Published June 22, 2020
Air Force Materiel Command (U.S. Air Force graphic)
Headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, Air Force Materiel Command is a major command created July 1, 1992. The command conducts research, development, test and evaluation, and provides acquisition management services and logistics support necessary to keep Air Force weapon systems ready for war.
Powering the world's greatest Air Force...AFMC develops, delivers, supports and sustains war-winning capabilities.
AFMC delivers war-winning expeditionary capabilities to the warfighter through development and transition of technology, professional acquisition management, exacting test and evaluation, and world-class sustainment of all Air Force weapon systems. From creation to disposal, AFMC provides the workforce and infrastructure necessary to ensure the United States maintains the world's most respected Air Force.
One AFMC — Collaborative, innovative, trusted and empowered...indispensable to the nation, disruptive to U.S. adversaries.
People and Resources
AFMC employs a highly professional and skilled command work force of some 87,000 military and civilian employees.
AFMC fulfills its mission of equipping the Air Force with cutting-edge weapon systems and technology through several unique centers which are responsible for the “cradle-to-grave” oversight for aircraft, electronic systems, missiles and munitions.
The AFMC headquarters is a major unit located at Wright-Patterson AFB. There are eight AFMC host bases: Arnold AFB, Tennessee; Edwards AFB, California; Eglin AFB, Florida; Hanscom AFB, Massachusetts; Hill AFB, Utah; Robins AFB, Georgia; Tinker AFB, Oklahoma; and Wright-Patterson AFB. In addition, the command has tenant units operating on several non-AFMC bases.
Core Mission Areas and AFMC's Six Centers
Discovery and Development
Air Force Research Laboratory
Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
AFRL is the Air Force's only organization wholly dedicated to leading the discovery, development and integration of warfighting technologies in air, space and cyber for the U.S. Air and Space Forces. AFRL leverages a diverse science and technology portfolio that ranges from fundamental and advanced research to advanced technology development. The lab also provides a wide range of technical services to joint acquisition, logistics, aerospace medicine and operational warfighting communities.
AFRL’s technically-diverse workforce of more than 10,200 employees works across more than 40 operating locations worldwide.
AFRL's headquarters, 711th Human Performance Wing, Aerospace Systems, Materials and Manufacturing and Sensors Directorates are located at Wright-Patterson AFB.
Kirtland AFB, New Mexico, is home to the Directed Energy and Space Vehicles Directorates. AFRL's Munitions Directorate is located at Eglin AFB, and advanced cyber technology research takes place at the Information Directorate in Rome, New York. The Air Force Office of Scientific Research in Arlington, Virginia, manages the Air Force basic research program within AFRL, as well as cooperatively with industry and universities around the world.
Test and Evaluation
Air Force Test Center
Edwards AFB, California
The Air Force Test Center conducts developmental and follow-on testing and evaluation of manned and unmanned aircraft and related avionics, flight-control, munitions, and weapon systems. It has flight-tested every aircraft in the Army Air Force's and the Air Force's inventory since World War II. AFTC also operates the Air Force Test Pilot School where the Air Force's top pilots, navigators, and engineers learn how to conduct flight tests and generate the data needed to carry out test missions.
Arnold Engineering Development Complex, located at Arnold AFB, operates more than 68 aerodynamic and propulsion wind tunnels, rocket and turbine engine test cells, environmental chambers, arc heaters, ballistic ranges, sled tracks, centrifuges and other specialized units. AEDC operating locations include Ames Research Center, Mountain View and Edwards AFB, California; Peterson AFB, Colorado; Eglin AFB; the Federal Research Center at White Oak, Maryland; Holloman AFB, Kirtland AFB, and White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; Wright-Patterson AFB, and Hill AFB. AEDC offers a suite of test capabilities to simulate speed, temperature, pressure and other parameters over a wide range to meet the needs of aerospace system developers. The facilities can simulate flight conditions from sea level to 300 miles and from subsonic velocities to Mach 20.
The 96th Test Wing, located at Eglin AFB, is the test and evaluation center for Air Force air-delivered weapons, navigation and guidance systems, command and control systems, and Air Force Special Operations Command systems. The wing provides expert evaluation and validation of the performance of systems throughout the design, development, acquisition, and sustainment process to ensure the warfighter has technologically superior, reliable, maintainable, sustainable, and safe systems. The 96th Test Wing is the principal Air Force organization for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) developmental testing. The 96th TW performs developmental test and evaluation across the complete system life cycle for a wide variety of customers including Air Force Systems Program Offices, the Air Force Research Laboratory, logistics, and product centers; major commands; other DoD services and U.S. government agencies (Department of Transportation, NASA, etc.); foreign military sales; and private industry.
The 412th Test Wing, located at Edwards AFB, plans, conducts, analyzes and reports on all flight and ground testing of aircraft, weapons systems, software, and components as well as modeling and simulation for the Air Force. There are three core components for this mission: flying operations, maintenance, and engineering. Through a maintenance group of more than 2,000 people and an operations group of 3,000, the test wing maintains and flies an average of 90 aircraft with upwards of 30 different aircraft designs and performs more than 7,400 missions (more than 1,900 test missions) on an annual basis.
The U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School (USAF TPS), located at Edwards AFB, is where the Air Force's top pilots, navigators and engineers learn how to conduct flight tests and generate the data needed to carry out test missions. Human lives and millions of dollars depend upon how carefully a test mission is planned and flown. The comprehensive curriculum of TPS is fundamental to the success of flight test and evaluation. Upon graduating from TPS, graduates have earned a Master of Science degree in Flight Test Engineering.
Life Cycle Management
Air Force Life Cycle Management Center
Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
The AFLCMC mission is to deliver affordable and sustainable war-winning capabilities to U.S. and international partners, on time, on cost, anywhere, anytime from cradle to grave. AFLCMC is the single center responsible for total life cycle management of all aircraft, engines, munitions, and electronic systems. AFLCMC's workforce of nearly 26,000 is located at 75 locations across the globe — from Peterson AFB, to Oslo, Norway.
AFLCMC's portfolio includes information technology systems and networks; command, control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; armaments; strategic systems; aerial platforms; and, various specialized or supporting systems such as simulators or personal equipment. AFLCMC also executes sales of aircraft and other defense-related equipment, while building security assistance relationships with foreign partner nation air forces.
AFLCMC is headquartered at Wright-Patterson AFB, where program executive officers oversee life cycle management of fighters, bombers, mobility, and tanker aircraft, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and special operations forces weapon systems, presidential and executive aircraft, as well as agile combat support systems, such as training aircraft and simulators.
The Air Force Security Assistance and Cooperation Directorate conducts the foreign military sales mission. AFLCMC directorates at Wright-Patterson AFB provide intelligence, engineering, budget estimation, contracting and other operational support.
Program Office personnel located at the Hill AFB, Robins AFB, Georgia, and Tinker AFB, Oklahoma, air-logistics complexes provide weapons system product support and report to respective AFLCMC PEOs. Tinker AFB is also host to AFLCMC's Propulsion Directorate which directs engine product support.
AFLCMC's Armament Directorate located at Eglin AFB, manages aerial delivered weapons and armaments.
AFLCMC’s PEO Digital and C3I & Networks Directorate and supporting 66th Air Base Group are headquartered at Hanscom AFB, Massachusetts.
Operational support information technology systems management is accomplished by AFLCMC's Business and Enterprise Systems Directorate at Maxwell AFB-Gunter Annex, Alabama.
Sustainment and Logistics
Air Force Sustainment Center
Tinker AFB, Oklahoma
The mission of the Air Force Sustainment Center is to provide sustainment and logistics readiness to deliver combat power for America. The center provides globally integrated, agile logistics and sustainment to the warfighter through world-class depot maintenance, supply chain management and installation support.
The AFSC provides critical sustainment for the Air Force's most sophisticated weapons systems, including: A-10 Thunderbolt II, AC-130, B-1 Lancer, B-52 Stratofortress, C-5 Galaxy, C-17 Globemaster III, C-130 Hercules, E-3 Sentry, E-6 Mercury, E-8 Joint STARS, EC-130, F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon, F-22 Raptor, F-35 Lightning II, HC-130, HH-60 Pave Hawk, intercontinental ballistic missile(s), KC-135 Stratotanker, MC-130, MH-53 Pave Low, RQ-4 Global Hawk, U-2 Dragon Lady, and UH-1 Iroquois as well as a wide range of aircraft engines and component parts.
The Air Force Sustainment Center consists of more than 40,000 military and civilian personnel. AFSC provides installation support to more than 141 associate units with more than 75,000 personnel. The three logistics complexes are experts in world-class, comprehensive sustainment of air and space systems - from circuit cards to aircraft - and provide support to other Defense Department services and allied-nation aircraft.
Tinker AFB is home to the AFSC headquarters, Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, 72nd Air Base Wing, and 448th Supply Chain Management Wing.
Hill AFB is home to the Ogden Air Logistics Complex and 75th Air Base Wing. Additionally, the complex operates the DoD’s aircraft regeneration, storage and preservation facility at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona, and additional maintenance operations in Japan, Colorado, Nebraska, Texas, Florida, California, Wyoming, North Dakota and Montana.
Robins AFB is home to the Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex and the 78th Air Base Wing.
The 635th Supply Chain Operations Wing is located at Scott AFB, Illinois.
Installation and Mission Support
Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center
Joint Base San Antonio, Texas
The Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center serves as the single intermediate-level headquarters responsible for providing installation and mission support capabilities to 77 Air Force and Space Force installations, eight major commands and two direct reporting units. The AFIMSC cross-functional team provides globally integrated management, resourcing and combat support operations for Airman and family services, base communications, chaplain programs, civil engineering, contracting, logistics readiness, public affairs, security forces and financial management. The center manages an annual budget of approximately $10 billion.
AFIMSC activated April 6, 2015, reached Initial Operating Capability on Oct. 1, 2015, and a year later, achieved Full Operating Capability in October 2016.
The Air Force stood up the center to make the best use of limited resources in managing and operating its installations. Centralization of management support helps the Air Force realize better effectiveness and efficiency in providing installation and expeditionary combat support capabilities to wing commanders and mission partners. The consolidation of more than 150 capabilities at AFIMSC also helps commanders focus on their primary mission areas.
AFIMSC comprises its headquarters, one detachment that supports the Space Force, nine detachments collocated with the Air Force active-duty major commands and the Air Force District of Washington, and four Primary Subordinate Units. Those units are the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Air Force Security Forces Center, Air Force Installation Contracting Center and Air Force Services Center.
Headquarters directorates include Expeditionary Support, Installation Support and Resources. Those directorates integrate operations across AFIMSC. The detachments serve as the liaison to the major commands they support, and the PSUs execute the center’s programs across the Air Force and Space Force enterprises.
Nuclear Systems Management
Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center
Kirtland AFB, New Mexico
The Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center, established March 31, 2006, is the nuclear-focused center within AFMC synchronizing all aspects of nuclear materiel management on behalf of the AFMC commander in direct support of Air Force Global Strike Command. Headquartered at Kirtland Air Force Base, the center has about 1,400 personnel assigned at 18 locations worldwide and consists of five major execution directorates: Air Delivered Capabilities; Ground Based Strategic Deterrent Systems; Minuteman III Systems; Nuclear Command, Control and Communications (NC3) Integration; and Nuclear Technology and Integration. It also has several functional directorates and its commander is dual-hatted as the Air Force Program Executive Officer for Strategic Systems.
The center's mission is to deliver nuclear capabilities warfighters use every day to deter and assure. This mission ensures the nation's most powerful weapon systems are never doubted, always feared. The center’s strategic goals are: 1.) resource, develop and care for a mission-driven workforce and 2.) time-certain delivery of capability to the warfighter.
The Air Delivered Capabilities Directorate is principally located at Kirtland AFB, with operating locations at Eglin AFB; Joint Base San Antonio, Texas; Ramstein AB, Germany; Robins AFB; Tinker AFB; and Wright-Patterson AFB. It also has positions for deputy program and product support managers embedded in program offices for the B-2, B-21, B-52, F-15, F-16, F-35 and authorized test systems and support equipment. The directorate is responsible for delivering, sustaining and supporting air-delivered nuclear weapon systems for warfighters to secure the future of the nation and its allies every day. Programs managed by the directorate include: B61-12 Life Extension Program and Tail Kit, Long Range Stand-Off Weapon, W80-4 Life Extension Program, overseas Weapon Storage and Security System, Secure Transportable Maintenance System, Protective Aircraft Shelter Interior Intrusion Detection System, and Air-Launched Cruise Missile (AGM-86B/C/D) sustainment.
The Ground Based Strategic Deterrent Systems Directorate is principally located at Hill AFB, with operating locations across the nation, including at F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming; Malmstrom AFB, Montana; Minot AFB, North Dakota; and Vandenberg AFB, California. It is responsible for modernizing or replacing Minuteman III flight systems, weapon system command and control, and launch systems, including missile silos, control centers, and other ground infrastructure. The directorate is also responsible for the Mark 21A Reentry Vehicle and Fuze Modernization programs, which will upgrade the weapon’s reentry system. The directorate is accountable for the total life cycle of the GBSD weapon system.
The Minuteman III Systems Directorate is principally located at Hill AFB, with operating locations at F.E. Warren AFB, Malmstrom AFB, Minot AFB and Vandenberg AFB. It is responsible for inception-to-retirement integrated management of the LGM-30G Minuteman III ICBM system, the nation’s current backbone for nuclear deterrence. It develops, acquires and supports the continued operational viability of the silo-based Minuteman III, and provides program direction and logistics support to AFGSC, the nation’s primary nuclear warfighter. It is responsible for acquisition, systems engineering and depot repair for all aspects of the weapon system. It works with supply chain management and depot repair centers to manage system spares, provide storage and transportation, and accomplish modifications or equipment replacement to sustain the Minuteman III.
The Nuclear Command, Control and Communications Integration Directorate is principally located at Hanscom AFB, Massachusetts, and Kirtland AFB. It includes personnel at Barksdale AFB, Louisiana; Fort Meade, Maryland; Los Angeles AFB, California; Hill AFB; Robins AFB; Tinker AFB; and Wright-Patterson AFB. It is responsible for integrating the AN/USQ.225 NC3 Weapon System across the Air Force. The directorate advises AFGSC on the NC3 Weapon System's technical architecture and informs key decisions regarding investment and modernization. The directorate is also responsible for the weapon system’s configuration management, system test, system verification, and system certification. In addition, its director is dual-hatted as the Air Force PEO for NC3.
The Nuclear Technology and Interagency Directorate is principally located at Kirtland AFB. It is responsible for providing intelligence support to AFNWC, analyzing the full spectrum of weapons effects to support acquisition programs and inform tactics and procedures, and assessing current and future nuclear systems to identify and mitigate potential vulnerabilities. The directorate is also responsible for managing the Air Force's Nuclear Certification Program, the Air Force Nuclear Red Team, and leading capability development initiatives for all pre-Milestone A/B activities within the center.
Specialized Unit: The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force
The National Museum of the United States Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, is the Department of the Air Force’s national institution for preserving and presenting its story. Each year, more than 800,000 visitors come to the museum to learn about the mission, history and evolving capabilities of America's Air Force and new Space Force.
The museum is the world's largest and oldest military aviation museum, featuring more than 350 aerospace vehicles and missiles on display amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Thousands of personal artifacts, photographs and documents further highlight the people and events that comprise the Air Force storyline, from the beginnings of military flight to today's current operations.
The Air Force operates the museum complex through government appropriated funds. The commander of the Air Force Materiel Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base maintains operational oversight of the museum, with the History Office of the Secretary of the Air Force in Washington, D.C., providing policy guidance.
The museum's 96 federal civil service positions cover a variety of areas, including exhibits, collection, research, aircraft restoration, operations, education, special events, planning, public affairs and administration. More than 500 volunteers provide an important contribution in diverse areas from greeting and assisting visitors to leading tours and helping restore aircraft.
The museum's galleries present many rare and one-of-a-kind aircraft and aerospace vehicles and thousands of historical items that chronicle the evolution of military flight from the Wright brothers to today's stealth aircraft, rockets, missiles, and spacecraft. Sensory-rich exhibits, featuring mannequins, artifacts, sound effects and theatrical lighting, place aerospace vehicles in context and bring history to life by dramatizing and personalizing the events depicted. Visitors walking through the museum can view multiple galleries focusing on the various eras of military aviation and Air Force history, including the early years, World War I, World War II, Korea, Southeast Asia, the Cold War and the present.
Animating the Air Force story and the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics, behind the story, the museum offers a wide variety of special events and educational programs to connect the service with the public. Through its education office, the museum connects with thousands of students, teachers, youth groups and family members through hands-on learning activities, workshops, tours and curriculum materials. The museum also provides no cost on-line educational resources that focus on K-12 student success. In doing so, the museum helps inspire the future workforce to pursue careers in STEAM and/or the Air Force, and advance Air and Space power in the years to come.
The museum manages hundreds of special events each year. These include the biennial World War I Dawn Patrol Rendezvous, space and rocket events, the Giant Scale Radio-Controlled Model Aircraft Fun-Fly, concerts featuring the Air Force Band of Flight, “Plane Talks,” and a variety of fun family events.
(Current as of June 2020)