Some 80 personnel from the 86th Airlift Wing at Ramstein AB, Germany, and three C-130Js deployed to Otopeni AB, Romania, earlier this month to support Carpathian Summer, according to an Aug. 19 release. Though the training event is bilateral, the Air Force has transferred authority for the C-130Js to NATO for the duration of the exercise, a normal procedure intended to build readiness and interoperability for US and Romanian forces to prepare for combined air operations under the Alliance’s authority, states the release. NATO allies regularly transfer air assets to Alliance control, for use in training exercises and deployments, such as the NATO’s Baltic air policing mission. In addition to building joint air readiness, the event allows C-130J airmen to get training in tasks not readily available at home station in Germany, said Capt. Douglas Mabe, a pilot with the 37th Airlift Squadron. As part of efforts to support Operation Atlantic Resolve, US Air Forces Europe-Air Forces Africa has ramped up its engagement and training with eastern NATO allies such as Romania. (See also Looking East from the September 2014 issue of Air Force Magazine.)
When the Air Force sets a new program baseline for the B-52 re-engining this fall, there will be “some” cost increase, because the project wasn't previously fully funded, and the Air Force has a better handle on actual supplier costs and knowledge from ground testing, program officials said.