AFPTEF - History

By September 1944,  the packaging function had been organized under the Army Air Corps as the Packaging Branch, Engineering Standards Division, at Wright Field (now Wright-Patterson AFB) in Ohio.  On Apr. 21, 1952,  Air Material Command (AMC) Organizational Directive 20-670 established the "Packaging Division" of the Air Force Systems Command (AFSC) Materials Laboratory. 

In 1955 the Packaging Engineering Section was established at Brookley AFB.   On Oct. 6, 1959 , the packaging engineering function was formally assigned to Air Research and Development Center (ARDC) Brookley AFB, Mobile Air Materiel Area (MOAMA) near Mobile, Alabama per AFR 71-1.  While at Brookley the organization was variously called the Packaging Research and Engineering Branch and Air Force Packaging Laboratory. 

In January 1964 AFPEA was established as a Named Activity - "Air Force Packaging Evaluation Agency" per Special Order G-29. With the impending closure of  Brookley AFB, the packaging organization returned to Wright-Patterson AFB,  and was assigned to HQ Air Force Logistics Command (AFLC) on July 6, 1967.  The transfer actually took from 1966 to 1970 to complete and regain operational status.   Total losses due to the relocation have been estimated to exceed $20 million - mostly due to programs that were adversely impacted by lack of AFPEA support during the move. 

During the 1980s, AFPEA was reassigned several times.  Notable changes were assignment to HQ Air Force Logistics Command (AFLC) by Special Order GA-24, signed by William R. Carroll, Colonel, USAF , Reassignment to the Air Force Distribution Agency (AFDA) on 16 Feb 1987, and re-designation from Agency to Activity by Special Order GA-11, dated Feb. 19, 1987. 

The mid-1980s saw a major shift in AFPEA workload from trying to field-fix existing problems to preventing  them.  On July 1, 1991 the Packaging Policy office was reassigned as a branch of AFPEA and physically moved into Building 70.  Even though the Policy group had been co-located with AFPEA in Building 70 during the 1967-1975 timeframe, it was separately managed.  This reassignment marks the first merger of these two packaging functions within the Air Force. 

Concurrently the Air Force restructuring changed the office symbol from HQ AFLC/DSTZ to HQ AFLC/LGTP. On Jul 1, 1992, Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC) was formed by consolidating the missions, talents, and expertise of both AFLC and Air Force Systems Command (AFSC).  AFPEA officially ended on Oct. 1, 1994, when the Air Force formed the AFMC Logistics Support Office (LSO) and we were renamed AFPTEF. 

During the 1990s we greatly expanded our design capability with parametric computer design systems and rapid prototyping.  The prototyping was greatly assisted by the addition of numerical-control machining equipment with computer linking.  Container testing was upgraded with the purchase of nearly $1M of new chambers, vibration tables and ancillary test equipment.  This put AFPTEF in the position of being one of the best equipped organizations of its type in the government. 

In 1998, a decision was made that resulted in AFPTEF being downsized  and converted to a fee-for-service organization. Packaging Policy is no longer a part of AFPTEF.