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Data consolidation project enhances Air Force munitions logistics tracking

  • Published
  • By Richard Essary
  • 75th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Organizations at Hill Air Force Base played a key role in completing a data consolidation project that will enhance the logistics tracking and management of munitions across the Air Force.

The project, which was initiated in response to a 2020 Headquarters Air Force directive to merge the Integrated Missile Data Base, was completed in early November. The new Accountable Property System of Record now accounts for and tracks information by component type and characteristics.

“The completion of this data integration project is a significant milestone that will enhance the ICBM community's ability to effectively manage and maintain its vital assets,” said Col. Will Storms, director, Minuteman III Systems Directorate, Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center.

Damion Englen, a program manager for the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center and one of many personnel who had a hand in the project, said the migration effort was “a very big lift,” but will have a “very big payoff” for the Air Force.

“Consolidating data into a single, authoritative system will yield significant resource and cost savings,” said Englen. “The new system integrates the inventory with the existing Air Force conventional ammunition accountability system, serving munitions and weapons users worldwide, as well as senior Air Force leadership.”

At the start of the project, the Air Force reviewed more than 700 different logistics systems that track everything from aircraft tires to vehicles to radar parts.

The Air Force consolidated all 700 systems into “clusters,” with munitions becoming one of approximately two dozen clusters. Eventually, these clusters were merged into a singular system that performs the functions of the old eight legacy systems.

The new Accountable Property System of Record is a “modified” off-the-shelf commercial logistics management system, like what large retailers use to track their inventories.

However, the Air Force can modify the system to add special categories to track explosive weight or conduct inspections, something most retailers don’t deal with. The program will also continue to be updated and secured by the vendor, which will prevent software-related “legacy issues” the service has encountered with previous systems.

Throughout the migration process, personnel spent thousands of hours validating the accuracy and integrity of the data extracted from the old data bases before inputting it into the new one.

“This project gave us the chance to scrub legacy data and update it with the latest catalog information. This way, the new system users can access the most accurate and relevant data available for their assets,” said Joel Cochran, a senior software engineering with the AFLCMC.

Cochran acknowledged that the new system would require some adjustments, as the software screens and processes would be different from the old system. However, he also highlighted the benefits of the new system, such as its enhanced asset tracking capabilities.

“It will allow users to track assets through multiple moves in near real-time -- package, inspect and ship at the point of service – and quickly share such data with other systems, including sister services such as the Army and the Navy through modern methods and standards the old system could not support,” he said.

Storms credited personnel from the AFLCMC Munitions Sustainment Division, Minuteman III Systems Directorate, 309th Missile Maintenance Group, U.S. Space Force, contractors and other key logistics stakeholders for coming together the past 18 months to complete the migration of the final pieces of data into the new system.

“This project is a testament to the dedication and hard work of our Airmen and Guardians, and I am proud of them for making this project a reality and pushing it across the goal line,” he said. “I am confident that it will make a significant contribution to our mission and its benefits will be felt for many years to come.”