Thursday, November 2, 2017

AF awards F-35 programmers

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – The 53rd Wing’s 513th Electronic Warfare Squadron was awarded on Oct. 25 the Outstanding Scientist/Engineer Team of 2017 for their work on the F-35A Initial Operational Capability delivery at Eglin Air Force Base. This Air Force Science, Technology, Engineering and Math annual award recognizes the efforts and achievements of scientists and engineers who make significant contributions to technology and engineering. For the last seven years, 513th EWS airmen and sailors of the F-35’s U.S. Reprogramming Laboratory have been doing just that. Supercomputers, referred to as sensor fusion, make up the F-35’s brain. That brain provides the fighter with unique capabilities, making it more lethal, survivable and adaptable than any fighter aircraft on Earth, according to the Secretary of Air Force Public Affairs. However, without 513th EWS personnel inputting critical mission data into the F-35, sensor fusion wouldn’t work as intended. The aircraft wouldn’t know what threats to search for or when. In the electronic warfare world, engineers refer to this ability to understand the world, the ability to sift through stimuli and make informed decisions about how to react, as mission data software. This software helps compile countless pieces of information about the environment the F-35 will fly into. It also creates within the F-35’s brain the means of deciphering that environment. The men and women of the 513th EWS program this essential mission data software, thus teaching the F-35 how to distinguish between stimuli and making it efficient, intelligent and lethal. (Source: 53rd Wing Public Affairs, 11/01/17) Background story, "Putting the fight in the F-35," Gulf Coast Aerospace Corridor Newsletter, April 2015, p. 1-2.