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Air Mobility Command

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Air Mobility Command
Shield of Air Mobility Command
Active29 May 1941 – present
(82 years, 9 months)
Country United States

+  United States Air Force (18 September 1947 – Present)

TypeMajor Command
Role"AMC's mission is to provide air mobility: Right Effects, Right Place, Right Time."[2]
Size48,594 airmen
430 aircraft[3]
Part of
U.S. Transportation Command
HeadquartersScott Air Force Base, Illinois, U.S.
Nickname(s)"reach" (callsign used)
Motto(s)"We answer the call of others... so that they may prevail."[4]

World War II – American Theater

Global War on Terrorism[1]

Air Force Organization Excellence Award[1]
CommanderGen Michael A. Minihan[5]
Deputy CommanderLt Gen Randall Reed
Command ChiefCMSgt Jamie L. Newman
Aircraft flown
TransportC-5, C-17A, C-20B/C, C-32A, C-37A, C-37B, C-21, C-40B, C-130H, LC-130H, C-130J, WC-130J, VC-25A
TankerKC-135R, KC-10A, KC-46A

The Air Mobility Command (AMC) is a Major Command (MAJCOM) of the U.S. Air Force. It is headquartered at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, east of St. Louis, Missouri.[6]

Air Mobility Command was established on 1 June 1992, and was formed from elements of the inactivated Military Airlift Command (MAC) and Strategic Air Command (SAC). AMC melded MAC's worldwide airlift system of primarily C-5 Galaxy, C-141 Starlifter (later replaced by C-17 Globemaster III beginning in 1995), and C-130 Hercules airlift aircraft with SAC's tanker force of KC-135 Stratotanker and KC-10 Extender aerial refueling aircraft, the latter air refueling aircraft having been freed from their strategic nuclear strike commitment to SAC's B-52 Stratofortress and B-1 Lancer bomber fleet by the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union.[6]

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/5
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  • Ep 233: Air Mobility Command Commander, General Michael Minihan!
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  • Air Mobility Command First Quarter Newscast



Air Mobility Command's mission is to provide global air mobility. The command also plays a crucial role in providing humanitarian support at home and around the world. AMC Airmen – active duty, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve, augmented by the civilian airliners and flight crews of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF) – provide airlift and aerial refueling for all of the United States armed forces. Many special duty and operational support aircraft (OSA) and stateside aeromedical evacuation missions are also assigned to AMC.[citation needed]

U.S. forces must be able to provide a rapid, tailored response with the capability to intervene against a well-equipped foe, hit hard and terminate quickly. Rapid global mobility lies at the heart of U.S. strategy in this environment. Without the capability to project forces, there is no conventional deterrent. As the number of U.S. forces stationed overseas continue to decline, global interests remain, making the capabilities AMC can provide even more in demand.[citation needed]

Air Mobility Command also has the mission of establishing bare air bases in contingencies. To accomplish this mission, AMC established two Contingency Response Wings, and operates the Eagle Flag exercise.[6]

In addition to its status as a MAJCOM of the Air Force, AMC is also the Air Force component command of the United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM). It provides airlift, special missions, aerial refueling, and aeromedical evacuation for the United States armed forces. It also provides alert aerial refueling aircraft to the United States Strategic Command, and is a provider of theater airlift, aerial refueling, and aeromedical evacuation forces to the regional Unified Combatant Commands. AMC also operates VIP flights such as Air Force One, Air Force Two, and other Special Assignment Airlift Missions (SAAM). Finally, AMC acts as the single manager, on behalf of United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), for Military Space Available Travel.[citation needed]

Principal aircraft assets of the command include: C-17 Globemaster III, C-5 Galaxy, C-130 Hercules, KC-135 Stratotanker, KC-10 Extender, C-40 Clipper, C-37 Gulfstream V, and the C-21 Learjet. As of 2022, the command continues to integrate the KC-46 Pegasus within air refueling wings and air mobility wings in both the Active Component and the Air Reserve Component (ARC, i.e., the Air Force Reserve Command and the Air National Guard).[citation needed]

AMC also operates and maintains additional aircraft in support of high-profile VIP airlift include: VC-25, C-32, C-20G, C-20H, C-37 and the C-38, with the majority of that mission conducted by AMC's 89th Airlift Wing.[citation needed]

Additional long-range airlift aircraft are available during national emergencies through the Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF), a fleet of civilian commercial aircraft committed to support the transportation of military forces and material in times of crisis.[citation needed]

AMC wings and groups

The Air Mobility Command consists of the following active duty units:[7]

AFRC and ANG wings and groups operationally-gained by AMC

In addition to the active duty AMC units, numerous Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) and Air National Guard (ANG) units equipped with C-5, C-17, C-21, C-38, C-40, C-130, LC-130, WC-130, KC-10, KC-135 and KC-46 aircraft are "operationally gained" by AMC. These units train and exercise frequently and routinely provide augmentative operational support to AMC's active duty forces. AFRC units, when mobilized to active duty, and ANG units, when mobilized to federal service and active duty, may be deployed overseas as part of AMC in Air Expeditionary Groups and Wings as directed by HQ AMC.

Fourth Air Force (4 AF) – March ARB, California (Air Force Reserve C-5, C-17, C-40, KC-135 and KC-10 units)
Twenty-Second Air Force (22 AF) – Dobbins ARB, Georgia (Air Force Reserve C-130 and WC-130 units)
ANG air mobility units currently operate the C-21, C-17, C-38, C-40, C-130, LC-130 and KC-135, but are not assigned to a particular Numbered Air Force in the Air National Guard. Instead, they report to AMC via the National Guard Bureau (NGB).


Air Mobility Command Headquarters building, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois

AMC has undergone considerable change since its establishment.

Focusing on the core mission of strategic air mobility, the command divested itself of infrastructure and forces not directly related to Global Reach. Divestments included the former Air Rescue Service, the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC), intratheater aeromedical airlift forces based overseas, and much of the operational support airlift fleet. Most of these activities were transferred to other commands, such as Air Combat Command (ACC). ACC would later inactivate the Air Rescue Service while continuing to maintain the AFRCC under 1st Air Force.

However, all KC-10 Extender and most KC-135 Stratotanker air refueling aircraft initially assigned to Air Combat Command following the disestablishment of Strategic Air Command (SAC) were transferred to AMC, along with Grand Forks AFB, McConnell AFB and Fairchild AFB.[6]

As a result of the Global War on Terrorism, on 1 October 2003, AMC underwent a major restructuring, bringing a war fighting role to its numbered air force. AMC reactivated Eighteenth Air Force (18 AF) and established it as its main war fighting force. As subordinate components of 18 AF, AMC redesignated its two former numbered air forces as Expeditionary Mobility Task Forces (EMTF). Fifteenth Air Force was redesignated as the 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force (15 EMTF), headquartered at Travis AFB, and Twenty-First Air Force was redesignated as the 21st Expeditionary Mobility Task Force (21 EMTF), headquartered at McGuire AFB.[6]

AMC's ability to provide global reach is tested daily. From providing fuel, supplies and aeromedical support to troops on the frontline of the Global War on Terrorism, to providing humanitarian supplies to hurricane, flood, and earthquake victims both at home and abroad, AMC has been engaged in almost nonstop operations since its inception. Command tankers and airlifters have supported peacekeeping and humanitarian efforts in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq, Cambodia, Somalia, Rwanda and Haiti, and continue to play a vital role in the ongoing Global War on Terrorism. The USAF believes that air mobility is a national asset of growing importance for responding to emergencies and protecting national interests around the globe.[6]

AMC coordinates wildlife management on overseas runways between several agencies, including deployments in southwest Asia.[12] Where necessary AMC cooperates outside the DOD such as with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).[12] This includes obtaining USDA bird netting solutions to fill the military's need for bird strike defense.[12]


AMC accepted its first C-17 Globemaster III at Charleston AFB, South Carolina, on 14 June 1993, and declared initial operational capability on 17 January 1995. AMC's second C-17 wing was established at McChord AFB, Washington, in July 1999. The versatile C-17, America's future core military airlifter, is a key player in the Air Force's post-Cold War strategy of "global reach, global power".

The C-17 replaced the C-141 Starlifter fleet inherited from Military Airlift Command (MAC). C-141s were retired as C-17s were accepted into the inventory. First seeing operational service in 1965 under the Military Air Transport Service (MATS), the last Starlifters were retired in the early 2000s. By 2004, the C-141 left AMC service with active duty USAF units, being confined to Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard units for the remainder of its operational service life. In 2004, 2005, and 2006, the C-141s assigned to the 445 AW participated in missions to Iraq and Afghanistan, mostly for the medical evacuation of wounded service members. The last eight C-141s were officially retired in 2006.

The C-5 Galaxy airlifter, also inherited from MAC, is being modernized and upgraded into the C-5M Super Galaxy model. It is planned to modernize all C-5Bs and C-5Cs and many of the C-5As to the C-5M standard. The first C-5M conversion was completed on 16 May 2006, and performed its first flight on 19 June 2006. It is estimated that the modifications will extend the service life of the C-5 to about 2040.

Most legacy models of the C-130 Hercules (e.g., C-130E, C-130H, C-130H2) in AMC, AFRC and ANG units have been or will eventually be replaced by the C-130J Super Hercules. The C-130 family has the longest continuous production run of any military aircraft in history and has served in every branch of the U.S. armed forces except the U.S. Army and U.S. Space Force. During more than 50 years of service, the C-130 has participated in military, civilian and humanitarian aid operations. It is likely that future improvements to the C-130 will mean the design will be in service into the foreseeable future.

The upgrades of the inherited Strategic Air Command KC-135 Stratotanker to E, R, RT and T models have extended their airframe and powerplant lifetimes to 36,000 (E) and 39,000 flying hours (R, RT and T), respectively. The last KC-135E was retired in 2009 and all remaining operational USAF KC-135 aircraft are of the KC-135R, KC-135RT or KC-135T series. Acquired by SAC in the late 1950s, according to the Air Force, only a few KC-135s would reach these lifetime limits before 2040; but at that time, some of the aircraft would be about 80 years old. The Air Force estimates that their current fleet of KC-135s have between 12,000 and 14,000 flying hours on them, only 33 percent of the lifetime flying hour limit and none will meet the limit until 2040. Therefore, the USAF has decided to replace the KC-135 fleet. However, since there were originally over 500 KC-135s with the since-retired KC-135E included, these aircraft will be replaced gradually, with the first batch of about 100 aircraft to be replaced in the current buy. The effort to replace the KC-135 has been marked by intense controversy.

The 59 KC-10 Extender tankers, originally acquired in the 1980s by SAC, have been operated largely in the refueling of large numbers of fighter aircraft on ferry flights, the refueling of heavy bomber or other transport aircraft, or as supplemental airlift aircraft for palletized cargo, augmenting the C-5 and C-17 fleet. Conversely, the KC-135 fleet has operated largely in the in-theater role. In an attempt to modernize the platform, the USAF has awarded Boeing a US$216 million contract to upgrade its fleet of 59 aircraft with new communication, navigation and surveillance and air traffic management system to operate into the 2020s.


The direct successor to the USAF Military Airlift Command, the emblem of Air Mobility Command retained the historic emblem of not only the Military Airlift Command, but also the Military Air Transport Service (MATS), established in 1948 as the first Department of Defense Unified Command. The heritage of Air Mobility Command also includes the air refueling heritage inherited from the historic Strategic Air Command.


  • Established as Air Mobility Command and activated on 1 June 1992
Consolidated with Military Airlift Command on 1 October 2016[1][13]



Major components

Air Forces

Redesignated 15th Expeditionary Mobility Task Force (15 EMTF) and assigned to Eighteenth Air Force, 1 October 2003[14]
Redesignated 21st Expeditionary Mobility Task Force (21 EMTF) and assigned to Eighteenth Air Force, 1 October 2003[14]
Reassigned from AMC to Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC), 1 July 1993[15]

Direct Reporting Units


List of commanders

General Michael A. Minihan, incoming AMC commander, receives the command guidon from General Charles Q. Brown Jr., Air Force chief of staff, during a change of command ceremony on October 5, 2021.
No. Commander Term
Portrait Name Took office Left office Term length
1Johnson, Hansford T.General
Hansford T. Johnson
(born 1936)
1 June 199225 August 199285 days
2Fogleman, Ronald R.General
Ronald R. Fogleman
(born 1942)
25 August 199218 October 19942 years, 54 days
3Rutherford, Robert L.General
Robert L. Rutherford
(born 1938)
18 October 199415 July 19961 year, 271 days
4Kross, WalterGeneral
Walter Kross
(born 1942)
15 July 19963 August 19982 years, 19 days
5Robertson, Charles T. Jr.General
Charles T. Robertson Jr.
(born 1946)
3 August 19985 November 20013 years, 94 days
6Handy, John W.General
John W. Handy
(born 1944)
5 November 20017 September 20053 years, 306 days
-Kelly, Christopher A.Lieutenant General
Christopher A. Kelly
7 September 200514 October 200537 days
7McNabb, DuncanGeneral
Duncan McNabb
(born 1952)
14 October 20057 September 20071 year, 328 days
8Lichte, ArthurGeneral
Arthur Lichte
(born 1949)
7 September 200720 November 20092 years, 74 days
9Johns, Raymond E. Jr.General
Raymond E. Johns Jr.
(born 1954)
20 November 200930 November 20123 years, 10 days
10Selva, Paul J.General
Paul J. Selva
(born 1958)
30 November 20125 May 20141 year, 156 days
11McDew, Darren W.General
Darren W. McDew
(born 1960)
5 May 201411 August 20151 year, 98 days
12Everhart, Carlton D. IIGeneral
Carlton D. Everhart II
(born 1961)
11 August 20157 September 20183 years, 27 days
13Miller, MaryanneGeneral
Maryanne Miller
7 September 201820 August 20201 year, 348 days
14Van Ovost, Jacqueline D.General
Jacqueline D. Van Ovost
(born 1965)
20 August 20205 October 20211 year, 46 days
15Minihan, MichaelGeneral
Michael A. Minihan
(born 1967)
5 October 2021Incumbent2 years, 148 days

See also


Public Domain This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Ream, Margaret E. (28 December 2020). "Air Mobility Command". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Archived from the original on 3 June 2022. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  2. ^ "Air Mobility Command". Archived from the original on 13 December 2017. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  3. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 April 2018. Retrieved 29 November 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 April 2018. Retrieved 21 October 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ "GENERAL MIKE MINIHAN". Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  6. ^ a b c d e f "Air Mobility Command Fact Sheet". August 2007. Archived from the original on 15 September 2008. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  7. ^ "Units". Air Mobility Command. Archived from the original on 28 October 2012. Retrieved 19 December 2012.
  8. ^ USAF Band of Mid-America
  9. ^ USAF Band of the Golden West
  10. ^ AMC Museum
  11. ^ "Introducing the new 908th AW MVPS".
  12. ^ a b c King, Joshua (21 August 2018). "USDA net system reduces aviation bird strikes". Air Mobility Command. Archived from the original on 14 January 2023.
  13. ^ Dreyer, MSG Kristine. "AMC consolidates with MAC". Air Mobility Command Public Affairs. Archived from the original on 9 October 2016. Retrieved 7 October 2016.
  14. ^ a b Kane, Robert (2 March 2010). "Eighteenth Air Force (AMC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  15. ^ Kane, Robert B. (12 April 2010). "Twenty-Second Air Force (AFRC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  16. ^ Haulman, Daniel L. (6 April 2015). "618 Air Operations Center (AMC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  17. ^ "618th Air Operations Center (TACC)". 618th Air Operations Center. 2021. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  18. ^ Bailey, Carl E. (14 October 2015). "USAF Expeditionary Center (AMC)". Air Force Historical Research Agency. Retrieved 29 September 2022.

External links

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