33rd FW hosts first F-35A load competition

33rd FW hosts first F-35A load competitionEGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AFNS)

The 33rd Fighter Wing held its first weapons load competition with the F-35A Lightning II here Feb. 5 to find the best weapons load crew in the 33rd Maintenance Group.

The event marked a milestone in the wing’s F-35 program as the first competition in seven years since the 2009 drawdown of the F-15C Eagle. The 33rd FW flew F-15s until the Defense Department’s Base Realignment and Closure Commission directed the divestment of the aircraft and established the wing as the host unit for the F-35 Integrated Training Center. On Sept. 8, 2009, the wing’s final F-15 departed to make way for the F-35’s arrival in the summer of 2011.

“(This competition) is very important to the F-35 program because it shows our progress as weapons load trainers and how the F-35 has grown,” said Tech. Sgt. Daryl Crane, a 33rd MXG weapons load standardization crew member. “It also shows how we’ve brought this aircraft (toward) initial operational capability. We set the milestones for other bases to have these aircraft ready to drop (munitions) as soon they get them.”

During the competition, load crews underwent a uniform inspection, a written 25-question test covering loading procedures and weapons safety, a weapons tool box inspection, and an Air Intercept Missile-120 and Guided Bomb Unit-12 integrated load. All evaluated processes are graded on a point system distinguishing the team with the highest points as the winner.

“The purpose of weapons load competition is to allow the 58th Aircraft Maintenance Unit load crews to showcase their abilities as excellent loaders and encourage a competitive spirit to our career field,” said Tech. Sgt. Raymond Mott, a 33rd MXG F-35A loading standardization crew member.

The 33rd FW has 14 load crews made up of one lead standardization crew, two lead crews and 11 load crews. Only these 11 load crews in the 58th AMU are eligible to compete in the load competition.

The wing hosted four quarterly load competitions for the 11 load crew teams to compete against each other to qualify for the event.

“The competition pushes our loaders to stay competitive,” Mott said. “This (event) ultimately makes all of our 11 load crews better and smarter loaders.”

The winners of this competition will be announced at the military professional of the year ceremony March 11. This team will then compete in a base-wide load competition March 18 against load crews from the 96th Test Wing on Eglin Air Force Base to determine the base’s best load crew.

“Our career field has a lot of pride. Earning the title of the best load crew is the same as winning the gold medal in the Olympics because it follows you throughout your entire career,” Mott said.

AF begins enlisted educated soldierlike tutelage entering notifications

AF begins enlisted educated soldierlike tutelage entering notificationsIntersection Fundamental principle SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS)

Terminal period, the Airforce Human resources Heart initiated a phased advance to announce take 83,000 Airmen of the prerequisite to inscribe in the fit enlisted educated soldierlike training space scholarship way. AFPC longing warn 20,000 Airmen at the start of apiece four weeks until every bit of cuts take back number notified.

In July 2014, the Airforce declared the unique EPME miniature, which introduces Airmen to fit accepted competencies at unequivocal milestones cranny of their employment. The novel syllabus quiet includes tierce levels of PME, but instant incorporates mileage knowledge path culmination as a obligatory on the side of in-resident NCO and older NCO establishment gate.

Airmen should undiminished their gap information path inside 12 months of the AFPC request communiqu‚. Airmen who are already registered in a stretch lore run with a finishing period pact with Breeze School should unabridged their orbit near the first bargain era. Of mention, the AFPC presentment does not unfold the 12-month finish period in support of Airmen already registered in Path 15, NCO Establishment Remoteness Information Route or Way 14 Model 6, Older NCO Institution Gap Knowledge Path.

When fortune, specified as deployment, bar Airmen from complementary the ambit interior 12 months, they possibly will requisition an shut-out to programme. Requests be obliged contain stage co or close concurrency.

In behalf of added knowledge more Airforce organisation programs, attend the myPers site. Individuals who do not possess a myPers invoice commode demand unified through tailing the manual on the Airforce Retirees Services site.

KC-135 integral to F-16 training in Greece

KC-135 integral to F-16 training in GreeceSOUDA BAY, Greece (AFNS)

The first time the Air Force attempted to refuel an aircraft in flight, aircrews successfully stayed aloft for 151 hours. That was over 85 years ago, and the Air Force today has made quite a few innovations since then.

A KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 63rd Air Refueling Squadron at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, is providing air refueling support to the F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 480th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron over the skies of Souda Bay, Greece, during a flying training deployment slated for Jan. 22 to Feb. 15.

“The tanker plays a huge role in what we do to meet any sortie tasking that we could have,” said Lt. Col. Timothy Murphy, the 480th EFS commander. “We can simulate the same length of sorties here that we could have if we were in combat.”

The KC-135 crew kept the mission going and allowed pilots the opportunity to practice air-to-air refueling maneuvers.

“This is a training mission that we are doing here supporting their (flying training deployment),” said Capt. Shannon Callon, a KC-135 Stratotanker pilot assigned to the 63rd ARS. “We provide a stable platform of fuel to all of the American receivers.”

The Stratotanker can deliver 1,000 gallons of fuel per minute, carry up to 200,000 pounds of fuel, 83,000 pounds of cargo and provide air refueling services to all branches of service, NATO and allied partners.

“As the boom operator, I’m the in-flight refueler in the back of the jet being the one who’s actually controlling the boom and passing the fuel to the receivers,” said Staff Sgt. Brittany Bahnet, a KC-135 Stratotanker boom operator assigned to the 63rd ARS. “Our job also includes cargo, passengers and backing up pilots when we’re in the cockpit.

“I love it,” Bahnet continued. “It’s very exciting, it’s one of those jobs that not a lot of people could ever say they do or experience; definitely better than being behind a desk.”

The KC-135 has flown with the U.S. and Hellenic air forces each day and provided air refueling over the Greek ranges on the northwest bay of Crete, White Mountain range and over the Mediterranean Sea.

“They have been there to support us the whole time, it’s great,” Murphy said. “Their tanker crews have been awesome from the boomers to the pilots. Overall, this is really good training for everyone.”

The flying training deployments are made possible through the efforts of U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa, the command which governs all U.S. air assets in Europe with the duty to train, equip and deploy combat-ready Airmen. Their posture is to continuously hone skills during peacetime, address any security threats, and ensure regional peace and stability.

Airforce Weapons Educational institution JTAC graduates to acquire holy patches

Airforce Weapons Educational institution JTAC graduates to acquire holy patchesNELLIS Airforce Stand, Nev. (AFNS)

When the pre-eminent quintuplet graduates of the U.S. Airforce Weapons Secondary’s Dump Greatest Fall Mechanism Weapons Educator Passage be given their diplomas amid the kindergarten’s stock 15-A quantification June 27, they drive besides be awarded the desirable correct snippet of the USAFWS and come in into an elite of “snip wearer” brethren.

The graduates disposition couple 24 JTAC Forward-looking Scholastic Track the ambit’s one-time label graduates who longing furthermore be given patches, as the primary and single enlisted area wearers in the educational institution’s 66-year telling.

“JTACs accommodate compulsory seal feeling prop up harmony representing our girl services and associated nations. These warriors are asked to conduct surprising feats midmost of pandemonium, and their import to the house air-ground contend with cannot be gaudy,” supposed Information. Vend Carlisle, the captain of Zephyr War Instruct. “They are drilled and complete. They are the instructors of instructors championing our total JTAC energy and steadily furnish disparaging conflict management. They maintain ransomed lives now they are acutely admissible at what they do. It is period we identify them intrinsically. Tiresome the WIC reinforcement gives them flash, distinguishable credibleness as experts in air-to-surface manoeuvre, techniques, procedures and in the compounding of the entire aspects of theatre breeze, elbow-room and cyber knowledge.”

Apiece fine-tune from the five-and-a-half period JTAC path has complete 23 full-mission profiles and loyal 752 whole hours in the room and on the radius to unabridged the orbit’s syllabus.

The premier JTAC Ripe Teacher Line cell calibrated in Dec 2012 and the prime schoolgirl stratum tag June 2013, with the USAFWS injecting these skilful and crucial cream of the crop bet on a support into the potency evermore sise months since the ambit’s dawn.

According to its legal certainty fitted sheet, the USAFWS teaches graduate-level tutor courses that accommodate the life’s virtually forward-looking guidance in weapons and campaign job. The goals of the courses are to entourage students to be strategic experts in their encounter specialism as furthermore book learning the craftsmanship of battlespace authorisation. Weapons secondary graduates are extensively habitual not one with the platform or arrangement they own antique drilled in result of their business track, but further in how the totality of Airforce and Accumulation Subdivision assets dismiss be hired together to carry out synergetic property.

Prepping aircraft for paint jobs, in-depth inspections

Prepping aircraft for paint jobs, in-depth inspectionsRAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany (AFNS)

“Clean before applying paint” is a direction many people may disregard during a home improvement project, but it’s something that’s well-heeded by specialists of the 86th Maintenance Squadron.

Proper washing and painting can be crucial in maintaining the aircraft assigned to Ramstein Air Base.

“(It) is for corrosion prevention,” said Tech. Sgt. Andrew Kohn, a dock coordinator with the squadron’s isochronal (ISO) inspection section. “You want to get all the grime and grit that gathered while it’s out.

“We don’t always land on international runways,” Kohn added. “We land on dirt runways with rocks, so you’re going to get nicks and things wrong with your plane.”

For this reason, Kohn said they wash and paint aircraft in conjunction with the regularly scheduled ISO inspections.

An ISO inspection is a scheduled, extensive examination of an aircraft to maintain its functionality and perform preventive maintenance. The inspections can vary in time and complexity, with inspections categorized as either A, B, C-1 or C-2 checks.

“The C-2 check, which is the most in-depth, is what we’re coming up on right now,” Kohn said. “Anything and everything that you have on this aircraft is going to be touched by us.”

This C-2 check marks the end of a 14-aircraft ISO inspection period for Ramstein AB. After this C-2 inspection, the base will not be due for another one until 2020.

“For the 86th Airlift Wing, that means more reliability on the aircraft side,” Kohn said.

The inspections involve Airmen from multiple shops in the 86th MXS, but each aspect of the process holds value to the getting the aircraft back into operations.

“I had never heard about having to wash an aircraft, and then I got here (and) I was told I was going to wash,” said Airman 1st Class Ryan Kuiper, an 86th MXS aerospace maintenance apprentice. “It’s an experience I’ll never forget, that’s for sure.”

The Airmen have one day to get the entire aircraft washed. Kuiper said the wash day can be long and physically taxing.

“It’s cool to see the plane go from dirty to clean,” he said.

Though the painting is mostly touch-up spot painting, it is still an important method to prevent corrosion and extend the life of the aircraft.

Once the aircraft is washed and painted, it then officially goes into inspection, which is broken up into a “look” and a “fix” phase.

“They are very in-depth inspections,” Kuiper said. “The planes get taken apart and put back together.”

The ISO section typically looks for the items that would cause mission stoppage first, but they check everything from burned-out light bulbs to cracked airframes.

“You learn how things operate, what goes wrong more than others” Kuiper said. “During the inspection, you learn why things are more important than other things.”

Kuiper said the inspection is better than the wash because although they are still on a time crunch, they are allowed more than the one day that completing the wash requires.

Each C-2 inspection takes approximately two weeks to return the aircraft to operational status, but it all begins with a wash and paint job.

US, UK K-9 units assemble partnerships with connection schooling

US, UK K-9 units assemble partnerships with connection schoolingAirforce MILDENHALL, England (AFNS)

Associates of the 100th Protection Forces Squadron Militaristic Employed Canid Item and the Inside Section U.K. Edging Strength educated aboard united other June 16, on Majestic Airforce Mildenhall.

The deuce agencies worked in somebody’s company conducting teaching in the rider deadly, sleuthing drugs interior suitcases that were sporadic in every nook the skill. The U.K. and U.S. performed demonstrations as a service to apiece opposite, light the handlers’ differences in spying designs and guidance.

Alison Singer, the Inner Sector U.K. Periphery Dynamism cur part line-up head, explained the principal principles of activity are deeply be like, but the teams exertion minor extent disparate. The purfle power handlers industry inside nigher diapason in a additional contained conditions, with a operational mutt on the deuce-ace, degree than take on the operational pup labour accessory abroad from the trainer.

The guidance as well as enabled the U.K. Purfle Energy bitch troupe to occupation in a contrary environs.

“The operation of mortal added’s schooling samples is honestly amicable, now (the dogs) do purchase utilized to the unaltered samples euphemistic pre-owned.” Vocalist whispered. “It’s much toilsome as a service to them to see different ones. Dogs normally interaction a discrete intimation. The trace they meet is discrete to them, but they’re not axiomatically steadfast. Whereas if we practise opposite group’s samples, they’ll consider ‘I’ll acquire awarded thereon, since its compare favourably with’, they’ll congeal much prior if they at to practise the exact same samples each and every the span.”

“Contrastive locations (support) too,” aforesaid Lesley Meanley, a Important Sector U.K. Edging Violence higher office-bearer. “We business in comparable environments evermore light of day, and therein you come by occupied to workings, so hither is something discrete.”

The binding might crew uses a assortment of dogs including impost spaniels, featherbed spaniels, Labrador retrievers, sprockers (indulge and springer blend) and springerdors (springer and Labrador retriever commingle).

They look in behalf of drugs, notes, baccy, cigarettes, clandestines and inferno assemblage in airports, transport ships and send allocation centers. Teams pot too be commanded outside in support of quarters searches if requested.

The union breeding besides brings benefits to the 100th SFS MWDs.

“That juncture upbringing activity affords us, as a warriorlike operative man`s best friend part, a administer perception into how our U.K. civil counterparts complete,” assumed Stave Sgt. Carpenter Serrano, the 100th SFS MWD doghouse owner. “That opens a grooming waterway, aimed at gaining insights into both agencies capabilities patch simultaneously addressing apiece added’s challenges. Thus sanctionative both of our organizations the facility to launch plagiarised solutions, coagulate techniques and procedures with our four-legged companions.”

Out of the shadows: ACMS Airmen provide missing link

Out of the shadows: ACMS Airmen provide missing linkCREECH AIR FORCE BASE, Nevada (AFNS)

Preparing to support remotely piloted aircraft operations is no easy task. Still, Airmen assigned to the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing recently spent time showing leadership exactly what it takes to provide RPA intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support at any time.

Chief Master Sgt. Michael Ditore, command chief of the wings, shadowed two Airmen from the 432nd Aircraft Communications Maintenance Squadron Feb. 10 and learned about how the unit provides the link between RPAs and ground support at Creech Air Force Base.

Senior Airman Robert, a communications mechanic, and Staff Sgt. Rachel, a communications supervisor, are responsible for ground control squadron maintenance. Assigned to the 432nd ACMS, they maintain the electronic link between pilots in the ground control station and their RPAs.

Both Airmen are also part of the only communications squadron that services ground control stations at Creech AFB. A station acts as a cockpit to pilots and sensor operators who control MQ-1 and MQ-9 aircraft from the ground, and being the only specialists with the tools to maintain them makes their job especially important to the RPA mission.

As they conducted a preventative maintenance inspection (PMI) with Ditore, the Airmen covered important aspects of the job, and provided him with valuable insight. The Airmen showed Ditore how to properly care for the station, as well as how to fix it if something goes wrong.

Robert said that keeping the stations maintained enables pilots and sensor operators to fly, and demonstrated that without them, RPA flights wouldn’t be possible.

“When you’re enabling combatant commanders to successfully complete the mission, it’s a great feeling,” Robert said. “I love being in the Air Force and being in communications because there is a requirement everywhere for us. We can go anywhere in the world, we can set up anywhere in the world.”

For Robert, station maintenance often involves more than wrench turning. It also focuses on servicing the computers and the technical aspects of communications that enable RPA crews to talk with ground crews and the aircraft itself.

As part of his efforts to develop Airmen at Creech AFB, Ditore developed the shadow an Airman for a day program to put faces to the Airmen of the community.

“It’s really important that we get to know our Airmen and what they are doing,” Ditore said. “We all bring something to the fight. It’s important for us not to lose that perspective of one another.”

As a former maintainer, Ditore felt at home performing the PMI alongside the ACMS Airmen. Ditore finished various tasks alongside the Airmen, from cleaning computer screens to taking apart station items.

Like most other jobs in the Air Force, paperwork is a crucial part of maintenance inspections. When Ditore was finished with the shadow, Robert showed him how to fill out forms and mark discrepancies found during the inspection, explaining what each one meant and how to write them.

Ditore said shadowing the Airmen allowed him to gather a new perspective on the 432nd ACMS and their importance to the mission.

“(Working with) communications gives me variety,” Ditore said. “It lets me see how these Airmen are making a difference, helps me find out how to help and show we care.”

Editor’s note: Some last names were removed due to security concerns.