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Misawa propulsion Airmen speed up F-16 engine delivery to PACAF bases

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Anthony Thomas, a 35th Maintenance Squadron jet engine intermediate maintenance dock chief, pauses for a photo at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsions Airmen overcame the challenge of operating with a temporary storage facility that did not meet their needs. The flight received nomination for the General Welsh Air Force award and won the 35th Fighter Wing’s Team of the Year award. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Anthony Thomas, a 35th Maintenance Squadron jet engine intermediate maintenance dock chief, pauses for a photo at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsions Airmen overcame the challenge of operating with a temporary storage facility that did not meet their needs. The flight received nomination for the General Welsh Air Force award and won the 35th Fighter Wing’s Team of the Year award. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Joseph Mikolajczyk, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. The Misawa central repair facility provides the U.S. Pacific Air Force with an in-theater option for repairs and overhaul of the GE F110 engines in support of all PACAF F-16 bases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Joseph Mikolajczyk, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. The Misawa central repair facility provides the U.S. Pacific Air Force with an in-theater option for repairs and overhaul of the GE F110 engines in support of all PACAF F-16 bases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class William Bowen, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects a divergent seal with a flash light at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsion Airmen previously traveled across the flightline to access spare parts and materials to complete their mission, but now an easily accessible storage unit is just feet away from their shop location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class William Bowen, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects a divergent seal with a flash light at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsion Airmen previously traveled across the flightline to access spare parts and materials to complete their mission, but now an easily accessible storage unit is just feet away from their shop location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Courtney Parker, a 113th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsions technician from Joint Base Andrews, Md., repairs an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. The Misawa central repair facility provides the U.S. Pacific Air Forces with an in-theater option for repairs and overhaul of the GE F110 engines in support of all PACAF F-16 bases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Courtney Parker, a 113th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsions technician from Joint Base Andrews, Md., repairs an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. The Misawa central repair facility provides the U.S. Pacific Air Forces with an in-theater option for repairs and overhaul of the GE F110 engines in support of all PACAF F-16 bases. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Taylor Reineke, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine with a flash light at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsions Airmen previously traveled across the flightline to access spare parts and materials to complete their mission, but now an easily accessible storage unit is just feet away from their shop location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Taylor Reineke, a 35th Maintenance Squadron aerospace propulsion journeyman, inspects an F-16 Fighting Falcon engine with a flash light at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 25, 2019. Propulsions Airmen previously traveled across the flightline to access spare parts and materials to complete their mission, but now an easily accessible storage unit is just feet away from their shop location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility sits at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Before the establishment of this new structure, props Airmen traveled across the flightline to a hardened aircraft shelter that stored parts and materials. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility sits at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Before the establishment of this new structure, props Airmen traveled across the flightline to a hardened aircraft shelter that stored parts and materials. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility stores various equipment at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. The seemingly brand new building is constructed out of four unused corrugated metal buildings, which aided in cost savings, time and resources. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility stores various equipment at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. The seemingly brand new building is constructed out of four unused corrugated metal buildings, which aided in cost savings, time and resources. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

Boxes sit on a shelf at the 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility building at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Streamlining the storage of parts and equipment is important in providing the best engines possible not only for Misawa, but other U.S. Pacific Air Force installations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

Boxes sit on a shelf at the 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility building at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Streamlining the storage of parts and equipment is important in providing the best engines possible not only for Misawa, but other U.S. Pacific Air Force installations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility logo is displayed at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Although easy access to parts and equipment wasn’t always present for this team, that didn’t stop them from being recognized by leadership and winning the 35th Fighter Wing's Team of the Year Award. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion flight centralized repair storage facility logo is displayed at Misawa Air Base, Japan, Feb. 12, 2019. Although easy access to parts and equipment wasn’t always present for this team, that didn’t stop them from being recognized by leadership and winning the 35th Fighter Wing's Team of the Year Award. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Collette Brooks)

MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan -- The 35th Maintenance Squadron propulsion centralized repair flight opened a new storage facility that stores all F-16 Fighting Falcons engines for U.S. Pacific Air Forces installations in January 2019, enabling the team to provide engines more rapidly to its sister bases.

The Misawa central repair facility provides PACAF with a convenient option for repairs and overhaul of GE F110 engines in support of all PACAF F-16 bases.

“Having an in-theater CRF drastically reduces the amount of time required to move an engine around PACAF,” explained Capt. Eric Boehm, the 8th Maintenance Squadron maintenance operations officer from Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea. “Should an engine in the peninsula require repair, the turnaround time for Misawa AB versus Hill AB would be weeks faster, which is vital to mission effectiveness.”

With operational efficiency as a top priority, a new building that provides more storage space to Misawa Air Base and counterparts is a huge feat.

“A natural disaster destroyed the original building in 2010,” explained Chief Master Sgt. Christopher Almeria, the 35th MXS propulsion flight chief. “Not only did the previous structure have a large foot print on the environment, but it also had a lot of wasted space due to the layout.”

Almeria stated that innovation was of the upmost importance when creating the new structure.

“This seemingly brand new building is actually not new; it’s recycled,” explained Almeria. “We took four vacant corrugated metal buildings from around base which were not in use and disassembled those structures to make one super extra deluxe warehouse.”

The massive size of the new structure not only allowed of surplus of storage, but the salvaging of materials led to a thrifty construction bill.

Recycling and re-purposing the old buildings made the construction cost-effective,” explained Almeria. “It saved the Air Force money, time and resources since fewer materials were needed to complete this build."

The propulsion flight Airmen previously used a hardened aircraft shelter which was located approximately 10 to 15 minutes away from their unit to store spare parts and materials. Traveling across the flightline to access the temporary storage unit came with added responsibilities such as performing foreign object debris checks and being on high alert for air crafts also utilizing the runway.

The project saves Airmen time in terms of feet versus miles.

“You can compare the distance to having a storage shed in your backyard to having your storage shed in the next neighborhood over,” chuckled Almeria. “We finally have storage in our own backyard. Airmen can now focus and expend their energy on the task at hand of repairing engines versus taking time away to travel for parts."

Although easy access to parts and equipment wasn’t always available to this team, that didn’t slow down their ability to earn a few nominations and awards.

“We are the best in the Air Force as a whole right now with our production of GE F110 motors,” explained Senior Master Sgt. Dustin Jose, the 35th MXS propulsions superintendent. “That feat alone is amazing. Being nominated by 5th Air Force for the General Welsh One Air Force award is a major accomplishment. That recognition paired with winning the Fighter Wing's Team of the Year is truly an honor and testament to our Airmen’s dedication and drive.”