Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Sharon G. Heilmann, PhD


The ability of the United States Armed Forces to maintain a global presence and rapidly project military power anywhere in the world are key factors in preserving our freedom. To accomplish the demanding task of global reach support, Air Mobility Command employs an en route support infrastructure. These en route locations provide varying levels of command, control, and communications (C3), logistics support, and aerial port functions. The goal of the en route is to minimize delays for AMC mission aircraft. However, these en route locations comprise a small percentage of the locations that AMC aircraft visit. Given the critical demand for rapid air mobility, potential impact of mission delays or cancellations, and the substantial investment of taxpayer dollars, AMC must provide logistical support to off-station aircraft in the most effective manner possible.
This research examined a 5-year historical summary of AMC’s logistical support process. The resulting data was used to perform a statistical analysis of AMC off-station aircraft logistic support records for AMC’s six primary aircraft fleets (C-5, C-17, C-141, C-130, KC-10, & KC-135). The calculated average not mission capable (NMC) time was used to compare overseas en route and non en route locations to assess AMC’s en route infrastructure’s effectiveness in reducing mission delays due to aircraft maintenance problems. Effectiveness, in the context of this research, was measured in terms of a lower or shorter average NMC time, equating to reduced mission delays.
The initial data analysis on OCONUS en route and non en route locations provided a macro level assessment based on location only. A closer investigation on each of the six primary AMC aircraft fleets returned varying results in terms of reduced averaged NMC time. To determine if a significant difference existed between data groups, parametric and nonparametric statistical testing methods were used. All data groups were tested for normal distributions using histograms and goodness-of-fit tests. Each of the data set had non-normal or non-lognormal distribution and unequal variances based on F-test results. Mann-Whitney (Wilcoxon) tests were used to determine significant differences between the ranked sums and unpaired two-sample Student’s t-tests assuming unequal variances were also applied to test for differences in population means.

The results of this study indicate that the OCONUS en route infrastructure is effective in reducing average NMC time as compared to OCONUS non en route locations, except in the case of the KC-135 fleet. Overall, en route locations appear to reduce average NMC time by more than 17 hours. Results of the aircraft fleet comparisons reveal significant reductions in NMC time for the C-5, C-17, C-141, and KC-10 fleets. The C-130 fleet appeared to achieve a slight reduction in average NMC time. In the case of the KC-135, the en route average NMC time was nearly one hour higher than non en route locations. The findings of this study could be further evaluated by the suggested future research topics.

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