HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah -- An Airman at Hill Air Force Base is among the Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center announced finalists for the 2021 AFIMSC Innovation Rodeo.
Master Sgt. Luke Rogan, assistant chief of operations with the 775th Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Department, was selected for co-innovating an idea to modernize the way the Defense Department conducts real property inventory and facility inspections using 3D structural scanning. Co-innovators of the idea are Scott McClure and Capt. Nathanael Kohl, 611th CES, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.
The proposal includes using high-resolution 360-degree cameras and 3D scanners in Air Force civil engineering processes. Rogan said these technologies would integrate seamlessly with cloud-based solutions to create entirely new, visual-spatial facility management techniques that can be used for space utilization, facility assessments, housing inspections and fire and safety inspections.
“We are grateful to be selected from the hundreds of candidates and enthusiastic and energized by the chance to be a part of this groundbreaking opportunity for the Air Force,” Rogan said. “We are eager to showcase the idea of a 21st century image system for facility management and hopeful to be able to benefit the civil engineer squadrons we work for.”
The AFIMSC leadership team and Ventures Innovation Office staff picked the idea along with seven other finalists out of more than 370 submissions. Each will now compete for a share of $1 million in funding and resources to pursue their ideas.
“Currently, the requirements demand a team of engineers with specialized skills, knowledge and equipment to produce these images and scans so they can have actionable data,” Rogan said. “Our proposal is to equip users with these 3D scanners and software, allowing a single operator to effectively perform an entire facility examination in a faction of the time.”
The cost to implement the idea in a squadron is an estimated $4,000 to $10,000 investment per bundle, depending on the package. However, Rogan said there are some challenges that need to be figured out as well, such as acquiring secure cloud-based server space to manipulate and store the massive 3D digital image files within on the Air Force’s network or via a commercial contract.
Conducted virtually this year due to COVID-19, the 2021 AFIMSC Innovation Rodeo will take place the week of Feb. 5.
Finalists will spend a week learning from leading innovators and honing their pitches before trying to convince a board of senior Air Force installation and mission support leaders that their idea is the best.
“It would be incredible to achieve the full potential of this idea and to be able to produce tangible, accurate information in order to maintain, build, and sustain airbases around the globe,” Rogan said. “It is exciting to be able to see a concept go from idea to potential implementation.”
The theme of this year’s Innovation Rodeo is Base of the Future, a broad topic with endless mission support-centric possibilities. Through the competition, Airmen can help shape how installations can look and function in the future.
For more information about the AFIMSC Innovation Rodeo, email AFIMSC.Innovation@us.af.mil.