More than 1,500 military personnel, 60 fighter jets and 13 helicopters are practicing their flying skills this month at the 2019 NATO Tiger Meet at the French Air Base at Mont-de-Marsan.
Around 900 sorties are being planned, prepared, conducted and debriefed at the 2019 NATO Tiger Meet. According to a NATO news release:
“International military flying units with a tiger in their logo are getting together at the base south of Bordeaux to conduct tactical flying exercises. The participants from fighter and helicopter units from NATO Allies Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom, Partner Austria and a NATO AWACS plane are flying large mixed aircraft formations also known as composite air operations (COMAOs).
For ten days, two aircraft waves are flown. During the morning COMAO waves of some forty aircraft take off to simulate aerial manoeuvres against twenty others; this takes more than two hours and requires thorough preparation and debriefing sessions for the pilots and planners. In the afternoons the so-called shadow wave will provide training opportunities for junior pilots with limited scenarios and smaller training areas. All flights are conducted in separated airspace over the ocean, the Mont-de-Marsan area or the central parts of France.”
The different Tiger squadrons coordinate and fly together so they will find it easier to cooperate in real-world scenarios whenever and wherever required.
The NATO Tiger Meet is a tactical-level live-fly event that has existed since 1961.