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Air Force Technician Develops Tech to Streamline F-16 Aircraft Maintenance

Christopher Caruso, a U.S. Air Force avionics technician, has created new technologies designed to simplify maintenance of the F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft.

Caruso built a digital video recorder tester and a sniper pod test stand during his deployment at the Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, the Air Force said Friday.

He connected a small television to an aircraft to develop the DVR tester, which works to bypass the DVR head unit and provide a live view into the aircraft’s multifunction display.

Caruso said the DVR tester helps maintainers see any issues with the wiring or the DVR head unit in real time.

The avionics technician built the sniper pod test stand to eliminate the need to mount a pod to the aircraft during maintenance and operational checks.

Sniper pods are mounted on aircraft using tools that block some compartments, limiting maintenance that airman can conduct on pods, the Air Force noted.

Chief Master Sgt. Wesley Ruuti, superintendent of the 455th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron F-16 maintenance, said Caruso’s test stand reduces sniper pod maintenance time by two to three hours.

Ruuti noted that the Air Force unit’s leadership provided guidance and support to help Caruso develop his technology ideas.

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