Aircraft Scheduled To Begin Flying About 2330 Wednesday
The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and its
geographical component, the Continental United States NORAD Region
(CONR), will conduct exercise Falcon Virgo 11-08 beginning
Wednesday night into early Thursday morning in the National Capital
Region, Washington, D.C. The exercise is comprised of a series of
training flights held in coordination with the Federal Aviation
Administration, the National Capital Region Coordination Center,
the Joint Air Defense Operations Center, Civil Air Patrol, U.S.
Coast Guard and CONR’s Eastern and Western Air Defense
Flights in the National Capital Region are scheduled to take
place between 2330 EDT Wednesday and 0500 Thursday morning.
Exercise Falcon Virgo is designed to hone NORAD’s intercept
and identification operations as well as operationally test the NCR
Visual Warning System. Civil Air Patrol aircraft, Air Force F-16s
and a U.S. Coast Guard HH-65 Dolphin helicopter will participate in
These exercises are carefully planned and closely controlled to
ensure CONR’s rapid response capability. NORAD has conducted
exercise flights of this nature throughout the U.S. and Canada
since the start of Operation Noble Eagle, the command’s
response to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
In the event of inclement weather, the exercise will take place
the next day, until all training requirements are met. If bad
weather continues, officials will then make a decision to postpone
or cancel the exercise.
As the Continental United States geographical component of the
bi-national command NORAD, CONR provides airspace surveillance and
control, and directs air sovereignty activities for the CONUS
region. CONR and its assigned Air Force and Army assets throughout
the country ensure air safety and security against potential air
Since Sept. 11, 2001, CONR fighters have responded to more than
3,400 possible air threats in the United States and have flown more
than 59,000 sorties with the support of Airborne Warning and
Control System and air-to-air-refueling aircraft.