SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany --
Members of the 52nd Maintenance Group practiced their Integrated Combat Turn capabilities in conjunction with the 52nd Fighter Wing’s implementation of the Agile Combat Employment concept at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, July 17, 2020.
The ICTs establish an efficient method for munitions loading, minor servicing, and refueling of the aircraft while its engines are still running. This reduces the time the jet is on the ground.
“ICTs are a process that have been around for a long time and are being brought back across the Air Force to give us a competitive edge on our near-to-peer adversaries,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jason Jaramillo, 52nd MXG lead standardization crew member.
These capabilities have been used in the past to empower the Air Force mission. Now, these ICT methods, as well as multi-capable Airmen, can be applied to ACE.
“The ICTs are significant in that they allow us to load and return the aircraft in a fraction of the time that it usually takes,” Jaramillo said. “This ultimately increases sortie generation whether it be for home base training or real-world employment. ACE is significant in that it gives us a way to increase force generation capabilities in a contested environment as well as reducing our dependency on operating at a main base. The ACE concept will also prepare our people to be more flexible and multi-capable Airmen.”
By applying ICT tactics crews are able to diminish the amount of time aircraft are out of the fight.
U.S Air Force Tech. Sgt. Aaron Taylor, 52nd MXG lead standardization crew team chief said that in an ICT a jet can be reloaded in significantly less time than in a non-ICT reload where the jet would have to go back to the parking spot, shut down, and restart after– a much longer process.
The weapons standardization section assists in the facilitation of ACE and is the focal point for all ICT training.
“We at WS developed a program and planned how Spangdahlem will train as well as implement the ACE and ICT concepts,” Jaramillo said. “We will also certify all the personnel involved in the ICT operation along with maintaining their re-occurring proficiency training and records. As Weapons Standardization, our main responsibilities are to establish munitions loading standards, procedures, and policies to support mission requirements.”
Spangdahlem AB plans to continue the collaboration between the ACE and ICT programs.
“We are trying to incorporate the ICT portion into ACE at least once a month so we can keep this going,” Taylor said.