The exercise, which will take place from 6 October 2008, is designed to sharpen the response levels of the thousands of soldiers, sailors and airmen involved.
Conscious of the fact that the exercise will take place in environmentally sensitive conservation zones, planners have spent months in direct discussions with the people most closely involved as exercise director, Royal Navy Captain Paddy McAlpine, explained:
"We are aware that we will be training in areas which contain a wide variety of marine wildlife, sea bird breeding grounds and protected fauna and flora.
"Therefore, we have spoken to landowners, farmers, fishermen, tourist agencies and environmentalists and we have built into our plans details which will limit our impact on our natural surroundings.
"However, I must stress that our armed forces are operating in a busy and dangerous world and it is our fundamental responsibility to ensure that they are trained to the highest possible standard."
In all, 29 ships and four submarines will take part, with the majority of the assets from the UK, NATO and Allied Nations operating off the north and west coasts of Scotland. Submarines will patrol the Sea of Hebrides and the Minch throughout the exercise.
Sixty aircraft will fly 100 missions a day over Scotland, England and Wales and will conform to normal UK low flying regulations between 0800 hrs and 2300 hrs, Monday to Friday.
Essential Joint Firing Exercises will take place at Cape Wrath in Scotland and Castle Martin and Sennybridge in Wales. The Welsh exercises will involve troops and fast jets using a variety of live ammunition. The ships will fire only in Scotland; Cape Wrath is the only regulatory firing range in Northern Europe. Environmental Impact Assessments are conducted for all potentially damaging activities.