Defense

August 6, 2014

Deployed loadmasters use new airdrop system

Tags:
SSgt. Evelyn Chavez
Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan

MSgt. Bradley Nulf, 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron evaluator loadmaster secures cargo for an airdrop at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan Aug. 1, 2014. The squadron is using the new Wireless Gate Releases System for airdrops. The WGRS saves the Air Force in material, fuel costs and man hours. Nulf is deployed from Dyess Air Force Base, Texas.

 
A C-130J Super Hercules aircraft from the 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron completed an airdrop for the Afghan National Army using the new Wireless Gate Release System Aug. 1, at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.

While still in the testing phase in the U.S., the WGRS, is the primary method crews use in Afghanistan.

“We train on the system before we come out here, and now we are putting it into use,” said Capt. Jeffrey Furnary, 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron tactician deployed from Dyess Air Force Base, Texas. “Its main priority is to keep our loadmasters safe. It allows them to work in a safe area, and they can operate the switches and wirelessly drop the bundles without getting in harm’s way.”

The WGRS is a two part system: the mission control station where loadmasters program mission details and the mechanism that releases the gate holding the bundles that will be air dropped. The mission control system sends a wireless signal to the mechanism which keeps the loadmasters safe behind moving payloads exiting the aircraft.

“With the WGRS the loadmasters no longer have to go behind or beside an unrestrained load,” said MSgt. Bradley Nulf, 774th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron evaluator loadmaster deployed from Dyess Air Force Base. “The process is also faster, the system saves the loadmasters rigging time by 50 percent. If we were to do two-part drops, we could do in 10 minutes what we used to do in 40.”

According to Nulf, there was an urgent operational need for the system, hence the reason why it was brought into theater. A group of experienced subject matter experts from across Air Mobility Command including Little Rock AFB, Ark., Dyess AFB, Texas, and F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo., met for initial training in September 2013.

“Because all the units that come here have the need and requirement to be certified on the system, we trained individuals within our units to be fully capable of performing the need here,” said Nulf.

Despite a glitch in the system that caused the WGRS to release the cargo prematurely, the manufacturing corporation and engineers fixed the problem in order to continue its use. And the system has already proven to save the Air Force money as well.

“It saves the Air Force in material, fuel costs and man hours,” said Nulf. “The type of nylon used for our release gates is very expensive. With the conventional system, the nylon would get cut. With the WGRS it doesn’t, so the nylon can be used for multiple drops.

“It’s a great feeling to see how much the system can do for us,” said Nulf. “From being familiar to proficient and to utilize the system out here the way we are supposed to is just great.”

As the unit continues to support the fight and mission through airlift capabilities, the WGRS will continue to assist the loadmasters to operate safely and in a more efficient manner.

“It is important to showcase one of our main capabilities in the C-130J Super Hercules aircraft,” said Furnary. “One of those are airdrops. This allows us to help the ANA fortify their country so when we leave they have the ability to operate.”

 

Airmen from the 774th Expeditionary Airlifit Squadron push equipment into a C-130J Super Hercules before an airdrop at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan Aug. 1, 2014. The squadron completed an airdrop for the Afghan National Army using the new Wireless Gate Release System.




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


 
 

 

Headlines October 20, 2014

News: Navy grounds ‘Top Guns’ - The F/A-18s needs spare parts and in too many cases they’re being taken from brand new jets. This is a risk to national security and pilots’ lives.   Business: Boeing seeks revised schedule for U.S. aerial tanker - Boeing is revising its master schedule for developing the new U.S. Air Force...
 
 

News Briefs October 20, 2014

New military medical team to help with Ebola in U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the military to prepare and train a 30-member medical support team that could provide short-term help to civilian health professionals if there are more Ebola cases in the United States. His spokesman, Rear Adm. John Kirby, says the team...
 
 

Dragon ‘fires up’ for flight

The Air Force and NATO are undergoing a cooperative development effort to upgrade the avionics and cockpit displays of AWACS aircraft belonging to the 552nd Air Control Wing at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., and the NATO E-3 Sentrys from Geilenkirchen, Germany. The Diminishing Manufacturing Sources Replacement of Avionics for Global Operations and Navigation, otherwise...
 

 
Boeing photographs

Boeing-built X-37B successfully completes third flight

Unmanned spacecraft concludes record-setting 674-day mission   Boeing photograph A third mission of the Boeing-built X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle was completed on Oct. 17, 2014, when it landed and was recovered at Vandenberg...
 
 

Boeing concludes commercial crew space act agreement for CST-100/Atlas V

Boeing has successfully completed the final milestone of its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability Space Act Agreement with NASA. The work and testing completed under the agreement resulted in significant maturation of Boeing’s crew transportation system, including the CST-100 spacecraft and Atlas V rocket. NASA in July approved the Critical Design Review Board milestone for Boeing’...
 
 

AF to release small business research solicitations

The Air Force Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer program office is set to release its fiscal year 2015 list of topics Oct. 22, on the SBIR/STTR website.  Small businesses and research institutions with expertise to address the topics’ technology challenges are encouraged to submit proposals. During 2014, the Defense Department SBIR...
 




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>