Exercise Pitch Black is now underway in Australia with over 100 aircraft and 2,500 personnel from 17 nations and resumes after a four-year gap necessitated by the global Covid-19 pandemic. 

The large-scale exercises which conclude on 8 September are being held in Australia’s Northern Territory with forces primarily based from RAAF Base Darwin and RAAF Base Tindal with supporting elements at RAAF Amberley.

Participating nations at Exercise Pitch Black are Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Indonesia, India, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Thailand, UAE, US and UK. Germany, Japan, and the Republic of Korea are marking their maiden participation at the exercises. 

“Pitch Black is a large force employment exercise, driven by fighter combat scenarios. This year, significant efforts have been made to advance the air-to-air refuelling capability between many of the participating nations,” Exercise Commander, Air Commodore Tim Alsop said in a Defence release. 

“Air to air refuelling is a force multiplier, providing essential reach to our combat aircraft. Working with many of the participating nations aims to increase our force projection and maximise our capability.”

Participating nations at Exercise Pitch Black will train on offensive counter air, air interdiction and strike, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities.