Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Military Exercise Talisman Saber 2013 - Preparations Begin with Aircraft Movements at Rockhampton and Townsville Airports

Exercise Talisman Saber 2013 is scheduled to take place from Monday 15 July to Monday 5 August 2013.

Exercise Talisman Saber 2013 is a US led Australian supported exercise conducted primarily in Australia to improve combat training, readiness and interoperability, across a wide spectrum of military activities. The Exercise is conducted at designated Australian Defence Force (ADF) training facilities throughout Queensland, and in adjacent maritime areas of the Coral Sea. Key sites include the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA) in Central Queensland, Townsville Field Training Area, port facilities in Queensland (Brisbane, Gladstone and Alma Ports), as well as Rockhampton and Cairns Airports.

Reports suggest that preparations in Rockhampton and Townsville are well under way, with personnel and equipment spotted in the two cities over the last couple of weeks.

Rockhampton Airport has already played host to a couple of small US military aircraft, as well as multiple Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Beech B350 Super King Air arrivals, as well as the odd training flight from a RAAF Boeing C-17A Globemaster III and Airbus KC-30A MRTT.

RAAF Beech B350 Super King Air A32-439 at Rockhampton Airport recently   (File photo taken by 'IAD' ©)

During a recent trip North, Rockhampton plane spotter 'IAD' captured a great image of a pair United States Air Force (USAF) Dornier C-146A (Dornier 328-120) aircraft on the ground at Townsville Aiport. 

Photo taken by 'IAD' ©

Also spotted at Townsville Airport last week was a Nippon Cargo Airlines Boeing B747-400F JA05KZ, which was operating in support of Talisman Saber.

There are reports that more US aircraft are due to arrive into Rockhampton Airport this coming weekend, with US Navy (USN) 7th Fleet Band from Yokosuka, Japan, starting performances in the area from Sunday 7 July. There are also reports of multiple military aircraft arriving into the beef city on Monday 8 July.

United States Navy (USN) Boeing C-40A at Rockhampton Airport in 2011 (File photo)

The Talisman Saber 2013 Open Day has also been announced and will be held on Sunday 14 July at the Rockhampton Showgrounds from 11.30am to 4pm (entry via gates 2 and 8 only). For the small price of $2 per person (under 5's free), the TS13 Open Day offers a unique opportunity for members of the community to view military hardware, aircraft and displays, talk to defence personnel from Australian and visiting US forces, enjoy performances by US and RAR bands, and enjoy the skill of the Australian Federation Guard Precision Drill Team.

Talisman Sabre Open Day 2011  (File photos)
Food, drinks and static displays also provided by various local community groups. All gate proceeds donated to Legacy.

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