F. E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE –The ICBM Missile Engineering office supports the maintenance of facilities in the missile field surrounding F.E. Warren Air Force Base.
The Mighty Ninety is tasked with managing one of the highest priority missions in the Department of Defense: providing a combat-ready ICBM force.
The ICBM Missile Engineering office supervises engineering and construction activities on the wing’s Missile Alert Facilities. In addition, they ensure any supplemental facilities and programs are running up to standard for all personnel in the missile field.
Mark Frank, chief of missile engineering, explains the importance of the ICBM Missile Engineering office.
“We take care of all the possible issues in the field, from power outages, to sewage, to water drainage in the launch facilities, ”said Frank. “By doing so we allow for service members to perform their jobs to the best of their ability.”
The ICBM Missile Engineering office has multiple responsibilities including the design, construction and maintenance of the missile field.
“A crucial part of our job is monitoring the Defense Access Roads,” said Frank.
Before each missile movement, the ICBM Missile Engineering office works with maintenance teams to survey access roads for clearance and line of sight. However, making sure the roads are sufficient for completing the mission is just one aspect of the job.
“I love the variety of work,” said Frank.
The ICBM Missile Engineering office is currently processing multiple work repairs such as MAF underground tank inspections, plumbing restorations, preventative maintenance, lift stations, underground electric repairs, and more.
“It is up to us to make sure everything is running smoothly so everyone can do their job,” said Frank.
All modifications in the field need to get approval from the ICBM Infrastructure Office, meaning each repair part needs special approval before being installed.
“In our job, it is important to ask, is this really the right piece to install?” said Frank.
This multi-step process means minimal mistakes are made, creating the most efficient solution to the problem.
A current project the office has been working on is the recontouring of the LFs. In order to maintain proper drainage of water, wells and water pumps are required. If water makes it to the blast door, it could deteriorate the integrity of the missiles and compromise the mission.
Using a computer drawing software called AutoCAD, Kent Good, an engineering technician, is able to create drawings for engineers to review, who then pass it on to contractors. The accuracy of the drawings is critical in order to create the correct product.
Good explains the process of taking data from field surveys and analyzing it to create topography maps. This data is then passed to Tom Niichel, a project engineer, who is currently designing a system for water to be pumped away from the blast doors.
“Seeing the mission right in front of you truly helps you understand it more,” said Joshua Maynez, chief of construction for the 90th Civil Engineer Squadron. “People who work solely on base don’t get to see that.”
The ICBM Missile Engineering office is committed to providing reliable solutions for all engineering and maintenance problems in the missile field, and plays a critical role in supporting the ICBM mission on F.E. Warren.