After years of relying on data from a time-consuming civilian weather system, a team from the Horn of Africa Combined Joint Task Force, have just installed a new innovative weather system at the Kenya Military Airport in Nairobi.
The system, called the TMQ-53 Tactical Meteorological Observing System, will now help war planners and combat weather teams through weather sensors connected to a computer. The system would use low-earth orbiting satellites to collect data, enabling the transmission of mission-critical weather data within an hour after receiving it. The new system provides current weather conditions to the Kenyan Defense Forces, which will enhance the safety of future missions.
In support of defeating extremist groups in East Africa, the team of innovators included U.S. service members from the J3 Meteorological and Oceanographic Office, J3 Special Operations Command and Control Element Weather System and Support Cadre and the 411th Civil Affairs Battalion, zealous to see the system operating efficiently.
According to US Navy Lt. Cmdr. Rachel Martin, Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa Joint Meteorological and Oceanographic Officer, enhancing safety and effectiveness of the Kenyan Defense Forces ground and air operations was one of many positive results of the mil-to-mil engagement.
Also in support of the concept with METOC were J3 WSSC technicians that would help install and provide working knowledge of the system to KDF personnel.
The team had to ensure the location was right for the system and properly installed, said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Harlan Rogers, noncommissioned officer in charge of the cadre adding that the Kenyans co-workers were “very sharp, fast learners, and their attention to detail was amazing.”
Senior Airman Michael Becker, the cadre’s lead technician, noted that installing the TMQ-53 system while communicating to the Kenya Defense Force how proper maintenance and handling the equipment, helps it last longer builds that trust in a relationship with KDF.