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Fulfilling the JASDF mission of protecting Japan’s territorial airspace involves not only fighter aircraft scrambles but also the execution of missions by a variety of units. To secure the peaceful livelihood of the Japanese people, the JASDF is diligently engaged in day and night missions and training in places that the Japanese people seldom see.
The JASDF is extensively engaged in around-the-clock warning and surveillance in Japan’ s territorial airspace 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Warning control radar for ballistic missile defense (BMD)
Mobile radar operated by Mobile Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron
E-767 Airborne Warning and Control Aircraft
Airborne Early Warning Aircraft (E-2C)
When an aircraft from an unidentified nation is detected by early warning surveillance and is suspected of violating Japanese airspace, it is the JASDF's mission to respond. The term "scramble" refers to the emergency dispatch of aircraft against unidentified aircraft. In FY2016, there were a total of 1,168 scrambles.
Japan's ballistic missile defense is an effective multi-tier defense system equipped with the Patriot surface-to-air guided missile of the JASDF and the Aegis ship of the Maritime Self-Defense Force. Warning and control ground radar also plays a role in ballistic missile defense. If a missile is launched towards Japan, the commander of the Air Defense Command will serve as the commander of the Joint Task Force and respond.
Utilizing the readiness and versatility that are special features of air defense force, the JASDF protects the livelihood of the Japanese People.
When disasters such as natural disasters occur in any part of the country, the JASDF works in collaboration with municipal governments. The JASDF's relief activities include engaging in the search and rescue of disaster victims or missing ships or aircraft, transporting personnel and goods, and offering medical treatment.
Relief activities relating to torrential rain disasters in Fukuoka and Oita prefectures (July 2017)
In the case of emergencies overseas, the JASDF is dispatched to transport Japanese nationals by aircraft.
Exercise for rescue of Japanese nationals at the Iruma Base (December 2017)
In 2014, the governments of Japan and the United States were committed to respond as a seamless, powerful, flexible and effective alliance based on new guidelines, making the reinforcement of the Japan-U.S Alliance more important than ever.
To ensure the effectiveness of the Japan-U.S. alliance, JASDF is developing stronger and closer ties with the U.S. Air Force. For example, the Headquarters of the Air Defense Command and U.S. 5th Air Force are both located at Yokota Air Base, which gives them on opportunity to respond if the situation demands.
The JASDF conducts various joint training exercises aiming to improve tactical effectiveness and enhance its ability to interoperate with allied forces.
Joint exercise with the U.S.Air Force (July 2017)
Bilateral training with the U.S.Navy (June 2017)
Stabilization of the Asia-Pacific region and international community will lead to peace and security for Japan.
Overseas activities performed up to now include peacekeeping operations (PKO), reconstruction in Iraq, and counter-piracy operations etc. The JASDF has accumulated diverse overseas experiences centered in transport units.In response to disasters occurring overseas, the JASDF has also carried out international disaster relief operations as part of International Peace Cooperation Activities. The JASDF keeps transport units on continuous standby in order to respond quickly for these activities.
Completion of air transport mission in cooperation with international peacekeeping activities in South Sudan (May 2017)
Government airplanes have conducted airlift missions to 95 countries to transport dignitaries including the Prime Minister.
A government airplane undergoing flight preparations
The JASDF conducts joint exercises with other countries in
an effort to improve the strategic capabilities of its units, promote mutual understanding and further deepen defense coordination.
Joint formation flight exercise with the Royal Air Force(RAF)of the UK (July 2017)
ABOVE:JASDF’s KC-767 Below:The RAF’s Eurofighter Typhoon
The advancement of mutual understanding and trust between countries helps build the foundation for a stable security environment. The JASDF pursues conducting defense cooperation and exchanges in a multi-layered manner that builds and strengthens cooperative relationships for addressing common security challenges.
Event attended by air force chiefs of staff (Air Force Forum in JAPAN)
Symposium inviting the chiefs of the Air staff from 8 nations (October 2016)
In capacity exchange, the SDF provides support to raising the capabilities of militaries in other countries by utilizing it's own expertise. Such assistance has been provided on an ongoing basis since fiscal year 2012. To date, JASDF has provided support for Vietnam, Indonesia, Myanmar, Malaysia, and the Philippines.
Capacity Building assistance for Thailand (Flight Safety Seminor (April 2017))