The 319th Missile Squadron headquartered at FE Warren AFB, Wyo., overseer of 50 Minuteman III ICBMs, experienced “a disruption of communications” between its five launch control centers and the missiles on Saturday, Lt. Col. John Thomas, Air Force Global Strike Command spokesman, told the Daily Report Wednesday. He said the evidence so far points to a mechanical part failure associated with the missile complex’s primary communications system. Somehow the electronic queries that the LCCs send out to each missile to verify its health and status got out of sync and created a transmissions logjam, kind of like 50 people trying to speak simultaneously on the same walkie-talkie frequency. Thomas said it took the missileers about 45 minutes to diagnose and isolate the issue. They switched control of all 50 missiles to one of the LCCs. (Normally each LCC controls 10 missiles.) In short order, all but one of the LCCs were back in the network. However, one of the squadron’s LCCs remains offline for additional study of the anomaly, he said. Thomas said there’s no evidence of tampering or malicious conduct. USAF technical experts think the issue is similar to ones that occurred in the late 1990s at Malmstrom AFB, Mont., and Minot AFB, N.D., he said. The missile crews at FE Warren had multiple safety, security, and command and control systems that were available throughout this event. Thomas said there was never any danger of unauthorized missile launch and the missiles’ wartime capability “was never affected.” And there was no outright outage of communications or power as some press reports have indicated. (See also Associated Press report and AFPS report by Terri Moon Cronk.)
Feb. 28, 2021
In commemoration of the 30th Anniversary of Operation Desert Storm, Air Force Magazine is posting daily recollections from the six-week war, which expelled Iraq from occupied Kuwait.
Feb. 26, 2021
Acting Secretary of the Air Force Roth, NORAD’s Gen. VanHerck, U.S. Space Command’s Gen. Dickinson, Spark Tank, and more from Day 3 of the Air Force Association’s virtual Aerospace Warfare Symposium.
Feb. 26, 2021
A crew chief and production superintendent from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., took home the 3D-printed trophy in the Department of the Air Force’s Spark Tank innovation contest for a simple idea he predicts could “solve a lot of issues across the aircraft community.” Master Sgt. Justin Bauer pitched his…
The first flight of the AGM-183A hypersonic missile will happen within a week, experts reported Feb. 26 at AFA's virtual Aerospace Warfare Symposium. The Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon will fly soon after a failed attempt, which was apparently due to technical and procedural glitches not related to the missile's design.
Air Combat Command is trying to move forward with an experiment it hopes will pave the way for a larger overhaul of fighter pilot training, despite pandemic-era complications. The command is working through the contracting process for the resources it needs to test the “Reforge” idea, ACC boss Gen. Mark…
Feb. 26, 2021
Nearly 140 Air National Guard personnel from Texas and Kentucky have responded to parts of Texas that were devastated by Winter Storm Uri, ANG Director Lt. Gen. Michael A. Loh told reporters Feb. 26. The polar vortex ravaged Texas’ power grid and deprived many citizens of running water.
The head of Air Combat Command isn't sure the cost of operating the F-35 will hit the desired $25,000 per hour by 2025, and he's headed out to meetings to see what can be done to make it happen. He's also concerned that China will beat the U.S. to 6th-generation…
The Pentagon’s new Independent Review Commission on Sexual Assault in the Military has 90 days to find ways to combat the problem within the ranks, and the group will consider all options to address an issue that has “shattered the dreams” of many service members who joined with optimism about…
Feb. 26, 2021
Air Education and Training Command has incorporated a focus on human performance optimization—which includes personal resilience, health, fitness, diet, and mental performance—into its Undergraduate Pilot Training 2.5 program, 19th Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Craig D. Wills said at the Air Force Association’s virtual Aerospace Warfare Symposium.