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Weather team supports air superiority

Man sets up hand held weather forecasting device

Senior Master Sgt. Michael Adcock, 375th Operations Support Squadron Weather Flight chief, sets up a Kestrel on the flightline at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 25, 2020. Kestrels are handheld meteorological instruments used to measure temperature, moisture, wind speed and pressure. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Shannon Moorehead)

Detail photograph of weather data on a screen.

Weather sensor data at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 25, 2020. Weather sensor data is used to monitor conditions over the airfield. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Shannon Moorehead)

Man reads weather forecasting documents

Technical Sgt. Michael Udoh, 375th Operations Support Squadron Weather Flight weather forecaster, smiles while reviewing documents at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 25, 2020. Weather documents include information on air and sea surface temperature, atmospheric pressure, measuring humidity, wind speed and solar radiation. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Shannon Moorehead)

Hand adjusting a handheld weather data tool

A Kestrel on the flightline at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 25, 2020. Kestrels measure real time weather data and connect to weather applications providing wind speed, barometric pressure, and temperature. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Shannon Moorehead)

Man observes satellite weather patters on a monitor

Airman 1st Class Corbin Deboer, 375th Operations Support Squadron Weather Flight weather forecaster, observes weather patterns at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., Aug. 25, 2020. Observing and analyzing weather patterns is how new weather forecasters learn and develop accurate forecast capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Shannon Moorehead)

Scott Air Force Base, Ill. – Achieving air superiority is a critical condition for successful Air Force operations, and that’s why it relies on accurate weather forecasters like Senior Master Sgt. Michael Adcock.

As the chief of the 375th Operations Support Squadron Weather Flight, he helps train and guide future Airmen for this important role.

“Our role here is to provide weather intelligence to the base as a whole,” he said. “Our primary focus is on the airfield and flying customers—not just the 375th [Air Mobility Wing] flyers, but also the Guard and Reserve and any transient aircrew that fly out of Scott [as well].”

Because weather can easily alter military operations and even halt troop movement, weather observation is imperative to maintain readiness across the spectrum. That’s one reason why before core competencies can be certified, Weather Flight 
Airmen learn to keep a constant watch of weather patterns, and then communicate weather observations and forecasts to help aircrews achieve mission success.

“It’s knowing how to exploit the weather to make a mission more successful,” said Adcock. “When we get surprised by those weather elements, it can set us back in an operation. By knowing in advance something is coming through, we can shift an operation ahead or delay it so that they’re not affected by that, we can still get people on target, on time.”

Daily weather observations also play a vital role and that’s why you’ll find forecasters like Airman 1st Class Corbin DeBoer, 375th OSS Weather Flight weather forecaster, out on the flightline monitoring the skies rain or shine. While a local weather station might advise to “bundle up” when it’s chilly outside, DeBoer’s information is used for flight requirements and operational needs around base.

“I enjoy being able to provide up to date, last minute information to pilots and aircrew,” said DeBoer. “Being able to provide that information and to see its effects on the environment and the affect it has on people is inspiring.”

The information that is provided by forecasters is critical for resource protection on Scott. The heads up they provide to mission partners, and wing assists leadership in preparing Airmen appropriately. Whether it’s here at Scott or wherever the 375 AMW has aircraft in the sky, forecasters will be watching to ensure mission success.

Adcock added, “We provide weather support wherever any of our aircraft go whether it’s down the street or across the country.  Wherever they go, we got their back.”