Air Force

May 2, 2014

Australian air force makes home at Luke

Tags:
Staff Sgt. LUTHER MITCHELL Jr.
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Maj. Nathan Draper, 61st Aircraft Maintenance Unit participant maintenance liaison officer, poses April 22 in front of the 61st AMU. Draper is the first Royal Australian air force officer to arrive at Luke Air Force Base.

The buildup of F-35 operations at Luke Air Force Base has begun, and the Royal Australian air force will soon be Luke’s first international partner to train here on the F-35A Lightning II.

The 61st Fighter Squadron and 61st Aircraft Maintenance Unit will house the RAAF personnel. The goal is to build a cohesive, working understanding of the F-35A program with Luke’s international partners for increased success in joint operations.

“It’s one more step in the long road to making this aircraft combat capable,” said Capt. Dan Langan, 61st AMU officer in-charge.

“The idea is in future conflicts nobody is going to be going at it alone. We’ll have our allies with us. The idea behind this aircraft was to make it easier to operate with our multinational partners, understand the same tactics, operate with the same logistics base, and figuring out how to do that starts right here. We are laying the foundation and it’s pretty exciting to be on the ground floor of that effort.”

Luke will act as ground zero for international partners to build their expertise in F-35A operations. The RAAF is the first partner to start their spin-up operations and are expecting their first aircraft by the end of this year.

“We are really pleased to come in and be the first partner to stand up operations here,” said squadron leader Maj. Nathan Draper, 61st AMU participant maintenance liaison officer and RAAF senior officer. “We are pretty lucky to get to come here first.”

The RAAF plans to eventually have 14 aircraft at Luke, with their goal to have a complete working picture of U.S. Air Force F-35 operations, then return to the home base they are setting up for the F-35.

“One of the biggest things I hope to achieve is the successful transition of our aircraft from the production line to the Luke training environment and the commencement of training operations alongside our Air Force colleagues,” Draper said. “If we can do that in a safe and efficient streamlined manner, leveraging the Air Force processes and systems, it will be a pretty good day.”

The RAAF expects their first pilot to arrive at Luke the beginning of next year. Draper is part of an acquisition project called Joint Strike Fighter Division, and he now considers himself a team member of the 61st AMU.

“We have a really good, close working relationship with our colleges in the Air Force, and we are looking forward to the next few years of joint operations here,” he said.

Luke’s relationship with the RAAF goes back a long way. Air Marshal Mark Binskin, soon to be the top Australian Defence Force officer, was stationed at Luke in the late 80s.

Follow-on squadrons, to include the 62nd, are scheduled to bring in additional partner countries including Italy, Norway, Canada, Turkey and the Netherlands.




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


 
 

 

75-day leave carryover expires at fiscal 2015 end

Beginning Sept. 30, the 75-day carryover policy that allows members to carry more than 60 days of leave from the prior fiscal year will expire. Any leave balance more than 60 days at the end of fiscal 2015 will be automatically forfeited. Only members entitled to special leave accrual will be allowed to carry a...
 
 

Start small, think BIG

“A penny saved is a penny earned.” ~ Benjamin Franklin Luke Air Force Base, in conjunction with Fighter Country Foundation, is scheduled to host a financial exposition for members of the Luke community during Military Saves Week from Monday through Feb. 28. The week is designed to show service members how to plan for their...
 
 

Air Force News – February 20, 2015

Alaska Members of the 611th Civil Engineer Squadron at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, along with five other state and federal agencies, practiced techniques to deal with oil or hazardous waste spills under cold weather conditions during a recent exercise.   Greece Airmen from the 435th Air Ground Operations Wing’s Contingency Response Group from Ramstein Air Base,...
 

 

People First – February 20, 2015

Editor’s Note: The “People First” section is compiled from information from the Air Force Personnel Center, TRICARE, 56th Force Support Squadron, Airman and Family Readiness Flight, Veterans Affairs, the civilian personnel office and armed forces news services. For the complete story, click on the link in each title. Carter takes office as 25th Defense secretary...
 
 
Staff Sgt. Timothy Boyer

Flyovers: Sight, sound of freedom

Staff Sgt. Timothy Boyer A four-ship formation of F-35 Lightning IIs perform the first-ever F-35 flyover Jan. 24 over University of Phoenix Stadium during the opening ceremonies of the 2015 Pro Bowl. They are breathtaking, flaw...
 
 

vESD 2.0 rolls out Air Force wide

WASHINGTON — A brand new version of the Virtual Enterprise Service Desk (version 2.0) is now available on unclassified computer desktops on the Air Force network. The vESD is an application on the desktop that empowers computer users to resolve minor information technology issues on their own, no longer requiring users to call the Enterprise...
 




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