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Exercise tests base’s mission readiness

An F-15E Strike Eagle taxis to the runway during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

An F-15E Strike Eagle taxis to the runway during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

An F-15E Strike Eagle departs the runway during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario tested the wings ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

An F-15E Strike Eagle departs the runway during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario tested the wings ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Airman 1st Class Joshua Castaneda, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, conducts a preflight inspection during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance deployment operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Airman 1st Class Joshua Castaneda, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, conducts a preflight inspection during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance deployment operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Pilots and weapons systems officers assigned to the 335th Fighter Squadron step to the F-15E Strike Eagles during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. In order to ensure the 4th Fighter Wing is adequately prepared to meet the U.S. Air Force’s readiness standards, the wing conducted a planned, no-notice mission assurance exercise July 19-21. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Pilots and weapons systems officers assigned to the 335th Fighter Squadron step to the F-15E Strike Eagles during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. In order to ensure the 4th Fighter Wing is adequately prepared to meet the U.S. Air Force’s readiness standards, the wing conducted a planned, no-notice mission assurance exercise July 19-21. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Airman 1st Class Joshua Castaneda, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, salutes a pilot and a weapons systems officer during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Rapid deployment exercises are a way to ensure the wing’s Airmen and deployment processes are prepared to provide air superiority at a moment’s notice. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Airman 1st Class Joshua Castaneda, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, salutes a pilot and a weapons systems officer during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Rapid deployment exercises are a way to ensure the wing’s Airmen and deployment processes are prepared to provide air superiority at a moment’s notice. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Staff Sgt. Colten Lingley, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron engines specialist, inspects the F-15E Strike Eagle during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise served to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly deploy Airmen and aircraft for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Staff Sgt. Colten Lingley, 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron engines specialist, inspects the F-15E Strike Eagle during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise served to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly deploy Airmen and aircraft for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Staff Sgt. Rachelle Lord, 4th Maintenance Group weapons systems coordinator, arrives at the passenger terminal during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise served to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly deploy Airmen and aircraft for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Staff Sgt. Rachelle Lord, 4th Maintenance Group weapons systems coordinator, arrives at the passenger terminal during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise served to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly deploy Airmen and aircraft for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Participants of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 transit to the passenger terminal, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance deployment operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Participants of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 transit to the passenger terminal, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance deployment operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Airman 1st Class Mackenzie Sones, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron receiving technician, records the cargo weight during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Airman 1st Class Mackenzie Sones, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron receiving technician, records the cargo weight during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Staff Sgt. Branden Lashhorn, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron structural technician, removes a heating cart from a weighing scale during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing conducted simulated cargo transport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)
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Staff Sgt. Branden Lashhorn, 4th Civil Engineer Squadron structural technician, removes a heating cart from a weighing scale during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing conducted simulated cargo transport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

A member of Team Seymour performs TSA checks during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. According to Col. Christopher Sage, 4th Fighter Wing commander, rapid deployment exercises are a way to ensure the wing’s Airmen and deployment processes are prepared to provide air superiority at a moment’s notice should the necessity arise in any current or future conflict. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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A member of Team Seymour performs TSA checks during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. According to Col. Christopher Sage, 4th Fighter Wing commander, rapid deployment exercises are a way to ensure the wing’s Airmen and deployment processes are prepared to provide air superiority at a moment’s notice should the necessity arise in any current or future conflict. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

An Airman from Team Seymour stands on a weight scale while processing during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, deploying members were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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An Airman from Team Seymour stands on a weight scale while processing during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, deploying members were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

Airmen from the 4th Fighter Wing pack gear for exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. While the exercise provided an opportunity to fine-tune the wing’s deployment processes, it also showcased the wing’s readiness in preparing for the potential to rapidly deploy in the future. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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Airmen from the 4th Fighter Wing pack gear for exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. While the exercise provided an opportunity to fine-tune the wing’s deployment processes, it also showcased the wing’s readiness in preparing for the potential to rapidly deploy in the future. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

During the first phase of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 held on July 19-21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, Airmen simulating a short-notice deployment were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. Once the Airmen and the cargo were processed, the exercise moved into phase two where 16 F-15E Strike Eagles and their associated aircrew simulated leaving for the undisclosed deployed location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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During the first phase of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 held on July 19-21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, Airmen simulating a short-notice deployment were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. Once the Airmen and the cargo were processed, the exercise moved into phase two where 16 F-15E Strike Eagles and their associated aircrew simulated leaving for the undisclosed deployed location. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

1st Lt. Justin Murray, 335th Fighter Squadron pilot, grabs a web belt before simulating a deployment during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise required the 4th Fighter Wing to prepare and deploy more than 400 Airmen and more than 300 tons of cargo and equipment needed to provide F-15E Strike Eagle capability and mission support to simulated regional commanders. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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1st Lt. Justin Murray, 335th Fighter Squadron pilot, grabs a web belt before simulating a deployment during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise required the 4th Fighter Wing to prepare and deploy more than 400 Airmen and more than 300 tons of cargo and equipment needed to provide F-15E Strike Eagle capability and mission support to simulated regional commanders. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

Members of the 335th Fighter Squadron and 335th Aircraft Maintenance Unit wait to be processed through the pre-deployment function processing line during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The three-day exercise tested Seymour Johnson AFB’s readiness for a short-notice deployment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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Members of the 335th Fighter Squadron and 335th Aircraft Maintenance Unit wait to be processed through the pre-deployment function processing line during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The three-day exercise tested Seymour Johnson AFB’s readiness for a short-notice deployment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

Tech Sgt. Austin Weinman, 4th Operations Support Squadron non-commissioned officer in charge of 335th Fighter Squadron aircrew flight equipment, takes issued equipment for exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the first phase of the exercise, deploying members were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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Tech Sgt. Austin Weinman, 4th Operations Support Squadron non-commissioned officer in charge of 335th Fighter Squadron aircrew flight equipment, takes issued equipment for exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the first phase of the exercise, deploying members were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

In order to ensure the 4th Fighter Wing is adequately prepared to meet the U.S. Air Force’s maximum readiness standards, the wing conducted a planned, no-notice mission assurance exercise July 19-21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario, Thunderdome 17-02, tested the wings ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)
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In order to ensure the 4th Fighter Wing is adequately prepared to meet the U.S. Air Force’s maximum readiness standards, the wing conducted a planned, no-notice mission assurance exercise July 19-21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario, Thunderdome 17-02, tested the wings ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

Two F-15E Strike Eagles fly overhead during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario tested the wing’s ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Two F-15E Strike Eagles fly overhead during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise scenario tested the wing’s ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Team Seymour Airmen carry their deployment bags to the pre-deployment function processing center during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Seymour Johnson AFB members simulate deployments and other major events to test and improve readiness and capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Team Seymour Airmen carry their deployment bags to the pre-deployment function processing center during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Seymour Johnson AFB members simulate deployments and other major events to test and improve readiness and capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 participants prepare to receive a pre-deployment brief, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing strengthen skills in the event of a real-world short notice deployment tasking. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 participants prepare to receive a pre-deployment brief, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing strengthen skills in the event of a real-world short notice deployment tasking. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

An F-15E Strike Eagle soars through the air during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The scenario required the 4 FW to prepare and deploy more than 400 Airmen and more than 300 tons of cargo and equipment needed to provide F-15E capability and mission support to simulated regional commanders. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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An F-15E Strike Eagle soars through the air during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 21, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The scenario required the 4 FW to prepare and deploy more than 400 Airmen and more than 300 tons of cargo and equipment needed to provide F-15E capability and mission support to simulated regional commanders. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Members from the 4th Fighter Wing move cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Team Seymour regularly performs exercises to ensure readiness in case of a real-world emergency or event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Members from the 4th Fighter Wing move cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Team Seymour regularly performs exercises to ensure readiness in case of a real-world emergency or event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Participants of Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 review, log and analyze cargo and equipment, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Exercises such as this are performed to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Participants of Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 review, log and analyze cargo and equipment, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Exercises such as this are performed to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Airmen from the 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron play a game of spades while waiting at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Airmen watched movies, played games and rested while waiting to be processed through the PDF line. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airmen from the 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron play a game of spades while waiting at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Airmen watched movies, played games and rested while waiting to be processed through the PDF line. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Staff Sgt. Daniel Diaz, 335th Fighter Squadron weapons technician, waits as his mobility folder is reviewed at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. As part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, Diaz and several other 4th Fighter Wing Airmen are deploying to evaluate the wing’s ability to rapidly deploy for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Staff Sgt. Daniel Diaz, 335th Fighter Squadron weapons technician, waits as his mobility folder is reviewed at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. As part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, Diaz and several other 4th Fighter Wing Airmen are deploying to evaluate the wing’s ability to rapidly deploy for contingency operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Airmen from the 4th Fighter Wing wait to have their mobility folders reviewed at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This deployment exercise was part of Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airmen from the 4th Fighter Wing wait to have their mobility folders reviewed at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This deployment exercise was part of Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to rapidly generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Senior Airman Natalie Molina, 4th Force Support Squadron, reviews a deployer’s mobility folder at the PDF processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The pre-deployment processing was to ensure the deployers had all necessary documents and gear prior to departing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Senior Airman Natalie Molina, 4th Force Support Squadron, reviews a deployer’s mobility folder at the PDF processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The pre-deployment processing was to ensure the deployers had all necessary documents and gear prior to departing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Staff Sgt. Josh Dobbins, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle maintenance, prepares to operate a 10K forklift July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Dobbins used the 10K forklift to move pallets of cargo to designated spots prior to loading onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Staff Sgt. Josh Dobbins, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle maintenance, prepares to operate a 10K forklift July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Dobbins used the 10K forklift to move pallets of cargo to designated spots prior to loading onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

A member of the 4th Fighter Wing inspects cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. In preparation of a real-world deployment, Team Seymour members perform exercises to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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A member of the 4th Fighter Wing inspects cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. In preparation of a real-world deployment, Team Seymour members perform exercises to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, completes paperwork for cargo that will be loaded onto an aircraft July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Walker is responsible for ensuring the accurate dimensions and weight of the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, completes paperwork for cargo that will be loaded onto an aircraft July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Walker is responsible for ensuring the accurate dimensions and weight of the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Staff Sgt. Richard Averitt, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron air transportation specialist, verifies the dimensions and weight of a weapon loader to be loaded onto an aircraft July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This cargo was part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Staff Sgt. Richard Averitt, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron air transportation specialist, verifies the dimensions and weight of a weapon loader to be loaded onto an aircraft July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This cargo was part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Airman 1st Class Marlon Cruz-Gonzalez, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, tapes cargo information to a heater cart’s July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This process was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airman 1st Class Marlon Cruz-Gonzalez, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, tapes cargo information to a heater cart’s July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This process was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, completes paperwork for cargo July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The cargo is weighed based on its front and rear axle to ensure it can safely be loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, completes paperwork for cargo July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The cargo is weighed based on its front and rear axle to ensure it can safely be loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Participants of Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 review, log and analyze cargo and equipment, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to make improvements and strengthen skills in the event of a real-world short notice deployment tasking. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Participants of Exercise Thunderdome 17-02 review, log and analyze cargo and equipment, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to make improvements and strengthen skills in the event of a real-world short notice deployment tasking. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Members from the 4th Fighter Wing move cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Team Seymour regularly performs exercises to ensure readiness in case of a real-world emergency or event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Members from the 4th Fighter Wing move cargo and equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Team Seymour regularly performs exercises to ensure readiness in case of a real-world emergency or event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Airman Joshua Shepherd, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron Travel Management Office receiving technician, places duct tape to mark the balance point on a piece of equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Exercises such as this are performed to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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Airman Joshua Shepherd, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron Travel Management Office receiving technician, places duct tape to mark the balance point on a piece of equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Exercises such as this are performed to ensure mission readiness. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

A Team Seymour Airman inspects the oil of a piece of equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Seymour Johnson AFB members simulate deployments and other major events to test and improve readiness and capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)
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A Team Seymour Airman inspects the oil of a piece of equipment during Exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Seymour Johnson AFB members simulate deployments and other major events to test and improve readiness and capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ashley Maldonado)

Staff Sgt. Richard Averitt, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron air transportation specialist, views an x-ray machine at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Averitt was responsible for viewing all bags of deployers before they were briefed. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Staff Sgt. Richard Averitt, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron air transportation specialist, views an x-ray machine at the pre-deployment function line processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Averitt was responsible for viewing all bags of deployers before they were briefed. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Senior Master Sgt. Virgil McCullough, 4th Force Support Squadron manpower and personnel superintendent, briefs deployers at the PDF processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The pre-deployment processing was to ensure the deployers had all necessary documents and gear to prior to departing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Senior Master Sgt. Virgil McCullough, 4th Force Support Squadron manpower and personnel superintendent, briefs deployers at the PDF processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The pre-deployment processing was to ensure the deployers had all necessary documents and gear to prior to departing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Airmen carry their deployment bags into the pre-deployment function processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The processing line was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airmen carry their deployment bags into the pre-deployment function processing center July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The processing line was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Staff Sgt. Matthew Rico, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron joint inspector, inspects a generator cart during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing conducted simulated cargo transport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)
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Staff Sgt. Matthew Rico, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron joint inspector, inspects a generator cart during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. During the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing conducted simulated cargo transport. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, guides a weapon loader onto a vehicle roll-on scale July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Walker is responsible for ensuring the accurate dimensions and weight of the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airman 1st Class Dillon Walker, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, guides a weapon loader onto a vehicle roll-on scale July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Walker is responsible for ensuring the accurate dimensions and weight of the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Airman Joshua Shepherd, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, marks a cargo item complete July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Shepherd and several of his coworkers weighed the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft as part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Airman Joshua Shepherd, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office, marks a cargo item complete July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Shepherd and several of his coworkers weighed the cargo prior to being loaded onto an aircraft as part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Members of the 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office determine the weight and dimensions of a nitrogen cart July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This process was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Members of the 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron travel management office determine the weight and dimensions of a nitrogen cart July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. This process was a part of exercise Thunderdome 17-02, which is designed to evaluate the 4th Fighter Wing’s ability to generate and deploy aircraft, Airmen and equipment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Crew chiefs with the 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron push a hydrogen cart into a vehicle roll-on scale July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. With the help of travel management office, the crew chiefs were able to weigh the cart prior to being loaded onto the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)
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Crew chiefs with the 4th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron push a hydrogen cart into a vehicle roll-on scale July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. With the help of travel management office, the crew chiefs were able to weigh the cart prior to being loaded onto the aircraft. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. David W. Carbajal)

Participants of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 receive a simulated deployment briefing, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)
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Participants of exercise Thunderdome 17-02 receive a simulated deployment briefing, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Members of the 4th Fighter Wing prepare cargo equipment for a simulated transport during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance cargo transportation capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)
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Members of the 4th Fighter Wing prepare cargo equipment for a simulated transport during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. By working together during the exercise, members of the 4th Fighter Wing continue to enhance cargo transportation capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

Members of the 4th Mission Support Group remove a generator cart from a weighing scale during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)
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Members of the 4th Mission Support Group remove a generator cart from a weighing scale during exercise Thunderdome 17-02, July 20, 2017, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. The exercise allowed members of the 4th Fighter Wing to strengthen skills for real-world operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Victoria Boyton)

SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. --

Combatant commanders often rely heavily on the readiness of each Department of Defense brigade, wing or fleet, in order to accomplish the nation’s global defense objectives. This indispensable preparation can mean the difference between a mission’s success or its failure.

In order to ensure the 4th Fighter Wing is adequately prepared to meet the U.S. Air Force’s maximum readiness standards, the wing conducted a planned, no-notice mission assurance exercise July 19-21.

The exercise scenario, nicknamed Thunderdome, tested the wings ability to conduct a necessary rapid and appropriate response without any prior coordination.

According to Col. Christopher Sage, 4 FW commander, rapid deployment exercises are a way to ensure the wing’s Airmen and deployment processes are prepared to provide air superiority at a moment’s notice should the necessity arise in any current or future conflict.

“It is of utmost importance to our combatant commanders to know that when called upon, we are ready to provide the air power to meet their objectives,” Sage said. “Here at the 4th Fighter Wing we have an expectation of being prepared to providing global strike eagle airpower … anytime, anywhere. This exercise ensures that we are holding ourselves accountable to that standard.”

As the largest F-15E Strike Eagle wing in the U.S. Air Force, the 4 FW is often one of the first Air Force wings called upon to provide air dominance and support for combatant commanders during major operations. Taking that into account, exercise organizers decided to provide realistic scenarios based on how the wing was utilized in past conflicts and how it may be utilized in the future.

The scenario required the 4 FW to prepare and deploy more than 400 Airmen and more than 300 tons of cargo and equipment needed to provide F-15E capability and mission support to simulated regional commanders in an undisclosed area of operation. 

“It takes a lot of coordination and moving parts to ensure we are able to correctly deploy this many Airmen and equipment in such a short amount of time,” said 1st Lt. Stephanie Teeple, 4th Logistics Readiness Squadron installation deployment officer. “However, thanks to the dedication, preparedness and ingenuity of our Airmen, we were able to complete our deployment requirements, overcome some of our challenges and identify several ways to improve going forward.”

During the first phase of the exercise, deploying members were identified, medically cleared, equipped with any necessary gear and briefed on all information needed to conduct operations in the simulated area of responsibility.

Once the Airmen and their associated cargo were processed, the exercise moved into its second phase. At this time, 16 F-15E Strike Eagles and their associated aircrew simulated leaving for their undisclosed deployed location. Along with their cargo, support Airmen, including maintainers, civil engineers, security forces members and more, simulated transport to the deployed location by several C-17 Globemaster IIIs, Boeing 747s and a C-5 Galaxy.

While the exercise provided an opportunity to fine-tune the wing’s deployment processes, it also showcased the wings readiness in preparing for the potential to rapidly deploy in the future.

This exercise provided us the chance to strengthen our procedures and gave our Airmen realistic deployment experience,” Sage said. “The lessons we learned this week will prepare us to be ready to deploy tonight, and fight tomorrow!”