Interoperability sounds like a buzzword a systems analyst would use.
But for the next few weeks off central Queensland, it means 25,000 military personnel, 17 warships, six countries and millions of dollars of operations.
It means scores of combat jets roaring through the sky over Shoalwater Bay, near Rockhampton, and submarines under its surface.
And there’s a Chinese spy ship watching on from the outskirts.
Interoperability – the ability of military forces to work together – is the name of the game of Exercise Talisman Sabre.
It’s the biennial war games between Australia and the United States, now in its eighth edition.
New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan are also taking part.
“It’s beyond systems,” Karl Thomas, Rear Admiral of aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan, said.
“It’s the way we train so that when we’re out there conducting a mission, we now know how the other guy’s