NON-STANDARD FIXED WING AVIATION: THE RECIPE FOR ADDRESSING SPECIALIZED MOBILITY SHORTFALLS
AIR COMMAND AND STAFF COLLEGE, DISTANCE LEARNING, AIR UNIVERSITY MAXWELL AFB United States
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The unique requirements of Special Operations Forces SOF make it necessary to employ specialized tactics and equipment in order to successfully operate in hostile, denied, or sensitive environments. The preponderance of these types of missions are quick reaction demanding low-visibility and greater assumption of risk. Americas SOF teams require an additional level of aviation support to execute national level missions. This decade is faced with tighter defense spending and cutbacks to the small aircraft inventory, an increased number of contracts with commercial aviation companies have been the hasty solution in order to maintain readiness and meet operational requirements. If properly balanced and with the right oversight, a mix of contract and military air assets could meet the needs of SOF and the Department of Defense to fill the non-standard aviation shortfalls being experienced globally. The analysis identifies shortfalls in specialized mobility capabilities and logistics and evaluates the utilization of available non-standard aviation aircraft for Special Operations and compares the effectiveness and efficiency between using organic military assets to that of investing in specialized mobility contract aviation. For USSOCOM, and DoD as a whole, to maintain a global presence in austere locations while meeting the specialized mobility needs of SOF, there are three areas identified to fill eliminate shortfalls Adjust the waiver process for contracting air carriers improved utilization of the USASOC C-27J aircraft and modification to the hub and spoke approach that is tailored to SOF. This research paper uses a mixed-methodology of problemsolution framework and evaluation framework. The paper is divided into three main sections overview of the problem, analysis of the problem, and the recommended solutions.
- Military Forces and Organizations