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RAF Atlas aircrew and ground staff exchange skills with French counterparts

A Royal Air Force Atlas aircraft has flown to Orleans, France for its crew and ground support specialists to exchange expertise with the French Air and Space Force.

Personnel from the different Air Forces standing smiling at the camera with their arms crossed

Aircrew, engineers and specialists in air movements, fuel and airfield operations collaborated with their French counterparts at Bricy Air Base to test and improve their ability to work together and support each other in austere environments.

Personnel refuelling

"The aim of the exercise is to train together as a coalition in a complex air environment, facing a high-level threat from a peer adversary.

"The French Air and Space Force have been superb and gracious hosts and the fact we both fly the A400M Atlas makes interoperability so much easier, we have both learnt a great deal from each other.”

Squadron Leader Beard
Detachment Commander

Royal Canadian Air Force aircraft on the runway

The heavy lift aircraft, part of the Air Mobility Force based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, showed its ability for Agile Combat Employment – to disperse from a targeted base at a moment’s notice, and operate in irregular or austere conditions with minimal support.

Working with French Air Force personnel, looking at papers on a table

The team operated seamlessly from Bricy Air Base with support from local airfield services, showing the flexibility of the aircraft and the interoperability of the French and UK forces. Six other allied nations also took part including Spain, Canda, Greece and Italy, showing the RAF’s ability to collaborate with NATO and partner nations.

RAF Atlas on the runway

“Each participating country is using this exercise to hone vital readiness skills and enhance interoperability between air forces.

“The RAF detachment made up of both regular and reserve forces have stepped up to the mark and delivered; proving again the agility of our air force and our ability to deploy and work from any location.”

Flight Lieutenant Meredith
Project Officer

Large group of personnel from the various air forces standing and looking up at the camera from afar on the runway