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Honing skills: 366th EMS executes armament training

MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho- --

The 366th Equipment Maintenance Squadron conducted in-depth F-15E Strike Eagle armament training Aug. 27-30 that will enhance the 366th Fighter Wing’s readiness down-range.

EMS armament technicians trained on the Bomb Rack Unit-61, an F-15E equipment piece that houses the Guided Bomb Unit-39. The GBU-39 is a 250-pound small-diameter precision-guided glide bomb that relies on the Global Positioning System to provide navigation to the F-15E’s target.

“We hook (the BRU-61) up to the F-15 on one of its pylons and it drops four bombs at a time,” said Airman 1st Class Justin Sinde, 366th EMS armament maintenance technician. “It is pretty efficient and one of the nicer units we have.”

Sinde said that the opportunity to work on the BRU-61 is a unique experience, and the training is valuable as it will strengthen his leadership skills and prepare him for situations he may encounter while deployed.

“We need to know what we are doing in the desert because there is always a possibility that this equipment can break down,” Sinde said. “We need to know how this equipment works in detail.”

Before this training, the BRU-61 would be sent to a depot manufacturer for inspection and maintenance.

“Due to recent TO (technical order) changes, we are allowed to work more in depth on them than we used to,” Sinde said. “Instead of sending them back to a depot manufacturer, we can work on the different components instead of wasting time and money by shipping it back and forth."

Master Sgt. Michael McDonald, 366th EMS armament maintenance section chief, expressed that this training will increase the wing’s operational capabilities by giving his unit the ability to fix the asset themselves.

"It's going to enable us to be mission-ready when called upon,” said McDonald. “If we are down an asset, we're going to be able to do a quick turn-around on it rather than waiting for depot-level assistance.”