When an air force base was faced with the challenge of increasing throughput of a refueling system with 50% less hydrants due to reconstruction, they turned to ProcessModel. Using ProcessModel, a Process Mapping and Simulation tool, an optimum solution was found that saved taxpayer money, serviced existing traffic and provided additional capacity for the future.

Overview of the Air Force Base’s History

This air force base, has played a vital role in defense for the United States for the past 50 yearsair force stealth fighter. Because of its strategic location, it is one of the primary operating location for bombers as well as a critical refueling hub for transport aircraft. When the refurbishment plans were announced, ProcessModel Simulation software was selected to help solve the aircraft refueling and parking dilemma. Using ProcessModel, they could compare and test proposed plans and generate new ideas about increasing productivity of the system.

The air force base has a modern fuel transport system, but the hydrants used to fuel the aircraft were in poor condition. Phase I of the reconstruction project was to replace and add new hydrants. Each phase of the project disabled large portions of the hydrant system and dramatically reduced the refueling capability.

Reconstruction Lead Problem

The main problem facing the wing planners was how to maintain the capability to support a large operation while continuing the refurbishment effort.

The refueling system at this air force base consisted of 57 hydrants. Half are located on the North ramp and the other half on the south ramp. Twenty of the hydrants were inoperable due to deterioration or parts failure. In phase one of the construction, contractors will remove twenty active hydrants on the south ramp leaving 4 functions hydrants. On the north ramp there will be 22 functioning hydrants. During the construction, fuel trucks and temporary fuel bladders will be used to help service aircraft.

b52 bomber ready for refuelingA B-52 bomber waiting to be refueled

With the number of hydrants cut by half, a large bomber operation with an intense airlift movement could create a process halting queue for aircraft needing refueling. The members of the planning team all had primary concerns. The airfield manager was concerned about th