NTC Aviation Company

National Training Center, Fort Irwin, California


Providing general support, air assault, and opposing forces aviation support to the National Training Center (NTC) at Fort Irwin, California is a diverse and complex, mission. The NTC Aviation Company deploys an average of 6 aircraft a day during each of the ten 14-day brigade-Level rotations held annually. This constant support results In an extremely high operating tempo (OPTEMPO) for the Aviation company. The NTC Aviation Company performs it’s mission with 17 aircraft: 10 UH-72 Lakota helicopters, 5 visually modified JUH-1 Sokol helicopters, and 2 UH-1H IroquoIs helicopters. The unit’s 10 UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters were recently turned in and replaced by the UH-72a Lakota. NTC AVCO will receive the OPFOR variant of the UH-72A in May 2011.

UH-72a Lakota - Light Utility Helicopter

Birds of Prey

The smallest of the platoons In the NTC Aviation Company, the OPFOR platoon, has an Army-wide reputation for excellence. The OPFOR platoon's mission involves flying attack helicopters in one of the most demanding environments in the world. During the force-on-force portion of the rotation, the OPFOR platoon executes it’s mission nearly 24 hours a day. It is the most visible and feared presence on the NTC battlefield. The Sokol aircraft armed with multiple Integrated laser engagement system (MILES), AT-5 missiles, 57-millimeter rockets, 30-millimeter cannon, and a 50-caliber machine gun; replicates the Soviet MI-24E Hind attack helicopter threat. Sokol is the Russian word for “bird of prey”, and the Sokol helicopter lives up to its name. Sokol crews routinely post Impressive battle damage assessments using russian attack helicopter doctrine that has been modified for today's modern battlefield environment. Aggressive tactics and Individual pilot skills make the Sokol birds of prey formidable adverseness on the NTC battlefield. The OPFOR aviation threat provided during the force-on-force segment of an NTC rotation helps rotational units Improve their force protection and air defense.

"We Own the Night"

The air assault platoon's motto "We Own the Night" came to life during force-on-force operations when over half of the platoon's missions were at night. The air assault platoon provided all non-attack tactical support to the 11th ACR OPFOR. In addition to flying air assaults, the platoon conducted both OPFOR reconnaissance Insertions, and counter-reconnaissance missions, the air assault platoon was known for its multi-ship, night-vision-goggle, air assault mission-code named "Task Force Angel". While the landing zones and pick-up zones changed, the platoon's objective remained the same. Insert light Infantry equipped With AT-5 antitank weapon systems behind the forward line of own troops-undetected. TIle air assault platoon's success rates were the result of In-depth participation. In an Integrated planning process with the 11th ACR. This close operational relationship and the frequency of air assaults allowed greater air-ground integration The aircrews are extremely familiar With the NTC and all associated MILES components which gives the NTC Aviation Company "Desert Hawks” the edge. -

Aviation Support at the NTC


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If you are headed to NTC Aviation Company or may be assigned to an aviation unit on Fort Irwin...
for Newcomer Infohttp://www.ntcaviationcompany.com/NTC_Aviation_Company/Newcomer_Info.html
for FRG Info
The FRG supports the AVCO mission through provision of support, outreach, and information to family members.http://www.ntcaviationcompany.com/NTC_Aviation_Company/AVCO_FRG.html

The UH-72 Lakota is the Army’s newest helicopter. It features an all glass cockpit using state-of-the-art avionics on a militarized EC-145 airframe. The Lakota features a fully coupled autopilot and a GPS with moving map display. The UH-72 Lakota will be used for general support VIP transport and logistics operations.

Find out more: www.uh-72a.com

Presidential Visit and Flying with Marine One - April 3rd, 2007

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