96th BS executes Exercise Red Devil Thunder

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Hailey Farrell
  • 2d Bomb Wing

Airmen from across the 2nd Bomb Wing successfully concluded exercise Red Devil Thunder 24-3 June 27, 2024 at Barksdale Air Force Base, La.

RDT is one of many small-scale exercises that provide a training opportunity for aircrew members and maintainers on how to respond to an alert and perform a nuclear generation. 

“An alert is getting ready to launch the B-52H Stratofortress at a moment’s notice,” said 2nd Lt. Lianna Bush, 96th BS weapons systems and electronic warfare officer. “There’s a lot of coordination that goes into executing RDT and the aircrew have to constantly be ready with their nuclear currencies.”

Normally, launching a B-52 takes over an hour and involves a significant amount of equipment and personnel. However, during an alert, a quick taxi enables the jet to take off much faster, requiring fewer resources.

Despite needing fewer resources, RDT is only possible due to multiple units working together to provide manning, equipment and security. These small scale exercises allow Airmen the opportunity to sharpen their skills for larger exercises and to always be prepared for real world missions.

“Red Devil Thunder gives us the opportunity to get down to the nitty gritty details of what we do,” said Bush. “That way when we are executing a real world mission our process is a habit rather than a learning environment.”