Gen Michael Moseley, Chief of Staff, said he is open to hearing what could be done to improve the reliability of USAF’s C-5A airlifter now that the decision has been made not to send them through the much more robust upgrade Reliability Enhancement and Re-engining Program that would have addressed lingering reliability issues. Under a major restructure announced Feb. 14, the Air Force will overhaul and add new engines to the 49 C-5Bs and two C-5C in the 111-aircraft Galaxy fleet, but not its 59 C-5As, leaving them to get only new digital cockpits under a separate avionics modernization program. “I’d be interested to see what reliability program would exist beyond the AMP because you have got … a variety of things out there that could be addressed,” Moseley said in response to a question posed during a meeting with defense reporters Feb. 28. Despite the interest, he cautioned that the Air Force does not currently have any money set aside for this type of work. Even with just the AMP upgrades, which slightly improve the aircraft’s reliability, the C-5A will still be “a useful airplane,” Moseley said, noting that he doesn’t think they will be relegated to second-tier status, such as domestic-only missions. “Units that fly the A models will still have tasking whether it is … disaster relief or in support of the theater,” he said. “A C-5 is a C-5. It has some really interesting capabilities because of the outsized [cargo] box. And, so the A models still have got the same box, so we will use that airplane like we have all along.”
Unlike nearly every other innovative technology throughout history, Maj. Gen. DeAnna M. Burt believes the space enterprise emerged backward. “Every other domain started with an entrepreneur who built something,” Burt, the special assistant to the Chief of Space Operations, told an audience at AFA’s Air, Space & Cyber Conference.