Cobbling together three 3,850-gallon tanks and some spare parts and piping, engineers and maintainers built a pre-mix station, vastly accelerating aircraft de-icing at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. Filling trucks from 55-gallon drums of deicing fluid and mixing the solution with water “could take up to three hours,” said Todd Mighell of the 455th Expeditionary Maintenance Group. “Last year, there were missions that had to be scrubbed because the de-icer trucks were not able to keep up with the demand.” Using the temporary mix station, “a 2,450-gallon truck can get filled in about 20 minutes,” explained Mighell, meaning that the base now keeps up with demand. “Even if the permanent station never shows up, this one will definitely do the job,” he added confidently. (Bagram report by TSgt. Vernon Cunningham)
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.