Recently an A-10 Warthog that had suffered battle damage underwent repairs by an engineering team that came up with a repair solution without seeing one another or the plane. The news comes from the United States Air Force public affairs website. The engineering team hails from the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Hill Air Force Base. It was ordered to fix a bullet hole in the underbelly of the A-19 Warthog. The bullet was fired by the enemy during an active mission.
The engineers were, however, working remotely and were not allowed to meet in-person. They were also not allowed to carry out a physical inspection of the plane. The A-10 Warthog was at a ‘deployed location’ as per the Air Force post. This implied that the repair had to be carried out thousands of miles away while the engineers were staying in their homes.
The team didn’t put off the repair until the whole pandemic thing was finished but rather decided to work in ‘bedrooms, basements, and home offices’ as per the Air Force. The team relied on emails, phone calls, and VPNs to find out more about the damage and were able to communicate with the aircraft maintenance officials.
A-10 Division Chief at Hill ATB Pamela Lee said, ‘The team tested the teleworking capabilities during the previous weeks in anticipation of such an event. Because of this preparation, Engineering was able to keep the lines of communication open with the unit to support the expedient response to this emergency repair.’
Once the on-site maintenance crew was provided with the repair instructions, the plane was fixed, studied, and made airworthy once again. The A-10 Warthog will be undergoing permanent repairs once it is back to the home base in the United States. This goes to show the dedication that US Air Force engineers have and how the Air Force is handling the pandemic. This novel solution might come as a blessing in disguise because it can help save the cost of sending experts all over the globe to carry out repairs. It will also help to create a bigger pool of experts who can remotely provide their assistance on any repair matter.