AFRL Space Vehicles, Directed Energy Directorate Personnel Honored

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Source: U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory,
Source: U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory,

March 15, 2021 | Originally published by U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory on March 5, 2021

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. (AFRL) – The Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles and Directed Energy Directorates honored the outstanding achievements of 70 Air Force and Space Force individuals and teams during their 2020 Phillips Research Site Annual Awards.

The virtual ceremony was held on February 24. It illustrated how personnel from both directorates enabled the discovery, development, and delivery of Warfighting technologies for United States air, space, and cyberspace forces.

Dr. Kelly D. Hammett, Director of the AFRL Directed Energy Directorate (AFRL/RD), and Col. Eric Felt, Director of the AFRL Space Vehicles Directorate (AFRL/RV), honored the achievements of the winners and commended the work taking place in the laboratories.

About 250 members of the AFRL workforce tuned in to the ceremony that featured 40 award categories that ranged from mentorship to technology transfer, highlighting the outstanding efforts in both the Directed Energy and Space Vehicles Directorates. Winners went on to compete at the AFRL headquarters level and brought back 11 victories for the New Mexico-based labs.

“We’ve found a way today, to collectively celebrate the tremendous accomplishments of the Phillips Research Site’s workforce over the last year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic,” Hammett said. “I’m extremely proud of both the nominees and the winners. In the five years in the Directed Energy Director position, and in my nine years in the front office, I don’t think the teaming between Directed Energy and Space Vehicles has ever been better. It’s great to see the crossflow between the directorates.”

“I am blown away by the quality of work being done across the whole organization,” Felt said. “We are in a great place in making contributions to the nation, and that’s due to the hard work and dedication of these teams who are able to produce incredible technologies, and it paid off with the impressive number of wins at the headquarters level!”

Capt. James Schrock was the winner of the Director’s Cup Junior Force Award and also prevailed at the competition at the headquarters level. He was honored for his efforts in counter electronic mon-kinetic microwave attack (CKMA) technology and for leadership as Chief of the Computational Physics Section.

“Our team invested many long and intense hours of work into CKMA, and it feels great to have that work recognized,” Schrock said. “I am separating from active duty this June, and I hope to stay on as a civilian here within the High Power Electromagnetics Division, where I can continue working on fun and impactful projects. I have a strong desire to see high-power electromagnetic weapons transition into the hands of the Warfighter, and I want to be involved in that process.”

Both Hammett and Felt expressed that it was an exciting time to be working in Directed Energy and Space Vehicles considering all of the new and innovative opportunities arising, with the workforce prevailing during a worldwide pandemic.

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