Logistics Provides Backbone for Continued Coalition Air Operations
19 October 2015
The RAAF relies on a robust supply chain for its ability to resupply aircraft and personnel in order to conduct long term effective air operations.
A combined logistics cell based in the Middle East Region, comprising Combat Support Unit (CSU) personnel deployed on Operation Accordion and Air Task Group (ATG) personnel deployed on Operation Okra, performs this vital function in supplying everything from stationery through to precision guided munitions.
One of the ATG F/A-18A Hornet pilots, Squadron Leader Jason, knows how critical the supply chain is.
In addition to aircraft parts, he relies on the regular supply of explosive ordnance, from defensive munitions such as chaff and flares, to offensive precision guided munitions.
"Operation Okra has seen the RAAF use the most munitions since the Vietnam War over four decades ago," Squadron Leader Jason said.
"Without the supply of these munitions we would not be able to fulfil our role as part of the coalition disrupting and degrading Daesh."
The supply of these munitions relies heavily on logistics personnel working directly with the Armament Officer and pilots to understand the requirements and place the requisitions.
With three vastly different aircraft platforms and up to 350 personnel to support, the logistics cell comprises a number of different elements all working together to maintain a robust supply chain.
ATG has logisticians dedicated to supporting each aircraft platform: the F/A-18A Hornet fighter attack aircraft, KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport aircraft and the E-7 Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft.
In the 12 months since the commencement of Operation Okra, ATG has placed over 100 high priority Aircraft Operationally Grounded (AOGs) demands.
The total supply chain time for AOGs is two weeks. However the average the total supply chain time is less than seven days.
This is a major achievement in considering that each item requires the raising of the demand, picking the item, preliminary movement within the National Support Base in Australia, movement of the item to the Middle East Region and the intra-theatre movement to the end-user.
As a result of personnel from all agencies working together, the end result has ensured the efficient delivery of items, resulting in rapid aircraft maintenance and the ability of the ATG to successfully undertake its mission.