Military News

Thursday, March 26, 2015

A day with AGE

by Airman 1st Class Amber Powell
177th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

3/20/2015 - ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.J.  -- Airmen from the 177th Fighter Wing's Aerospace Ground Equipment shop performed preventative maintenance for the entire base here recently servicing roughly 200 pieces of powered and non-powered equipment.

Aerospace ground equipment, also known as the AGE equipment, help Airmen prepare aircraft to support the Air National Guard mission.

"Sometimes it takes six arms to do everything," said Senior Master Sgt. Frank Camillo, powered support systems mechanic supervisor. "There's so much going on and so many things you have to do to get the job done right."

On one of the walls in the shop hangs two paintings of an octopus with different types of ground equipment in each tentacle, representing how much the shop is responsible for and how busy it can get at times.

"Our maintenance is labeled in two categories, scheduled maintenance and unscheduled maintenance," said Camillo. "Unscheduled is anything that breaks, we fix it. Scheduled maintenance has its own subcategories."

The subcategories are phase one and phase two maintenance. Phase one consists of six month maintenance and phase two is annual maintenance that is more comprehensive and is performed on each of piece of equipment ranging from light carts and generators to air conditioners and hydrogen carts.

Electronic manuals are used in order to ensure that the proper steps are taken while performing the work.

"Each step must be complete," said Senior Airmen Gregory Gilkes, a Powered Support Systems Mechanic who has been with the AGE shop for five years, "and each thing has to be signed off on in case someone else comes in to finish the job; they need to know what has been done."

While Gilkes performs maintenance on a light cart, which is used by crew chiefs to light the aircraft, he checks things ranging from hinges and latches to the oil in the motor.

Every little step plays a part in the inspection of each piece of equipment, making sure it is mission ready. Likewise, every Airman has an important job that keeps the base functioning in an effective way.

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