Maintainers complete first aircraft generation exercise

  • Published
  • By Maj. Bryon Turner and Senior Airman Jennifer Pierce
  • 103rd Airlift Wing, Public Affairs
Airmen in the 103rd Maintenance Group completed their first aircraft generation exercise with the C-130H Hercules, Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 at Bradley Air National Guard Base, East Granby, Connecticut.

"An aircraft generation is basically a sequence of events we follow to configure the aircraft for a particular mission within a specified timeframe," said Master Sgt. Jonas Concepcion, production superintendent for the 103rd Maintenance Group.

The mission for the aircraft may involve transporting passengers, cargo, a combination of both, or flying through hostile territory. Based upon the type of mission, there is a particular sequence of events we would need to complete for the aircraft to be ready for its mission, said Concepcion. Depending on the mission, the generation may include aircraft inspections and servicing, seating for passengers, cargo configuration, and loading armor or chaff flare.

The wing's inspector general office inspected the process with the help of three wing inspection team members with backgrounds in engines, environmental, electrical and radar from around the wing, including one from the 103rd Air Control Squadron. 

"They were tasked with inspecting the generation with their subject matter expertise background. The goal for this inspection was to ensure regulation compliance--AFI's, AWI's, MXGOI's and Technical Orders--within several areas," said Senior Master Sgt. Kirkland Foran, from the wing inspector general office.  "The areas primarily consisted of the processes to give a fully mission capable aircraft to operations flight."

The exercise scenario challenged maintainers to produce two fully mission capable aircraft within specific parameters to enable members of the 103rd Operations Group to accomplish their flying mission.  Inspectors leveraged a local aircraft generation flow chart and a checklist developed from discrepancies documented at similar units within several inspector general evaluation management system reports.

"The maintenance folks showed an outstanding attitude towards the inspection team and provided any and all information asked for," said Foran.  "All maintenance troops were outstanding with honest replies to all inspectors; they showed the unvarnished truth with a desire to enhance the unit."

This exercise allowed us to evaluate the sequence of events needed to get the aircraft ready and then make adjustments, said Concepcion. For example, if a large number of aircraft were required for a mission, and we didn't have the man power to complete that many refuels on the aircraft at the same time, we would plot out all the requirements then make a predetermined sequence to stagger our aircraft configurations that wouldn't affect our manpower.

"The knowledge, dedication and willingness from the WIT members were instrumental to the success of this inspection," said Foran, who also put his own combined 30 years of maintenance and quality assurance experience to work while facilitating the inspection.

This generation exercise will be the first of many for the maintainers as different types of generations for the aircraft are completed two to four times a year.