FRIDAY FOTO June 1, 2012
Big Plane, Big Job
A C-17 Globemaster III cargo aircraft from McChord Air Force Base (AFB) drops equipment for a rapid runway repair during a Mobility Air Force Exercise (MAFEX) at the Nevada Test and Training Range last week (May 23). After all the equipment was dropped, airborne engineers assigned to the 820th Red Horse Squadron, cleared and repaired a dirt runway. The 820th, based at Nellis AFB in Nevada, is one of four active duty rapid deployment heavy construction squadrons.
MAFEX tests participants’ ability to synchronize aircraft movements from geographically-separated bases — including Altus AFB, Oklahoma, Little Rock AFB, Arkansas, Nellis AFB, Nevada and Hurlburt Field, Florida. It also exercises the ability to command large formations of dissimilar aircraft in high threat airspace and deliver and recover combat forces via air drops and combat landings on an unimproved landing strip.
Nearly 70 aircraft, including C-130 Hercules cargo lifters and A-10 Thunderbolt “Warthog” attack aircraft, simulated a “forced entry” operation, in which planes attacked an enemy airfield then dropped paratroopers and supplies on the ground.
To get a better idea of the Globemaster’s size, take a look at the photo below. When you click on the photo to enlarge it, notice how small the people standing beside it are.
Entry filed under: FRIDAY FOTO, Photos, Skills and Training, Special Operations, Weaponry and Equipment. Tags: Air Force, C-17 Globemaster, military aviation, Military cargo aircraft, Mobility Air Force Exercise (MAFEX).