Editor’s Comment: One day, the Air Force will acknowledge that it’s actually just a big logistics organization and put logisticians in charge. Like it or not, the aircrew are the service’s “delivery drivers” ensuring that the right thing gets to the right place at the right time. That’s just part of the equation. Making sure the means of delivery and the “thing” to be delivered are ready for that in time delivery takes a lot of work and aircrew aren’t involved at all.
Sorties are generated by maintenance. This realignment and renaming of MX happens every few years based in the whims of ever-changing Ops leadership. It’s all been tried before, over and over. It never really changes anything except causing turmoil for MX leaders. Wrenches still get turned and sorties generated.
JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, Va. (AFNS) —
Air Combat Command is changing the aircraft maintenance organizational structure to improve synchronization between maintenance and fighter squadrons.
This new structure, called Combat Oriented Maintenance Organization, or COMO, flattens the maintenance organizational structure and transitions aircraft maintenance units into fighter generation squadrons.
The fighter generation squadron is a new squadron comprised of maintainers responsible for airpower health and generation. The fighter generation squadron will be paired with a complementary fighter squadron and the two units will work collaboratively both in garrison and during deployments.
“We’ve already seen success with this new organizational model at Shaw Air Force Base (South Carolina),” said Maj. Gen. Mark Slocum, ACC director of air and space operations. “The benefit of this new organizational construct is it enhances the fighter force’s agility and better prepares them for a future dynamic force employment in a high-end fight.”
Pairing fighter squadrons with a dedicated fighter generation squadron will foster unity of effort between maintenance and operations as well as provide a better view of readiness.
For the last few years, ACC has been on a wing reorganization experimentation journey and allowed commanders to experiment with various types of wing organizational constructs in order to build more agile and cohesive units.
“After gathering what we’ve learned from this season of experimentation, we are now moving forward into a season of standardization,” said Maj. Gen. Tom Miller, ACC director of logistics, engineering and force protection. “The COMO structure allows fighter wings to prepare for rapid deployments and to disaggregate and reaggregate as needed by the CFACC.”
This pairing of the fighter and a fighter generation squadron is just the first phase of a broader force presentation model ACC is building to better organize, train and equip combat air forces. Phase two will focus on evaluation of air base squadrons that can rapidly deploy and provide base operating support. Phase three examines wing command and control capabilities.
The 20 FW at Shaw AFB and 388 FW at Hill AFB, Utah are the first wings to transition to the COMO model, with the remaining ACC fighter wings transitioning by the summer of 2022.
By Headquarters Air Combat Command
Photos by SSgt Destinee Sweeney