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Technology training key to USAF readiness and lethality, says under-secretary

On a visit to the Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas, US Air Force (USAF) under-secretary Matthew P Donovan highlighted the importance of proper training for future USAF readiness and lethality.

Donovan stressed the significance of establishing infrastructure, such as learning laboratories, pre-flight briefings, and simulation equipment at the Sheppard facility and others across the US. He also mentioned that modernising key capabilities, improving the skillset of the workforce and providing operational innovation were part of the US National Defense Strategy (NDS).

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Air Force Seeks New Ideas to Train, Retain Pilots

A new Air Force initiative is calling on its personnel, industry and all aviation enthusiasts to create next-generation technology to train pilots.

The effort comes as the Air Force ? and the aviation industry at large ? faces a major pilot shortage that could threaten future readiness. The Pilot Training Next v2.0 Challenge is administered by AFWERX, an Air Force innovation hub with offices in Las Vegas, Austin, Texas, and Arlington, Virginia.

The goal of the challenge, which was open for submissions through early October, is to develop emerging technologies in artificial intelligence, biometrics, simulator development, virtual reality and adult education, according to AFWERX.

NationalDefenseMagazine.org

T-6 hypoxia problem solved, Air Force announces

The rash of hypoxia-like problems in the Air Force?s fleet of T-6 Texan II trainers was primarily caused by fluctuating concentrations of oxygen in the cockpit, the service said Thursday.

Air Education and Training Command said in a release that the Air Force will start putting a series of fixes in place to correct the problems. These fixes will include redesigning the oxygen system in the T-6, adjusting oxygen levels in flight, and increasing maintenance on the On-Board Oxygen Generating System, or OBOGS.

A six-month study conducted by AETC and Air Force Materiel Command, uncovered the problem with varying oxygen concentration levels, which AETC described as the ?major factor in unexplained physiological events? affecting T-6 pilots, AETC said. Experts from the Navy and NASA also assisted with the study.

AirForceTimes.com

OPINION: ‘There won’t be many prizes for second place’

Humankind’s fascination with space is timeless-but our exploration of space is only just beginning. Our ability to explore and inhabit the heavens will soon catch up with the wistful dreaming of our ancestors. Before long, reality will eclipse fantasy as we go, build, develop, and explore the far reaches of our galaxy, beyond the wildest dreams of those who came before us. Rapid technological progress is making access to space cheaper, more powerful, and more reliable. We see titans of industry staking personal fortunes to explore and develop space. And we see the military taking an ever-more active role in defending space from those who would deny its advantages. But these moves are just the beginning. As the human quest for adventure leads inevitably deeper into space, we would be wise to act with urgency across the spectrum of society to ensure that humanity’s approach to developing space is in keeping with our values. Our destiny as Americans is in space. But we must act quickly if we want to shape that destiny for the good, before others shape it for us.

Politico.com

Air Force zeroing in on cause of T-6 hypoxia problem

JB SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas ? Since late last year, a rash of unexplained physiological events such as hypoxia has caused dangerous breathing problems for pilots of T-6 Texan II training aircraft, and led to multiple groundings.

But now, the Air Force is finding more clues, and coming closer to solving the problem once and for all, said Lt. Gen. Steven Kwast, head of Air Education and Training Command.

?Within the next couple of months, you?re going to see some communication from [the safety investigation board at Edwards Air Force Base in California], that they are starting to really discover the root cause here,? Kwast said in a July 23 interview at his office here. ?We?re finding insights that we did not know before, that will help us understand what?s going on and give us a pathway to solving the problem permanently. We?re getting close, and you should see something soon.?

AirForceTimes.com