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Global Strike detachment at Duke Field to stand up for new helicopter

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Air Force Global Strike Command will stand up a new unit named Detachment 7 Dec. 18 at Duke Field to support testing and evaluation of the command’s new MH-139A helicopter. Detachment 7 will manage four helicopters, with the first scheduled to be delivered Dec. 19 at the naming and unveiling ceremony.

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EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. — Air Force Global Strike Command will stand up a new unit named Detachment 7 Dec. 18 at Duke Field to support testing and evaluation of the command’s new MH-139A helicopter.

Detachment 7 will manage four helicopters, with the first scheduled to be delivered Dec. 19 at the naming and unveiling ceremony. The second aircraft is due to arrive mid-January 2020, while the third and fourth aircraft are scheduled to arrive in February.

The MH-139A is the first service-unique helicopter acquired by the Air Force and the first aircraft ever acquired by AFGSC. It will replace the Vietnam-era UH-1N “Hueys” which have capability gaps in the areas of speed, range, endurance, payload and survivability in support of the command’s intercontinental ballistic missile missions.

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“It is a unique and exciting opportunity to lead some of the Air Force’s best Airmen in the acquisition and testing of the MH-139A,” said Lt. Col. Mary Clark, who will assume command of Detachment 7.

The helicopters will provide security and support for the nation’s intercontinental ballistic missile fields which span Wyoming, Montana, North Dakota, Colorado and Nebraska, all with increased range, speed and payload. Other multiple missions include civil search and rescue capabilities; airlift support; National Capital Region missions; survival school and test support.

PHOTO (ABOVE): Maj. Gen. Christopher Azzano, Air Force Test Center commander, tours the 413th Flight Test Squadron’s helicopter testing areas on Duke Field Dec. 5 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. The general toured the base during a strategic planning visit. (U.S. Air Force photo/Ilka Cole)

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