The US Air Force has conducted its first expeditionary airfield lighting system (EALS-C) training at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida.

Taking place under the service’s mission essential equipment training (MEET) course, the EALS-C demonstration honed the skills of electrical systems airmen in implementing contingency airfield lighting technology and services.

The EALS-C training was led by the 801st Red Horse Training Squadron and involved a five-day, 40-hour training across unconventional take-off and landing sites.

New Airfield Lighting System

Activities focused on using the air force’s latest lighting capability with improved efficiency and safety.

“The EALS-B (legacy system) is very dated, using incandescent lighting for the fixtures and a mobile electric power generator,” 801st Red Horse Electrical Contingency Instructor Staff Sgt. Michael Murillo explained.

“The MEP (mean effective pressure) generator is a potentially fatal piece of equipment due to upwards of 2,000 volts present at any time.”

“With the new EALS-C system, all lights are LED and at a maximum, there is 270 volts running through the cable or equipment, making it safer for our Airmen.”

Providing Speed and Efficiency

According to the US Air Force, the EALS-C system supports military and civilian aircraft operations in under one hour of setup compared to its predecessor, which takes up to nine hours.

U.S. Airmen prepare to assemble an Expeditionary Airfield Lighting System (EALS-C) at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, Jan. 27, 2023. The proper setup, use and break down of the EALS-C system was taught to electrical systems Airmen from different Air Force installations in the new Mission Essential Equipment Training held at Tyndall AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Anabel Del Valle)
US Air Force personnel prepares contingency airfield lighting system. Photo: Senior Airman Anabel Del Valle/US Air Force

“Minimizing the installation time to under an hour to light up an airfield, ensures we can project unrivaled combat power as quickly as possible,” Murillo stated.

“In a potentially contested environment, time, speed and efficiency are of the essence to saving lives.”

After Tyndall, the Red Horse Squadron will provide the MEET course at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, and Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.