NAVAIR Commander honors Air Combat Electronics team for contribution to aircraft readiness
NAVAIR Commander Vice Adm. Carl Chebi recognized the Air Combat Electronics program office (PMA-209) Readiness Cell team with a NAVAIR Commander’s Award for most impactful Readiness Control Board team April 20 during the Commander’s Awards ceremony at Patuxent River.
Chebi said the PMA-209 Readiness Cell’s analytical rigor and data-driven decision making resulted in a 30 percent increase in readiness across Degrader Action Cell (DAC) efforts and helped achieve a mission capable rate of 92 percent across PMA-209 managed systems.
The Cell’s readiness levers focused on changes to procedures, technical publications and cross-organization collaboration. Combined, these levers avoided component re-design while reducing back orders by 100 percent, reducing repair requirements by 50 percent, improving on-wing time by approximately 40 percent and $50 million of cost avoidance across Navy and Marine Corps Type/Model/Series (T/M/S).
“I am very proud of our Readiness Cell and grateful to them for their hard work in improving readiness in the fleet,” said Capt. Margaret Wilson, PMA-209 program manager. “Our team also recognizes that although NAVAIR supports readiness, it’s the sailors and Marines working day in and day out, often in austere conditions that achieve fleet readiness. Staying connected to the fleet at the deck plate level is essential in delivering sustainable avionic solutions in support of the warfighter.”
NAVAIR designed the Reliability Control Board (RCB) process around aircraft platform evaluations at the Work Unit Code (WUC) level, which presented unique considerations for commodity programs. The PMA-209 Readiness Cell, in coordination with the Advanced Analytics and Innovation Group (AA&I), defined and developed a commodity one list to help ensure inclusion of this vital equipment in the RCB process. During RCB 2.0 development by the PMA-209 and AA&I team, they proactively implemented RCB processes across common avionics to mitigate readiness degraders by analyzing commodity system impacts to readiness percentages and balancing those against T/M/S objectives. Using metrics including mean flight hour between unscheduled removals for reliability and issue priority group for supply response time, the Readiness Cell established a foundation to be used across similar commodity-based programs in the RCB process.
The Cell’s efforts effectively captured datasets from various resources to design, develop and maintain thousands of descriptive data charts used by the program office in the management of 255 common avionics systems installed across Navy and Marine Corps aircraft. By collaborating directly with each DAC lead on the analysis process, including identification of potential shortfalls and errors in fleet maintenance data, the PMA-209 Readiness Cell also trained and mentored 10 DAC leads in the development of datasets focused on root-cause analysis, ensuring the focus on readiness continues.
Additionally, the team successfully organized the new program related logistics optimization project profiles in the advanced degrader tracking system, establishing requirements to resolve diminishing manufacturing sources and material shortages concerns across four families of systems effecting seven T/M/S aircraft. These efforts further supplied information to stakeholders with needed contract and depot repair throughput, sparing requirements and capability roadmaps to help ensure asset availability.
“This award recognition inspires the PMA-209 Readiness Cell to continue digging into readiness degraders wherever possible, especially reliability and supply chain challenges, understanding that correct root-cause identification is key to success,” said Todd Porter, PMA-209 product support manager. “Looking forward, the team is collecting lessons learned to implement corrective actions early in the acquisition phase in order to capture readiness upfront and early.”
Since inception, the PMA-209 Readiness Cell analyzed 19 degraders, initiated 47 projects supporting seven program offices while completing 24 projects since PMA-209 Readiness Cell implementation.
PMA-209 is a collaborative team of proactive acquisition professionals enabling current and future foundational aviation requirements led by Capt. Margaret Wilson, PMA-209 program manager. The program office is NAVAIR’s executive agent for the development and management of cutting-edge air combat electronics systems.
Established in 1988, PMA-209 is responsible for providing critical capabilities to the warfighter in the form of common, fully developed, supportable, and reliable systems that align with the strategic and operational requirements of our platform PEO and PMA customers.