The half of the 55th Electronic Combat Group flying EC-130H Compass Call aircraft for operations in Afghanistan has just passed 5,000 combat hours. The airmen of the 41st Expeditionary Electronic Combat Squadron, deployed from Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz., have flown more than 940 sorties supporting coalition ground troops operating in Afghanistan. (Their sister unit, the 43rd EECS, covers Iraq.) The 41st EECS maintainers have ensured a more than 95 percent mission capable rate, changing propellers, engines, and making major repairs to keep the EC-130Hs in the air.
Reports of production troubles on the SpaceX rocket that could contend for military cargo deliveries happened to coincide with a different company’s concept receiving an early nod—one that might not require a rocket at all.