Air Force Reserve Command
|Air Force Reserve Command|
Headquarters, Air Force Reserve Command, Robins Air Force Base, Georgia
|Active||1 August 1968 – 17 February 1997 (as: Air Force Reserve)
17 February 1997–present (as: Air Force Reserve Command)
|Branch||United States Air Force|
|Role||Air Reserve Component (ARC)|
|Size||Nearly 57,000 personnel|
|Garrison/HQ||Robins Air Force Base, Georgia|
|Lt Gen James F. Jackson|
|Air Force Reserve Command Emblem|
|Attack||A-10 Thunderbolt II
F-15E Strike Eagle
F-16 Fighting Falcon
|Multirole helicopter||HH-60G Pave Hawk|
|Reconnaissance||RQ-4 Global Hawk (UAV)|
T-6 Texan II
C-17 Globemaster III
C-40 Clipper (B-737)
HC-130P Combat King
WC-130 Hurricane Hunter
The Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) is a Major Command (MAJCOM) of the United States Air Force, with its headquarters stationed at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia. It is a federally controlled Air Reserve Component (ARC) of the USAF, consisting of duly appointed officers and enlisted airmen.
AFRC supports the Air Force mission to defend the United States through control and exploitation of air and space by supporting Global Engagement. The AFRC plays an integral role in the day-to-day Air Force mission and is not a force held in reserve for possible war or contingency operations.
If its units are mobilized, AFRC units and their support elements are primarily gained by Air Combat Command and Air Mobility Command, with a smaller number of units gained by Air Force Global Strike Command, Air Force Special Operations Command, Air Force Space Command, Pacific Air Forces, and Air Education and Training Command. The mobilized components are immediately deployable without need for additional training.
The federal reserve component of the United States Air Force, AFRC has about 450 aircraft assigned to it. The inventory includes the latest, most capable models of aircraft assigned to the active-duty U.S. Air Force. On any given day, 99 percent of these aircraft are mission-ready and able to deploy within 72 hours.
The purpose of the Air Force Reserve as derived from Title 10 United States Code is to:
Provide combat-ready units and individuals for active duty whenever there are not enough trained units and people in the Regular component of the Air Force to perform any national security mission.
Unlike the Air National Guard, the Air Force Reserve is strictly a "federal" reserve component under Title 10 of the United States Code (Title 10 USC). However, in combination with the Air National Guard, the Air Force Reserve comprises the other half of what is known as the Air Reserve Component (ARC) of the United States Air Force. Under the "Total Force" concept, Air Force Reserve Command units are trained and equipped by the Air Force and are operationally gained by a Major Command of the USAF if mobilized. In addition, the AFRC forces are assigned to Air Expeditionary Forces and are subject to deployment tasking orders along with their active duty and Air National Guard counterparts in their assigned cycle deployment window.
Air Force Reservists are on duty around the world at their home base or deployed as part of Air Expeditionary Units. In addition to its role as a proven and respected combat force, the Air Force Reserve is also involved in international humanitarian relief missions, from repairing roads and schools to airlifting supplies. At the request of local, state or federal agencies, the Air Force Reserve also conducts aerial spray missions or forest fire suppression missions using specially MAFS equipped C-130 Hercules.
The Air Force Reserve has some specialized capabilities not found in regular Air Force units. These include support of counter-narcotics detection and interdiction efforts in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard; aerial weather reconnaissance, including hurricane penetration, augmenting the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA); aeromedical evacuation; aerial spray capabilities and forest fire suppression.
Reserve Categories 
There are several categories of service in the Air Force Reserve. Most Reservists serve in the Unit Program, in which they are required to report for duty at least one weekend a month and an additional two weeks a year. However, many serve well in excess of this minimum requirement.
A smaller but equally important category of Reservist is the Individual Mobilization Augmentee (IMA). IMAs are Reservists who are assigned to active duty units to do jobs that are essential in wartime but do not require full-time manning during times of peace. They report for duty a minimum of one day a month and twelve additional days a year. Like their Unit Program counterparts, many IMAs also serve well in excess of the minimum military duty requirement.
A small number of Reservists serve limited tours of active duty, usually at headquarters staff level or in other special assignments. Their job is to bring Reserve expertise to the planning and decision-making processes at senior levels within the Air Force, other services and joint combatant commands.
Like the Air National Guard, the Air Force Reserve Command also requires two categories of personnel to perform functions that require full-time manning. These full-time positions are filled via the same two programs as employed by the Air National Guard: the Active Guard and Reserve (AGR) and Air Reserve Technician (ART) programs.
AFRC Recruiting is one of the fields in which an Air Force Reservist can become a member of the Active Guard and Reserve, otherwise knownas AGR. AGRs receive full active duty pay and benefits just like active members of any branch of the armed forces. They serve four-year controlled tours of special duty that can be renewed. Other AGRs serve with operational AFRC flying and non-flying wings and groups; at active and reserve numbered air forces; on the staffs of other USAF Major Commands (MAJCOMs), Field Operating Agencies (FOAs) and Direct Reporting Units (DRUs); on the Air Staff at Headquarters, U.S. Air Force (HAF); on the staffs of unified combatant commands; on the Joint Staff and in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD). AGRs also have the option with good conduct and performance to serve 20 or more years on active duty and receive a retirement after 20 or more years, just like active members of the Regular Air Force.
Air Force Reservists serving in the Air Reserve Technician Program (ART) carry a dual status, working as full-time civil service employees for the Air Force and as military members in the same AFRC units where they work as civil servants, performing the same job duties. Although "technically" civil servants part of the time, all ART officers and the vast majority of ART enlisted personnel wear their uniforms and utilize their rank titles at all times when on duty. Most ART personnel are assigned to operational AFRC flying wings, groups and squadrons in various operational flying, aircraft maintenance and other support positions and functions, up to and including wing commander.
Traditional Reservists (TR) are categorized by several criteria in the Ready Reserve, Standby Reserve, Inactive Ready Reserve or Retired Reserve:
- Ready Reserve
- The Ready Reserve is made up of approximately 74,000 trained Reservists who may be recalled to active duty to augment active forces in time of war or national emergency. These Reservists are combat ready and can deploy to anywhere in the world in seventy-two hours.
- Standby Reserve
- The Standby Reserve includes Reservists whose civilian jobs are considered key to national defense or who have temporary disability or personal hardship. Most Standby Reservists do not train and are not assigned to units.
- Individual Ready Reserve (IRR)
- These Reservists no longer train, but are qualified in their fields and eligible to be recalled in the event of a national emergency.
- There is a small group of these IRR reservists labeled PIRR, or Participating IRR, who receive points toward retirement but not drill pay and are under Category E status. There are over 1,000 ALOs or USAF Academy Liaison Officers and Civil Air Patrol Reserve Liaison Officers in this field, as well as some Air Force chaplains and a few other positions that require Military duty, but not a fixed schedule. These CAT E personnel can earn active duty mandays with pay just like Cat A and B reservists, but on a more limited basis.
- Retired Reserve
- The Retired Reserve is made up of officers and enlisted personnel who receive pay after retiring from active duty or from the Reserve, or are Reservists awaiting retirement pay at age 60, although exceptions are made for certain reservists mobilized to active duty since 11 Sep 2001 who may receive retirement pay earlier on a sliding scale between ages 58 and 60. TRICARE Retiree Dental Care is also authorized, however, medical care under TRICARE is still delayed for the retiree and eligible family members until the retiree turns age 60.
Associate Program 
A USAF Associate Unit is a unit where active duty, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard members combine forces and missions using Total Force concept integration. The Air Force Reserve Command Associate Program provides trained crews and maintenance personnel for active-duty owned aircraft and space operations. This unique program pairs a Reserve unit with an active-duty unit to share a single set of aircraft and rests on the idea that there are more operational requirements than there are manpower to fulfill them. The Associate Reserve program is based on providing manpower to complement the Total Force
Previously, an associate unit was one where the active duty (typically a wing level organization) owned the aircraft and the Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard wing or group co-located with the active duty unit, providing only manpower. To take advantage of the synergies and aircraft, active duty units are now being stood up at what were previously Air Force Reserve Command or Air National Guard locations, where the Air Reserve Component organization technically "owns" the aircraft, but share them with an active duty squadron, group or wing that provides additional manning. This enables the Air Force to be more productive in meeting the global demands for primarily Mobility Air Forces (MAF), although the concept is now being extended to the Combat Air Forces (CAF) as well. The result is a more cost-effective way to meet increasing mission requirements.
- In an active associate unit, the Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard owns the aircraft, while the active force provides air crews and maintainers who share the responsibility of flying and maintaining the planes.
- In a traditional associate unit, Air Force Reservists fly and maintain aircraft owned by the active duty. In many of these units, particularly in the MAF, the aircraft have re-marked to include both Regular Air Force and Air Force Reserve Command or Air National Guard organizational and unit markings.
- A corollary unit is an Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard squadron or group attached to an active duty squadron or group.
Associate reservists fly the largest [[Air Mobility Command airlifters, the C-5 Galaxy, and the newest AMC global airlifter, the C-17 Globemaster III. Air Force Reserve associate crews account for nearly 50 percent of the Air Force's C-5 and C-17 air crew capability. AFRC also provides aerial refueling capability with aircrews operating AMC KC-10 Extenders in associate units and KC-135 Stratotankers in both associate and Air Reserve Component air mobility wings and air refueling wings and groups. Associate KC-10 units provide 50 percent of the KC-10 crews and contribute 50 percent to the maintenance force. Reservists also contribute about 13 percent of the KC-135 aerial refueling requirements.
Air Combat Command F-22A Raptor air dominance fighters, F-16 Fighting Falcons, F-15E Strike Eagles and A-10 Thunderbolt II ground attack aircraft are jointly operated by ACC active duty personnel and AFRC aircrews, as well as F-16 and A-10 aircraft in stand-alone AFRC fighter wings. The combat search and rescue and special operations missions also have both stand-alone flying units as well as Associate Programs along with Air Education and Training Command pilot training schools. Space Operations associate units operate Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP), Defense Support Program (DSP) and Global Positioning System (GPS) Satellites.
More than 9,100 reservists train in the C-130 Hercules airlift mission in a variety of aircrew, aircraft maintenance and support skills. In wartime, AFRC provides 23 percent of Air Force's C-130 airlift force. About half of the Reserve's airlift units fly and own the shorter range C-130 Hercules. Its speed, range, load-carrying characteristics and capability to operate under difficult terrain conditions make it an invaluable and versatile aircraft. It's strong enough to deliver its cargo on unimproved landing strips. Other missions involve aeromedical evacuation and special air support operations. The Air Force Reserve also operates the HC-130 in the Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) mission and the WC-130 in the weather reconnaissance mission
Nearly 57,000 reservists are assigned to specific Air Force Reserve units. These are the people who are obligated to report for duty for a minimum one weekend each month and two weeks of annual training a year, with most performing many additional days of military duty. Reserve aircrews, for example, average more than 100 military duty days a year, often flying in support of national objectives at home and around the world. Air Reserve Technicians (ARTs), the special group of reservists who work as Air Force civil service employees during the week in the same jobs they hold as reservists on drill weekends and active duty periods, provide a degree of continuity that serves to make the Air Force Reserve a relevant combat force. ARTs are the full-time backbone of the unit training program, providing day-to-day leadership, administrative and logistical support, and operational continuity for their units. More than 9,500 reservists, over 15 percent of the force, serve full-time as ARTs.
Total Force concept 
The Air Force Reserve (AFRES) was created as a separate operating agency (SOA) and replaced a major command – Continental Air Command – which inactivated in August 1968. Upon activation, AFRES assumed command of all personnel, equipment and aircraft previously assigned to ConAC.
As the 1970s unfolded, the challenge then was to find the right mix of forces for mission effectiveness. Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird adopted the Total Force concept in August 1970 with Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger declaring it policy in 1973.
With the implementation of the Total Force Policy, the Air Force Reserve became a multi-mission force, flying the same modern aircraft as the active Air Force. Mobilization planning and operational evaluation were integrated with the corresponding active duty functions. With the same equipment and budget authority, the Air Force Reserve was held to the same readiness standards and inspections as regular Air Force units. Special operations, air refueling, weather reconnaissance, and, once again, fighter missions were added to the airlift, rescue, and mission support roles performed by the Air Force Reserve. The associate concept soon expanded to include the C-5 Galaxy.
Cold War era 
Air Force Reserve participation in Air Force exercises and deployments perfected its mobility capabilities as demonstrated throughout the seventies, most notably during the Israeli Airlift of 1973, some 630 crewmembers volunteered for Middle East missions to include flying into Ben Gurion Airport, Tel Aviv while another 1,590 Reservists performed missions worldwide, freeing up more active crews for airlift.
The 1980s saw the modernization and expansion of the Air Force Reserve program. KC-10 Extenders joined the associate force in 1981, expanding its air refueling capability. Fighter units obtained the more modern A-10 Thunderbolt II ground support aircraft and F-4 Phantom IIs, and in 1984, the Air Force Reserve received its first F-16A Fighting Falcon. Operationally, the Air Force Reserve participated in Operation Urgent Fury, the return of American students from Grenada in 1983, performed air refuelings of F-111 bombers during the El Dorado Canyon raid on Libyan-sponsored terrorists in 1986, and acted as a full partner in Operation Just Cause which ousted Panama's General Manuel Noriega in 1989–1990. Air Force Reservists also supported humanitarian and disaster relief efforts, including resupply and evacuation missions in the aftermath of 1989's Hurricane Hugo. The Reserve's continual volunteering allayed the concerns of those who believed the Air Force Reserve would not be available when really needed.
Middle East and Yugoslavian operations 
Air Force Reserve airlift and tanker crews were flying within days of Saddam Hussein's Invasion of Kuwait in August 1990. When ground operations commenced as part of Operation Desert Storm, Air Force Reserve A-10s from the New Orleans 926th Tactical Fighter Group operated close to the front lines along with Air Force Reserve special operations and rescue forces. A Reservist scored the first-ever A-10 air-to-air kill. When Operations Desert Shield/Storm ended, the air Force Reserve counted 23,500 Reservists mobilized with another 15,000 serving in a volunteer capacity.
The Air Force Reserve had become indistinguishable from the active force in capability; there was no difference between an Air Force Reserve pilot and an active duty pilot, or a boom operator, or loadmaster.
In the aftermath of Desert Storm, Air Force Reservists continued to serve and were heavily involved in both Operation Northern Watch and Operation Southern Watch during the 1990s, enforcing the United Nations-mandated no-fly zones over northern and southern Iraq as well as in humanitarian relief missions during Operation Provide Comfort] to assist uprooted Iraqi Kurds. For over six years, Air Force Reserve C-130s performed these Provide Comfort missions on a rotational basis while F-16s and rescue HH-60 Pave Hawks deployed to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, for the no-fly operations. In 1993, when tensions mounted in Bosnia, Air Force Reserve tanker and fighter units participated in enforcing the Operation Deny Flight no-fly zone while airlift units ensured logistical resupply.
The Air Force increasingly relied on its Air Force Reserve component for a "steady state" of daily assistance—whether it was flying airlift channel, fire fighting, aerial spray, hurricane hunter missions, or providing highly skilled medical and aeromedical personnel. As a result, Congress sought to clarify the organizational placement of the reserves. Accordingly, in February 1997, the Air Force Reserve officially became the Air Force Reserve Command, the Air Force's ninth major command.
Between March and September 1999, Air Force Reservists volunteered and were also mobilized for Operation Allied Force operations over Serbia and Kosovo. The involuntary recall marked the ninth time the Air Force had requested a mobilization of Air Force Reserve units and personnel since 1950. In summary, Reservists provided 150,000 mandays of support that spanned the spectrum of Air Force missions. The Air Force Reserve once again proved itself as an adaptable and capable force, ready to perform the full range of Air Force operations on an integrated and daily basis in sync with the new Air and Space Expeditionary Force (AEF) concepts.
Global War on Terrorism 
When terrorists attacked the United States on 11 September 2001, Air Force Reservists responded in full measure. Air Force Reserve F-16 Fighting Falcon fighters flew Combat air patrols (CAPs) protecting America's cities while AFRC KC-135 Stratotankers and E-3 Sentry AWACs aircraft supported with air refuelings and security. In October 2001, the United States initiated the Global War on Terrorism as military forces entered Afghanistan to combat the Taliban in Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). Air Force Reserve special operations MC-130 Combat Talon aircraft became the first fixed-wing aircraft to penetrate Afghan airspace while Air Force Reserve F-16 crews, already deployed in theater for Operation Southern Watch, performed the first combat missions.
Air Force Reservists made significant contributions by flying close air support, combat delivery, rescue, strategic airlift, and air refueling missions supporting operations in Afghanistan. They also provided B-52 Stratofortress, special operations, aeromedical, security forces, and civil engineering support. Air Force Reserve A-10s, HH-60s and C-130 Hercules continue to perform rotational tours in Afghanistan, and Air Force Reservists have been instrumental in building the Afghan National Army Air Corps.
When Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF), the war against Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq began in March 2003, Air Force Reserve combat-ready A-10, B-52, and F-16 aircrews flew numerous strike operations during the first hours of engagement and performed special operations and rescue missions. Air Reserve rescue personnel were among the first into Tallil Air Base as Reserve A-10s provided close air support. Part of the lead tanker force, Reserve tankers offloaded more than 21 million pounds of fuel to more than 1,000 aircraft. In late March 2003, fifteen C-17 Globemaster III Reserve associate crews supported the C-17 airdrop, which opened up the Northern Front in Iraq.
Additionally, Reservists supported Air Force Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) missions and space-based operations in Southwest Asia, providing essential data to battlefield commanders. During the combat phase (19 March-1 May) of OIF, Air Force Reserve aircraft and crews flew nearly 162,000 hours and deployed 70 unit-equipped aircraft in theater while aeromedical personnel provided 45 percent of the Air Force's aeromedical crews that performed 3,108 patient movements.
The Air Force Reserve continues to expand its associate construct across the mission spectrum. Specific examples are the Air Force Reserve 477th Fighter Group associating at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, flying the F-22 Raptor jointly with the PACAF 3d Wing and the active duty associating with the C-40 Clipper-equipped 932d Airlift Wing with the 375th Air Mobility Wing at Scott AFB, Illinois, and the 433d Airlift Wing C-5 Galaxy at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas. On the horizon, associate units will include future weapon systems such as the F-35 Lightning II and the Next-Generation Bomber in the 2020s.
- The War Department established an Army Air Forces Air Reserve Program as part of the United States Army Air Forces, July 1946. With the establishment of an independent U.S. Air Force in September 1947, Air Force Reserve personnel and units were assigned to Continental Air Command
- Established as Air Force Reserve, and activated as a separate operating agency, on 21 June 1968
- Organized on 1 August 1968, assuming reserve assets of Continental Air Command (Inactivated)
- Status changed from separate operating agency to direct reporting unit on 1 July 1978
- Returned to separate operating agency status on 1 May 1983
- Status changed from separate operating agency to field operating agency on 5 February 1991
- Re-designated Air Force Reserve Command and status changed from a field operating agency to a major command of the United States Air Force on 17 February 1997
- United States Air Force, 1 August 1968 – present
- Air Forces
Air Force Reserve’s entire intermediate management structure was realigned effective 8 October 1976. The Reserve Regions were inactivated and succeeded by the reactivated Fourth, Tenth and Fourteenth Air Forces
- Fourth (Reserve) (later, Fourth) Air Force: 8 October 1976 – present
- Tenth (Reserve) (later, Tenth) Air Force: 8 October 1976 – present
- Fourteenth (Reserve) (later, Fourteenth) Air Force: 8 October 1976 – 1 July 1993
- Twenty-Second Air Force: 1 July 1993 – present
- First Air Force Reserve Region: 1 August 1968 – 31 December 1969
- Third Air Force Reserve Region: 1 August 1968 – 31 December 1969
- Fourth Air Force Reserve Region: 1 August 1968 – 31 December 1969
- Fifth Air Force Reserve Region: 1 August 1968 – 31 December 1969
- Sixth Air Force Reserve Region: 1 August 1968 – 31 December 1969
- Central Air Force Reserve Region: 31 December 1969 – 8 October 1976
- (Ellington AFB, TX) Became Responsible for the Fourth and Fifth Region areas
- Eastern Air Force Reserve Region: 31 December 1969 – 8 October 1976
- (Dobbins AFB, GA) Became responsible for the First and Third Region areas
- Western Air Force Reserve Region: 31 December 1969 – 8 October 1976
- (Hamilton AFB, CA) Re-designation of the Sixth Air Force Reserve Region
- Support components
- Individual Mobilization Augmentee Readiness Management Group: 1 Apr 2005 – present
- 8600 Air Force Reserve Command Support (later, 952 Reserve Support Squadron; Air Force Reserve Command Force Generation Center): 1 Feb 1991 – present
- Air Reserve Personnel Cebter: 1 Jul 1978 – 1 May 1983; 15 Sep 1997 – present
- Air Force Reserve Command Recruiting Service: 1 Oct 1994 – present
- 581st (later, Command Band of the Air Force Reserve; Band of the Air Force Reserve; Band of the USAF Reserve) Band: 1 Aug 1968 – present
- 2400th Reserve Advisor (later, 2400 Reserve Readiness and Mobility; 951st Reserve Support) Squadron: 1 Dec 1972 – present
- 953d Reserve Support Squadron: 1 Jul 1997 – 1 Oct 2011
- 954 Reserve Support Flight (later, 954 Reserve Support Squadron): 15 Dec 1997 – 1 Oct 2011.
- Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, 1 August 1968 – present
See also 
- AFRC at globalsecurity.org
- Air Force Reserve Command USAFHRA Factsheet
- Cantwell, Gerald (1987), Citizen Airmen, A History of the Air Force Reserve, 1946–1994. Washington, D.C.: Air Force History and Museums Program: GPO, 1997 ISBN 0-16049-269-6
- AMC officials blend tanker units
- Air Force Reserve Official Website
- Air Force Historical Research Agency Wings and Groups factsheets
- Fourth Air Force website
- Tenth Air Force website
- About the AFR – What We Do
- Twenty Second Air Force website
- AFRC History 1969–1989
- AFRC History 1990–1999
- AFRC history 2000–