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Periodista del EMAD

Members of the Order of the Grand Blue Cross for Emergencies visit the Combined Air Operations Centre in Torrejón

Torrejón AFB, Madrid
April 22, 2022
  • The delegation has learned about the day-to-day operations of the CAOC TJ and the human resources and assets at its disposal

A representation of authorities belonging to the Order of the Grand Blue Cross for Emergencies, together with the Councillor President of the District of Ciudad Lineal and the Chief Officer of Ciudad Lineal, visited the NATO Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) at Torrejón de Ardoz AFB. On its arrival, they were welcomed by lieutenant general Fernando de la Cruz, Commander of the Centre.

During the first part of the visit, Chief Colonel of the National Support Element (NSE), Francisco Javier Cáceres Botello, gave a presentation of the Unit. He explained to the authorities the capabilities and resources of the centre for the performance of its main mission, the permanent surveillance of the airspace of allied nations through the network of sensors located on the southern flank of Europe. Colonel Cáceres also explained to the delegation the role of the CAOC TJ in providing a Joint Force Air Component (JFAC) for the handling of crisis and conflict situations.

Afterwards, the authorities were able to see examples of real operations in the centre's control room, following the explanation given by Lieutenant Colonel Rubén Diego Porras de la Huz.   

The tour of the facilities ended with a visit to the 12th Wing, a Unit located at Torrejón AFB. As a demonstration of the Allies' contribution to NATO's sovereign airspace surveillance mission, the delegation was able to learn about the performance of the Spanish EF-18s.

Combined Air Operations Centre Torrejón (CAOC TJ)

The main mission of the Torrejón CAOC, under the direct command of a Lieutenant General of the Spanish Air Force, is to plan, direct, coordinate, supervise, analyse and report on air defence operations in Southern Europe, following the directives of the NATO Air Component Command to which it reports and with the means assigned to NATO by the nations in peacetime.

The Spanish Armed Forces make an important contribution to the mission carried out by this centre. Some 120 military personnel serve in the CAOC itself as well as in the National Support Element (NSE) and the NATO Communications and Information Agency Unit (NCIA).