ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, New Jersey –
The 177th Fighter Wing of the New Jersey Air National Guard, part of Air Combat Command, hosted Integrated Combat Turnaround (ICT) training for members of Air Mobility Command (AMC) from Feb. 9 to Feb. 17, 2023.
An ICT is a process by which an aircraft is recovered and relaunched in a minimum amount of time, through the simultaneous fueling, loading of munitions, aircraft reconfiguration and aircraft inspections.
“The 177th Fighter Wing had always practiced hot-pits when the need presented itself,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Charles A. Zingrone, Jr., 177th Logistics Readiness Squadron (177th LRS) Fuels Management Flight fuels information service center section chief. “Hot Pitting is a technique used to refuel aircraft without the need to shut down engines, resulting in a very rapid turnaround time for the assigned fighter aircraft.”
The 177th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron (177th AMXS) collaborated with the 177th LRS, accompanying the hot-pit refueling with the loading of munitions, aircraft reconfiguration and aircraft inspections. The combined process is what makes up the true purpose of an ICT. Once the ICT training was scheduled, Zingrone reached out to his counterparts at other bases and offered them the opportunity to attend. He realized that cross-training Airmen from other Major Commands ensured that his career field would better fit the Agile Combat Employment (ACE) model. Airmen from three AMC bases attended the ICT training at the 177th FW including Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, and Pease Air National Guard Base, New Hampshire.
“They’re [177th members] providing all of their lesson plans and checklists so that I can bring them back and develop our own at Scott Air Force Base,” said Staff Sgt. Johnathan King, 375th Logistics Readiness Squadron fuels management flight training non-commissioned officer in charge at Scott AFB. Scott AFB has hot-pit capabilities on U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornets, E-2 Hawkeyes, C-2 Greyhounds, CH53 Sea Stallions, USAF F-22 Raptors, and U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawks, said Mr. Craig Reis, a Scott AFB transient alert contractor. Scott AFB is currently looking to expand its repertoire of aircraft for hot-pit capabilities, including the USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon, the aircraft that the 177th FW flies.
“We jumped on the opportunity, because the U.S. Air Force is striving to be multi-capable, and this extends our multi-capable assets,” said Chief Master Sgt. Lonnie J. Major, 157th LRS Fuels Management Flight chief enlisted manager at Pease ANG Base.
This training offered the experience of hot-pit refueling the F-16C Fighting Falcon, training that isn’t possible to obtain at JB M-D-L, Pease or Scott.
“The importance of this training is the experience and knowledge of the operation,” said Airman 1st Class Nolan Taylor, 87th Logistics Readiness Squadron fuels service center controller at JB M-D-L. “Learning different operations gives you the knowledge of what to do when these situations come to you.”
ICT training at the 177th FW provided exigent total force training scenarios, and the experience that Airmen from Pease ANG Base, JB M-D-L and Scott AFB garnered will help strengthen relationships between Mobility Air Forces and Combat Air Forces. To be trained and current in the Integrated Combat Turnaround is a mark of an Airman who is actively engaged in the Agile Combat Employment of the U.S. Air Force.