HomeNewsArticle Display

B-1B Integrated Battle Station modification completed

Airman sitting at station aboard B-1

B-1B functional check flight pilot Maj. Michael Griffin, with the 10th Flight Test Squadron, Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., evaluates critical defensive and offensive aircraft systems, such as upgraded navigation procedures, radar systems and aircraft terrain, Dec. 15, 2015. An eight-year project to install the Integrated Battle Station on the B-1B Lancer fleet, which began in 2012, was completed in September 2020. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kelly White)

B-1 aircraft in flight above runway

A B-1B Lancer bomber from Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, takes off from Tinker AFB, Okla., Dec. 15, 2015, following completion of the Integrated Battle Station modification. The eight-year project to install the IBS on the B-1B Lancer fleet, which began in 2012, was completed in September 2020. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kelly White) (U.S. Air Force photo/Kelly White)

TINKER AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. (AFNS) --

An eight-year project to install the Integrated Battle Station, or IBS, on the B-1B Lancer fleet has been completed ahead of schedule. Sixty aircraft went through the modification process that began in late 2012 and was completed this month.

 

The IBS was developed as three separate modifications: Fully Integrated Data Link, Vertical Situational Display Unit and Central Integrated Test System.

 

“During development, it became obvious that modifying the same aircraft three times would be detrimental to aircraft availability and would create numerous aircraft configurations,” said William Barnes, B-1B Systems program manager, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center. “Thus Integrated Battle Station was born.”

 

The IBS was the largest, most complicated modification ever performed on the B-1 and it gave the flight deck a whole new look.

 

To complete a modification of this size took thousands of man-hours of work. Rodney Shepard, 567th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron director, said with 120 maintainers assigned to the modification line working two shifts, completing all 60 aircraft over the past eight years came to 1,050,000 hours of planned work.

 

With this large of an undertaking, there was bound to be some difficulties along the way.

 

“With all new workload, the start of the modification line was slow, however, with enterprise buy-in and support, the modification line eventually reduced flow days and met “Art of the Possible” goals,” Shepard said.

 

By the time the modification was completed, 987 aircraft availability days were returned to the warfighter. The 567th AMXS’s dedication to continuous process improvement on the IBS modification line was a significant element in the unit winning the Robert T. Mason Award for Best Depot Level Maintenance Facility in 2017.

 

The completed modification will enhance B-1B flight operations and give the crews more flexibility in performing their various missions.

 

“All aircraft outfitted with the Integrated Battle Station modification enhancements provide the four members of the aircraft with much greater ’battlefield‘ awareness of surrounding threats whether those threats are air-to-air or ground-to-air, and provides a much faster capability to execute both defensive and offensive maneuvers needed in any conflict,” Shepard said.

 

Lt. Col. James Couch, 10th Flight Test Squadron commander, whose pilots and weapon system officers performed numerous check flights on the modified aircraft, echoed those comments.

 

“This upgrade drastically improves aircrew situational awareness with color displays, and enhanced navigation and communication systems are projected to significantly enhance B-1B mission readiness,” Couch said. “Although this closes a chapter, this continues the unprecedented advances of B-1B lethality and aircrew situational awareness for decades to come. All of these benefits are made possible by the IBS upgrade.”

 

The onset of the coronavirus pandemic had little effect on the timeline of the modification.

 

“For the IBS workforce, COVID(-19) restrictions were very limited,” Shepard said. “At the time of the outbreak, the IBS modification line only had one aircraft in-dock at the Maintenance Repair Overhaul Technology Center, with three aircraft already transitioned to post-dock flight operations.”

 

Col. Greg Lowe, 76th Aircraft Maintenance Group commander, said IBS provides upgraded capability for communications and situational display, which is a tremendous advantage to the warfighters in Air Force Global Strike Command.

 

“Using the Air Force Sustainment Center’s constraints-based management system, known as ‘Art of the Possible,’ the artisans of the 567th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron developed a repeatable process to efficiently install the modification on the aircraft,” Lowe said. “The project employed 120 mechanics and support personnel at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex for the past eight years. And while this mission is coming to an end, all of our employees will be diverted to other growing workload at Tinker (AFB).”

 

Air Force Global Strike Command had high praise for the men and women at Tinker AFB who worked on the modification.


“Big thanks to the team at Tinker (AFB) for doing a remarkable job retooling the B-1 and getting it back in the fight,” said Gen. Tim Ray, AFGSC commander. “The work the B-1 and our Airmen are doing is a great example of how we’re making a huge impact on Dynamic Force Employment to support the National Defense Strategy. These modifications have revitalized the B-1 for the high-end fight, allowing our precision strike force to remain strategically predictable but operationally unpredictable.”

Engage

Twitter
RT @97AMW: Each year, we observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15-Oct. 15. This month, we would like to highlight Tech. Sgt.…
Twitter
RT @Hanscom_AFB: Our Enterprise-IT-as-Service Team is helping to ensure mission readiness for the entire Department of the @usairforce. The…
Twitter
The @AF_Academy band recognized graduates, cadets & officers who’ve passed away in the last year during a ceremony… https://t.co/y5f5G6XAeS
Twitter
#DYK @HQ_AFMC manages installation and mission support, discovery and development, test and evaluation, and life cy… https://t.co/aBJVgXG6i1
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Accelerate Change (Story by the @920thRescueWing) #ReserveReady #ReserveResilient #ReserveReform #ReadyAF https://t.co/j…
Twitter
The Air Force Personnel Center’s Innovation Cell and Robotics Process Automation Branch were awarded the 2019 Larry… https://t.co/QVMFszOorW
Twitter
The Air Force Rapid Sustainment Office will host its inaugural Advanced Manufacturing Olympics, Oct. 20-23. Click t… https://t.co/NRHcDhwZdU
Twitter
RT @grandslamwing: "Accelerate change or lose." - @usairforce CSAF @GenCQBrownJr Since our inception as the 379th Bombardment Group, we…
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: Did you know October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month? This observation ensures that America’s workplaces…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Culture is who we are, and who we want to be. https://t.co/3SuDArtmdy
Twitter
.@AFSpecOpsCmd Airmen conducted approach and landing training, and fired approximately 600 rounds of .50-caliber am… https://t.co/qvM3IHIfc4
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: …we must also consider our decisions in the context of the key competitions over time...decisions on our missions & capab…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: "Learning from prior recapitalization and modernization plans, we must frame decisions with an enterprise-wide perspectiv…
Twitter
Need a lift? .@Travis60AMW Airmen train @USArmy Soldiers, with the 372nd Inland Cargo Transfer Company & 101st Air… https://t.co/obsYg8PGt9
Twitter
View the Dept. of the Air Force Arctic Strategy here: https://t.co/uKE0S1JL55 #ReadyAF #AimHigh https://t.co/w83LjutnsP
Twitter
Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey helps civilians voice their opinions. Learn more here: https://t.co/IjMPGspYE8
Twitter
Unity among military branches and a combined, all-domain effort could be the difference in winning large-scale, mul… https://t.co/MjKDafCQPD
Twitter
An F-15E Strike Eagle takes off during Mission Assurance Exercise 20-20 @48FighterWing. Exercises like MAX 20-20 in… https://t.co/WWZ9j3IXDM
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
1,289,713
Follow Us