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Air-to-air refueling exercise with the United States Air Force during week 6

Air Force
8.2.2021 9.00
Press release
F/A-18 Hornet and KC-135 Stratotanker.
F/A-18 Hornet and KC-135 Stratotanker. Photo: Finnish Air Force.

Finnish Air Force F/A-18 Hornets will train with a United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft from 9 to 10 February 2021.

The Finnish Air Force conducts an air-to-air refueling (AAR) exercise with the United States Air Force two times a year. The objective of the exercises is to provide fighter pilots with AAR proficiency and currency training opportunities. Finnish F/A-18 pilots complete an AAR qualification as a part of their training.

Lapland Air Command will carry out the first AAR exercise of 2021 in cooperation with the United States Air Force’s 100th Air Refueling Wing (100 ARW) based at RAF Mildenhall, United Kingdom. In total, the exercise will involve 8–14 Finnish F/A-18 Hornet multi-role fighters and a U.S. KC-135 Stratotanker.

The exercise will be flown in Finnish airspace in an area bordering on Rovaniemi, Kuusamo, Kajaani and Oulu as a part of Finnish Air Force’s daily flight operations from 9 to 10 February. The Finnish F/A-18s will fly from Rovaniemi, Rissala and Pirkkala air bases. The KC-135 will operate out of RAF Mildenhall.

The air-to-air refueling exercises are a part of the Defence Forces’ international training and exercise plan, approved by the Finnish Ministry of Defence. The previous similar AAR exercise took place in September 2020.