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Sentry Aloha puts fighter integration to the test

A fighter pilot with the 199th Fighter Squadron, Hawaii Air National Guard gives the traditional Hawaii Shaka to say hello and to show his aloha spirit on his way to takeoff at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 16, 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha Exercises.

A fighter pilot with the 199th Fighter Squadron, Hawaii Air National Guard gives the traditional Hawaii Shaka to say hello and to show his aloha spirit on his way to takeoff at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 16, 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha Exercises. The 199th Fighter Squadron is part of the 154th Wing, which is the largest Air National Guard wing in the nation. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. James Ro)

A crew member with the 513th Air Control Group, perform system checks before departing for Sentry Aloha exercises.

A crew member with the 513th Air Control Group, perform system checks before departing for Sentry Aloha exercises. Sentry Aloha is an ongoing series of exercises, hosted by the Hawaii Air National Guard’s 154th Wing, involving multiple aircraft and services. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Staff Sgt. James Ro)

A crew member with the 513th Air Control Group, perform system checks before departing for Sentry Aloha exercises.

A crew member with the 513th Air Control Group, perform system checks before departing for Sentry Aloha exercises. Sentry Aloha is an ongoing series of exercises, hosted by the Hawaii Air National Guard’s 154th Wing, involving multiple aircraft and services. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Staff Sgt. James Ro)

Crew members from the 513th Air Control Group board the Boeing E-3 Sentry aircraft at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 24. 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha exercises.

Crew members from the 513th Air Control Group board the Boeing E-3 Sentry aircraft at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 24. 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha exercises. Reservist from the 513th Air Control Group provide command and control for Sentry Aloha 18-1. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Staff Sgt. James Ro)

Two crew chiefs with the 154th Maintenance Group, Hawaii Air National Guard prepare to launch a F-22 Raptor at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 16, 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha exercises.

Two crew chiefs with the 154th Maintenance Group, Hawaii Air National Guard prepare to launch a F-22 Raptor at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on Jan. 16, 2018 as part of Sentry Aloha exercises. Sentry Aloha is an ongoing series of exercises, hosted by the Hawaii Air National Guard's 154th Wing, involving multiple types of aircraft and services. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. James Ro)

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii --

The Hawaii Air National Guard (HIANG) has completed its first large-scale “Sentry Aloha” fighter exercise of 2018. The training sorties ran from Jan. 10 to Jan. 24 in and around the air spaces surrounding Hawaii.

Sentry Aloha is an ongoing series of exercises hosted by the Hawaii Air National Guard’s 154th Wing. It aims to provide the ANG, Air Force and DOD counterparts with multi-faceted, joint venue, fighter integration training that incorporates current and realistic training to equip the warfighter with the skillsets necessary to fly, fight and win.

According Maj. Kenneth Peterson, Sentry Aloha exercise director for the 154 WG, the scenarios put a premium on integration.

“One of the most valuable aspects of Sentry Aloha is the ability to bring together a wide range of air assets,” said Peterson. “We’re able to work out and hone the skills and procedures needed to effectively integrate 4th and 5th generation air assets.”

Sentry Aloha exercises are conducted by the HIANG several times a year. This Sentry Aloha iteration involved close to 1000 personnel and just over 40 aircraft from six other states.

“Large scale exercises such as Sentry Aloha are complex and require a good amount of planning and coordination,” Peterson said. “From logistics and support functions to the maintenance operations that keep the aircraft air and combat ready. All aspects of the air enterprise are put to the test and as result receive invaluable training from the experience.”

Visiting units included tanker support from Oklahoma and Iowa, F-16 Falcons from Alaska, F-15 Eagles from California and E-3 Sentry (AWACS) from Oklahoma as well as U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornets. The visiting aircraft took part in simulated combat sorties with F-22 Raptors flown by the HIANG’s 199th Fighter Squadron and active duty 19th Fighter Squadron.

Over 400 sorties were flown, accounting for nearly 800 hours of flight time during the two-week exercise.

“Everyone involved played a huge role in making this Sentry Aloha a success.” said Peterson.