Execute integrated Battle Management and Command and Control to counter all air threats in persistent defense of the homeland.
The 225th Air Defense Squadron will deliver operational excellence and critical combat capability through agile employment of cutting edge technology and development of world class Air Defenders.
How the 225th ADS Protects the Homeland:
Using over 200 dedicated and shared radar devices, the WADS detects the presence of all air traffic within the continental United States. This information is constantly analyzed by airmen and sophisticated equipment in the battle control center to monitor air traffic 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Any aircraft originating from outside of the boundaries of the continental United States and entering into U.S. airspace must be positively identified. All of these aircraft in the WADS area of responsibility are then screened and categorized as friendly or otherwise. Flights originating in the U.S. are only monitored if the aircraft shows abnormal flight patterns or is in violation of FAA flight rules.
The WADS will initiate action on any aircraft identified as an actual or possible threat. Action includes launching fighter jets from the nearest location to get "eyes on" the aircraft, deter further activity and use deadly force if necessary. Jets can also be scrambled to assist aircraft in distress, to help determine if the aircraft is safe to land and to visually monitor the situation.
2018 Year in Review
In 2018, WADS actively tracked more than 3.2 million flights over the United States. Of these flights, more than 1,500 were identified as tracks of interest (TOI), causing additional action by WADS personnel to identify these aircraft. WADS operations personnel scrambled many live air defense fighter aircraft to intercept real world and simulated TOIs and unknown aircraft. During daily training exercises, WADS supported 27 Air National Guard, U. S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and U.S. Marine Corps flying units by providing command and control (C2) to 1,000 live-fly training missions.
The WADS planned and executed the second-ever Aerospace Control Alert CrossTell exercise in Portland, Oregon, July 24-26, 2018. Over 100 personnel from 13 different government agencies to include Air National Guard fighter wings, Civil Air Patrol, NORAD, and U.S. Coast Guard rotary-wing air intercept units conducted 40 live-fly sorties and 30 simulated sorties to hone their skills with tactical-level air-intercept procedures.
These training scenarios replicated airborne intercepts of aircraft that fly into airspace the FAA has established as temporarily flight restricted airspace. Temporary flight restrictions, or TFRs, are established by the FAA and enforced by the NORAD during high-visibility national-events such as the political nominating conventions, the Super Bowl, State of the Union Address, as well as presidential travel.
It was only weeks later, that the WADS scrambled the Portland Air National Guard’s 142nd Fighter Wing F-15s to intercept the Horizon Bombardier Q400 commercial aircraft that was stolen from SeaTac Airport Aug. 10, 2018. The NORAD commander, Gen. Terrence O'Shaughnessy, visited the WADS Aug. 23, 2018 to personally thank the men and women of the WADS for their quick actions and met with the WADS operations crew that provided command and control of the 142nd Fighter Wing's two F-15s that intercepted the stolen aircraft. The crew had an opportunity to discuss the intercept and answer O'Shaughnessy's questions during his visit. Weapons directors assigned to the 225th Air Defense Squadron, Tech. Sgt. Brian Kulp, Tech. Sgt. Aaron DeCremer and Staff Sgt. David Jacob were specifically recognized with commander's coins by O’Shaughnessy for the critical role they played during the intercept.
The WADS has been actively participating in the National Guard State Partnership Program where teams from the 225th Air Defense Squadron travelled to Guatemala, Thailand and Malaysia throughout the year to provide air defense expertise to the country’s air forces. The WADS has also participated in exercises in the Ukraine and Germany.
The SPP links a State's National Guard with the armed forces of a partner country in a cooperative, mutually beneficial relationship by means of tailored, small footprint, high-impact security cooperation engagements that foster long-term enduring relationships with U.S. friends and allies around the world. The SPP arose from a 1991 U.S. European Command decision to pair reserve component soldiers and airmen with the armed forces of the then newly formed nations of the Baltic Region following the collapse of the Soviet Bloc.