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Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF): A Participation Analysis 1986-2005
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT
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Since deregulation, the Civil Reserve Air Fleet CRAF has undergone significant commitment fluctuations within its long-range international passenger, cargo, and Aero-medical segments. Some of the causes of these fluctuations include the cyclical economic cycles of the airline industry, activation of CRAF, and the impact of changing gauge usage by the CRAF carriers. This project attempts to address the impact these fluctuations had on CRAF readiness during the period 1986 to 2005. To do so, a review of the origins of CRAF as well as its critical role in Department of Defense planning was conducted. Following the review, an analysis of CRAF commitment data provided by AMC A34B as well as commercial fleet summary data were used to discern trends in both commitment and gauge. The research indicates that economic fluctuations have had a limited effect on CRAF commitment levels with regard to single-carrier bankruptcy events. However, the extent of the impact is largely dependent on the level of commitment the carrier provides CRAF as well as the abruptness of the event. Additionally, the reduction of gauge in the passenger airline industry will be a cause for concern for defense planners when faced with limited airfield availability. However, cargo aircraft increased in relative gauge size during the study period.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE