Ellsworth Air Force Base is hosting members of the Navy for training on a new high tech airplane. Black Hills FOX Reporter Jon Wilson was at Ellsworth today and saw the new plane firsthand.
It's called the Growler, it's cutting edge, and it's mission is vital.
Lieutenant Fancy says, "Our mission is to deny, degrade, and delay the enemy's ability to engage, detect our friendly air forces and so we've taken that mission, and as its progressed through the years and new technology has advanced, we keep up the tactics and develop new ones in order to engage in more active and more dangerous threat."
The Growler is a Naval electronic attack plane, and Ellsworth Air Force Base provides a great location for training.
Lieutenant Fancy says, "A lot of times, we're forced to kind of pretend that the emitters are out there, but when we come to places like Ellsworth and we fly on their brand new range, the Powder River Complex, we can actually detect those signals from the emitters that are on the ground that they direct at us."
The Growler is equipped with special technology to help keep US military and other allies safe when in enemy territory.
Lieutenant Colonel Allen Geist says, "The Growler is an extremely complex aircraft due to its mission. The mission of the Growler is to gain access in enemy denied air space. So the enemy denies its air space through radar systems, surface-air missiles, comnodes, and the Growler, with its jamming capabilities, air to ground weapons, air to air weapons, great air to air radar makes it very unique."
For Lieutenant Colonel Geist, this is not only training, but also a return to his home state as he hails from Tolstoy, South Dakota.
Lieutenant Colonel Geist says, "It is always nice to come back home and it's always great to fly the Growler, there's absolutely no question about that, but to be able to do it in the Black Hills area, a place where I've been stationed twice and is my home state makes it a little more special as well, absolutely."
The training continues through next Friday.