AAFB Spark Cell connects 'A Galaxy Far, Far Away' with 'Mobility's Hometown'

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Kayla Christenson
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

Senior Airman Aaron Yohannan, 97th Logistics Readiness Squadron fuels facilities operator, and Airman 1st Class Aidan Clark, 97th Training Squadron boom operator student, dedicate their free time to creating Star Wars lightsabers, helmets, and other replicas at the Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma Spark Cell.

The Spark Cell provides 3D printers, laser cutters, and other tools and services to help Airmen foster a culture of innovation and solve larger problems. Master Sgt. Joseph Royer, 97th Air Mobility Wing Spark Cell superintendent, guides Airmen through the process of creating innovative solutions and pitching their ideas to leadership.

“The Spark Cell gives Airmen hope that their ideas to solve problems are valid and a means to articulate them,” said Royer. “It gives them a space to test and develop physical objects and intangible objects like computer software. It gives them an avenue to create and implement lasting change.”

Both Yohannan and Clark became Star Wars fans at a young age, and are grateful for the opportunity to blend their love of the franchise with the innovative opportunities the Spark cell provides.

“My dad was watching (‘Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back’), and I immediately fell in love with the universe and with the lightsaber in particular,” said Yohannan. “The lightsaber is so iconic.”

“I'm really grateful that I have the opportunity to use this equipment,” said Clark. “All of these tools enable Airmen like me to just create, solve problems, design things and learn more about computers and technology.”

The Spark Cell is open 24/7 at the ARC to Airmen interested in taking advantage of the services and equipment provided at the facility.