LOW-LEVEL AND TACTICAL FORMATION
Combat spread is not as flexible as combat cruise, but is a good technique to employ when
crossing wide-open terrain and affords good defensive lookout ahead of the flight. It also
maximizes the ability to employ forward weapons. Wingmen are to be + 10° of lead's abeam.
Figure 3-2 Combat Spread
There are two types of TAC turns:
The TAC turn away from the wingman.
The TAC turn into the wingman.
These turns can be accomplished easily from the combat cruise or combat spread formation.
They are used to change the direction of a formation from 60 120 degrees. With the command,
Call sign, TAC left (right), a turn of 90° at 30° AOB is understood. If a smaller or larger change
is desired, the tactical leader may elect to specify the new heading in the command. TAC turns
enable aircrews to turn into an approaching enemy while maintaining formation integrity to
facilitate mutual support and avoid presenting a linear target to an approaching enemy aircraft.
The following should be understood:
The wingman will always change sides in the formation.
The aircraft on the outside of the turn will always turn first.
The wingman is always responsible for clearance regardless of who initiated the turn.
When the aircraft turning first crosses the 5 or 7 o'clock position (of the other aircraft), the
other aircraft should commence the turn.
During TAC Turns into the wingman from a combat cruise
position, the tactical leader immediately turns to the new direction
and depending on the wingman position, either passes behind or in
front of the wingman. This shall be communicated over the radio:
TACTICAL/AERIAL REFUELING PROCEDURES