2A6X6 - Aircraft Electrical and Environmental Systems Specialist
Every plane in the Air Force has miles of wire, thousands of sensors and hundreds of dials, switches and indicators. As an Aircraft Electrical and Environmental Systems specialist, you'll know what each one of them does and, more importantly, how to repair them if they malfunction. Precision and attention to detail are key because not only do successful missions rely on safe and effective aircraft, so do the lives of pilots and crew.
|ASVAB Required||E – 61 and M - 41|
|CCAF Earned||Aviation Maintenance Technology|
|Civilian marketability||Very good|
Aircraft Electrical and Environmental (E&E) Systems Specialist are specialists used to maintain all the aircraft systems listed above. E&E works on a variety of systems, more than other maintenance specialty. If one of these systems break, you're responsible to fix it.
Electrical systems consist of power production (generators) and distribution, warning and caution, flight controls, cargo ramp and door positioning, lighting, and NESA (defogging/deicing) windows.
Environmental systems are bleed air (hot air from engines) control, air conditioning, liquid cooling, pressurization, and oxygen systems.
What an average day is like
An average day depends on the aircraft on base, the shop given in your orders, and your shift.
Each aircraft in the Air Force has a personality of its own. Typically fighters (F-15's and F-16's) that pull more G forces break more than heavies (C-130, C-17, C-5) that are flown more kindly. Generally expect more work and longer shifts on fighters than other aircraft.
E & E is assigned to either on-equipment or off-equipment maintenance. On-equipment maintenance, usually called 'flightline' or aircraft maintenance (AMXS), consists of work that includes anything physically on the aircraft, such as generators, bleed air valves, and external lighting. Off-equipment maintenance, typically called backshop or MXS) works on aircraft component such as relay matrixes and liquid oxygen bottles. They also maintain gaseous and liquid oxygen servicing cart components. AMXS typically has more work than MXS.
Shifts are dependent on your base. Some bases have two 12 hour and others have three 8 hour shifts. Each shift is responsible for launching and recovering aircraft. There is usually a launch truck, a truck containing various specialists, that drives around during launches incase something breaks before take-off. When landing, pilots typically report the aircraft's condition before landing stating if anything is broken. If that system belongs to E & E, congratulations, you now have work.
Like all maintenance, there's a fair share of tobacco, alcohol, and parties. E&E troops are nicknamed sparkchasers and are known as the brainiacs/nerds of the flightline. This is usually by people who have no experience with basic electrical principles and stare in wonder of a digital multimeter.
After BMT graduation you'll PCS on a 6-8 hour bus ride north to the 364 TRS at Sheppard AFB, TX. 364 TRS also has Hydraulic System Specialist, POL (Fuels), and Telecommunication. E&E tech school length is 93 academic days, roughly a little more than 5 months. Tech school will teach you basic, generic versions of the systems outlined above. The dorms are brand new and close to the main BX, Commissary, defac, and school house where classes will be. Do NOT brain dump your tech school, it will be essential for your CDCs.
Career Development Courses (CDCs)
There are 5 volumes of CDC’s, with open book tests at the end of each and an End of Course test after all 5 have been completed. A 65% or greater is needed on the End of Course.
Aviation Maintenance Technology. After tech school, your CCAF degree can be completed with 8 CLEPS/DANTES.
Engine run school is a TDY (temporary travel) available after you have some experience, as well as the constant opportunities to become an instructor for on-base training or in AETC (Air Education and Training Command) back at Sheppard AFB.
Ability to do schoolwork
Depends on everything outlined above: aircraft, shop, and shifts.
Requires a secret clearance, which is just a background check. If you can get to MEPS, you're probably good to go. No lie detectors or waterboard confessions needed.
Since there isn't a shred (aircraft specific job) for this AFSC, you're able to go to any base with aircraft. E&E does not work on F-22's, F-35's, or drones.
Deployments happen often and typically last between 4-6 months. Your deployment location depends on your base and global events.
Since E&E touches every system aside from hydraulics, engines, and communications/navigation, it is easy to get an Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) license once those systems are learned. This license is required to work on aircraft outside of the Air Force. The Air Force COOL program currently pays for this exam cost, which can be thousands of dollars.
Videos about the job
revision by SilentD13S/ROTC Cadre— view source
Wires, sensors, dials E&E keep aircraft in flight
ASVAB: Maintenance 41 and Electrical 61
CCAF Degree: Aviation Maintenance Technology
Specialty Summary. Performs and supervises aircraft electrical and environmental (E & E) functions and activities. Troubleshoots, inspects, removes, installs, repairs, modifies, overhauls, and operates integrated E & E systems, components, and associated support equipment.
Duties and Responsibilities:
Inspects, troubleshoots, and maintains aircraft E & E systems, subsystems, components, and associated test equipment. E & E on-equipment systems include direct and alternating current; gas turbine compressors and auxiliary power units; landing gear, anti-skid, and nose wheel steering; electronic engine control, ignition, and starting; lighting; master caution and warning; take-off warning; flight control; cargo door and cargo delivery equipment; non-electro static application (NESA) windows; anti-icing; fire and overheat warning; fire extinguishing and suppression; fuel control; liquid cooling; air conditioning, bleed air, cabin pressurization, and auxiliary pressurization; oxygen; and aircraft utility systems.
Performs off-equipment maintenance on E & E system components and associated test equipment. Included are control, protection, caution, and warning panels; lighting equipment; frequency and load controls; anti-icing controllers; inverters; voltage regulators; nose wheel steering and anti-skid amplifiers; generators and integrated drive generators; actuators, relays, motors, and valves; lighting equipment; fire and overheat panels; fire extinguishing equipment; aircraft batteries; aircraft oxygen system components and special equipment testers. Performs cryogenic maintenance on mobile aircraft servicing units. Maintains, repairs, and fabricates electrical wiring, harnesses, and connectors. Uses electrical, electronic, pneumatic, and other test and support equipment. Maintains compressed gas equipment.
Inspects and evaluates aircraft E & E maintenance activities. Determines operational status of assigned assets. Interprets inspection findings and determines corrective actions. Ensures compliance with technical publications and directives.
Knowledge. Knowledge is mandatory of: electrical, electronic, and mechanical principles relating to E & E systems; concepts and application of maintenance directives; meaning of symbols used in wiring diagrams, blueprints, and schematics; and proper handling, use, and disposal of hazardous waste and materials.
Education. For entry into this specialty, completion of high school with courses in basic electronics, mathematics, general science, and mechanics is desirable.
Training. For award of AFSC 2A636, completion of a basic aircraft E & E systems maintenance course is mandatory.
Experience. The following experience is mandatory for award of the AFSC indicated:
2A656. Qualification in and possession of AFSC 2A636. Also, experience maintaining electrical, electronic, and environmental systems.
2A676. Qualification in and possession of AFSC 2A656. Also, experience performing or supervising E & E maintenance.
For entry into this specialty:
Normal color vision.