, survivability and resilience, and future capabilities.

AIRCOM and NCI Agency celebrate joint annual Air Command and Warfighting Symposium

The NCI Agency General Manager, Ludwig Decamps, attended the event alongside senior officials from NATO's Air Command domain. Attendees also included AIRCOM Commander, General James B. Hecker and Director of NCI Agency Communications and Information Systems (CIS) Support Units (CSUs) General Ralf Hoffmann. AIRCOM is responsible for delivering Air Power for the Alliance across Europe. It provides command and control of NATO's Integrated Air and Missile Defence Mission, which incorporates all measures that contribute to the deterrence of any air or missile threat. General Hecker is also responsible for the NATO Space Centre in support of the Alliance.

The NCI Agency directly supports the daily work of AIRCOM via its CSUs in Ramsteim and Uedem (Germany), Poggio Renatico (Italy) and Torrejon (Spain). In Ramstein, the NCI Agency CSU enables AIRCOM Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance capabilities, by delivering secure and interoperable CIS services that enhance Allied Air Power. The Agency also offers support for the Ballistic Missile Defence system located at the Ramstein Air Base.

"The Warfighting Symposium further strengthens an already robust partnership between AIRCOM and the NCI Agency," remarked Colonel Mokrovich, Commander of CSU Ramstein. "This partnership is paramount for the successful Air and Missile Defence of the Alliance and key to AIRCOM's ability to command and control the Air component for any joint NATO operation."

CSU Uedem in Germany and CSU Torrejon in Spain play a crucial role in providing CIS services to the Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC), which are responsible for NATO's air-policing mission across Europe. The CAOCs identify unknown aircraft and communicate activation orders with the pilots on standby to intervene if necessary. Agency staff stand ready for help desk resolution and service desk delivery, in order to ensure a secure communications connection remains at all times. In addition, CSU Poggio Renatico is responsible for the deployable air command and control (C2) centre CIS support that enables the air C2 and recognized air picture support.