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NATO certifies 150th air refuelling expert in Poggio Renatico

POGGIO RENATICO, Italy - The 150th student graduated from the Specialised Heavy Air Refuelling Course at the Deployable Air Command and Control Centre in Poggio Renatio, Italy, since the course started in 2014. 

Major General Claudio Gabellini, Commander of the Deployable Air Command and Control Centre, presented Captain Huseyin Ozdemir of the Turkish Air Force with the commemorative certificate highlighting the importance of the multinational specialist course which was also attended by personnel from, Canada, Germany and France, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. 

NATO developed the specialised course to address the lack of Allied air-to-air refuelling planners identified during Operation Unified Protector in 2011. The course has been instrumental in increasing Allied readiness for operations as it maintains a roster of graduates from which it can draw expertise to respond to real world operations.

"We conceived the course in a building block approach,” said Royal Air Force Squadron Leader Travis Stone, the Course Director. "Students first learn standardised planning methodology and are then challenged with several days of increasingly difficult practical exercises. Graduates will be fully certified to serve in a NATO planning centre after testing their skills during at least one multinational exercise,” he added. 
Graduates continue to prove the course’s worth by consistently performing well during both live-fly and simulated portions of exercises like TRIDENT JUNCTURE 18, NATO’s largest exercise since the Cold War.

The DACCC conducts two courses annually, training both NATO and Partnership for Peace students from a variety of backgrounds and units. The instructor corps is usually augmented by guest instructors from Headquarters Allied Air Command, the NATO Joint Air Power Competence Centre, the Movement Coordination Centre Europe and the European Air Transport Command. The knowledge and experience of these instructors ensures each student is trained and challenged to the highest standard, ensuring NATO readiness for real world operations.

Story by Deployable Command and Control Centre Public Affairs Officer

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