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Press Releases
Press Release | Sept. 6, 2022

NORAD to conduct arctic air defence operation Noble Defender


North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) will conduct Operation NOBLE DEFENDER, a long-planned Arctic air defense operation in Alaska and the Northwest Territories, from September 12-14, 2022. The operation will involve military aircraft and personnel from the United States and Canada.


The majority of Operation NOBLE DEFENDER flights will be conducted over sparsely populated Arctic and Pacific areas at high altitudes, where the public is not likely to see or hear them. However, the general public may notice an increase in military presence and flying activities in various remote locations in the Arctic and Pacific North West, including Inuvik, Yellowknife, St. Lawrence Island, King Salmon, Ketchikan, and west of Vancouver.


Operation NOBLE DEFENDER is a routine series of long-planned NORAD operations that validate NORAD Command’s capability to defend Canada and the United States from every avenue of approach, and demonstrate the ability to integrate with other defense and security partners for a holistic, 360-degree defense of North America.


Operation NOBLE DEFENDER demonstrates the ability to rapidly deploy military assets and conduct operations from or in the vicinity of the aforementioned locations. This rapid deployment operation will showcase the abilities of our NORAD forces in the Arctic to quickly deter, defend and, if needed, defeat threats to North America.


All three NORAD regions – Alaska NORAD Region (ANR), Canadian NORAD Region (CANR), and Continental U.S. NORAD Region (CONR) – will launch military aircraft to conduct defensive maneuvers along the northern and western approaches to North America.


This Operation NOBLE DEFENDER includes military personnel and equipment support from Portland, Oregon; Cold Lake, Alberta; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson and Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska.


NORAD is a Canadian and United States bi-national command charged with three missions: aerospace warning, aerospace control, and maritime warning for North America. NORAD employs a network of aerial, ground-based, and space-based sensors, air-to-refueling tankers, and fighter aircraft controlled by a sophisticated command and control network to deter, detect, and defend against aerial threats that originate outside or within North American airspace.


The defense of Canada and the United States is NORAD’s number one priority. NORAD continues to execute its missions with the same conviction and diligence that has been the Command’s trademark since 1958.