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  • Assuring maintenance quality for the RPA mission

    Quality assurance Airmen in the maintenance world are known by many titles -- the “best of the best,” the “eyes and ears,” and even “sharks in the water” for their no nonsense attitudes toward maintenance. No matter how they’re viewed, Airmen of the 432nd Maintenance Group QA shop are accountable for being knowledgeable and well-trained, enforcing standards, and inspecting all work performed on MQ-1 Predators and MQ-9 Reapers within the unit.
  • Around the Air Force: April 15

    In this look around the Air Force, two remotely-piloted aircraft initiatives are approved and F-35 Lightning II candidate bases are named.
  • AF releases criteria for basing new RPA units

    The Air Force released basing criteria April 12 that will be used to select candidate bases for a potential new MQ-9 Reaper wing with units at up to two locations.
  • Air Force approves RPA initiatives

    The Air Force recently approved two initiatives for the remotely piloted aircraft career field. First, eight RPA reconnaissance squadrons will be redesignated as attack squadrons. Second, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III authorized RPA aircrews to log combat time when flying an aircraft within designated hostile airspace, regardless of the aircrew's physical location.
  • Flying the RPA mission

    The aircraft is ready to fly, the ground control stations are up and running, and the crews have been briefed. Now it’s time to fly the remotely piloted aircraft. The pilot, sensor operator, and mission intelligence coordinator step into the control station to prepare for flight, but they’re not alone; they are joined by other Airmen, each in their respective locations.
  • ACC commander addresses RPA health to Senate Armed Services Committee

    Gen. Hawk Carlisle, the commander of Air Combat Command, addressed plans to improve the health of the Air Force remotely piloted aircraft enterprise March 16 during a hearing of the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee’s Airland subcommittee in Washington, D.C. The purpose of the hearing was to receive testimony on Air Force RPAs and Army unmanned aerial vehicles as part of the committee’s review of the 2017 defense budget.
  • Raven B: Securing the perimeter from above

    Small, hand-held, unmanned, light weight and remotely operated drones describe one of the ways technology is used to ensure the safety of deployed personnel. The 379th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron secures the base perimeter with help from the Raven B Digital Data Link drone at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.
  • Celebrating Women’s History Month

    On a daily basis, women of the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing provide intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support; maintain both the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper; safeguard control centers; administer medications; file records and maintain secured communications capability. They also command squadrons; fly aircraft and tell the Air Force story.
  • Out of the shadows: ACMS Airmen provide missing link

    Preparing to support remotely piloted aircraft operations is no easy task. Still, Airmen assigned to the 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing recently spent time showing leadership exactly what it takes to provide RPA intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support at any time.
  • Training squadron ‘doubles down’ in effort to grow RPA pilot ranks

    The 558th Flying Training Squadron ramped up efforts to double the remotely piloted aircraft pilot ranks with the start of its first 24-person class Jan. 11 at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph.
  • RPA crashes in central Iraq

    An Air Force MQ-1 Predator crashed in central Iraq at approximately 12:50 p.m. local time Jan 7.
  • AF announces FY16 aviator bonuses: RPA pilots eligible for first time

    Eligible active-duty aviators have until Sept. 30 to apply for the fiscal year 2016 Aviator Retention Pay or Critical Skills Retention Bonus programs, Air Force officials announced Dec. 15.
  • ACC charts path for remote aircrews, units

    Air Combat Command officials announced the results of their study into the remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) community in an attempt to normalize operations and ensure long-term mission success.
  • James discusses coalition efforts at press club luncheon

    Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James discussed her two-week trip of seeing firsthand the Air Force’s role in coalition efforts against violent extremist organizations during a National Press Club luncheon Dec. 2.
  • Global Hawk reaches new milestone, helps in fight against ISIL

    As the morning sun beat down on its nearly 131-foot wingspan, the EQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft descended from its 60,000-foot perch for the 500th time, coming to rest at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia Nov. 11.
  • MQ-1B Predator crashes in Turkey

    An Air Force MQ-1B Predator, a remotely piloted aircraft, crashed in southern Turkey at approximately 9:36 p.m. local time, Oct. 19.
  • Remotely piloted aircraft training expands at Holloman

    The Air Force currently employs numerous remotely piloted aircraft in support of surveillance and reconnaissance missions throughout deployed locations, with the bulk of these missions are being placed specifically upon the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper aircraft.
  • RPA maintainers accomplish mission despite low retention

    The constant and insatiable demand for remotely piloted aircraft airpower places stressors on nearly every career field within the RPA enterprise. For some Airmen of the 432nd Maintenance Group, the fast-paced deployment rotation, constant shift work, time away from family, limited assignment options and struggle of daily process changes, are more than enough to make some choose not to re-enlist.
  • Aircraft communications maintainers make RPA missions possible

    In a world where cockpits aren't in the plane, these traditional communications Airmen are put in a maintenance environment to link the ground control station, also known as the RPA cockpit, to the aircraft. This capability allows the pilot and sensor operator to control the plane, both locally and thousands of miles away, in an effort to provide the necessary intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance so desperately needed by combatant commanders of the joint U.S. forces and its allies.
  • Tech Report: Air Force Prize

    The Air Force is energizing domestic research and development with a $2 million prize for a lightweight, fuel-efficient, small turbine engine. This innovative acquisition approach will advance the technologies needed to support the world's strongest Air Force.
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