The 2023 edition of the ETAP-C 23-2 Element Lead was held in Orléans from June 5 to 16. 6 transport crews from France, Belgium, Spain and Germany came to obtain the precious ELEMENT LEADER qualification, which attests to their ability to prepare, lead and debrief a mission involving 2 or 3 aircraft. To achieve this, each aircraft flew 8 missions in two- or three-plane formations, sometimes as leader, sometimes as wingman.

A demanding tactical scenario was proposed to them: electronic warfare, air-to-air threat, ground-to-air threat and aircraft failures were on the menu. The participation of French alpha-jets enabled everyone to work on reaction workshops against the air-to-air threat in formation. Parachute drops and COMAO flights using Rafales from the French Navy and Air Force added a valuable dose of realism to the exercise. Finally, the airspace of western and central France enabled us to study the execution of these missions in a variety of meteorological and topographical conditions.

Mission accomplished for the crews, who delivered work of impressive quality! The warm welcome provided by the CIET and Orléans air base enabled everyone to work under excellent conditions, and ETAC and EATC are already looking forward to the next edition of this course there.