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Wing 1 WERX sparks new missile field idea

An Airman stands on a ladder and looks down a shaftway into a launch facility.

Senior Airman Zachariah Abdul-Aziz, 341st Missile Security Operations Squadron tactical response force assaulter, views his descent for a rappel down an entrance to a launch facility Aug. 21, 2020, near Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. A new tool is being tested to allow security forces defenders a faster and more efficient way to navigate a launch facility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Daniel Brosam)

An Airman is at the top of a ladder, descending into a shaftway into a launch facility.

Senior Airman Zachariah Abdul-Aziz, 341st Missile Security Operations Squadron tactical response force assaulter, prepares for a rappel down an entrance to a launch facility Aug. 21, 2020, near Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. A new tool is being tested to allow security forces defenders a faster and more efficient way to navigate a launch facility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Daniel Brosam)

MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. --

A new idea suggested at a Wing 1 WERX convention here is being tested as an implemented tool for security forces Airmen defending Malmstrom’s 13,800 square-mile missile field.

During a trip to a Combat Air Force Weapons and Tactics seminar in January 2019, 1st Lt. Daniel Cook, 341st Security Forces Group commander executive, and Tech. Sgt. Daniel Bratt, 341st Missile Security Forces Squadron NCO in charge of operations support, began brewing up ideas to assist the 341st Missile Security Operations Squadron tactical response force and missile field defenders.

Cook and Bratt pitched an idea to wing leadership at a Wing 1 WERX convention and discussed the capability of a new tool designed to assist climbers while they are rappelling.

Wing 1 WERX is a program that was initiated to develop and implement innovation initiatives across the 341st Missile Wing to increase lethality and readiness.

Although Cook and Bratt came in second place at the convention, wing leadership assured the two they would still receive funding to test the tool’s new capabilities against current recapture and recovery operations.

“Even testing the new system with untrained Airmen resulted in improved time and efficiency for Airmen at the launch facility,” Cook said. “If regular Airmen can successfully use it, imagine what our specialized TRF team can do.”

The hope for the new tool is to be implemented in security forces’ new procedures for recapture and recovery, and ultimately help streamline advances across the missile wings.

“We want to be able to put a system at every missile alert facility, provide TRF with a lightweight option and be able to put it out across 20th Air Force and (Air Force Global Strike Command),” Bratt said.