An E-4B Advanced Airborne Command Post, commonly known as ‘doomsday plane’, took part in the flying exercise.
The E-4B aircraft, a militarized version of the Boeing 747-200, is always on 24-hour alert, 7-days a week, with a global watch team at one of many selected bases throughout the world.
The aircraft serves as the National Airborne Operations Center (NAOC) and is a key component of the National Military Command System for the President, the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The NAOC operations teams, made-up of joint personnel including Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors and Marines from a variety of specialties serving aboard the E-4B aircraft provide a highly-survivable, command, control and communications center to direct U.S. forces, execute emergency war orders and coordinate actions by civil authorities in case of national emergency.
The E-4B is protected against the effects of electromagnetic pulse and has an electrical system designed to support advanced electronics and a wide variety of communications equipment. An advanced satellite communications system provides worldwide communication for senior leaders through the airborne operations center. Other improvements include nuclear and thermal effects shielding, acoustic control, an improved technical control facility and an upgraded air-conditioning system for cooling electrical components.