HomeNewsArticle Display

Innovation at its finest

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, holds up the tool he invented to save the Air Force time and money at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, holds up the tool he invented to save the Air Force time and money at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018. The LAU-118 Retention Handle Strap and Lanyard Assembly is designed to keep munitions from detachment and sustaining damage. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Sean Sweeney)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, prepares a munition to be loaded onto an F-16 Fighting Falcon at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, prepares a munition to be loaded onto an F-16 Fighting Falcon at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018. Tankersley created a new tool that will save the Air Force money and man hours. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Sean Sweeney)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, double checks the new tool he created to ensure it is properly secured on a munition at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, double checks the new tool he created to ensure it is properly secured on a munition at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C., Oct. 16, 2018. The new tool will eliminate the possibility of the munition falling and sustaining damage. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Sean Sweeney)

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- The Air Force looks to its Airmen to be innovative in order to save time and money.

Staff Sgt. Justin Tankersley, 20th Maintenance Group weapons lead crew chief, created a new tool for F-16 Fighting Falcons.

The new tool, called the LAU-118 Retention Handle Strap and Lanyard Assembly, will save hours of work and money for the Air Force. It is less expensive than the old one, will save man hours and will reduce the possibility of munitions sustaining damage from being dropped.

“The older tool worked, but it was a pain because 80 percent of using the tool was spent trying to get it to just do its job,” said Senior Airman Paul Satala, 20th MXG weapons lead crew member.

“The old tool was just unreliable, so it was time to come up with something new,” said Tankersley.

The new tool enables the 20th MXG to train Airmen to do their jobs faster and more efficiently in order to increase productivity and load more munitions. This will prepare them for potentially larger-scale missions they may support overseas.