U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II fifth-generation stealth fighters held a real hunt for Draken International’s L-39 training aircraft during the Northern Lightning exercise at Volk Field, Wisconsin.
U.S. Air Force Airmen on its F-35A fighter jets assigned to the 33rd Fighter Wing take part in annual Northern Lightning exercise. August’s edition of the exercise is the second iteration of Northern Lightning this year, the first of which occurred in May.
Pilots and air crews participating in Northern Lightning can expect to operate in a contested environment with adversary aircraft, electronic jamming and simulated surface-to-air threats, and such training is critical to building readiness for the threats and missions the nation faces.
Northern Lightning is a tactical level, joint training exercise replicating today’s air battle space with current and future weapons platforms. A variety of the world’s most advanced aircraft including the F-35, F-22, F-16, EA-18, and C-130 will participate in the exercise.
Draken International, the adversary support contractor with the world’s largest private tactical jet air force also take part in the exercise.
Draken supports military training objectives around the globe, providing tremendous cost savings over the use of traditional military fighter assets. As an organization, Draken is uniquely positioned to answer the growing demand for contract air support.
As a cost-effective force multiplier or on stand-alone missions, the L-39 is an integral part of the Draken fleet.
According to Draken’s website, Soviet-era training aircraft are the perfect addition for training pilots to fight dissimilar aircraft. They can be modified from carrying EW pods to employing ordnance in support of the demanding missions of CAS and JTAC training. These aircraft are maintained to a military standard and provides a safe, effective, economical and reliable asset.