Defense

August 31, 2013

Airmen perform first weapons load verfication on F-35A

TSgt. Russ Fontaine, of the 33rd Maintenance Group, maneuvers the guided-bomb-unit-31 into position to be loaded onto an F-35A Lightning II Aug. 27 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This marked the first time airmen have loaded weapons onto the new joint strike fighter here. Each step and procedure was analyzed to ensure it was correct or needed to be changed. The weapons load procedures perfected by the MXG airmen will be taught to maintenance students in the future.

 

After months of preparation the weapons troop Standardization Load Crew from the 33rd Maintenance Group performed the first munitions load verification on the F-35A Lightning II at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., Aug. 27.

“Over the next couple of days, our 33d Fighter Wing maintenance professionals, alongside representatives from the F-35 Program Office and Air Combat Command, will validate weapons loading procedures. This involves loading and unloading laser-guided and GPS-guided bombs, and air-to-air missiles into the weapons bays of the aircraft and ensuring the instructions we provide our load crews are accurate and effective – one more step towards F-35 initial war fighting capability,” explained Air Force Lt. Col. Ron Huzzard, deputy commander of the 33rd MXG.

The SLC has been practicing this load verification using a series of tabletop exercises for several months. This marked the first hands-on load verification for the crew.

MSgt. Karen Griffin, of the 33rd Maintenance Group, informs the jammer drive which way to turn to get the guided-bomb-unit-31 into position to be loaded onto an F-35A Lightning II Aug. 27 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This marked the first time airmen have loaded weapons onto the new joint strike fighter here. Each step and procedure was analyzed to ensure it was correct or needed to be changed. The weapons load procedures perfected by the MXG airmen will be taught to maintenance students in the future.

“Watching our weapons troops verify loading procedures was like getting a glimpse into the future. Ultimately, this will be the work that is performed down range when it counts, and we are laying that foundation here at Eglin,” said Navy Capt. Lance Massey II, commander of the 33rd MXG. “The stealth capability on the F-35 is beyond incredible, but the weapons capability rounds out the whole purpose of the joint strike fighter.”

The procedure was overseen by CMSgt. Christopher Wilbur, wing weapons manager at the 33rd MXG.

“The airmen walked through the technical instructions to verify the data is accurate and make adjustments as necessary,” Wilbur said about the verification load exercise.

The three-person SLC included Air Force MSgt. Karen Griffin, TSgt. Russell Fontaine and SSgt. Steven Dash. Working as a cohesive team, the trio carefully performed several iterations of loading and unloading four different munitions. Once the procedures are verified SLC members will train the weapon troops.

“Getting this step verified in ALIS (the automated logistics information system) for the F-35A is important, so we can move forward and get our 60-plus maintainers trained and working,” Griffin said.
 

SSgt. Steven Dash, of the 33rd Maintenance Group, places a warhead on the front of a guided-bomb-unit 12 before it’s attached to an F-35A Lightning II Aug. 27 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This marked the first time airmen have loaded weapons onto the new joint strike fighter here. Each step and procedure was analyzed to ensure it was correct or needed to be changed. The weapons load procedures perfected by the MXG airmen will be taught to maintenance students in the future.

 

MSgt. Karen Griffin, of the 33rd Maintenance Group, maneuvers the guided-bomb-unit-12 into position to be loaded onto an F-35A Lightning II Aug. 27 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This marked the first time airmen have loaded weapons onto the new joint strike fighter here. Each step and procedure was analyzed to ensure it was correct or needed to be changed. The weapons load procedures perfected by the MXG airmen will be taught to maintenance students in the future.

 

TSgt. Jamal Smith, of the 33rd Maintenance Group, secures a warhead to the front of a guided-bomb-unit 12 before it’s attached to an F-35A Lightning II Aug. 27 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. This marked the first time airmen have loaded weapons onto the new joint strike fighter here. Each step and procedure was analyzed to ensure it was correct or needed to be changed. The weapons load procedures perfected by the MXG airmen will be taught to maintenance students in the future.

 




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


 
 

 

Headlines July 31, 2015

News: Carter: Military leaders could arm more troops at home – Following the recent fatal shooting of four Marines and a sailor in Tennessee, Defense Secretary Ash Carter is ordering the military services to consider new policies that would enhance security for troops at home, including potentially arming more personnel.   Business: DOD weighs supplier base,...
 
 

News Briefs July 31, 2015

U.S. delivering eight newer F-16 warplanes to Egypt The United States Embassy in Cairo says the U.S. is delivering eight newer F-16 warplanes to Egypt as part of an ongoing military support package. It says in a July 30 statement that the aircraft, of the current Block 52 production variant, will be flown in from...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph

Lockheed Martin successfully tests design changes for Orion spacecraft’s fairing separation system

Lockheed Martin photograph A protective panel for Orion’s service module is jettisoned during testing at Lockheed Martin’s Sunnyvale, California facility. This test series evaluated design changes to the spacecraft’s fair...
 

 

Australian company to provide parts for initial production of Triton UAS

Northrop Grumman has awarded the first Australian supplier contract for the U.S. Navy’s MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft system initial production lot to Ferra Engineering. Brisbane-based Ferra Engineering will manufacture mechanical sub-assemblies for the first four Triton air vehicles including structural components. “At Northrop Grumman it’s very important to not only develop...
 
 
Boeing photograph

CH-46 ‘Phrog’ makes its last hop

Boeing photograph The CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter commonly known as the “Phrog,” is set to retire and to be flown one last time by Reserve Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM) 774 on Aug. 1. The CH-46 Sea Knight is a med...
 
 

Insitu awarded LRIP Lot IV RQ-21A Blackjack Systems contract

Under the terms of its latest contract, Insitu will build six RQ-21A Blackjack systems for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. The $78-million Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft Systems Lot IV Low Rate Initial Production contract is the latest event in the program’s progression toward the Initial Operational Test and Evaluation phase.   “This award will...
 




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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>