Renowned for the legendary and iconic aircraft that have passed the test and made their mark in history. Likewise, for the heroic test pilots who have helped usher in today’s awesome fighter jets.
Throughout its history, AFTC has tested and supported the development of virtually every aircraft, weapon system, and component the Air Force has ever put in the air, on an aircraft, or in an aircraft.
From the early test flights of the jet-propelled XP-59A and breakthroughs in hypersonic propulsion, to unmanned aerial systems like the X-33 and advanced “smart” weaponry of today such as the Small Diameter Bomb, JDAM, and MOAB.
Senior Airman Jennifer Peterson (left) and Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Phelps prepare to move Mark 84 bombs inside a hardened structure April 21, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, SD. Both Airmen are assigned to the 28th Munitions Squadron as conventional maintenance crew chiefs. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Corey Hook)
OVER CALIFORNIA -- An F/A-22 Raptor, flown by Maj. John Teichert, releases a guided bomb unit-32 1,000-pound joint direct attack munitions at supersonic speed for the first time near California's Panamint Mountain range. Major Teichert is a test pilot assigned to the 411th Flight Test Squadron at Edwards Air Force Base, CA. (U.S. Air Force photo by Darin Russell)
The X-51A Waverider is set to demonstrate hypersonic flight. Powered by a Pratt Whitney Rocketdyne SJY61 scramjet engine, it is designed to ride on its own shockwave and accelerate to about Mach 6. (U.S. Air Force graphic)
The GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb sits at an air base in Southwest Asia waiting to be used should it become necessary. The MOAB is also called "The Mother of all Bombs" by scientists and the community alike.
Development of the P-59 "Airacomet", America's first jet-propelled airplane, was ordered personally by General H. H. Arnold on September 4, 1941. The project was conducted under the utmost secrecy, with Bell building the airplane and General Electric the engine. The first P-59 was completed in mid-1942 and on October 1, 1942, it made its initial flight at Muroc Dry Lake (now Edwards Air Force Base), California. One year later, the airplane was ordered into production, to be powered by I-14 and I-16 engines, improved versions of the original I-A. Bell produced 66 P-59s.
We work on things that most people only dream about—the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Airborne Laser, scramjet technology, and yet to be seen advances in flight—are being tested and refined today at AFTC locations around the nation.
AFTC is part of the Air Force Civilian Service (AFCS). That’s the indispensable force that provide the brain power and manpower that keep the Air Force ready for action.
At 170,000 strong we at AFCS are a force to be reckoned with. We fill positions in over 600 different occupations. Dedicated and confident, we work shoulder to shoulder with Airmen around the country and around the world, committed to the vital Air Force mission in air, space, and cyberspace. Together we are... Forces. Joined.