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MAFB hosts second Spark Tank

Airmen across Malmstrom came together July 11 to participate in the second edition of a Spark Tank event.

Airmen across Malmstrom came together July 11 to participate in the second edition of a Spark Tank event. Spark Tank provides a public forum to celebrate Airman innovation, identify avenues to increase lethality and cost-effective modernization, push boundaries to pursue future technologies and recognizes problem and creative solutions. (U.S. Air Force graphic by Senior Airman Daniel Brosam)

MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. -- Airmen across Malmstrom came together July 11 to participate in the second edition of a Spark Tank event.

Spark Tank provides a public forum to celebrate Airmen innovation, identify avenues to increase lethality and cost-effective modernization, push boundaries to pursue future technologies and recognize problems and creative solutions.

“Today we’re highlighting our innovative Wing One Airmen and the ideas they want to see implemented across the base,” said Master Sgt. Randy Burtis, 741st Maintenance Squadron operations flight superintendent. “We want to encourage innovation here at Malmstrom and make a continuous effort.”

Five Airmen presented seven ideas to a panel of five judges. The judges included Col. Jennifer Reeves, 341st Missile Wing commander; Chief Master Sgt. Eryn McElroy, 341st MW command chief; and three other group commanders.

The ideas were: replacing the fire department’s legacy paper based forms and references with tablets, implementing more efficient ways to mitigate flooding in the missile field, changing the way food is ordered and processed in the missile field, changing the base newspaper to a digital format, creating a magnet for the magnetic relay inside the personnel access shaft wall at a launch facility, and being more efficient with locks and lanyards in the maintenance group.

“Look at what we have right in front of us,” said Reeves. “We have Airmen here doing the job every day who are close to the problems in our world.

“What I want you all to take away from this today is that there are, without exception, more opportunities to be paying attention, seeing the problems, sussing out a solution and bringing it up because we want to help solve problems,” she continued.

The judges found merit in the ideas and said they will conduct some research to implement each one.

However, Senior Airman Justin Dudzic, 341st Missile Maintenance Squadron electromechanical team team chief, was selected as having the best idea to create a magnet for use in the missile field. His idea will be pushed to higher leadership at Air Force Global Strike Command with a goal to be implemented across all missile fields.
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