Defense

August 14, 2013

Training pods produce knowledge, keeps war fighters sharp

A Navy F/A-18 Hornet from the 113th Fighter Squadron, Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., takes off for a familiarization flight Aug. 9, 2013, from Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The F/A-18 is a twin-engine supersonic multirole fighter jet designed for air-to-air and air-to-ground combat.

 

Keeping track of 60 aircraft from U.S. and allied partners during a two-week exercise could seem to be an impossible task especially in a training space the size of Florida.

To help with the giant task of tracking and collecting data, fighter aircraft are equipped with Air Combat Maneuver Instrument Pods to track actions ensuring pilots can learn from their flying experience and sharpen their war fighting skills.

The ACMI pods, which look similar to the typical air-to-air missile in dimensions, collect data as the aircraft negotiate training scenarios in the 64,000-acre Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex while participating in Red Flag-Alaska. Back on the ground, the information is dissected and used to debrief the crew on what they did well and what they could improve on – education being the key.

“Every participating jet gets a pod,” said Randy Robertson a contractor from Bering Sea Environmental North, the company that provides and mounts the pods. “These 140-pound units are key to training. They give pilots the opportunity to learn from their mistakes and others.”

Robertson compared the information to a scene in the movie ”Top Gun” where Navy pilots are debriefed about their performance.
 

Wes Dear attaches an air-combat maneuver instrument pod to a Japan Air-Self Defense Force F-15J Eagle Aug. 8, 2013, at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. The pods are attached to aircraft to help monitor movement during flights, which can be reviewed during post-flight briefings. Dear is an electronic technician with Bering Sea Environmental North.

 
“This system is similar to the green shapes pilots saw in the film; however, our system is state-of-the-art,” he said.

With five countries and almost every branch of the U.S. military flying simulated combat sorties in a realistic threat environment, this information becomes invaluable on a daily basis.

“The ACMI brings all the time and money spent on sorties to fruition,” said Maj. Sam Stitt, the 354th Combat Training Squadron operations division chief. “We are able to take the information and accurately debrief.”

Stitt said some information can be lost with the fast-paced environment of Red Flag and describes the action in the field as chaotic.

“Debriefing is like a film study in football,” he said. “Every player has a job and even though you can’t replace hands-on flying, it’s extremely valuable to review information from the outside.”

 




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


 
 

 

Headlines April 21, 2014

News: Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him - Almost 10 years after the friendly fire death of former NFL star turned Army Ranger Pat Tillman, a fellow ranger admits that he may have been the one who fired the fatal shot.   Business: Ship study should favor existing designs -...
 
 

News Briefs April 21, 2014

Navy OKs changes for submariners’ sleep schedules The U.S. Navy has endorsed changes to submarine sailors’ schedules based on research into sleep patterns by a military laboratory in Connecticut. With no sunlight to set day apart from night on a submarine, the Navy for decades has staggered sailors’ working hours on schedules with little resemblance...
 
 

NASA cargo launches to space station aboard SpaceX resupply mission

Nearly 2.5 tons of NASA science investigations and cargo are on the way to the International Space Station aboard SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft. The spacecraft launched atop a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 3:25 p.m., EDT, April 18. The mission is the company’s third...
 

 

Second series of CASIS-sponsored research payloads launch to ISS

The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space is proud to announce several sponsored research payloads have launched to the International Space Station onboard the Space Exploration Technology Corporation’s Dragon cargo capsule. This marks the second series of investigations headed to the station that are sponsored by CASIS, the nonprofit responsible for managing research...
 
 

Boeing to give California workers $47 million in back pay

PALMDALE, Calif. – Boeing will pay $47 million to hundreds of current and former Southern California employees who are owed back pay and benefits, a union announced April 18. An arbitrator ruled against the aerospace giant in January and laid down guidelines for the payments and interest, but it took months to cull through records...
 
 

NASA selects commercial crew program manager

NASA has selected Kathy Lueders as program manager for the agency’s Commercial Crew Program. Lueders, who has served as acting program manager since October 2013, will help keep the nation’s space program on course to launch astronauts from American soil by 2017 aboard spacecraft built by American companies. “This is a particularly critical time for...
 




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>