The 2016 two-day 4th 5th Generation Integration Information Forum was held at the home of the EAG, RAF High Wycombe, at the end of April 2016. With national 5th Generation aircraft programs maturing and the need to integrate 4th and 5th generation aircraft into future coalitions acknowledged the forum is providing a vital conduit to keep information flowing between both EAG nations and external partners and increase the awareness of nations about the challenges to come.
The first day saw experts from academia and industry set the scene with their interpretation of the technological and political developments that are going to shape the future of air power and more specifically the challenges of integrating 4th and 5th generation multi-national air forces into that vision.
The second day opened the floor to a discussion between the individual EAG nations present, Tactical Leadership Program (TLP), Joint Air Power Competence Centre (JAPCC); European Union Military Staff (EUMS) and the USAF that was being represented for the first time at an EAG 4th 5th Generation Forum. The debate focussed on the specific challenges being experienced at a national program level whilst also providing an overview of the future Air Force compositions.
The identification of the common challenges being experienced with this cutting edge evolution of the approach to, and employment of, air power is key to the development of future collaborative solutions. National representatives were able to take away key areas for further consideration and investigation that when resolved will be fundamental to enhancing interoperability between the nations.
The 4th 5th Generation Integration Information Forum will continue to provide a crucial communication channel between the EAG nations as the next generation of combat aircraft are brought into service in Europe.