ACC’s Agile Battle Lab accelerates austere communication capabilities for squadrons

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Jonathan Carkhuff
  • Air Combat Command Public Affairs

Air Combat Command’s Agile Battle Lab worked with the 354th Fighter Squadron at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona, to improve tactics, techniques and procedures for organic communication capabilities in an austere environment, Feb. 14-19, 2022.

Throughout the week, the Lab helped the 354th FS develop the connectivity, access and equipment needed for communication requirements in Agile Combat Employment operations.

“Command, control and communication are crucial to the fighter squadron and its combat support team during ACE, said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Gary Glojek, 354th FS commander. “Working with the Agile Battle Lab accelerates our improvement and training cycles, and prepares us for future deployments.”

The lab works with organizations around the Air Force to effectively train Airmen and bring forward changes to increase the organic capabilities of Lead Wings.  

“ACE requires Lead Wings to have organic communication and intel capabilities,” said U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Reid Beveridge, Agile Battle Lab superintendent. “Forging tactics, techniques and procedures for durable and effective communication at the wing, and down to the squadron level, make units more lethal and resilient in any ACE environment.”

Collaboration between ACC’s Agile Battle Lab and Airmen from the 354th FS was a unique opportunity to work together to improve austere C3 capabilities. 

“Working hand-in-hand with the 354th FS Airmen is empowering for everyone involved,” said Beveridge. “We got to see and hear about challenges at the tactical level, and we worked together over the course of the week to develop solutions to those challenges.” 

ACE is a proactive and reactive operational scheme of maneuver executed within threat timelines to increase survivability while generating combat power. Within ACE, command, control, and communication is critical to ensure leaders on the ground can quickly make and execute decisions when they are physically separated from their major support network.

“When we continuously maneuver small teams while generating and employing attack airpower, we are able to rely on localized leadership and mission command up to a point,” said Glojek. “Having reliable and resilient communication paths back to the fighter squadron, the Lead Wing, and the Air Operations Center improve our intelligence, mission planning and debriefs making us more lethal during dispersed operations.”