45 SCS Airmen and 210 EIS join forces to update capabilities on Patrick AFB
By Airman 1st Class Dalton Williams, 45th Space Wing Public Affairs
/ Published May 31, 2019
PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Minnesota Air National Guard Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing, 210th Engineering Installation Squadron, come from a variety of different backgrounds.
When they are not wearing the uniform, they are delivering pizzas, managing gas stations, or working towards their college degrees.
But when they put the uniform on, they’re engineering and installing systems that support operations around the world.
When the 45th Space Communications Squadron asked for assistance in replacing a 30-year-old deteriorating copper cable that was causing outages and impacting mission capabilities, the 210th EIS volunteered.
“With an engineering plan already done and running into zero problems, our four-man team would have had to dedicate three months of work running cable,” said Master Sgt. James Bowman, 45th SCS section chief.
February 21, 2019, the 210th EIS arrived at Patrick ready to hit the ground running.
One of 15 Engineering Installation Squadrons in the Air Force, the 210th EIS’s 12-person team got to work.
For some of those Airmen on the team, installing cable at Patrick was their first job.
“This is a really good training opportunity for the younger guys to come down and sharpen their skills,” said Tech. Sgt. Tyler Borrell, 210th EIS team chief.
The 210th EIS installed over 11 miles of cable saving Patrick approximately $400,000 in costs.
To replace the 30-year-old cable in less than two months, the team got creative on how to overcome challenges.
The team worked underneath the roads at Patrick at night in order to minimize traffic interference on Patrick.
The 45th SCS worked alongside them and provided equipment and assistance.
To safely install the cable, Airmen had to be at a minimum of 450 feet or greater between each other. The 45th SCS provided the team with radios to ensure they had effective communication.
The team also worked with multiple organizations that provided assistance to the 210th EIS.
The 45th Civil Engineer Squadron and the Patrick Fire Department provided vital assistance clearing mud and water from damaged sections of duct work that the 210th EIS had to work through in order to install the cable.
On April 15, 2019, the 210th EIS had finished the installation.
The newly laid cable provided teams like the Air Traffic Control Airmen to have effective mission capabilities thanks to the 210th EIS and 45th Space Wing collaboration.
“These are good guys, they know what they’re doing and they’re experts in their field,” said Bowman. “Engineering, installation, infrastructure – they know how to do all that.”
They did the work in less than two months and can’t wait to come back.
“It was really awesome,” said Borrell. “We built a good relationship working together. I know everyone from Minnesota wants to come back down and work there again.”
“There was a lot of moving parts, so keeping the project on time required pretty quick responses from Master Sgt. Bowman and the rest of the staff at the squadron,” said Borrell.
60,000 feet of copper and fiber cable, approximately the length of 41 Empire State Buildings, are now underneath Patrick.