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Library > Fact sheets > Combined Air and Space Operations Center (CAOC)


Posted 7/30/2014 Printable Fact Sheet
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The Combined Air and Space Operations Center Weapons System, also known as the AN/USQ-163 Falconer Weapon System, commands and controls the broad spectrum of what air power brings to the fight: Global Vigilance, Global Reach, and Global Power. The CAOC provides the command and control of airpower for Air Forces Central's theater of operations.

Serving as the operational bridge that integrates and synchronizes strategic decisions to tactical level execution, the CAOC is comprised of a vast array of people, programs and processes that execute day-to-day combined air and space operations and provides rapid reaction, positive control, coordination and deconfliction of weapons systems.

Functioning as the nerve center of the air campaign, the CAOC plans, monitors and directs sortie execution, close air support/precision air strike; Intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance; airlift; air refueling; aerial evaluation; air drop, and countless other mission critical operations.

The CAOC is a true joint and Coalition team, staffed by U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and Coalition partners. Construction began in July 2002. A Total Force team of active duty, Air National Guard and Reserve personnel worked on the project. The CAOC - both team members and equipment - was fully operational Feb. 18, 2003.

Built at a cost of $60 million, the project involved installation of more than 67 miles of high-capacity and fiber optic cable. This capability created the most advanced operations center in history. Keeping these systems humming requires hundreds of people, working in satellite communications, imagery analysis, network design, computer programming, radio systems, systems administration and many other fields. With thousands of computers, dozens of servers, racks of video equipment and display screens, the facility resembles the set of a futuristic movie. 

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