is a biennial warfare exercise hosted by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). The exercise is normally held in Northern Australia, primarily at RAAF Bases Darwin and Tindal. The aim of the exercise is to practice Offensive Counter Air (OCA) and Defensive Counter Air (DCA) combat, in a simulated war environment. It traditionally consists of a ‘red team’ and a ‘blue team’ based at separate locations, with one attacking the other.
The first Pitch Black exercises took place on 15–16 June 1981 between different RAAF and USAF units
The exercise began in 1990 starting with training between Australia and Singapore, and it then expanded to other international air forces with defence ties to Australia being invited, which have come to consist of France’s Armée de l’Air; the Royal Malaysian Air Force, the Republic of Singapore Air Force; the Royal Thai Air Force; the Royal New Zealand Air Force; the United States Air Force; and Britain’s Royal Air Force. Countries unable to participate are able to send observers.
Although the 2000, 2004 and 2006 exercises were held in the Northern Territory, the 2002 exercise was scaled down and held at RAAF Bases Amberley and Williamtown, on the Australian east coast. RAAF Base Glenbrook (near Sydney) is used as the command and control centre, as it would if the simulated conflict were real