Signaller’s Network Reaches US

Department of Defence

Corporal Chloe Loftus’ job in the Australian Army has taken her all the way to California in the US.

Corporal Loftus is posted to the 16th Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery (16 Regt, RAA), in Adelaide as a member of the Royal Australian Corps of Signals. Her job is to enable air defence operations through the provision of battlespace communications.

16 Regt, RAA, is Australia’s only ground-based air and missile defence unit providing protection to the joint force and key infrastructure – in essence, helping to keep Australia and its interests safe from air attack.

Corporal Loftus’ role in the unit is as a battlespace communications specialist, ensuring the required information is reaching the commander and that the equipment and people are passing information successfully.

She has found joy in working with new capabilities, such as tactical data links, an opportunity not afforded to most signallers.

She also recently deployed to the US to apply her skills on the newest technologies available to the coalition as a part of Project Convergence Capstone Four (PC-C4).

“During this exercise our team maintained the link between the FDC [fires distribution centre] and other coalition units,” Corporal Loftus said.

“I learnt a lot throughout this activity. I was able to work with NASAMS [national advanced surface-to-air missile system], which was live-fired for the first time by the Australian Army in November last year, but now we are connecting in with the coalition.”

NASAMS is already being used by the US military, and it is being used in the Ukraine conflict.

“As the United States has experience with using NASAMS, it was great to be able to tap into that and provide my unit an array of new knowledge, experience and data,” Corporal Loftus said.

From growing up in Bendigo, to now deploying overseas, Corporal Loftus said a highlight was working with other militaries.

“The best thing was networking and making connections with people from all over the world,” she said.

“It was an amazing opportunity to integrate with the US and I’m glad I got the experience.”

16 Regt, RAA’s, focus on air and missile defence, and its location within South Australia, affords the soldiers and officers of the regiment opportunities to work with the Royal Australian Air Force and Royal Australian Navy on a regular basis, as well as with members of the US Armed Forces.

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