The Professional Certificate in Air Defense Radar and Communication Program was organized by UTMSpace, UTM from 11 to 22 November 2019. In attendance to the program are 3 officers and 4 other ranks from the various Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) bases in Johor, Pahang and Sarawak. The participants are involved in the operations of communications, radar systems and the various aspects of Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (C4I) for RMAF. Unlike maintenance personnel, high level technical competency may not be critical in their daily job functions. However, the highly evolving technical nature of warfare with its different facets has prompted RMAF Command to initiate programs that are technical in nature suitable for personnel involved at the operations level of RMAF. Furthermore, similar programs like this is also in-line with the human resource development which is part of the Capability Advancement Program (CAP 55). Besides RMAF, Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO), for the second time, had earlier identified the need for advancing human resource development with UTM through UTMSpace through  Specialist Diploma in Management and Communication Program started earlier this year. Therefore, there is a need for similar programmes for the armed forces to meet technology demands in warfare.

Topics selected for this program and their contents were formulated from a series of meetings with the relevant divisions of RMAF which was initiated in April 2008. Experience from an earlier program conducted in 2011 was also discussed to improve on the content and delivery of the present program. Among the challenges that were brought up to UTM is how would this program be beneficial even though RMAF has their own training organization. Furthermore, the vendors also provide training prior to the delivery and commissioning of new equipment. Eventually, the subject matter expects from the School of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, UTM managed to convince RMAF Command on the topics, contents and delivery methods. The topics covered are radio propagation, radar systems, satellite communication and HF communication. Besides in-class lectures at UTMSpace facilities, participants were  also exposed to lab work, case study with presentation and site visits. Lecturers who conducted this program have the necessary experience to deliver the material relating theory with practice. The lecturers involved were: Prof. Dr. Jafri bin Din, Assoc. Prof. Dr Nor Hisham bin Haji Khamis and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ahmad Zuri bin Sha’ameri.

The closing ceremony was conducted on the last day of the programme on the 22 nd November 2019. In attendance representing RMAF was the Commanding Officer of Squadron 323, Left. Col. Mohd Rizal bin Zainol and representing School of Electrical Engineering was Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ahmad Zuri bin Sha’ameri. The General Manager, Center for Professional Development, UTMSpace, Assoc. Prof. Sr. Dr. Sarajul Fikri Bin Mohamed, awarded the certificates for all the participants. The ceremony was concluded by noon and lunch was provided for all who attended.

The end of the program, the objectives were met and the participants had completed the required program contents. The knowledge acquired may not be directly related to their daily duties at RMAF, however, it will improve the capability of the participants handle their equipment, involvement with technology transfer activities with their respective vendors and better assessment of the acquisition of new technologies. The success of this program will ensure continual support by RMAF with future conduct of similar programs for the other branches of the Malaysian Armed Forces as well as the armed forces from foreign countries.