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Academy cadet lauded for 'quick fix' on deployed B-1B
Cadet 1st Class Joel Noble helped Airmen with the 379th Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron in Southwest Asia quickly repair a B-1B Lancer that could not fly due to a failed entry hatch bailout rocket while shadowing the squadron as part of Operation Air Force in July 2011. He is a native of Springboro, Ohio, and is assigned to Cadet Squadron 14 at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Air Force photo/Don Branum)
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Academy cadet lauded for 'quick fix' on deployed B-1B

Posted 8/5/2011   Updated 8/5/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Don Branum
U.S. Air Force Academy Public Affairs


8/5/2011 - U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- One of the Air Force Academy's goals, set by Superintendent Lt. Gen. Mike Gould in the third year of his tenure, is to contribute to winning the wars in the Middle East.

One cadet here has helped the Academy make a head start, Gould revealed during a superintendent's call here Aug. 2.

Cadet 1st Class Joel Noble of Cadet Squadron 14 traveled to Southwest Asia in July as part of the Operation Air Force summer program. An entry hatch bailout rocket had failed on a B-1B Lancer, and Noble shadowed the 379th Expeditionary Maintenance Squadron's operations officer as he sought a solution, 379th EMXS Commander Maj. Thomas Preston wrote in an email July 5.

"From discussion with the B-1B engineers back in America, they told us we could use a foam material to protect the rocket propellant," Preston wrote. "However we ... don't really have any material like this."

Acquiring a replacement part would have taken several weeks, Preston wrote. However, because Noble had shadowed the 379th Expeditionary Civil Engineer Squadron a week before, he knew the foam was locally available.

"(It) ended up being stuff you'd use to plug holes in your home," Preston wrote. "Cost of a can: $5. We presented him a 'cadet of the week' certificate, but in truth ... really he is the cadet of the deployment."

Noble, a native of Springboro, Ohio, said he hopes to become a helicopter or C-130 Hercules pilot after graduation.



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