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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, May 6, 2003

Local Modern Study Club tours scoring site

The Modern Study Club members and their guests carpooled at the West Park Baptist Church parking lot on April 9, for a Public Affairs Program field trip to tour the Pecos Electronic Scoring Site of AHNTECH (Innovation Through Technology), which is approximately 25 miles south/southwest of Pecos. Margie Williamson, Chairman of the Public Affairs Department, was in charge and Shirley Shaffer assisted.

The thought-quote for the program was ­ "From the Sand Rises the Phoenix" ­ Egyptian Mythology ­ Pecos Electronic Scoring Site Motto.

Club members and their guests were divided into three groups following their registration and a briefing by William W. Kilby II, site manager. Kilby, assisted by electronics technican III Robert "Tex" Taylor, served as tour guides and gave most interesting and informative narratives.

Tourers learned the Pecos ESS was moved to it's present location, the "Lone Star Site," and began operation in January 2002, after 30 years as the "La Junta Bomber Plot" out of La Juna, Colo. The move was made because the B-I bomber training base, (Dyess Air Force) in Abilene needed a "backyard" site to train it's B-1 students in the art of electronics combat. Thus began the "Realistic Bomber Training Initiative (RBTI). The "Lone Star Site," is in the vicinity of the IR-178 military training route, which has been used by bomber crews for low-level flight training for more than 40 years. The Pecos ESS is under the control of the 7th Operational Support Squadron at Dyess AFB.

Those in attendance also learned the site provides crucial Electronics Combat Training for B-1 and B-52 air crews. There are three Electronic Combat systems operating at the Pecos ESS. The AN/MST-TIA, Multiple Threat Emitter System (MUTES) can produce over 200 threat signals, from 19 transmitters, to simulate hostile threats; such as, surface to air missiles, anti-aircraft artillery, airborne intercept and naval threats. This threat training enables the aircrews to practice their electronic countermeasures to these threats. So, in essence, the site helps provide the aircrews with the skills needed to prevent getting shot down.

Tourers also hear about the AN/MSR-T4 Threat Reaction Analysis Indicator System (TRAINS) is a receiver designed to capture, record, and analyze Electronic Counter Measures (ECM) employed by the tracked aircraft in response to threat signals from the MUTES. The data is stored and later used to debrief aircrews when they land. They are told what they did right and what they did wrong based on the data furnished.

Guides told of the AN/MST-TIV Mini-Mutes is smaller, remotely controlled version of the MUTES. A typical pedestal has four to five transmitters. There are five pedestals located in West Texas. One is located about 20 miles southeast of Pecos; another is 35 miles south of Alpine. There are also pedestals near the towns of Imperial, Girvin, and Bakersfield. All pedestals are controlled, via phone line or cell phone, from the Master Control Group located at the main site.

Visitors were told that within its first year of operation, this site was instrumental in preparing our Military Combat Air Crews for a combat environment before being deployed to war being waged in the Middle East; ie; Afghanistan and Iraq. During Operations "Enduring Freedom" and "Iraqi Freedom," B-1 and B-52 Aircrews have had their successes as a result of training received at the RBTI sites. The Realistic Bomber Training Initiative improves training by using more realistic terrain with threat emitter sites in closer proximity to bomber bases.

Those making the tour were left with this thought ­ "Whether we agree to the politics of the wars or not, our parents, children, friends and relatives are placed in harms way. The job of the Pecos ESS is to help them stay alive."

Club members and their guests journeyed to Balmorhea for a dutch-treat luncheon at the Bear's Den Restaurant and then gathered in the home of Al and Nan Cate in Verhalen for dessert.

Following this gathering, a business meeting for club members was held in the Cate home. President Joyce Morton presided and conducted opening ceremonies with Juracy Ray leading the Club Collect and Shirley Shaffer leading the pledges to the United States of America Flag and the Texas Flag as those in attendance repeated all in unison.

Catherine Travland read the minutes of the previous meeting in the absence of Secretary Paula Fuller and a statement of club finances was presented by Margie Williamson in the absence of Treasurer Pearl Gustafson.

During new business the club voted to help finance a trip to the ten-day 2003 National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine for Amanda Lara, daughter of Deana and Carlos Lara of Pecos. This forum is noted for being an extraordinary program that inspires our nation's most promising future physicians.

The Annual Spring Convention of the Western District of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs was discussed and traveling arrangements were made for study club members who will be attending.

Roll call was answered by telling about something learned on the tour today.

A special thank you was given to Nan and Al Cate for hosting the dessert time and the business meeting in their lovely Verhalen home.

Deadlines for OC Experience are set

Deadlines for the May sessions of OC Experience are approaching.

Students new to Odessa College may register for OC Experience, a combined information and registration program that offers academic counseling, financial aid information and other assistance. The OC Experience also offers students the opportunity to register early for the summer and fall semesters.

Students must register in advance for the OC Experience session of their choice.

May sessions will be at 5 p.m., Thursday, May 8; at 9 a.m., Monday, May 19; and at 5 p.m., Thursday, May 22.

Reservation deadlines are at 4 p.m. on the following dates: Thursday, May 1 for the May 8 session; Monday, May 12 for the May 19 session; Thursday, May 15 for the May 22 session.

To register for an OC Experience session, contact the Student Development Center at 335-6433, or go by Room 204 in the Student Union Building and complete a registration form.

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