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​Air Forces Central Command is shifting its posture in certain areas from an expeditionary footing to a more enduring presence. The 379th Expeditionary Civil Engineering Squadron, as a result, is undertaking projects to improve infrastructure at al Udeid AB, Qatar, one of AFCENT’s operating hubs. This includes constructing a permanent C-17 spare parts facility to improve access to spares and shorten supply chains, according to a release. Having spares readily available for the aircraft, like C-17s, moving through al Udeid is “critical,” said Maj. Timothy Scheffler, the 379th ECES engineering flight commander. At present, more than 16,000 C-17 spare parts are stored in connexes on a dirt lot on base. This setup, however, leaves some parts prone to degradation due to exposure to dirt, sand, heat, and humidity. Proper storage and organization of these parts will help to prevent this, saving money and enabling members of the 8th Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron return C-17s to mission-ready status faster, said Lt. Col. Jesse Baker, the unit’s commander.