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  • Air Force Chief Data Office Announces First Datathon

    The Department of the Air Force (DAF) Chief Data Office (SAF/CO) unveiled plans to host a series of Datathons—events aimed at solving critical DAF challenges by using data. For the first Datathon, SAF/CO is teaming with AFWERX and the USAF-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Artificial Intelligence Accelerator to focus on C-17 aircrew scheduling optimization. The team is working with C-17 crew members based at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina, and Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.
  • Scheduling training is about to get easier for C-17 crews

    Scheduling training for C-17 Globemaster III pilots and crew is about to get easier with the launch of Puckboard, a data-powered software application to plan aircrew qualification flights automatically. The tool, developed by and for Airmen, allows schedulers to rapidly match aircraft commanders, pilots, and loadmasters with available flights to complete currency requirements such as aerial refueling and tactical training events required throughout the year.
  • AFRL creates safer-than-steel synthetic winch cable for cargo aircraft

    WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – The C-17 Globemaster III aircraft fleet currently uses winch cables made of steel to pull pallets, vehicles and other items onto the aircraft from the ground via the aft ramp.The current steel cable experiences dangerous snapback upon breakage, which can injure personnel and damage aircraft. The synthetic
  • The Air Force is analyzing operational efficiency – one airframe at a time

    Have you ever wondered if the Air Force is flying as efficiently as possible? Well, you’re not alone…and there’s a task force to find out. The Energy Analysis Task Force (EATF), led by the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Air Force Operational Energy, has been systematically visiting Air Force bases around the country to observe actual training and mission flights, and speak with flight crews (to include operators and maintainers) about flight operations, practices, and aircraft requirements that have an impact on aviation fuel efficiency. The goal: to identify optimization best practices (and the challenges to implementing them) across each airframe, and produce a report that recommends which initiatives, processes, and technologies could have the greatest benefit to capability and readiness.
  • How the Air Force got smarter about its aviation fuel use in 2018

    Did you know the Air Force is the largest consumer of fuel in the Department of Defense? This may not surprise you, if say, you’ve ever watched a sortie of F-35s complete an aerial refueling, or witnessed a C-5 lift (seemingly) effortlessly into the sky. In fact, the Air Force consumes approximately 2 billion gallons of aviation fuel annually – which is about 81 percent of the total Air Force energy budget (with about 17 percent used for facilities and 2 percent for ground vehicles). Operational energy, or aviation fuel, is critical to mission success – but getting fuel to the warfighter involves complex logistical and technical challenges, intricate planning, and more importantly, poses safety risks to the troops transporting it. As the battlefield becomes increasingly multifaceted, energy resilience is a top concern for the Air Force, and optimized operations are an essential component to maintaining it.
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