ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.J. --
Airmen from the 87th Logistics Readiness Squadron, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, traveled to Atlantic City Air National Guard Base, New Jersey, to collaborate with the 177th Fighter Wing to take part in an integrated hot-pit refueling training the week of April 24, 2023.
Hot-pit refueling is a method of refueling aircraft while the engine is still running. This allows for a quicker turnaround time for the aircraft, as they don’t have to shut down the engine. This also ensures Integrated Combat Turnaround is successful, which is the recovering and relaunching of aircraft while simultaneously loading munitions and repairing aircraft in order to rapidly return them to combat operations.
“Hot-pit training and ICT’s help us recover and regenerate aircraft much faster than standard recovery times,” said U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Charles Zingrone, 177th Logistics Readiness Squadron Fuels Management Flight fuels information service center section chief. “This gives us the ability to obtain air superiority in contested environments.”
Cross-training Airmen from other Major Commands improves the knowledge and skills of the airmen in the career field, while also aligning with the Agile Combat Employment model. The Air Force faces an evolving threat from global adversaries who possess the means to target our Main Operating Bases. Our peer opponents have made improvements in developing advanced technologies for small-unmanned aircraft systems and cruise, ballistic and hypersonic missiles. As a result, the Air Force cannot view MOBs as safe havens from hostile attacks. To overcome this, The Air Force must train and maintain a combat-ready force, and Airmen should prepare to engage in operations that are more complex, large in scale and faster-paced than before.
“Air Combat Command collaborating with Air Mobility Command makes us multi-capable in numerous airframes,” stated Zingrone. “This plays a huge role in deployed or contested environments, where we’ll be able to maintain high operational tempos.”
The training received by the 87th LRS Airmen to hot-pit refuel the F-16C Fighting Falcon is a significant experience, seeing as this training isn’t attainable at JB MDL.
“This shows we’re able to execute special fuels operations no matter the environment while improving our multi-capable assets,” stated U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Alvaro Rojas, 87th LRS Superintendent of Operations and Compliance. “Even though our mission slightly differs from one command to another, we can still partner to train and learn from each other. This allowed us to advance our readiness, increase our mission capabilities and maximize efficiency in man hours to generate aircraft sorties.”
The 87th LRS Airmen showcased the interoperability and readiness of our Air Force operations and emphasized JB MDL’s role in developing multi-capable combat-ready Airmen.