Operation Noble Defender validates NORAD’s capability to defend the United States and Canada against threats from every avenue of approach, as well as demonstrate globally integrated layered defense. Each Operation Noble Defender evolves NORAD’s aerospace warning, aerospace control, and maritime warning mission areas.
This iteration allowed NORAD units to confirm capabilities designed to defend the southern approach to the United States from simulated cruise missile threats. The Continental U.S. NORAD Region coordinated and conducted joint operations with 2nd Fleet assets while concurrently launching jets from different locations across the United States' Gulf Coast.
"Participating in joint cross-command operations, such as Noble Defender, only increases our operational readiness and our ability to work as a cohesive unit," said Capt. James Johnston, U.S. 2nd fleet maritime operations center director. "This air defense operation demonstrated our joint abilities to outpace threats and defend North America."
2nd Fleet was activated by U.S. Northern Command to direct the activities for the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut (DDG 99) and the Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 123. 2nd Fleet coordinated with U.S. Naval Forces Northern and the Continental U.S. NORAD Region for planning and execution. 2nd Fleet’s role in the operation was to facilitate the successful execution of a missile warning informational link.
NORAD is a bi-national Canadian and American command that employs a network of aerial, ground-based, and space-based sensors, air-to-air refueling tankers, and fighter aircraft to deter, detect and defend against aerial threats.
U.S. 2nd Fleet, reestablished in 2018 in response to the changing global security environment, develops and employs maritime forces ready to fight across multiple domains in the Atlantic and Arctic in order to ensure access, deter aggression and defend U.S., allied, and partner interests.