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Air Force Materiel Command Delivers War-winning Capabilities

Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC) is the U.S. Air Force’s provider of technology and capabilities to its warfighters.  The command employs more than 80,000 military and civilian employees, all highly skilled and trained professionals, in a network of bases, centers, and specialized units. It is responsible for billions of dollars worth of contracts annually – everything from major acquisition programs, including fighter, bomber, mobility/transport, reconnaissance, trainers, and special operations, to testing, R&D, logistics, support and maintenance – making it one of the largest purchasing and supply commands within the entire Department of Defense.

In 2012 it will be 20 years since AFMC was founded.

The command traces its heritage to 1917, when the Equipment Division of the U.S. Army Signal Corps established a headquarters for its Airplane Engineering Department at McCook Field, Ohio.

Wind tunnel at Arnold Test Center

Inside the diffuser section of the 16-foot supersonic wind tunnel at Arnold Engineering Development Center on Arnold Air Force Base, Tenn. U.S. Air Force photo by Lance Cheung

The functions of research and development and logistics were operated separately during World War II, until they were reunited for several years in the late 1940s under Air Materiel Command. Then, in 1950, research and development were split off into a separate organization, the Air Research and Development Command.

In 1961, Air Materiel Command became the Air Force Logistics Command, while the Air Research and Development Command gained responsibility for weapon system acquisition and was renamed the Air Force Systems Command. On July 1, 1992, Air Force Logistics Command and Air Force Systems Command were reintegrated to form the new Air Force Materiel Command.

Defense Media Network will post regularly in 2011 on AFMC organizations and achievements  as AFMC approaches its 20th anniversary.