Air Force Featured Stories

  • Structural maintainers provide backbone of RPAs

    When people have a blemish, they see a dermatologist; when they have a physiological problem, they see an orthopedist. For the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper, aircraft structural maintainers fill both the aesthetic and structural maintenance roles to keep remotely piloted aircraft in check.

  • MQ-9 crashes in Afghanistan

    An MQ-9 Reaper assigned to the 451st Air Expeditionary Group, part of the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing, crashed Feb. 20 at about 9 p.m. Afghanistan time, at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan.

  • RPA maintainers accomplish mission despite low retention

    The constant and insatiable demand for remotely piloted aircraft airpower places stressors on nearly every career field within the RPA enterprise. For some Airmen of the 432nd Maintenance Group, the fast-paced deployment rotation, constant shift work, time away from family, limited assignment

  • Arming the RPAs

    Airmen from the 62nd Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron provide every munition that is loaded onto an MQ-1B Predator or MQ-9 Reaper at Kandahar Airfield; without them, the RPAs wouldn’t be able to provide combat airpower in Afghanistan.

  • Reaper maintainers ensure ISR mission accomplishment

    Supporting the largest Reaper unit in the Air Force, Airmen assigned to the 451st Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron work 24 hours a day to ensure the Reaper fleet is fully operational and ready to launch at a moment’s notice.

  • Recon squadron keeps remotely piloted aircraft flying

    "To provide world-class, full spectrum remotely piloted aircraft operations for the joint forces in Afghanistan," is the 62nd Expeditionary Reconnaissance Squadron's motto. The unit's Airmen work 24 hours a day to provide 84 percent of Central Commands' RPA combat air patrols.

  • RPAs meet mission goals safe and on time

    Airmen stationed in the continental U.S. and in deployed locations throughout the world drew on decades of Air Force aviation experience to achieve 65 simultaneous remotely piloted combat air patrols last month.

  • From aerodromes to Reaper, RPAs push limits of technology

    The RPA actually got its start as early as 1896, when something called aerodromes at the time, were used to test the capabilities of new flying devices and to test if it was even possible for a heavier-than-air craft to achieve sustained flight. In May 1896, Dr. Samuel Langley proved that mechanical

  • Maintenance makes RPA history possible

    During the morning of Oct. 22, the aircraft parking ramps at a deployed location roared to life. Checklists were run, hatches checked, and missions briefed as the crew chiefs, support units and air crew carefully prepared an MQ-1 Predator remotely piloted aircraft for flight, just as they would on