Ground Support Equipment plays important part in every ground support missions vary drastically between civilian and military operations. Although civilian operations have a set timeline of when an aircraft and its individual parts need to be serviced or repaired, it's not as strict of a timeline as the military. Military ground support also has the disadvantage of unpredictable working conditions that range from the limited or uneven pavement of a bare base to an entire airstrip at a well-kept airport. It is difficult to determine what could go wrong, but it is expected that all military ground support equipment items will work at all times, under all conditions.
Ground support equipment varies depending on the type of aircraft being grounded. If a military aircraft is like a civilian aircraft, then equipment can be obtained through civilian channels, but, if the aircraft is specific to military operations only, equipment could be a challenge to procure. Tactical aircraft have entirely different electrical systems and power requirements; they’re even towed differently than civilian aircraft because they weigh far more and have exterior weapon stores called hardpoints.
Hard points make it difficult to use a typical tow and often will require interference with external stores in order to work properly, therefore, and electric tow is typically used when available. An electric tow only requires one individual, allowing for a quicker turnaround time. Time, after all, is critical in military operations. There are rarely ever generic pieces of ground support equipment, so it is important for the military to purchase truly universal GSE when available as it will allow for the turnaround process to be more efficient. Military ground support equipment must be dedicated, easy-to-learn, simple to use and extremely reliable, especially since the pressure is on!
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