The “Hot” Commodity:

Air Combat Command’s Distributed Mission Operations Center, Kirtland AFB, N.M., has one of the hottest actions around in its Virtual Flag exercises, says DMOC officials. The number of participants is growing each years, and for the 2006 version, as many as 75 percent of participants never had to leave their home stations, says DMOC’s Lt. Col. Gordon Phillips. He believes that one real benefit of Virtual Flag over real-world exercises like Red Flag is that in the virtual world exercise officials can modify the intensity of the training or even freeze the action as needed. For instance, Phillips says, during Red Flag an E-3 AWACS might control 30 aircraft, while in Virtual Flag the same command and control aircraft would cover 300 aircraft at one time. (Also see DR, 11/11/05.)