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AFTC MISSION: The Air Force Test Center conducts developmental and follow-on testing and evaluation of manned and unmanned aircraft, avionics, weapons, cyber systems, space capabilities and emerging areas such as directed energy and autonomy. It has flight-tested every aircraft in the Army Air Force's and the Air Force's inventory since World War II. AFTC also operates the Air Force Test Pilot School where the Air Force's top pilots, navigators, and engineers learn how to conduct flight tests and generate the data needed to carry out test missions.
3 MAJOR INSTALLATIONS
CURRENT FOCUS AREAS
96th Test Wing Mission: The 96th Test Wing, located at Eglin AFB, is the test and evaluation center for Air Force air-delivered weapons, navigation and guidance systems, command and control systems, and Air Force Special Operations Command systems. The wing provides expert evaluation and validation of the performance of systems throughout the design, development, acquisition, and sustainment process to ensure the warfighter has technologically superior, reliable, maintainable, sustainable, and safe systems. The 96th Test Wing is the principal Air Force organization for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) developmental testing. The 96th TW performs developmental test and evaluation across the complete system life cycle for a wide variety of customers including Air Force Systems Program Offices, the Air Force Research Laboratory, logistics, and product centers; major commands; other DoD services and U.S. government agencies (Department of Transportation, NASA, etc.); foreign military sales; and private industry.
412th Test Wing Mission: The 412th Test Wing, located at Edwards AFB, plans, conducts, analyzes and reports on all flight and ground testing of aircraft, weapons systems, software, and components as well as modeling and simulation for the Air Force. There are three core components for this mission: flying operations, maintenance, and engineering. Through a maintenance group of more than 2,000 people and an operations group of 3,000, the test wing maintains and flies an average of 90 aircraft with upwards of 30 different aircraft designs and performs more than 7,400 missions (more than 1,900 test missions) on an annual basis.
The U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School (USAF TPS), located at Edwards AFB, is where the Air Force's top pilots, navigators and engineers learn how to conduct flight tests and generate the data needed to carry out test missions. Human lives and millions of dollars depend upon how carefully a test mission is planned and flown. The comprehensive curriculum of TPS is fundamental to the success of flight test and evaluation. Upon graduating from TPS, graduates have earned a Master of Science degree in Flight Test Engineering.
Arnold Engineering Development Complex Mission: The Arnold Engineering Development Complex, located at Arnold AFB, Tenn., proves the superiority of systems required to meet the demands of the National Defense Strategy.
To accomplish this mission, Team AEDC operates more than 68 aerodynamic and propulsion wind tunnels, rocket and turbine engine test cells, environmental chambers, arc heaters, ballistic ranges, sled tracks, centrifuges and other specialized units. AEDC operating locations include Ames Research Center, Mountain View and Edwards AFB, California; Peterson AFB, Colorado; Eglin AFB; the Federal Research Center at White Oak, Maryland; Holloman AFB, Kirtland AFB, and White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico; Wright-Patterson AFB, and Hill AFB. AEDC offers a suite of test capabilities to simulate speed, temperature, pressure and other parameters over a wide range to meet the needs of aerospace system developers. The facilities can simulate flight conditions from sea level to 300 miles and from subsonic velocities to Mach 20.
CURRENT FOCUS AREAS