AirForces Monthly - October 2016

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Always Vigilant
Dylan Eklund visited North Wales to learn about the role of the RAF’s only Search and Rescue Training Unit and explain its plans for the future.

‘Green Knights’ and the Lightning II
The US Marine Corps air assets will be revolutionised with the arrival of the F-35B into service, Ted Carlson/ Fotodynamics investigates the unit taking the lead role – VMFA-121 ‘Green Knights’.

Holding the Line at Luts’k
With their home base undergoing some repairs, Ukraine’s Su-24 Fencers deployed to Luts’k to fly some live-fire exercises. Vladimir Trendafilovski assesses this potent strike aircraft.

Glad to be Back!
After a ten-year gap, the ‘Grim Reapers’ of VF-101 returned to the aircraft carrier. The unit’s mission, as James DeBoer witnessed, was to complete the third phase of F-35C development testing.

Gripen Nest
Martin Scharenborg and Ramon Wenink/Global Aviation Review Press visited Såntenäs Air Base, the cradle of Gripen flying and home of the Swedish Hercules fleet.

European Air Force Transport Survey
In this, the first instalment of a four-part series, Alan Warnes and other AFM contributors examine Europe’s military transport fleet, detailing which nations are operating the latest types and which now need to upgrade.

EXERCISE REPORT: Pitch Black
The largest air exercise in the southern hemisphere, Pitch Black 2016 involved air arms from ten nations and 2,500 personnel. Chen Chuanren reports on the biennial event.

Sunset for Aéronavale’s SEMs.
Gert Kromhout looks back over the final years of service of the Super Étendard Modernisé (SEM) and its retirement ceremony in July.

FORCE REPORT: Royal Danish Air Force
Søren Augustesen reviews the Royal Danish Air Force as it prepares to bring the F-35 Lightning II into service and begin operations with the MH-60R.

Attrition
AFM’s Dave Allport reports on the world’s latest military accidents.

Base Watch
A snapshot of recent military visitors to air bases around the UK and abroad.

Debrief
Reviews of recently published books on military aviation.

Comment
AFM’s view on military aviation.