Modernizing the Mobility Air Force for Tomorrow's Air Traffic Management System
RAND PROJECT AIR FORCE SANTA MONICA CA
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As airspace systems around the world are transformed to accommodate growing air traffic demands, the U.S. Air Force must decide whether to modernize its fleets to comply with new equipage mandates. Without avionics modernization, the Mobility Air Force s C-5, C-17, KC-135, and C-130 fleets would lack some of the capabilities required to meet these forthcoming mandates. Modernization ensures continued access to fuel-efficient cruising altitudes and congested airspace, but these future benefits require an upfront investment in avionics upgrade programs. The Air Force plans to operate legacy aircraft well into the future. As they age, these fleets will require modernization to maintain their capabilities. In a fiscally constrained environment, investment decisions must be made in a way that maximizes the benefit of each dollar spent. This analysis looks at a subset of these potential investments, assessing their cost-effectiveness based on quantifiable future costs that would be avoided by modernization. For some programs, there may be additional benefits beyond those resulting from communication, navigation, and surveillanceair traffic management CNSATM cost avoidance. In many cases, these outcomes reinforce the results presented here. In others, the broader potential benefits must be weighed carefully against program costs that are not fully offset by CNSATM cost avoidance.
- Transport Aircraft
- Military Forces and Organizations