Burgas, Bulgaria --
Tennessee Guardsmen assigned to the 134th Air Refueling Wing, McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base, transported a fuel additive injection cart to Burgas, Bulgaria, June 9, 2019 in support of exercise Saber Guardian 19.
The cart is used to mix three separate fuel additives into the jet fuel; Fuel System Icing Inhibitor “FSII”, Static Dissipating Additive “SDA” and Corrosion Inhibitor/Lubricity Improver “CILI”, all of which are required for the KC-135R Stratotankers assigned to the 134th and the 128th Air Refueling Wings.
Both refueling units are participating in the global exercise with approximately 8,000 participants from six ally and partner nations. Without the fuel mixture and refueling capabilities the aircraft could not complete their mission.
“The aircraft fuel that is used in Bulgaria does not have the required additive (FSII), which prevents the fuel from freezing,” said Tech. Sgt. Travis Powers, fuels POL assigned to the 134th ARW.
Since Bulgaria’s fuel refineries do not have the required additives in their fuel, it is added and mixed using the cart when refueling the KC-135R. After the additives are mixed in, the fuel contains all the necessary ingredients required for Jet A fuel.
“It is imperative,” said Master Sgt. Troy Verbowski, 134th ARW crew chief. “If the fuel freezes, it could cause a loss of propulsion resulting in a crash, loss of life, and loss of hardware.”
The additive cart is a necessary piece of equipment and an important factor in the success of Saber Guardian. While fueling the KC-135R in Bulgaria the cart must be used for every flight.
“We could not do the mid-air refueling during this exercise if we didn’t have it,” said Powers.
The cart is on lease for exercise Saber Guardian.
“The 134th ARW does not have one at this time, however is considering purchasing a mobile additive cart in the future,” said Powers.
The additive cart is just one of the important components in making this exercise a success.
Saber Guardian promotes regional stability and security, while increasing readiness, strengthening partner capabilities and fostering trust. The combined training opportunities that the exercise provides greatly improve interoperability among participating allies and partners.
Without the necessary fuels equipment and mid-air refueling capabilities the mission could not happen.
“Our presence allows them to accomplish their mission. They have their objectives they are going out to accomplish as well,” said Maj. Chris Boyd, detachment commander for state partnership in Burgas. “Without the refueling they would not be able to accomplish their objectives.”
Saber Guardian continues to increase participating nations’ readiness and capacity to conduct full spectrum military operations.