With the end in sight, the next generation of Fighter Pilots only have a few missions left to prove they have what it takes to fly the F/A-18 Hornet. After 6 months at 2OCU (Operational Conversion Unit) the students and Squadron move to RAAF Townsville for the final 3 week stage of the 15-1 Course. ASO was invited along for one of these weeks to get a closer look at just how real it gets.
Working with 4SQN FAC (Forward Air Control) 2OCU put the students to the test and out at the range this was demonstrated with the use of live 1000lb HE (High Explosive) bombs. Capturing the action from 3km away, the power could still be felt on some of the drops. I took close to 3000 photographs, HD video of each drop plus Gopro footage of some of the passes on one day alone at the range. So if you haven’t already become an ASO subscriber for email notifications I suggest you do (on the right of this page) for the full article once the students have completed the 15-1 course. To give you an idea of just how good the range is, here are two photo’s of one of the drops. Just remember the distance is just on 3km.
A very nice pass by A21-108 showing off the 2 x 1000lb HE live weapons that are about to be used.
ASO would like to thank the Royal Australian Air Force, 2OCU, 4SQN and the students for this exclusive access. Once the course is complete the full article on this exercise will be released.- Mark Jessop