4th/5th Gen Aircraft Integration Initiative
Honouring interoperability as our essence, the EAG Steering Group held in Breda, The Netherlands on 16 May 2014 tasked the Permanent Staff to analyze the challenges of operating 5th generation fighter aircraft alongside legacy 4th generation aircraft in a coalition environment.
In November 2014, the EAG hosted a two-day seminar with three clear objectives: (1) identify 4th/5th generation aircraft integration challenges at an unclassified level, (2) evaluate the need to harmonize a number of these challenges at a Multinational level and (3) determine a potential role for the EAG in resolving these challenges.
With the presence of representatives from the EAG nations and the Tactical Leadership Program (TLP), the seminar began with an opening address given by Dr. Robbin F. Laird, a long-time analyst of global defence issues currently focusing his work on analysing the evolution of fifth generation aircraft systems and the emergence of fifth generation warfare. Dr Laird set up the appropriate strategic framework to allow further discussions.
This EAG initiative to establish practical steps to think through and shape the impact of the arrival of 5th gen aircraft on current 4th gen-based European airpower is considered a unique and worthwhile effort that will be further developed during 2015 with a second seminar.