2018-03-09 / News Update

35th Signal Brigade Soldiers support Roving Sands

VICTOR EVERHART JR.
35th Theater Tactical Signal Brigade


Elements of 3-43 Air Defense Artillery Battalion, 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, out of Fort Bliss, Texas, are in place and ready to provide coverage. The Soldiers continue to work and train. 
Sgt. 1st Class Brian Rhodes / 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command Elements of 3-43 Air Defense Artillery Battalion, 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, out of Fort Bliss, Texas, are in place and ready to provide coverage. The Soldiers continue to work and train. Sgt. 1st Class Brian Rhodes / 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command FORT BLISS, Texas — Soldiers with the 51st Expeditionary Signal Battalion, 35th Theater Tactical Signal Brigade, based out of Joint Base Lewis McChord, Washington, are participating in Exercise Roving Sands taking place from February to March at Fort Bliss, Texas. Soldiers prepare for the exercise by deploying signal communication terminals in the battalion motor pool to ensure all the equipment is working.

Roving Sands is a three-week long joint air training exercise that involves 32nd Army Air and Missile Defense Command units and coalition forces to practice joint air defense interoperability and incorporate lessons learned.

Roving Sands was an exercise from 1989 to 2005 and has since resumed in 2018 as the world’s largest air and missile defense exercise. The exercise focuses on joint theater air and missile defense and joint tactical air operations while integrating Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps command and control nodes and associated air and missile defense systems.

Roving Sands involves a large contingent of the 51st ESB. Secure and non-secure internet protocol network access points, Joint Network Nodes, and Single Shelter Switches are being tested as operators secure connections with the regional hub node to make ready for the coming exercise.

The total force committed by the 51st ESB to Roving Sands includes 145 Soldiers and 112 pieces of rolling stock. This accounts for two thirds of the battalion, making this support request the largest the 51st ESB has conducted in history.

The size of the exercise allows leaders of the 51st ESB to practice large scale deployment operations. The rolling stock and signal communications equipment were transported by air and rail from JBLM to Fort Bliss requiring each piece to pass inspections and weigh-ins.

“Roving Sands is a good opportunity to test the expeditionary capacity of the battalion to deploy in support of other exercises,” said Maj. Jeremey J. Fox, 51st ESB executive officer. “Coming from Washington all the way to Texas, it’s a great exercise for our company-level leaders – especially the company executive officers and platoon leaders to plan a deployment of troops and equipment.”

Return to top