US Air Force succeeding with fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance timeliness

by Pat Host

The US Air Force (USAF) has completed fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance on time or earlier an average of 82% of the time over the last five fiscal years, according to a congressional watchdog.

The US Government Accountability Office (GAO), in a 23 June report, said that the annual average percentages for on-time or early-completion maintenance ranged from 78-90% during fiscal years (FYs) 2014-19. In total, air force fixed-wing aircraft have spent 22,572 fewer days in maintenance than expected since FY 2014.

Six KC-135s taxi at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, on 11 May 2019. The KC-135 leads the US Air Force in fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance speed at finishing 27.7 days ahead of schedule. (US Air National Guard)

Six KC-135s taxi at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, on 11 May 2019. The KC-135 leads the US Air Force in fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance speed at finishing 27.7 days ahead of schedule. (US Air National Guard)

In comparison, the US Navy (USN) has completed fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance on time or ahead of schedule an average of 52% of the time over the same time period. In total, the maintenance for selected navy fixed-wing aircraft has taken over 62,000 more days than expected since FY 2014.

Timeliness varied for specific aircraft types. For example, USAF aviation depots completed individual Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refuelling tanker maintenance an average of about 28 days earlier than originally projected. Other fixed-wing maintenance successes include the F-16C Fighting Falcon, completed 24.2 days earlier than expected; the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress heavy bomber, completed 19.5 days earlier than first projected; and the Boeing E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS), which finished 11.5 days earlier than originally anticipated.

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/us-air-force-succeeding-with-fixed-wing-aircraft-depot-maintenance-timeliness

The US Air Force (USAF) has completed fixed-wing aircraft depot maintenance on time or earlier an av...

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