Quality Magazine

Case Study: Air Force Saves $13 Million

April 1, 2004
The U.S. Air Force projects that its $485,000 investment for four PinPoint II Testers from DiagnoSYS Systems will save more than $13 million.

By using the PinPoint Tester II, the U.S. Air Force projects a $13 million cost savings. Photo: DiagnoSYS Systems Inc.


The U.S. Air Force projects that its $485,000 investment for four PinPoint II Testers from DiagnoSYS Systems (Kissimmee, FL) will save more than $13 million by not having to re-host more than 100 previously developed software programs for repair of its Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) fleet, according to the office of the AWACS Support Equipment Program Manager (Hanscom Air Force Base, MA).

Re-hosting test programs to conventional functional automatic test systems (ATS) has become cost prohibitive at a time when large budgets no longer exist. The PinPoint tester satisfies the requirements for testing digital workloads and takes a few days to write a test program compared to the months that had originally been anticipated.

The AWACS program has more than 100 digital calibration test program sets (TPS) that need re-hosting, and if conventional functional test systems were used, it would have cost more than $150,000 for each item to be rehosted and would take anywhere from eight to 18 months per item to rehost. With the PinPoint II systems, each TPS can be turned around in a matter of weeks at one-tenth the cost of conventional ATS.

The PinPoint testers are one of the systems replacing an older AWACS legacy test system that is no longer fully supported by its manufacturer. The PinPoint testers provide a means to prevent repair workflow downtime because of premature legacy system failure, which is unacceptable to AWACS.

Because the programming is simple, the work can be spread out among more workers, which means the job gets done faster.

The Air Force has a large fleet of AWACS aircrafts and to keep them flying, technicians must be able to quickly find the causes of an electronic parts failure, make the repairs and get those items back into the Air Force's supply system.

The PinPoint II is expected to produce life-cycle cost savings of millions of dollars, while providing the military with a replacement for the older, legacy test systems.

DiagnoSYS Systems Inc.

(800) 788-6219

www.DiagnoSYS-usa.com