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52ND FIGHTER WING|
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U.S. Air Force Fact Sheet
52nd Fighter Wing
Defending American and Allied Interests; Building Partner Capacity.
The 52nd FW maintains, deploys and employs F-16 and TPS-75 radar systems in support of NATO and the national defense directives. The wing supports the Supreme Allied Commander Europe with mission-ready personnel and systems providing expeditionary air power for suppression of enemy air defenses, close air support, air interdiction, counter air, air strike control, strategic attack, combat search and rescue, and theater airspace control. The wing also supports contingencies and operations other than war as required.
Mission, Airmen and Community
The 52nd Fighter Wing conducts operations at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, one of 16 major operating locations in U.S. Air Forces in Europe. The wing is authorized about 4,000 active-duty members and about 210 Department of Defense civilians. The wing is organized with five groups responsible for operations, maintenance, mission support and medical operations, as well as headquarters staff. It is assigned 24 F-16 Fighting Falcons, and two TPS-75 radars to provide expeditionary combat capability in mission areas of suppression of enemy air defenses, close air support, air interdiction, counter air, air strike control, combat search and rescue, and theater airspace control.
In concert with USAFE wings at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, the 52nd FW directly supports the strategic mobility mission once conducted at Rhein-Main Air Base, Germany. The wing provides logistics support for C-17 Globemaster and C-5 Galaxy aircraft, crew, passengers and cargo to sustain air mobility operations throughout Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia.
The 52nd Operations Group consists of one flying squadron, the 480th Fighter Squadrons, the 606th Air Control Squadron and an operations support squadron. The 480th Fighter Squadron operates the F-16 C/D Fighting Falcon. The 480th FS pilots primarily perform the Wild Weasel mission of suppression or destruction of enemy air defenses, and are also trained for interdiction and counter air operations. Their F-16s are outfitted with high-speed anti-radiation missiles, joint direct attack munitions, laser-guided bombs, GPS-guided-inertial aided munitions and the HARM targeting system pod, making the aircraft a lethal platform against enemy air defense systems.
The 606th Air Control Squadron - the "Inspectors of the Skies" - employ AN/TPS-75 radars, the modular control equipment system and tactical communications to provide deployable theater battle management. The squadron conducts 24-hour operations providing command and control for air surveillance, identification, weapons control, and airspace control and management. The unit supports and maintains robust communications to provide secure, beyond-the-line-of-sight voice and data link connectivity with Army, Navy, NATO and other allied forces as part of a theater-wide communications network.
The 52nd Maintenance Group consists of four squadrons: aircraft maintenance, component maintenance, equipment maintenance and maintenance operations. The group directly supports the 52nd FW by providing safe, reliable maintenance to F-16 Fighting Falcons and a variety of other support aircraft arriving throughout the region, support equipment, and munitions resources. The group proved its combat effectiveness and versatility while deployed and at home station by supporting deployments to Operation Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, and operating U.S. Central Command Air Forces' centralized intermediate repair facility hub for hydrazine, engine and electronic countermeasure pods.
The 52nd Mission Support Group consists of civil engineer, communications, contracting, logistics readiness, security forces and force support squadrons. Responsible for orchestrating the deployment operations of the wing, the mission support group has deployed more than 2,000 wing members in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom since February 2003. During this period, more than 1,000 mission support group members deployed in support of America's overseas contingency operations and have fulfilled dozens of missions in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The 52nd Medical Group consists of aerospace medicine, dental, medical operations and medical support squadrons. The medical group operates an outpatient clinic at Spangdahlem and Bitburg ABs, which includes family practice, pediatrics, women's health, psychiatry, aerospace medicine and optometry with exceptional clinical laboratory, radiology, pharmacy and physical therapy support. Group dental services include general dentistry, oral surgery, periodontics, orthodontics and prosthodontics.
The 52nd Munitions Maintenance Group provides four fully capable U.S. munitions support squadrons responsible for the ownership, custody, accountability and release of war reserve munitions supporting Belgian, Dutch, German and Italian air forces. The MMG receives, stores, maintains, controls and employs $2.5 billion of U.S. protection level 1 assets in direct support of NATO contingency, wartime and strike missions. The 52nd MMG has a 14-person staff that provides command leadership and support for more than 550 active-duty personnel from 26 Air Force specialty codes at their four geographically separated units.
All five 52nd FW groups directly support the mission to provide strategic, theater and contract commercial air mobility capability for Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia. Spangdahlem's 726th Air Mobility Squadron provides command and control, logistics, and aerial port capabilities to every Air Mobility Command aircraft transiting through Spangdahlem AB. The base primarily handles C-17 and C-5 aircraft. The C-17 is the newest, most flexible cargo aircraft to enter the airlift force, capable of rapid strategic delivery of troops and all types of cargo to main operating bases or directly to forward bases in the deployment area. The C-5, the largest aircraft in the Air Force inventory, provides inter-theater airlift in support of U.S. and NATO objectives. The aircraft carry fully equipped, combat-ready military units to any point in the world on short notice and provide field support to sustain the fighting force.
Whether employing fighter aircraft and theater airspace control capability or supporting strategic mobility operations, the wing continues to be a key asset to European security and NATO, providing domineering expeditionary air power well into the 21st century.