Sheppard Profile: Avionics Program

Local News

A lot of work goes in before an aircraft is ready to fly out. 

A10 and U2 Avionics Instructor, Staff Sergeant Andrew De Nio said, “Here at the 365th we train airmen on avionics for fighter aircraft.” 

Here, airmen like Lance Wheatcraft learn all the fundamentals.

He said, “It’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before.” 

Airman Wheatcraft has been at Sheppard for almost four months, he said avionics was something he always wanted to learn.

“I don’t know how to say it, it’s like a super big computer,” he told us.

SSG De Nio continued to say, “Some people have experience on maintaining vehicles, that’s fairly common, but that’s more so just mechanical maintenance and once you get into avionics that’s an entirely different beast.”

Airman Wheatcraft was one who had to start from the very beginning. “I did not work in any kind type of electronics before this, so learning all of this is brand new and it’s a lot of fun.” 

The work is also critical to the air force’s mission.

SSG De Nio said, “All of our airframes nowadays have many avionics systems on board, and it’s only increasing.” 

Airman Wheatcraft told us, “Without avionics, I’m not sure if anybody could fly an aircraft. I think it’s super important because it’s one thing to get into a jet, but to understand how it works and how all of your different components work together to make the aircraft fly is super important”

SSG De Nio said no one can maintain the avionics systems and ensure aircraft are always ready for takeoff, like airmen!

If you’ve ever wondered how airmen are trained on the proper way to conduct an investigation on engine mishaps, we’ll show you next week when we introduce Sheppard’s Joint Engine Mishap course.

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