DVIDS – News – 128th aviation brigade: where the avionics mechanics are manufactured

JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, VA – Instructors assigned to 1st Battalion, 210th Aviation Regiment, 128th Aviation Brigade at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., play a vital role in maintaining Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters of the U.S. Army operational, involving training and training the next generation of avionics mechanics, Military Occupational Specialty 15N.

Approximately 200 soldiers go through the course each year to help sustain nearly 5,000 junior soldiers in the 15N community. These soldiers perform unit and intermediate maintenance on tactical communications security, communication, navigation, identify friend or foe, and flight control equipment for the Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter.

“Our mission here at the school is very important to ensure that when these soldiers arrive in their new units, they know how to go through their training manuals, their publications, and then do all the practical maintenance of the aircraft,” said said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Matthew Ellis, Charlie Company, 1-210th Aviation Regiment, 15N Avionics Instructor.

The Black Hawk helicopter’s primary mission is to be a troop carrier and logistics support aircraft, but the helicopter can also be configured to perform medical evacuations, command and control, search and rescue, armed escort, electronic warfare and executive transport missions.

“For the pilots and co-pilots who fly the UH-60 class helicopters, our role is very important because we work on all their navigation systems, their flight systems, their communication systems and everything that involves the aircraft can actually fly,” Ellis said.

Army aviation units with these helicopters are usually assigned 10 to 12 avionics mechanics. This generally equates to small teams of two mechanics per helicopter, where soldiers in this career field perform these important tasks.

“It definitely adds stress knowing that if I make a mistake or skip steps, it could lead to someone not going home to their family,” said Pvt. Jeremiah Stirn, 128th Aviation Brigade, 15N Avionics Mechanics, student. “So I’m very motivated to make sure I learn to do everything.”

To qualify as 15N instructors, soldiers must hold the rank of sergeant or higher. Individuals selected for assignment to Joint Base Langley-Eustis will be required to complete two courses before delivering their first course. The first is the Executive Training Course, which provides prospective instructors with training in professional behavior and conduct when interacting with students. The second is the joint faculty-instructor development course, which teaches how to guide and educate adult learners.

“I really enjoy teaching and being able to share my knowledge,” Ellis said. “Also, I might meet them on the pitch in the future, but it’s really about passing on the knowledge that I’ve learned and the expertise that I’ve acquired to turn around and train them properly and complete the mission.”

Students follow different educational blocks starting with general subjects, enhanced basic training in electronics, data networks, communications, navigation systems, automatic flight control systems and aircraft survival equipment .

“The curriculum here at school is tough because they have to have good basic math first, then technical manuals and publications, and then be able to troubleshoot and fix faults,” Ellis said.

“The instructors have been phenomenal because they use all of their knowledge and hands-on experience, and you can really tell they know what they’re doing,” Stirn said. “They have a really good way of remembering what it is in our shoes, and that they too had to start at the bottom by building us from the basics. They are always ready to answer our questions and chat with us. It feels like they are doing a really good job of keeping the class at the same level to move forward together.

As technologies continue to evolve and update, instructors also frequently refresh themselves on the materials and equipment with which they educate students, resulting in ongoing training for soldiers in the community. 15N.

“When students graduate, I hope they will leave with the knowledge they need to join their units where they will receive more hands-on training and progress even further as avionics mechanics,” Ellis added. “Thus, they are able to teach their future soldiers about their future.”

Date taken: 23.09.2022
Date posted: 23.09.2022 14:15
Story ID: 429987
Location: FORT EUSTIS, Virginia, USA

Web views: 4
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