Recent News

Airman 1st Class Caroline Karaverdian, 9th Medical Group outpatient technician, files a folder in the patient health record department at the clinic at Beale Air Force Base, California, Feb. 4, 2020. On June 20 the 9th MDG will be going all-digital by transitioning to a new electronic health record called Military Health System GENESIS. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)
Department of Defense Military Health System GENESIS logo (Courtesy Graphic)
Senior Airman Jennifer Carrier, assigned to the 319th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, Detachment 1 as the unit deployment manager, stands in front of a Globalhawk on Beale Air Force Base, Calif., Jan. 31, 2020. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman Jason W. Cochran)
Airman 1st Class Joshua Chatman, 9th Operations Support Squadron aircrew flight equipment specialist, places a strain relief cord back into an oxygen mask hose after cleaning it out, Jan. 22, 2020 at Beale Air Force Base, California. To ensure oxygen masks are properly functioning, aircrew flight equipment specialists inspect them every 30 days. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Luis A. Ruiz-Vazquez)
Airman 1st Class Maggie Breedlove, 9th Operations Support aircrew flight equipment specialist, measures and cuts Velcro pieces that will be placed in the inside of a flyers lightweight helmet, Jan. 22, 2020 at Beale Air Force Base, California. These pieces of Velcro will attach an energy absorbing liner to the helmet. The purpose of an energy absorbing liner is to reduce impact energy to the head of a pilot. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Luis A. Ruiz-Vazquez)
Wrenches lie in an aircraft mechanic’s toolbox at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 27, 2020. Mechanics are vital to ensuring the readiness of the 9th Reconnaissance Wing’s intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance flying operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)
Wesley Dietrich, 9th Maintenance Operation Squadron aircraft mechanic, runs an air speed test on a T-38 Talon at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 27, 2020. A group of civilian contractors prepare T-38s for their daily flying schedules by refueling and inspecting the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)
Wesley Dietrich, 9th Maintenance Operation Squadron aircraft mechanic, looks into a T-38 Talon cockpit during an air speed test at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 27, 2020. This test measures the aircraft’s speed with a static tube system, which can determine the speed of the air flowing around the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)
Wesley Dietrich, 9th Maintenance Operation Squadron aircraft mechanic, clicks a switch on a pressure-temperature test device at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 27, 2020. The T-38s are part of the Companion Trainer Program for U-2 Dragon Lady pilots. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)
Wesley Dietrich, 9th Maintenance Operation Squadron aircraft mechanic, looks into a T-38 Talon cockpit at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 27, 2020. The T-38 is a twin-engine, high-altitude, supersonic jet trainer used in a variety of roles because of its ease of maintenance, elevated performance, and exceptional safety record. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)

Chief's Corner

I am an American Airman

Too often I hear the statement, “The Air Force has no tradition…certainly not like the other services.” Or there’s the comment, “The Air Force changes everything all the time.  New uniforms, AFI’s, etc….how can we expect to maintain any heritage or tradition?”
I submit there is one decisive, deliberate, and motivating action each of us can take.  No matter the position you hold, the grade you wear, or if you are active duty, guard, reserve, retired, every single one of us can implement this small, yet powerful change today.  The change refers to a facet of our current culture.
Malcolm Gladwell speaks about culture change in his book, ‘Tipping Point’.  In his book, the author posits that even the smallest adjustments to habits, routines, or attitudes can have a significant impact on the culture or perception of an organization, population, or product.
Therefore, I challenge everyone to stop referring to members of our Air Force as ‘TROOPS’. 
According to Merriam-Webster, the primary definition of the word troop is:
a. A group of soldiers
b. A cavalry unit corresponding to an infantry company
c. A flock of mammals or birds
I understand a definition is literal, however, there are two problems with the way we throw this term around to refer to our Airmen.  First, the word troop is actually plural…referring to a group of soldiers.  Lastly, and most poignantly, the word troop is actually rooted in a tradition and heritage of another service.  And before we start the “But Chief, we were born out of the Army” conversation, I would ask you to consider a few points. 
We were born out of the Army for a reason.  We fulfill several needs that no other organization can: to keep up with advancing technology and to take warfighting to an entirely different level, both geographically and mentally.  The Army and Navy were long-time competitors for military leadership and neither service thought that the other should take on the new tasks of strategic deterrence missions associated with the advent of the atomic bomb.  This, along with many other great reasons, is why our Air Force, and our AIRMEN were created.
Think about it.  The United States Air Force was created for some of the most sophisticated warfare challenges of the time. 
So, let’s continue the tradition born in 1947 and call each other what we truly are.  Please, call me Airman.

Chief Hall

 

 

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ArticleCS

Using science to stay ahead of the weather

Weather forecasters analyzing weather

Staff Sgt. Joshua Snyder, 9th Operational Support Squadron weather forecaster, points on a map at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 15, 2020. Weather specialists keep a constant watch over the forecast and conditions that can affect the safety of pilots and aircrew. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)

Weather forecasters analyzing weather

Senior Airman Andrew Goudge, 9th Operational Support Squadron weather forecaster, looks at meteorological information at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 15, 2020. He and other weather Airmen utilize the latest technology to predict weather patterns, prepare forecasts and communicate weather information to commanders and pilots so that every mission goes as planned. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)

Weather forecasters analyzing weather

Tech. Sgt. Joaquin Morales, 9th Operational Support Squadron weather forecaster, analyzes weather at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 15, 2020. Weather forecasters provide weather support for the pilots and the base populous so when hazardous conditions come up they can put out advisories for base resources. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)

Weather forecasters analyzing weather

Senior Airman Andrew Goudge, 9th Operational Support Squadron weather forecaster, looks at meteorological data at Beale Air Force Base, California, Jan. 15, 2020. Weather flight Airmen boost the 9th Reconnaissance Wing’s mission through detecting, recording and transmitting space environmental observations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Valentina Viglianco)

BEALE AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

Countless factors can contribute to the outcome of the mission at Beale Air Force Base, including something seemingly simple as the weather.

In order to keep the mission going, weather flight Airmen assigned to the 9th Operational Support Squadron propel the 9th Reconnaissance Wing’s operations through discipline and attention to detail of the skies.

“Our main purpose is to provide weather support for the pilots and the base populous,” said Senior Airman Andrew Goudge, 9th OSS weather forecaster.“We monitor conditions of the entirety of the base, including its airspace. We make sure to put out advisories for base resources so we maintain protection of our assets.”

An important part of Goudge’s job is to forecast weather and ensuring accuracy of a forecast is imperative.

“With our job, we have stakes that are higher compared to the meteorologist someone sees on TV,” Goudge said. “As Air Force weather forecasters, we need to be confident with our calculations because we are essentially responsible for the pilot’s life and they put their trust in us to do our best to take care of them.”

One of the tools used to make their forecasts include the Air Force Weather Web Service (AFW-WEBS), which is a program that allows them to get meteorological data from anywhere in the world. Also, to ensure their predictions are correct, they uses sensors on the airfield and coordinate with airfield management and air traffic control to gather real-time weather.

Another responsibility of the weather unit is to relay this information to U-2 Dragon Lady/T-38 Talon pilots before and during any local training flights.

“The briefer cell is the outreach we provide for the pilots,” Goudge said. “We communicate with them directly about factors that might come up in their flying routes.We make sure they have everything they need to complete their mission and have a safe flight.”

The weather unit doesn’t only play a part in local airborne operations; certain members work closely with the 12th Reconnaissance Squadron and deliver weather support for the RQ-4 Global Hawk missions around the globe.

“Due to the RQ-4 being an unmanned aircraft, we work diligently with the pilots to be their eyes for navigating the sky,” said Staff Sgt. Joshua Snyder, 9th OSS weather forecaster.“We are constantly keeping an eye out for turbulence, thunderstorms, and freezing temperatures, which could affect not only the function of the aircraft, but also the intelligence to help troops down range.”

By providing weather support to the 9th RW aircrafts, the unit plays a significant role in Beale’s Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance mission by keeping pilots up to speed with the latest weather information in Beale’s neck of the woods and worldwide.

Mid-Air Collision Avoidance

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