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Name (Last, First Middle)Schnick, Robert H.
Branch at time of eventUSAF
RankLieutenant Colonel
SquadronCS 13
Home TownBaltimore
Home StateMD
High SchoolParkville Senior High School, Baltimore, MD.
High School ActivitiesNatl Honor Soc, College Club
Post High SchoolNone
Academy ExperiencesSkiClub,EngrClub,MathClub,SaddleClub
Academic Degree MajorBS,EngrMech,USAFA,1972 MS FrensoStateColl 1988
Active Duty Assignments72:PltTng Laredo AFB,TX 73:1TFW MacDill AFB F-4 RTU: 74:48TFW Lakenheath England F-4 Pilot. 76:21TASS Shaw AFB, SC OV-10 Pilot/FAC. 78:497th TFS Kunsan AB Korea, F-4 Pilot. 79; 474TFW Nellis AFB, NV F-4/F-16 Pilot. 82:10TFS Hahn AB Germany F-16 Pilot. 85: Det 5 AFOTEC, F-16 Combined Test Force, Edwards AFB, CA F-16 OT&E Test Director. 90:347TFW Moody AFB, GA 347OSS Commander, F-16 Pilot.
Civilian PositionsAccountant Shell Oil Company Houston TX;
Award Year1989
Award Summary InformationLTC Robert H. Schnick, US Air Force Academy class of 1972, is named winner of the 1989 Col James Jabara Airmanship Award. He earned the award for his sustained superior performance as test director of the F-16 Multinational Staged Improvement Program. Colonel Schnick directed evaluations and flew as the Air Force’s chief F-16 Low Altitude Navigation and Targeting Infrared for Night (LANTIRN) pilot during the most aggressive development and flight-testing phase. During this period he flew 25 hazardous test missions which were well beyond normal operational activities and which presented significant risk to equipment and personnel. These missions, designed to test the LANTIRN system, were flown high-speed at extremely low altitudes and mostly at night. Critical test sorties included Terrain Following Radar (TFR) development tests, night Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) tests, Visual Restriction Device development tests, and Targeting Pod (TGT POD) evaluations. Colonel Schnick was the first F-16 pilot to engage and flight test the Auto Terrain Following System. During the first tests of unproven software and hardware configurations, the performance of the LANTIRN system was uncertain and at times required Colonel Schnick to take corrective action to avoid ground impact. During hands-off flight tests flown against obstacles, towers and sand dunes, known to be difficult for the TFR to see, some clearances were measured to be less than 50 feet. He was the primary authority in General Dynamics and Martin Marietta discussions to prioritize changes to the flight control system. The successful completion of the LANTIRN test program was directly attributable to Colonel Schnick’s tireless efforts and unwavering dedication. He is a most deserving recipient of the 22nd annual presentation of the Jabara Award for Airmanship.
Involved Crew MembersNone
Burial Site/DateN/A
Aeronautical Speciality RatingCommand Pilot
Notable Military and Civilian Decorations & AwardsMSM(3),AM,AFCM(3),AFAM Jabara Award
CommentsRetired: USAF LtCol 1992
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