(Reading time: 3 - 5 minutes)

The Osan Airpower Day 2011 must have left mixed emotions amongst many of the visitors. On one hand people enthusiastically did give applause for the aerial demonstrations, but on the other hand strict security measures did leave many people disappointed - mainly those who invested quite some efforts to come to South Korea to attend this event.

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Where? Osan AB, South Korea
When? 29-30/10/2011

Bringing passports and the restrictions on backpacks and liquids are well known from other US airshows, but from a European point-of-view it will remain a mistery why visitors from the Netherlands were refused access to the show. Furthermore the show was scheduled until 5pm, however on Sunday the whole show area was closed from around 0330pm on for 'safety reasons'. Quite understandable as the ramp became 'hot' shortly afterwards as most of the RoKAF jets were leaving, but the Security Forces did not finish their duty until everybody was not only out of the ramp, but out of the airbase. Many disappointed faces were the cause amongst the visitors, as some spots along the fence would have provided some nice and rare views of the aircraft in action and ready to depart. The desire to photograph these rare views was not completely understandable for the Korean visitors, but all foreigners just shook their heads while being forced out way ahead of the scheduled end of the event.

1312 700 470 90
1312 100 67 85
Osan So 1226 100 67 85
Osan So 1308 100 67 85
Osan So 1311 100 67 85
Osan So 3325 100 67 85
Osan So 1838 700 470 90
Osan So 1838 100 67 85
Osan So 1839 100 67 85
Osan So 32701413 100 67 85
Osan So 3284 100 67 85
Osan So 3288 100 67 85

But fortunately there were also many positiv things to remember that made the trip worthwhile.

Where for example can you see a U-2 taking off and landing during an airshow or A-10s and F-16s releasing flares during a CSAR demonstration?

The displays had to be modified a little bit on Saturday due to a very bad weather with a low ceiling, but in the end nearly all displays took place apart from the RoKAF "Black Eagles". Sunday brought a deep blue sky from the early morning on and best conditions for the flying displays.

A fabulous formation of A-10s did make the start together with parachutists carrying the Korean and US flags.

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3409 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Opening 1536 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Opening 1624 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Opening 3544 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Opening 3554 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Opening 3567 100 67 85
3400 700 470 90
3400 100 67 85
Osan Opening Ceremony 1525 100 67 85
Osan Opening Ceremony 3398 100 67 85

Shortly before the U-2 was launched with an impressive engine noise (for an aircraft that makes the impression of being a sailplane...) and amazing rate of climb.

Osan U 2 1491 700 470 90
Osan U 2 1491 100 67 85
Osan U 2 14913372 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1516 100 67 85
Osan U 2 15163388 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3337 100 67 85
Osan U 21491 3340 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3412 700 470 90
Osan U 2 3412 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3428 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3436 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3438 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3449 100 67 85
Ozan U 2 2836 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1540 700 470 90
Osan U 2 1540 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1577 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1580 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1583 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1592 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1611 100 67 85
Osan U 2 1616 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3457 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3477 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3478 100 67 85
Osan U 2 3500 100 67 85

The USAF did furthermore show their F-16 and A-10 solo displays in the morning.

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3534 100 67 85
Osan F 16 Solo 3501 100 67 85
Osan F 16 Solo 3510 100 67 85
Osan F 16 Solo 3522 100 67 85
Osan F 16 Solo 3524 100 67 85
Osan F 16 Solo 3525 100 67 85
3928 700 470 90
3928 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Solo 3919 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Solo 3945 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Solo 3963 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Solo 3969 100 67 85
Osan A 10 Solo 3997 100 67 85

Highly expected were of course the flying displays of the Royal Korean Air Force (RoKAF). KT-1, the T-50 and F-15K were on the list as well as the Black Eagles display team, which gained much of applaus by the fascinated spectators.

1719 700 470 90
1719 100 67 85
Osan KT 1 1710 100 67 85
Osan KT 1 1712 100 67 85
Osan KT 1 1716 100 67 85
Osan KT 1 1728 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3753 700 470 90
Osan T 50 3753 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3758 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3760 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3779 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3783 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3793 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3795 700 470 90
Osan T 50 3795 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3809 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3837 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3841 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3843 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3856 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3881 100 67 85
Osan T 50 3883 100 67 85
3320 700 470 90
3320 100 67 85
Osan So 1451 100 67 85
Osan So 1705 100 67 85
Osan So 1826 100 67 85
Osan So 1828 100 67 85
Osan So 2868 100 67 85

The only drawbacks were the non-appearance of the 'Slam Eagle's due to technical problems on Sunday, and also the display team had to show up with only seven instead of eight jets due to one of the pilots not being able to perform.

Osan F 15K 2928 700 470 90
Osan F 15K 2928 100 67 85
Osan F 15K 2936 100 67 85
Osan F 15K 2949 100 67 85
Osan F 15K 2953 100 67 85

Fortunately the F-15K already flew on Saturday, and the blue and white skmade up for the 'imperfect' formations of the Black Eagles, though the without one of the solo pilots the crossing maneuvers were non-existent.

4351 700 470 90
4351 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1831 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1844 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3327 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 4353 100 67 85
1671 700 470 90
1671 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1669 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1674 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1676 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1678 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1687 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 1691 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3589 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3622 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3679 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3710 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 4369 100 67 85
3640 700 470 90
3640 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3581 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3585 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3594 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3598 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3614 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3628 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3643 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3644 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3662 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3692 100 67 85
Osan Black Eagles 3693 100 67 85

To finish the day the show the USAF did show a Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) set-piece, involving two A-10th Thunderbolt II, four F-16 Fighting Falcon and two UH-60 rescue helicopters.The time between take-off and the real action in front of the spectators on the ground was quite long, but the flying later on really made up for this. The storyboard was build up around a downed pilot, but more or less everybody was keen on seeing the jets turning around in the sky and releasing flares.

Osan A 10 1505 700 470 90
Osan A 10 1505 100 67 85
Osan A 10 3351 100 67 85
Osan A 10 3356 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4043 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4052 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4344 100 67 85
3069 700 470 90
3069 100 67 85
Osan A 10 3051 100 67 85
Osan A 10 3068 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4076 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4091 100 67 85
Osan A 10 4301 100 67 85
4035 700 470 90
4035 100 67 85
Osan F 16 1761 100 67 85
Osan F 16 2991 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4010 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4020 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4029 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4105 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4312 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4325 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4330 100 67 85
4127 700 470 90
4127 100 67 85
Osan F 16 3084 100 67 85
Osan F 16 3095 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4119 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4154 100 67 85
Osan F 16 4182 100 67 85
1782 700 470 90
1782 100 67 85
Osan CSAR 1284 100 67 85
Osan CSAR 1289 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 1772 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 1775 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 1814 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 1817 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 4050 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 4240 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 4243 100 67 85
Osan UH 60 4253 100 67 85

Whereas not very ideal during the rest of the day the dark gray sky on Saturday even improved these sights more than the blue one on Sunday, but to draw an end to the flying displays both A-10 ejected a massive amount of flares at the very end of their display. This might have drawn a perfect end to this day, wouldn't it have been for the point that was mentioned at the beginning of this report.

Osan Static 1457 700 470 90
Osan Static 1457 100 67 85
Osan Static 1464 100 67 85
Osan Static 1466 100 67 85
Osan Static 1470 100 67 85
Osan Static 1475 100 67 85
Osan Static 1479 100 67 85
Osan Static 4359 100 67 85
Ozan Static 1455 100 67 85
Osan Static 1368 700 470 90
Osan Static 1368 100 67 85
Osan Static 1373 100 67 85
Osan Static 1382 100 67 85
Osan Static 1385 100 67 85
Osan Static 1400 100 67 85
Osan Static 1411 100 67 85
Osan Static 1454 100 67 85
Osan Static 1481 100 67 85
Osan Static 4358 100 67 85
Osan Static 4363 100 67 85
4372 700 470 90
4372 100 67 85
Osan So 1862 100 67 85
Osan So 1863 100 67 85
Osan So 4366 100 67 85
Osan So 4371 100 67 85
Osan So 1264 700 470 90
Osan So 1264 100 67 85
Osan So 1273 100 67 85
Osan So 2877 100 67 85
Osan So 2878 100 67 85
Osan So 2880 100 67 85

The Airpower Day was thus not a very big event with the main intention to improve the relation with the local community and to improve the cultural undertanding – and of course it was also a rare and exclusive chance to see some unique flying displays. However there still remains some room for improvements and visitor satisfaction, hopefully to be implemented in the future.

Some more photos are linked here and are availabel in higher resolution:

911 Osan U 2 1597 911 Osan U 2 3291

911 Osan A 10 Opening 1531 911 Osan A 10 Solo 3919 911 Osan A 10 4283

911 C0ee8542372531d1 911 Osan A 10 4341 911 Osan F 16 1761

911 Osan A 10 Solo 1756 911 Osan U 2 3291 911 Osan Static 1464

911 Osan A 10 3347 911 Osan U 2 3422 911 Osan Static 1411

911 Osan Static 1457 911 Osan A 10 1505 911 Osan A 10 3069

911 Osan F 16 4035 911 Osan F 16 4325 911 Osan F 16 4330

911 Osan F 16 4127 911 Osan U 2 3388 911 Osan U 2 1577

911 Osan Black Eagles 3640 911 Osan Black Eagles 3585 911 Osan T 50 3783

911 Osan Static 1475 911 Osan Kt 1 1719 911 Osan Static 1470

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