Robins could see new missions, new aircraft in 2022

  • Published
  • By Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs
  • Robins Public Affairs

The Air Force announced plans today to bring four new missions, including new aircraft, to Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, beginning in fiscal year 2022.

The proposed plan, which was released as part of the Department of the Air Force’s fiscal year 2022 budget request, is contingent on congressional approval of the retirement of E-8 JSTARS aircraft. The Air Force requested to begin retiring four E-8s next year, which would make way for new E-11 Battlefield Airborne Control Node aircraft and the repurposing of approximately 2,000 Robins active duty and Air National Guard airmen. 

“As the Air Force looks to the future, we expect to be challenged around the world by China and Russia,” said John Roth, Acting Secretary of the Air Force. “Those threats require new solutions, which means divesting legacy platforms like the JSTARS.  However, our intent is to capitalize on the existing expertise at Team Robins as we bring on these new missions.  These missions will play a vital role in how we achieve decision superiority across all domains.”

Robins Air Force Base leadership is committed to working together with Middle Georgia to bring in the four potential new mission sets.

“The opportunity that comes with these new mission sets, including digital transformation and increased new workloads in the future, are exciting for our base and Middle Georgia, and their contribution to National Defense, said Col. Brian Moore, Robins Installation Commander. “If approved, we will work closely across all mission partners to ensure a smooth transition for all units and Airmen involved.”

If the Air Force is able to move forward with its plan, then it will begin transitioning operations and maintenance personnel from the JSTARS mission to four new missions.

  • Air Control Squadron: Robins AFB will host a unit whose day-to-day mission will be to provide command and control of aircraft in the Central Command theatre of operations. 
  • Joint All Domain Command and Control / Advanced Battle Management System Support: The Air Force plans to transition existing manpower to a classified mission in support of future capabilities associated with Joint All Domain Command and Control and the Advanced Battle Management System. 
  • E-11 Squadron: E-11 Battlefield Airborne Control Node aircraft and a squadron of active duty personnel will enable communications support to the joint force on the modern battlefield. 
  • Spectrum Warfare Group: A group of squadrons, comprised of active duty Airmen and civilians, will take advantage of the skills prominent in Macon and greater Atlanta area, namely software and hardware experts in the electro-magnetic spectrum.

Pending the passing of the National Defense Authorization Act with provisions for JSTARS retirement, the first of the new missions are projected to begin in fiscal year 2022.

“These cutting-edge missions, and the Team Robins Airmen that would execute them, are exactly what the Air Force needs to be ready for the threats we anticipate in the future,” said Roth. 

Robins Air Force Base is the home of the 78th Air Base Wing and its 54 mission partners that make up a vital part of the Air Force warfighting team. It is the largest single-site industrial complex in Georgia, employing a workforce of almost 24,000 civilians, contractors and military members.