VXS-1, located at NAS Patuxent River, MD, operates and maintains two NP-3C Orion aircraft and one RC-12 turboprop aircraft as airborne scientific research and technology development platforms. The men and women of the squadron provide the Naval Research Laboratory with airborne research platforms, conducting flight operations worldwide in support of a wide spectrum of projects and experiments. These include: magnetic variation mapping, hydro-acoustic research, bathymetry, electronic countermeasures, gravity mapping, and radar research. The detachment annually logs approximately 1,600 flight hours and in its 49 years, VXS-1 has amassed over 71,000 hours of accident-free flying.
Code 1600: The Commanding Officer of VXS-1 is responsible for the daily management and administration of both military and civilian personnel; maintenance and operational issues for three deployable aircraft, which includes providing for their security; and the Aviation Safety Program.
Code 1601: The Executive Officer, as the direct representative of the VXS-1 Commanding Officer, issues orders and directives to implement command policies. Using command instructions and policies set forth by the Commanding Officer, the Executive Officer is primarily responsible for the organization, manpower and strength, performance of duty, good order, and discipline of the entire squadron.
Code 1610: The Administrative Branch interfaces with the Military Administration/ Personnel Branch (Code 1410) for the processing/administration of military records, awards, training, travel, and per diem issues for assigned personnel. Additionally the Branch is responsible for the promulgation of all VXS-1 policies, instructions, and notices.
Code 1630: The Operations/Projects Branch coordinates the assignment of personnel and aircraft in the accomplishment of research missions. Additionally, the Branch interacts with the Operations Branch (Code1430) and project sponsor offices to accomplish scheduling, planning, and execution of projects during execution and out years. The Branch is responsible for the generation of the Daily Flight Schedule. Branch personnel ensure completion of flight physicals as well as ground and flight evaluations to maintain professional, medical, and physiological readiness.
Code 1640: The Maintenance Branch is responsible for the maintenance, record keeping, reporting, and management of the assigned science and technology (S&T) modified NP-3C aircraft in accordance with applicable specifications and directives. The Branch ensures compliance with maintenance, safety, and security procedures as well as adherence to established programs to prevent fuel, hydraulic, and oil contamination and foreign object damage; and to ensure effective corrosion control. The Maintenance Branch maintains liaison with other codes to ensure aircraft can meet research requirements.
Code 1670: The Safety/NATOPS/Training Branch ensures compliance with governing safety directives and Navy programs for aviation commands to include aircraft mishap reporting procedures and required proficiency drills. The Branch administers the Naval Air Training and Operating Procedures Standardization (NATOPS) Program for all assigned Code 1400 and Code 1600 aircrew and project specialists to include ground and in-flight evaluations. Branch personnel ensure compliance with all general military training requirements as well as command specified training.
Code 1690: The Configurations Branch coordinates with research project sponsor technical staff, Maintenance Branch (Code 1640) and the Operations/ Projects Branch (Code 1630) to achieve integration of research project equipment onto assigned aircraft. Branch personnel coordinate with customer technical staff to identify specific equipment needs (space, weight, power, etc.). Additionally, Branch personnel interact with Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) counterparts to arrange and obtain equipment installation approvals and flight clearances as well as with organic and external service providers to facilitate the installation and/or removal of specialized project equipment and support infrastructure. The Branch provides long-range planning capabilities to avoid conflict among future projects and to enable satisfaction of even the most demanding project requirements. The Configurations Branch maintains liaison with other codes to ensure assigned personnel can meet anticipated research requirements.