Eglin 2017 in review

  • Published
  • By Brig. Gen. Evan Dertien
  • 96th Test Wing

It has been another busy year for the 96th Test Wing as we continue to provide critical capabilities to the DoD by testing weapon systems and cyber capabilities.  In addition, we have the responsibility of supporting 35+ diverse Air Force and joint mission partners across the Air Force’s largest installation.  I am proud of all your accomplishments and how easy the 96th makes it look!

A few of your accomplishments:

-- 3700+ F-15, F-16, A-10s sorties to support the development of new warfighter capabilities. Tested improved aircraft software/hardware and weapons capability upgrades including the AIM-120, B-61 tailkit, Small Diameter Bomb, Advanced Precision Kinetic Weapon System and many others.

-- Completed AC-130J, AC-130W, CV-22 & HH-60 upgrade testing to provide increased capabilities to the warfighter. Postured ourselves to support future C-130, CV-22 and Combat Rescue Helicopter programs.

-- Hosted over 100 different programs and supported numerous weapons activities across the Eglin Range such as MALD-X, A/A and A/G WSEP, Emerald Warrior and numerous other large scale events.

-- Activated the AF’s first Cyberspace Test Group that will expand our cyber test capabilities for cyber testing of AF business systems, C2 systems and offensive/defensive capabilities.  The cyber team supported numerous command and control testing events this year including DoD’s large BLACK DART UAV exercise and a test of the defense system around Washington DC. 

-- AF Seek Eagle  engineers and test teams continued to push the envelope to meet warfighter needs and developed new test processes for agile weapons certification, F-16 flutter/LCO characterization, and 5th-gen fighter thermal and vibration modeling.

-- Provided medical, security, logistics and mission/installation support for the 96th TW ops and all our mission partners which allows them to accomplish a variety of missions including leading edge research, Army Ranger training, Special Ops training/deployments, weapons development, Explosive Ordinance Disposal Training, Operational Testing, space situational awareness and many other important mission sets for our nation.

-- Maintained and upgraded 3200+ facilities across Eglin  to support Team Eglin missions and started implementing the NexGen Eglin facilities plan that will help modernize our facilities. Broke ground on our new Invisible Wounds clinic, offering first-of-its-kind care to this country’s Wounded Warriors.

Thank you for all your hard work and focused efforts.  Hopefully, you will have time to relax, recharge and connect with those close to you over the holidays.  Please keep our deployed members in your thoughts and also recognize that this time of year isn’t joyous for all.  Please be a proactive wingman to those experiencing tough times and think about safety when making your plans over the next few weeks.

I appreciate all your efforts making 2017 a year of success and I look forward to welcoming all of you back safely in 2018.