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Air Force establishing new office aimed at driving down maintenance costs

Washington (AFNS) -- Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson announced the establishment of the Air Force Rapid Sustainment Office today.

The two-year test program will address sustainment of aging fleets in a way that is both efficient and responsible to the U.S. taxpayer. It will focus on rapid sustainment that will significantly drive down costs and deliver faster solutions to the field.

If the office demonstrates positive return on investment over time, the service will consider a transition to a permanent office.

“We will no longer pay premiums for things we can manufacture on our own,” said Wilson. “We will leverage agile manufacturing and reform legacy sustainment processes to drive down costs and at meet warfighter needs rapidly.”

Focus areas for the RSO include predictive maintenance and agile manufacturing techniques, such as additive manufacturing and cold spray repair technologies. Focus areas also include robotics and automation, corrosion detection and repair, nondestructive inspection, and advanced composite repair technologies.

Wilson added the Air Force will implement and immediately scale any opportunities to address sustainment challenges at lower costs discovered by the Rapid Sustainment Office.

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