F-22 clean room ready to roll

  • Published
  • By Jenny Gordon
  • Robins Public Affairs
The new F-22 clean room here will become fully operational this month, and is a welcome sign for combat-ready avionics parts which support the Air Force's F-22 Raptor.

The aircraft's features include not only sensor capability and weapons, but also situational awareness and integrated avionics.

The F-22 footprint here will be further extended due to the clean room's capabilities, which will provide testing and work on circuit cards used on the aircraft.

Those electronic components are critical pieces which allow information to be processed and transmitted on the aircraft.

"This is pretty exciting and another step forward in our F-22 workload," said Maj. Wendy Enderle, 568th Electronics Maintenance Squadron commander.

Clean rooms are environments free from dust and other contaminants which allow for the manufacture of electronic components.

This one includes special heating, ventilation and air conditioning units at its entry to remove contaminants on people prior to their entry.

The Air Force is partnering with Lockheed Martin by including an F-22 depot partnering site here. Robins received its first work station in 2009.

"This will give us the ability to work on hybrid electronic components as well as surface mount technology which will allow us to remove and replace standard components on circuit boards," said Mark Davis, Lockheed's F-22 depot site manager.

Some of the work this month includes cleaning and re-installing the circuit boards ball grid array - a type of surface-mount packaging used for integrated circuits.

BGA packages are used to permanently mount devices such as microprocessors.

New expanded capabilities benefit both the depot and the government by offering repairs in-house, said Davis.