In line with its mission to enhance EU Member States' defence capabilities, the European Defence Agency organises regular education and operational training activities across its directorates.
To date, more than 200 helicopter and 13.000 personnel have taken part in eight live exercises organised as part of the Helicopter Exercise Programme (HEP). In June 2015, Italy hosted Italian Blade 2015, a training event which gathered 40 helicopters from seven different nations. This was the biggest helicopter exercise held in Europe in 2015. Other concurrent projects are active in the field of helicopter training such as the Helicopter Tactics Course.
Similar exercises are organised to increase the availability of fixed-wing capabilities. This is true in the field of air-to-air refuelling, with two editions of the European Air-to-air Refuelling Training (EART) having been organised in 2014 and 2015 with the support of the European Air Transport Command and the Netherlands as host nation.
As part of the European Air Transport Fleet (EATF) partnership, regular exercises and training events are taking place throughout Europe to promote interoperability and increase the overall availability of military air transport assets. These include large multinational live-flying events as well as academics courses and instructor training.
Several events already took place in the field of Counter Improvised Explosive Devices (C-IED) training. In 2013, a group of Member States decided to pool resources and expertise to set up a series of C-IED Manual Neutralisation Techniques courses and exercises. The first event organised under this framework took place in May 2014. Other efforts in the field of C-IED training involve the organisation of a European Homemade Explosives Training course