Groundbreaking ceremony for new aircraft hangar at Delaware Air Guard Friday morning Oct. 17 in New Castle

  • Published
  • By 011008
Delaware Air National Guard
Headquarters, 166th Airlift Wing
2600 Spruance Drive
New Castle, DE 19720-1615 

Contact: Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Matwey
Public Affairs Specialist, 166th Airlift Wing, Delaware Air National Guard
Office 302-323-3369, or cell 302-593-2126
Release No. 2008-10-001, October 16, 2008


NEW CASTLE - On Friday morning, Oct. 17, 2008, the Delaware Air National Guard will host a groundbreaking ceremony for a new aircraft hangar to maintain and repair the unit's eight C-130 transport aircraft.

The event will begin at 10:30 a.m. News media organizations are invited, and asked to call ahead before arrival.

Invited guests include Delaware's congressional delegation and governor, as well as several local elected officials.

The current hangar was built in 1952 and provides only 65 percent capacity of the required functional space for C-130 aircraft maintenance. It also does not have required fire suppression or detection systems or sufficient lighting, the roof is leaking, and insulation is falling off the ceiling, creating potential multiple safety hazards for those working on the aircraft. The inefficient and old systems within the hangar also create high operating costs.

The new hangar is large enough to house the unit's current C-130H model aircraft, and the new C-130J extended model.

"This new hangar will significantly improve our capability to maintain and repair our eight C-130 transport aircraft, helping us perform our core aircraft flying mission and improve our operational readiness," said Brig. Gen. Hugh Broomall, commander of the Delaware Air National Guard. "This hangar is a large part in a series of several noteworthy base modernization and new construction projects that are keeping the base relevant, reliable and ready so the Delaware ANG can fulfill our state homeland security missions and our wartime missions."

The total congressional appropriation for the entire project, covering design, planning and construction of the new aircraft maintenance hangar and all connected work shops is appropriately $33 million, to occur in three phases.

The first phase will start this year, and cost about $10.8 million to construct a basic hangar bay of about 26,000 gross square feet to house an aircraft, and a pump house for fire suppression. This phase covers a total of about 30,000 gross square feet, and completion is estimated to occur in March 2010.

The second phase will cost about $11.6 million to construct general maintenance shops located on two floors in a U-shape configuration around the hangar bay. This phase covers about 38,100 gross square feet. Construction for this second phase is projected to start in 2009 and finish 12 to 18 months later around 2010.

The third phase, to be designed later this year, is for additional work shops, and is estimated to cost about $10.4 million. This phase covers about 33,500 gross square feet, and is projected to be completed by 2011.

When complete, all three phases will total about 101,000 gross square feet, making this the largest facility on the Air Guard base which currently encompasses 35 buildings on 70 acres.

The new hangar design has several innovative renewable energy and energy-efficient features.

First, a geoexchange (geothermal) heating and cooling system will use the relatively constant temperature of the earth to provide heating and cooling. This geoexchange system uses a glycol based fluid circulated through polyethylene pipes in closed loops that are installed below the earth's surface. The Geothermal Heat Pump Consortium, who coined the term 'geoexchange,' states that basic geoexchange technology has been around for more than 50 years. After the second phase of construction is complete, the new hangar will be the largest building on the base to use a geoexchange system, surpassing the size of the geoexchange system now in use in the squadron operations and aeromedical evacuation facility, the second largest air base facility, built in 2000 and covering about 38,800 square feet.

The new aircraft hanger will be the first in the entire U.S. Air Force (covering all active, reserve and guard units) to have a geoexchange system.

Second, the hangar roof is designed to handle a planned future installation of solar photovoltaic panels capable of generating about 100 kilowatts of electricity, able to meet nearly all of the daytime electricity needs of the hangar facility.

Other energy-saving features are translucent panels for daylighting, and light colored roofing material to reduce heat gain.

According to Maj. Elias Danucalov, assistant base civil engineer, 166th Civil Engineer Squadron, Delaware Air Guard, the new hangar meets the LEED Silver green building rating, the first building in the Delaware Air Guard to achieve this high standard. LEED is the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program operated by the U.S. Green Building Council. The LEED rating system, a nationally recognized, common language for defining building sustainability, awards platinum, gold, silver and bronze ratings for building design.

Since 2000 the Delaware Air National Guard facility in New Castle has built and installed several renewable energy and energy-efficient components on the base. The addition of the new maintenance hangar, plus future planned construction projects, will help the base become a better steward of natural resources and taxpayer money.

The New Castle air base has been home to the Delaware Air Guard for 62 years, since the unit's founding in 1946.

The unit has 300 full-time employees and 800 part-time traditional members, for a total of 1,100 serving Airmen.

This release is in the public domain, and any part may be used as written.

- 30 -