Air Force Reserve Command
The Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) supports the Air Force mission to defend the United States through control and exploitation of air and space by supporting Global Engagement. The AFRC plays an integral role in the day-to-day Air Force mission and is not a force held in reserve for possible war or contingency operations.
If called to active duty, the flying units and their support elements belonging to 4th and 22nd Air Force would be gained by Air Mobility Command while those of 10th Air Force would be gained by Air Combat Command.
The AFRC has about 450 aircraft assigned to it. The inventory includes the latest, most capable models of the F-16 Fighting Falcon, O/A-10 Thunderbolt II, C-5 Galaxy, C-141 Starlifter, C-130 Hercules, MC-130 Combat Talon I, HC-130 Tanker, WC-130 Weather, KC-135 Stratotanker, B-52 Stratofortress bomber and HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter. On any given day, 99 percent of these aircraft are mission-ready and able to deploy within 72 hours. These aircraft and support personnel are gained by Air Combat Command, Air Mobility Command, and Air Force Special Operations Command if mobilized. These aircraft and their crews are immediately deployable without need for additional training.
Under the 1998-2002 Air Force Reserve Command Long Range Plan provide planning guidance for 1998, Commanders were instructed to develop procedures to achieve or exceed the following mission capable rates within authorized funding constraints:
At the request of local, state or federal agencies, AFRC conducts aerial spray missions using specially equipped C-130s. With the only fixed-wing capability in the Department of Defense, these missions range from spraying pesticides to control insects to spraying compounds used in the control of oil spills. Other specially equipped C-130s check the spread of forest fires by dropping fire retardant chemicals. Real-world missions also include weather reconnaissance, rescue, international missions in support of U.S. Southern Command, and aeromedical evacuation. The AFRC also takes an active role in the nation's counternarcotics effort. Reservists offer a cost-effective way to provide specialized training, airlift, analysis , and other unique capabilities to local, state and federal law enforcement officials.
The Air Force Reserve Command, with headquarters at Robins Air Force Base, Ga., became the ninth major command of the Air Force on Feb. 17, 1997, as a result of Title XII - Reserve Forces Revitalization - in Public Law 104-201, the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 1997. Prior to this act, the Air Force Reserve was a field operating agency of the Air Force established on April 14, 1948.
The AFRC has 35 flying wings equipped with their own aircraft and seven associate units that share aircraft with an active-duty unit. Four space operations squadrons share satellite control mission with the active force. There also are more than 620 mission support units in the AFRC, equipped and trained to provide a wide range of services, including medical and aeromedical evacuation, aerial port, civil engineer, security force, intelligence, communications, mobility support, logistics, and transportation operations, among others. Fourth Air Force at March Air Reserve Base, Calif.; 10th Air Force at Carswell Air Reserve Station, Texas, and 22nd Air Force at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Ga., report to Headquarters AFRC. They act as operational headquarters for their subordinate units, providing operational, logistical and safety support, and regional support for geographically separated units.
The Ready Reserve is made up of over 125,000 trained reservists who may be recalled to active duty to augment active forces in time of war or national emergency. Of this number, nearly 70,000 reservists are members of the Selected Reserve who train regularly and are paid for their participation in unit or individual programs. These reservists are combat ready and can deploy to anywhere in the world in 72 hours. Additionally, more than 55,000 are part of the Individual Ready Reserve. Members of the IRR continue to have a service obligation, but do not train and are not paid.
Nearly 57,000 reservists are assigned to specific Reserve units. These are the people who are obligated to report for duty one weekend each month and two weeks of annual training a year. Most work many additional days. Reserve aircrews, for example, average more than 100 duty days a year, often flying in support of national objectives at home and around the world. Air reserve technicians (ARTs) are a special group of reservists who work as civil service employees during the week in the same jobs they hold as reservists on drill weekends. ARTs are the full-time backbone of the unit training program, providing day-to-day leadership, administrative and logistical support, and operational continuity for their units. More than 9,500 reservists, over 15 percent of the force, are ARTs.
The AFRC Associate Program provides trained crews and maintenance personnel for active-duty owned aircraft and space operations. This unique program pairs a Reserve unit with an active-duty unit to share a single set of aircraft and rests on the idea that there are more operational requirements than there are manpower to fulfill them. The Associate Reserve program is based on providing manpower to complement the Total Force. The result is a more cost-effective way to meet increasing mission requirements. In an active associate unit, the Reserve owns the aircraft, while the active force provides air crews and maintainers who share the responsibility of flying and maintaining the planes. This setup differs from the Reserve's traditional associate unit program, in which reservists fly and maintain aircraft owned by the active duty.
Associate aircrews fly C-5 Galaxies, C-141 Starlifters, C-17 Globemaster IIIs, C-9 Nightingales, KC-10 Extenders, KC-135 Stratotanker, T-1 Jayhawks, T-37 Tweets, T-38 Talons, F-16 Fighting Falcons, MC-130P Combat Shadows and MC-130 Talon I (Reserve Associate Unit) and E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and Control System aircraft. Space Operations associate units operate Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP), Defense Support Program (DSP) and Global Positioning System (GPS) Satellites. Reserve associate crews account for nearly 50 percent of the Air Force's C-141 and C-5 air crew capability, and 43 percent of KC-10 air crew capability. Reservists account for 32 percent of C-9 air crew capability and 36 percent of C-17 air crews. Associate maintenance people comprise 44 percent of the C-5 and 45 percent of the C-141 airlift maintenance forces, and 37 percent of the KC-10 maintenance force.
Air Force reservists are on duty today around the world in support of the Air Mobility Command [AMC] mission. A proven and respected combat force, the AMC reservist is quick to lend a helping hand. Humanitarian relief missions may involve anything from repairing roads and schools in a small village in Central America, to rescuing the victims of nature's worst disasters. AMC gains more than 45,000 Air Force Reservists upon mobilization. This includes unit personnel and Individual Mobilization Augmentees. When called to active duty, the reservists will become an integral part of AMC, giving valuable depth in all areas from operations and maintenance to critical support missions. During peacetime, the Air Force Reserve supports active duty requirements with equipment and personnel within the availability of the part-time reservists. Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command, Robins Air Force Base, Ga., provides the peacetime command and control of 29 AMC-gained units.
Under the Reserve Associate Program, reservists fly, maintain and share facilities and equipment of collocated active-duty units. This cost effective concept, developed in 1966, augments the AMC with trained personnel during peacetime and periods of increased airlift requirements when the aircraft need to be flown at wartime utilization rates. Reservists fly the same aircraft and perform the same maintenance and other support functions as the active duty personnel in their "associated" organizations. Reservists fly the KC-10 Extender, C-9 Nightingale, C-17 Globemaster III, C-141 Starlifter and the C-5 Galaxy. In addition to the aircrews, the Associate Program includes group support personnel who work with their active duty counterparts in maintenance, transportation, civil engineering, security police, communications, ALCE, aerial ports and in the medical fields. Each of the Reserve Associate Wings are affiliated with collocated active AMC airlift wings. Reserve Associate Wings are as follows: 315th AW, Charleston AFB, S.C.; 349th AW, Travis AFB, Calif.; 446th AW, McChord AFB, Wash.; 512th AW, Dover AFB, Del.; 514th AW, McGuire AFB, N.J.; 931 ARG, McConnell AFB, Kan., and the 932AW, Scott AFB, Ill.
The Air Force Reserve Command directly supports worldwide aerial refueling and cargo hauling missions, flying KC-135 Stratotankers (cargo tankers) and KC-10 Extenders (advanced cargo tankers). Reserve squadrons equipped with KC-135 aircraft accomplish about 13 percent of the KC-135 aerial refueling requirements. In associate units, Reserve KC-135 and KC-10 squadrons train with active-duty units and fly active-duty aircraft. Associate KC-10 units provide 50 percent of the KC-10 crews and contribute 50 percent to the maintenance force.
More than 9,100 reservists train in the C-130 airlift mission in a variety of aircrew, aircraft maintenance and support skills. In wartime, AFRC provides 23 percent of Air Force's C-130 airlift force. About half of the Reserve's airlift units fly and own the shorter range C-130 Hercules. Its speed, range, load-carrying characteristics and capability to operate under difficult terrain conditions make it an invaluable and versatile aircraft. It's strong enough to deliver its cargo on unimproved landing strips. Other missions involve aeromedical evacuation and special air support operations.
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