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Team Edwards members win top DOD maintenance award

The 412th Test Wing’s Emerging Technologies Combined Test Force conducted three test sorties March 6 using a quadcopter to inspect a C-17 Globemaster III. Maj. Dan Riley, ET CTF director, and Maj. William Niblack, ET CTF operations officer, piloted the small unmanned aerial system. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)

Members of the 412th Test Wing Emerging Technologies Combined Test Force and maintainers from the 412th Maintenance Group use a quadcopter to inspect the exterior of a C-17 Globemaster III. Team Edwards members were recognized by the Department of Defense for their use of a small unmanned aircraft system to conduct maintenance inspections. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)

EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

Members of the 412th Test Wing’s Emerging Technologies Combined Test Force and the 412th Maintenance Group won the Department of Defense 2017 Maintenance Innovation Challenge People's Choice Award for using small unmanned aircraft systems to conduct exterior maintenance inspections on large aircraft.

Top DOD maintenance leaders handed out the award during the DOD Maintenance Symposium held at the Calvin L. Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, Dec. 4-7.

The Edwards team competed against five other finalists from the armed forces in the DOD Maintenance Innovation Challenge. Each team presented their available technologies, best business practices and innovative maintenance processes to the maintenance community.

Senior maintenance leaders from the DOD’s Maintenance Executive Steering Committee, the Joint Group on Depot Maintenance, and the Industrial Base Commanders Peer to Peer Group, selected the Maintenance Innovation Challenge winner during the maintenance symposium plenary session and presented them with the 2017 Maintenance Innovation Challenge trophy. Attendees then voted to select the Peoples’ Choice Award, which went to the Edwards team. The team received an award plaque.

According to the DOD, the objective of the innovation challenge is to raise awareness in the maintenance community to available technologies, best business practices and innovative maintenance processes, while engaging senior maintenance leaders in assessing and prioritizing promising technology to deliver innovative, agile and affordable maintenance capabilities.

Team Edwards’ 2017 DOD Maintenance Innovation Challenge People's Choice Award Winners

Timothy Morris, 912nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron

Christopher Nagel, 412th Maintenance Group

Charles Ivory, 412th MXG

Danilo Dijamco, 412th MXG

Cherisse Lawson, 412th MXG

Maj. Dan Riley II, Emerging Technologies CTF director

David Freeman, Emerging Technologies CTF,

Chris Eaton, Emerging Technologies CTF

Maj. William Niblack, Emerging Technologies CTF

Capt. Justin Merrick, Emerging Technologies CTF