Monday 18th December, 2017
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25th OWS Science and Training Team awarded Thor's Hammer Trophy

U.S. Air Force - Thursday 7th December, 2017

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- According to mythology, the Norse god of thunder, Thor, wielded his mighty hammer as he presided over all aspects of weather. That is, when he wasn't busy fighting forces alongside the "Avengers."

The 25th Operational Weather Squadron Science and Training Team channeled the spirit of the ancient god as they won the inaugural Thor's Legions Forecast Challenge and received the Thor's hammer trophy from Lt. Gen. Mark Nowland, Air Force deputy chief of staff for operations, at the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., Dec. 6, 2017.

"We control the third domain, and weather plays a big part in that," said Nowland. "When Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines [are sent out], we have to make sure they're prepared for combat."

The Thor's Legions Forecast Challenge was held Oct. 10-20, 2017. Weather competitions occur regularly across Air Force units, and often test how accurately Airmen predict first snowfall, maximum hurricane wind speed, precipitation and maximum and minimum temperatures.

The competition also allowed weather Airmen to see firsthand their role in the Air Force's air and space mission, giving America the ability to control the ultimate high ground that is essential to winning America's wars.

"It's a great honor to be the first group to win [the trophy]," said Timothy Villaran, 25th OWS and Science Training Team lead. "The forecast challenge was a great way to practice what we teach."

Forty-nine teams participated in the 10-day challenge, which involved scenarios in China, Kenya, Sweden and Australia. These locations provided challenging environmental conditions, and tested the Airmen's capabilities to predict wind speeds, ceiling, visibility, present weather and temperatures.

Congratulations to the challenge winners:

Timothy Villaran

William Strickler

William Cassell

Ronald Bradford

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