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KC-135 Landing Weight

The max landing weight for the KC-135 is now 235,000 pounds because of the initiative displayed by one Airman in the CAOC. Concerned by the high incidences of fuel dumping, he was determined to reduce fuel dump frequency and avoid wasting an increasingly valuable resource. He came up with an innovative solution to increase the 1950s-era 200,000 pound landing weight restriction to 235,000 pounds. He worked with maintenance, sustainment professionals, and operators to ensure there were no hidden costs or safety issues associated with the proposed increase. When none were identified, he successfully worked to change AFI-11-2KC-135V3 to reflect the new max landing weight, thereby reducing AOR dump frequency by 80% and volume dumped by 90%.

Claiborne RANGE

Air Force Operational Energy brought together Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) and Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC) to identify an opportunity to increase flight training time by upgrading the Camp Claiborne (LA) training range. In 2016, with AFRC funding, emitter training equipment was upgraded and new equipment was installed allowing AFGSC's B-52s to train locally rather than flying all the way to New Mexico or other distant ranges. The upgrade decreased B-52 transit time by up to one hour, allowing for optimized aircrew training and decreased sustainment costs.

KC-135 C-PUP

The KC-135 C-PUP program is an engine sustainability program that has significant OE fuel efficiency impact. The program upgrades the F-108 engine core, boosting efficiency and increasing reliability by installing new high-pressure turbines, nozzles, shrouds, compressor blades and vanes. KC-135 Program office testing of the modified engine against baseline configuration confirmed 1.5% increase in fuel efficiency, along with tremendous savings in depot maintenance costs.

Mission Index Flying (MIF)

Current Mobility Air Force (MAF) aircraft lack sufficient built-in capability for aircrews to calculate flight profiles inflight to optimally balance mission effectiveness with fuel efficiency. Investments in a Mission Indexed Flying (MIF) capability enable aircrews to create and use optimized flight plans correlated with aircraft performance to ensure flight planned profiles (ground solutions) can be matched to the Flight Management System (FMS) flight profiles (airborne solutions) to enhance effective and efficient mission execution. 
Specifically, this initiative deploys commercial off the shelf Mission Indexed Flying software across the KC-10, KC-135, C-17, and C-5 fleets to reduce fuel consumption by calculating optimum altitudes and speeds, that are based on actual flight conditions versus planned conditions.

Vance Air Force Base

Seeking the greatest impact on the future pilot force, the Operational Energy team worked with Vance Air Force Base leadership and students to demonstrate the impact of operational energy awareness on fuel consumption. Reservist T-1A Instructor Pilot, Mark Lyons, with the help of simulator instructors, designed navigation sortie profiles at optimum altitudes and speeds that also used fuel efficient descent procedures.


Mr. Roberto Guerrero
Deputy Assistant Secretary
Operational Energy 

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