173rd Communications Flight practices domestic operations response skills

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Penny Snoozy
  • 173rd Fighter Wing

The 173rd Fighter Wing Communications Flight practiced domestic operations skills with their Army National Guard counterparts from Salem, Ore., Sept. 10, 2022. Together they set up an internet satellite and a radio tower while training to stand up the Joint Incident Sight Communication Capability (JISCC).

“Our goal is to have members that are trained and ready to go out the door utilizing the domestic response capability of the JISCC,” said Capt. Tracy Coon, the 173rd Communications Flight commander.  “If disaster strikes, we then have the tools and Airmen needed to support the emergency response efforts to enhance aid to citizens of Oregon.”

There were two main pieces of equipment being installed for the JISCC--the satellite terminal and the multiband omni-directional antenna. The satellite provides average commercial internet speeds to the site where it is set up and can communicate with any JISCC that is set up.

Army Sgt. Christopher Brewer from the Oregon National Guard says the importance of the multiband omni-directional antenna is that it allows the user to connect to UHF, VHF, and 700 and 800 bands all simultaneously.

“The goal is to set up in 45 minutes to one hour for an experienced team, which requires training like we’re doing today,” said Brewer.

To power these communications tools, the members used generators and a flexible, 12-panel solar system unit with battery storage supplied by the 270th Air Traffic Control Squadron.  The set-up allows for the JISCC to run in an austere environment, day or night and provides an essential function during potential disasters.

“The joint training between Army and Air has greatly enhanced my team’s capabilities so they can confidently respond anytime, anywhere,” said Coon.