HomeNewsArticle Display

Negatively pressurized conexes ready to save lives

NPC

In-flight testing is conducted to certify a Negatively Pressurized Conex prototype at Joint Base Charleston, S.C., April 30, 2020. The NPC was rapidly developed and designed to fit inside both C-5 Super Galaxy and C-17 Globemaster III to enable safe transport of up to 28 patients, as well as teams of medical professionals to medical facilities around the globe. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Chris Drzazgowski)

SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (AFNS) --

On June 24, the first Negatively Pressurized Conex ready for operational use touched down at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, with 16 experts from Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina and three members of the program office team to stand on alert status and train additional Airmen on the NPC.

The NPC is configured for the C-17 Globemaster III and C-5 Super Galaxy aircraft to safely transport up to 28 passengers or 23 patients, including ambulatory and litter, around the globe, while the Negatively Pressurized Conex-Lite is a smaller variation configured to be used aboard the C-130 Hercules.

The NPC-L system was certified to be fully operational June 25.

Air Mobility Command and Air Force Materiel Command leaders joined forces early April to invite creative materiel and non-materiel solutions to address a joint urgent operational need to move large numbers of COVID-19 patients should the need for that capability arise.

"In less than 30 days, the NPC went from an idea on a napkin to a proven concept ... and only 88 days from that idea to the delivery of an operational system," said Lt. Col. Paul Hendrickson, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defense material leader. "This was made possible by a team comprised of the Air Force CBRN Defense Systems Branch working with the Joint Program Executive Office for CBRN Defense and partnering with teams across the Air Force and Department of Defense."

After putting the proof of concept NPC system through rigorous testing that ran from April 21-30; the first NPC-L was delivered June 1, at JB Charleston, followed by the first NPC on June 7, to begin testing and operational utility evaluation.

“Teams from across the country led by the Program Executive Office for Agile Combat Support, gathered at Joint Base Charleston to assess the NPC and ensure it met four main requirements,” Hendrickson said. “The NPC must one, be able to contain the virus from aircrew and the aircraft; two, be usable for aeromedical teams; three, have the potential to be certified airworthy; and four, have the potential to be safe to fly. The NPC has proven capable of satisfying all of those requirements.”

When the coronavirus outbreak began, the Air Force increased training on the Transport Isolation System, an isolation chamber developed during the 2014 Ebola outbreak, but never used in operations until April 10, when it transported COVID-positive patients from U.S. Central Command to Ramstein AB for medical treatment.

To date, the TIS has successfully transported more than 80 patients. However, it offers AMC and the Air Force limited capability, as each TIS can transport only two to four patients. The NPC will increase AMC’s capacity for patient transport, both now and in support of future requirements.

“The NPC is crucial to readiness as it not only protects our aircrews, aircraft and aeromedical evacuation teams as they transport patients, but it also protects the readiness of the locations we will move patients from,” said Lt. Col. Timothy Mach, AMC Requirements Division chief. “We need to take care of the individual infected by the virus and mitigate the chance of it spreading. The NPC allows us to perform those life-saving movements in only hours.”

Engage

Twitter
One team one fight @366FW's Capt. Aaron Tindall is the 1st Airman to graduate from the @USNavy Airborne Electronic… https://t.co/mvfn30OnLP
Twitter
Give @GenCQBrownJr a follow for the latest on how he's leading the charge to accelerate change throughout the… https://t.co/LtDGcVwsKi
Twitter
Honoring a pioneer. Join us in celebrating the life and legacy of Brig. Gen. Chuck Yeager live, noon EST. Live c… https://t.co/0aFqKjSWyO
Twitter
RT @CalGuard: Airmen from the Cal Guard's 144th Fighter Wing in Fresno are stepping up to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. #TheVirusStops
Twitter
Pilot Training Next For the 1st time in @AFSpecOpsCmd history, two new graduates from @AETCommand's Pilot Training… https://t.co/TPOIM1KDEl
Twitter
Celebrating service. @GenCQBrownJr and @SpaceForceCSO thanked @SecAFOfficial Barbara Barrett for her service duri… https://t.co/0uo2BGRrq9
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: The remarkable consistency, the universality, in the @USAirForce & @SpaceForceDoD is the goodness of our people. Every d…
Twitter
Providing strategic depth The @USAFReserve’s T-56-15A engine Centralized Repair Facility, supported by the 913th A… https://t.co/wGHrc7Zdid
Twitter
RT @USAfricaCommand: First members of AFRICOM vaccinated against #COVID19 "It doesn’t mean we can let up, doesn’t mean we can’t keep follo…
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: Our AFMC essential Airmen continue to receive the first round of #COVID19 vaccines, with the latest at @HAFB and @RobinsAFB_GA
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Thank you to all @USAirForce #Airmen & @SpaceForceDoD #Guardians for safeguarding our Nation and the principles that def…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Life has a way of throwing us curveballs. How we deal with those moments is part of who we are. How we help others deal…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Received a COVID-19 vaccination yesterday alongside @USECAF_Manasco, @GenCQBrownJr, and @cmsaf_official. As the vaccine…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: The Nation’s Reserve Citizen Airmen didn’t let 2020 deter them. Check out how the 419th Fighter Wing continued its legacy…
Twitter
Give @GenCQBrownJr a follow for the latest on how he's leading the charge to accelerate change throughout the… https://t.co/KMqiaTbZNe
Twitter
The future is now. Air Force leadership participated in a virtual B-21 Industry Day event to increase industry awa… https://t.co/arNkumnouq
Twitter
RT @USAfricaCommand: Since the onset of #COVID19, a whole-of-government approach has enabled multiple #HumanitarianAssistance donations to…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,311,722
Follow Us