Home' Air Force News : September 15th 2011 Contents 7
September 15, 2011
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THE biggest maintenance workforce
in the Air Force continues to evolve at
The 505-strong workforce is
responsible for supporting a mixed
fleet of 20 C-130H and C-130J
Hercules, which deliver air mobility
within Australia and around the world.
As 37SQN Maintenance Flight
supports these aircraft, the Air
Mobility Improvement Program
(AMIP) is continuing to support the
workforce's natural evolution.
In June 2010, all technicians were
divided into eight separate teams --
each with about 20 avionics and 20
Since then, the team construct has
allowed 37SQN to manage its main-
tainers more effectively -- whether it
be for Middle East deployments, con-
ducting exercises, or supporting main-
tenance at RAAF Base Richmond.
An improvement initiative has cre-
ated 'Team Health' display boards in
the 37SQN hangar.
Graphs display statistics for indi-
vidual readiness, currencies, and job
progression, and also allows each
team to build its own 'identity' and
More recently, 37SQN
Maintenance Flight developed a
formal Maintenance Management
Improvement Project under the AMIP
structure to manage, prioritise and
implement improvement initiatives.
FLGOFF Aaron Thompson, a
37SQN engineering officer and the
current project manager, said initial
improvements centred on workforce
communication and standing instruc-
This included improving commu-
nication at all levels of the workforce
regarding aircraft serviceability and
shift handover procedures.
A new five-week rostering cycle
was created to better mitigate the
fatigue risk from highly variable shift
timings, while suiting the needs of the
"We revisited the nightly require-
ment to chain down aircraft, determin-
ing that current procedures were over-
ly cautious for no reason," FLGOFF
"This netted two extra parking
positions and approximately 150
working hours per year."
Better infrastructure at RAAF
Base Richmond will deliver further
improvements, including aircraft
"We are working on a permanent
installation of aircraft wash sup-
port equipment on the flightline at
Richmond," FLGOFF Thompson said.
"A permanent facility will save
12 working hours per wash, and with
approximately 100 washes per year,
we save 1200 working hours."
Similarly, permanent tarmac light-
ing -- which is absent from some of
the base -- will be installed to greatly
increase 37SQN's maintenance capa-
bility at night.
Half the workforce on Friday night
shifts has been moved to Sunday
afternoons, providing a maintenance
capability for aircraft returning from
tasks over the weekend.
Other plans include better man-
agement of spares kits and fly away
kits, a flightline communications sys-
tem, hangar power upgrades and a
Maintenance Planning Cell.
"The cell will optimise the way
in which scheduled maintenance is
performed through the structured
selection of people, date of servicing,
and preparation of spares and support
equipment," FLGOFF Thompson said.
"The same concepts will also be
used to plan the execution of unsched-
For more information on the Air Mobility
Improvement Program, contact Mike
Wilde or FLTLT Miles Le Ray.
BRIGHT IDEA: As part of the Air Mobilility Improvement
Program, permanent tarmac lighting will be installed on the
flightline at RAAF Base Richmond so 37SQN technicians
can conduct C-130 maintenance at night. Photo: CPL Col Dadd
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