DOMESTIC DEPLOYMENT OF THE AUSTRIAN AIR FORCE
The Austrian Air Force largely operates behind the scenes, but is usually kept very busy - especially at major events. For the safety and security of participants and visitors, the airspace above the venue is sealed for the duration of the event (e.g. G7 summit, Bilderberg Meetings, World Economic Forum in Davos). For these and many other tasks the Air Force has various types of aircraft and helicopter as well as fixed and mobile radar and air defence systems.
Maintaining air sovereignty above Austria and the country’s sovereignty in general involves locating and identifying unauthorised aircraft and, if necessary, performing an interception and forced landing. Ground-based air surveillance is based on the “Goldhaube” radar system, which combines fixed and mobile radar stations. These are capable of precisely locating flying objects and determining their height, direction and speed long before they reach the Austrian border. The practical aspect of air surveillance is subsequently handled by the Surveillance Wing using the Eurofighter and Saab 105 OE. Air surveillance is complemented, if necessary, by ground-based air defence systems. These are used to protect strategically important areas, locations and facilities against air attack using anti-aircraft guns and guided missiles.
Rescue and relief missions
In additioyn to basic military tasks, the armed forces are responsible for providing aid and protection through crisis management. In the event of disaster or accidents where ground-based relief organisations are unable to cope on their own, the pilots of the armed forces step in to provide support. The armed forces are repeatedly called upon to assist during floods, avalanches or remote forest fires. Currently our pilots are monitoring our national borders with helicopters equipped with infrared systems in order to keep an eye on unauthorised border crossings and to subsequently prevent such crossings by deploying ground troops.