North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Conducts Arctic Air Defence Exercise Amalgam Dart

North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) will be conducting Exercise AMALGAM DART, an arctic air defence exercise, from June 10 to 18, 2021. The exercise will feature a variety of military aircraft from the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and United States Air Force (USAF) operating out of Alaska U.S. and other northern locations including Inuvik, N.W.T., Yellowknife, N.W.T, 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alta., 5 Wing Goose Bay, N.L, Iqaluit, Nun, CFS Alert, Nun, and Thule Air Base, Greenland.

North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Conducts Arctic Air Defence Exercise Amalgam Dart
A United States Air Force, C-17 Globemaster, arrives at 5 Wing Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador, the morning of June 13, 2021, ready for NORAD Exercise Amalgam Dart. (Photo by Master Corporal Krista Blizzard/Canadian NORAD Region)

While the majority of exercise flights will be conducted over sparsely populated Arctic areas and at high altitudes, where the public is not likely to hear or see them, there will be increased aircraft activity at Inuvik, Yellowknife, Cold Lake, Iqaluit, Goose Bay, and Thule AB, Greenland. Residents of Cold Lake may also experience an increase in military vehicle activity around 4 Wing Cold Lake for the duration of the exercise. In order to test responses, systems and equipment, NORAD routinely conducts exercises, all year and in various weather conditions with a variety of scenarios, including airspace restriction violations, hijackings and responding to unknown aircraft.

A U.S. Air Force Airman assigned to the 140th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, brings in a F-16 Fighting Falcon June 11, 2021 at Thule Air Base, Greenland. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Airman Basic Mira Roman)

Exercise AMLAGAM DART is designed to train and exercise our ability to conduct Operation NOBLE EAGLE, the name given to the military response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and applies to all air defense missions in North America. During the exercise, a layered risk mitigation procedure will be employed which will strictly limit contact with the local population to the greatest extent possible in order to reduce risk of exposure to COVID-19 for exercise participants and members of local communities. Based on best practices recommended by Canadian health authorities, participating military personnel will follow established mitigation protocols, such as mask wearing, frequent cleaning of surfaces and other PPE use as appropriate.

United States Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon Pilots from 140th Wing, Colorado Air National Guard, unpack after arriving at 5 Wing Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador, on June 12, 2021, ready for NORAD Exercise Amalgam Dart.(Photo by Master Corporal Krista Blizzard/Canadian NORAD Region)

Participating U.S. military personnel will require two negative COVID-19 tests, separated by a minimum of 5 days, with the last test prior to arriving in Canada. All exercise participants will adhere to local, Territorial/Provincial, Federal and Canadian Armed Forces/Department of National Defence guidelines, regulations and orders regarding public health measures for the duration of Exercise AMALGAM DART. The defense of Canada and the U.S. is NORAD’s number one priority. While our air operations may change, our vigilance will not. NORAD continues to execute its missions with the same conviction and diligence that has been the command’s trademark since 1958.

A Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 arrives at Thule Air Base, Greenland, June 9, 2021 in support of North American Aerospace Defense Command’s (NORAD) Arctic air defense exercise, Amalgam Dart 21-01. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Trevor J. Derr)