AOG Develops Virtual Training Capability Published Nov. 8, 2009 By Capt. Bryon Turner 103rd Air and Space Operations Group BRADLEY ANG BASE, East Granby, Conn. -- The 103rd Air and Space Operations Group has taken another significant step toward developing in-house training capabilities through the acquisition and successful installation of the Theater Battle Management Core Systems Lite. "In some cases, we sent our people off to more than two months of communications training, and then another few weeks of AOC school, to eventually install, maintain and support this equipment," said Lt. Col. John Warren, commander, 103rd Air Communications Squadron. "It is good to finally be rolling our sleeves up here at home." The full TBMCS package is the core of the Combined Air and Space Operations Center, providing tasking for all air assets in the area of responsibility. Serving as the primary system for planning, managing and executing the air battle, feeding real-time, decision-quality information to users from the Combined Forces Air Component Commander and the staff at the CAOC to pilots, navigators, and weapons control officers on the battlefield. TBMCS synchronizes air combat power by giving users across the battlefield dynamic, mission-critical information in real time. The "Lite" version of TBMCS is a scaled down closed system that provides a realistic training environment that closely matches the real-world TBMCS operational environment. Essentially, TBMCS Lite is a simulator for CAOC planners and operators. "TBMCS Lite provides us with the tools to manage combat assets in a simulated environment," said Maj. Robert Feher, Chief of Group Stan/Eval, 103rd Air and Space Operations Group. "We are able to build and execute an Air War." TBMCS Lite enables operators to exercise their skills through a variety of scenarios including: immediate close air support requests, troops in contact situations, dynamic and time sensitive target execution, theater missile defense, changes to base statuses, alert launches, and combat search and rescue execution. The capability is also useful in the areas of refueling and airlift planning and execution. "With TBMCS Lite, we have the capabilities needed to train all facets of both air refueling planning and execution. Airlift planners can also gain training and proficiency by planning air land and airdrop missions in support of cargo and personnel movement," said Maj. Rick Mastalerz, Chief of Training, 103rd Air Mobility Operations Squadron. "This equipment will allow planners and duty officers to be proficient on systems they will eventually use to meet the CAOC's support taskings, as well as MAJCOM-directed exercises." The new training capability will enable planners and duty officers to integrate with intelligence experts to execute a successful air war within the training environment. "The Lite suite will allow Intelligence personnel the ability to exercise numerous positional skill sets from target development, to ISR asset utilization, as well as Order of Battle and analytical scenarios to more realistically expose Airmen to mission situations they will face when deployed," said 1st Lt. Chad Montague, intelligence officer, 103rd Air Intelligence Squadron. "It will better enable us to maintain a combat mission ready state and more readily fulfill the traditional role of 'Minute Men', ready to go at a moment's notice."