Salutes & Awards

September 15, 2013

Stay focused, don’t punch out

Capt. Brandon Liabenow, 355th Fighter Squadron pilot, receives a letter of appreciation from Col. Kevin Blanchard, 355th Fighter Wing commander. Liabeknow is being recognized for his quick thinking, systems knowledge, and physical endurance directly resulted in the prevention of injury, or loss of life, and the preservation of a $12 million combat asset.

 

Military aircraft go through vigorous inspections, daily, to ensure air crew safety, but what happens when an aircraft experiences malfunctions during flight? One D-M Airmen was faced with this situation.

Captain Brandon Liabenow, 354th Fighter Squadron pilot, was recently recognized for his actions during a mission to bring an A-10 Warthog to the Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group.

“We were doing a tail swap,” said Liabenow. “So we took four good A-10’s to Osan Air Force Base, Korea and we were bringing four A-10’s back to the boneyard for retirement.”

The troubles began when Liabenow was over the Pacific Ocean, roughly halfway through his flight. While flying from Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, to D-M, Liabenow began to experience technical difficulties and was only receiving hot air through the air vents in the cockpit.

After several minutes the heat intensified and became unbearable. Liabenow then tried to control the temperature through manual adjustments to no avail. He then realized that he had to turn off the main air supply in order to stop the flow of hot air.

“It got to the point where all the metal objects in the cockpit were too hot to touch,” Liabenow said. “Even with my gloves on I could feel the heat radiating through the stick as I was flying.”

By turning off the main air supply Liabenow was depressurizing the cockpit along with his external fuel tanks. A quick calculation revealed that he would not be able to reach his divert base without external fuel if they lost tanker support.

“Once I turned off the main air supply I wasn’t able to access the external fuel tanks, and without the tanker I wouldn’t have been able to make it to Vandenberg Air Force Base, California,” said Liabenow.

He then coordinated a decent to 15,000 feet and diverted to Vandenberg.

After completing the “Cockpit Over Temperature” checklist, which had Liabenow turn the main air supply back on, he was able to determine that he could handle about 15 minutes of heat before having to shut it off again. This would prove to be important should he need to use the external fuel tanks.

Liabenow was able to successfully reach his divert base and recover the aircraft by turning the main air supply off and on. Once grounded, it was discovered that the bleed air valve was jammed and was forcing hot engine air directly into the cockpit.

“Liabenow’s quick thinking, systems knowledge, and physical endurance directly resulted in the prevention of injury, or loss of life, and the preservation of a $12 million combat asset,” Said Capt. Dale Stark, 354th Fighter Squadron flight safety. “Superior airmanship!”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Iraqi Security Forces repel ISIL attack

WASHINGTON – An attempt by 20 to 25 Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant fighters to attack al Asad Air Base in Iraq was repulsed by “ready and able” Iraqi security forces, the Pentagon press secretary said today. “The attempted attack was led, we believe, by at least several … suicide attackers,” Navy Rear...
 
 

Avoid online dangers, unfriendly users on social media

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — The internet instantaneously allows you to reach out across the internet superhighway to share information or connect with loved ones.  Despite how innocuous this may seem, without taking the proper precautions, your personal information can inadvertently fall into the wrong hands. “You have to assume that everyone is looking at it,” said...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Timothy Boyer)

Flyovers: Sight, sound of freedom

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — They are breathtaking, flawless and can cause the viewer to have goosebumps. They look easy, but, according to those who perform them, flyovers take training, skill and precise decisions to ex...
 

 

Air Force seeks $10 billion over sequestration funding

WASHINGTON – The demand for Air Force capabilities is increasing, therefore the service is requesting $10 billion more than sequestration-level funding provides, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James said today in Orlando, Florida. Speaking during the Air Force Association Air Warfare Symposium and Technology Exposition, James discussed why the Air Force is taking its strongest...
 
 

75 day leave carryover ends Sept. 30

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) — Effective Sept. 30, military members will no longer be able to carry more than 60 days of leave into the next fiscal year, in accordance with 2013 National Defense Authorization Act requirements. Unless they are approved for special leave accrual, regular Air Force and Active Guard Reserve, or...
 
 

Generals outline Combat Air Force’s future challenges

ORLANDO, Fla. (AFNS) — Four senior Air Force leaders discussed key issues facing the nation’s Combat Air Forces at the Air Warfare Symposium here, Feb.12. During the hour-long discussion, leaders touched on budget concerns, ongoing operations against the Islamic State of Iraq in the Levant terrorist group, the future of fifth-generation fighters like the F-22 Raptor and F-35A...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin