List of U.S. Air Force acronyms and expressions

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This is a list of initials, acronyms, expressions, euphemisms, jargon, military slang, and sayings in common or formerly common use in the United States Air Force. Many of the words or phrases have varying levels of acceptance among different units or communities, and some also have varying levels of appropriateness (usually dependent on how senior the user is in rank). Many terms also have equivalents among other service branches that are not acceptable amongst Marines, but are comparable in meaning. Many acronyms and terms have come into common use from voice procedure use over communication channels, translated into the NATO phonetic alphabet, or both.

The scope of this list is to include words and phrases that are unique to or predominantly used by the United States Air Force. For other military slang lists, see the "See also" section.

0–9[edit]

A[edit]

B[edit]

  • BAH - Basic Allowance for Housing
  • BAS - Basic Allowance for Subsistance
  • BCGs - Birth Control Glasses (nickname for eyeglasses issued by the US military)
  • BCOT - Basic Communications Officer Training
  • BDU - Battle Dress Uniform
  • BIO - Beefeaters, Ice, and an Olive [Invented by Col Ron Clements (RIP)]
  • BIT - Bystander Intervention Training
  • BITC - Base Information Transfer Center
  • BITS - Base Information Transfer System
  • BF - Slang - 'Buddy Fucker' (Someone who through action or inaction causes harm or distress for a fellow Airman) Also, 'Bravo Foxtrot' or 'Blue Falcon'
  • BFE - Slang - 'Bum-f@#$ Egypt.' Refers to a particularly remote and uninspiring base or a remote in-transit stop
  • BFM - Basic Fighter Maneuvers
  • BFT - Blue Force Tracking
  • Bleeding Blue - Refers to a particularly, often annoyingly so, proud Airman.
  • Blueberry - Airman in blues, typically fresh out of BMT and just arriving at techschool (Often used as a negative term)
  • BLUF - Bottom Line Up Front
  • BONE - Nickname for the B-1 Lancer
  • BMT - Basic Military Training
  • BOHICA - Bend Over, Here It Comes Again. Used in the context of low morale that is still on the downward slope when further punishment is imminent and recognizable to the unit
  • BOQ - Bachelor Officer Quarters
  • BOS - Base Operating Support
  • BOT - Basic Officer Training
  • Brig Gen - Brigadier General
  • BS - Bomb Squadron
  • BSA - Basic Surface Attack
  • BTZ - Below the zone Early promotion from E-3 to E-4
  • BUFF -Big Ugly Fat Fucker/Fellow, nickname for a B-52 Stratofortress
  • Butterbar - Slang expression for the rank of second lieutenant; refers to the distinctive gold color of the rank insignia.
  • BW - Bomb Wing
  • BX - Base Exchange

C[edit]

  • C-Day - The unnamed day on which a deployment operation begins or is to begin
  • C2 - Command and Control
  • C4ISR - Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance
  • CA - Combat Arms
  • CAF - Combat Air Force
  • CAI - Computer Aided Instruction
  • CAOC - Combined Air and Space Operations Center
  • CAMS - Core Automated Maintenance System (database behind IMDS)
  • CAP - Civil Air Patrol
  • Capt - Captain
  • CAS - Close Air Support
  • CAST - Combat Airman Skills Training
  • CAT - Crisis Action Team
  • CATM - Combat Arms Training and Maintenance
  • CBCS- Combat Communications Squadron
  • CBMC - Communications Battlespace Management Course
  • CBT - Computer Based Training
  • CBRNE - Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and High Yield Explosives
  • CC - Commander
  • CCAF - Community College of the Air Force
  • CCE - Executive Officer
  • CCF - First Sergeant
  • CCT - Combat Control
  • CDC - Career Development Course
  • CEG - Combat Evaluation Group
  • CES - Civil Engineering Squadron
  • CEVG - Combat Evaluation Group
  • CFEPT - Career Field Education and Training Plan
  • CFR - Crash Fire Rescue
  • CFT - Cockpit Familiarization Trainer
  • CGO - Company Grade Officer (lieutenants and captains)
  • CGOC - Company Grade Officers' Council
  • Charlie Bravo - Cut-back, or being released early from duty
  • Charlie Foxtrot - Cluster Fuck
  • Chief - Proper term of address for Chief Master Sergeant. Also frequently used by pilots to informally refer to maintenance personnel, specifically "Crew Chiefs."
  • CI - Counterintelligence, Compliance Inspection
  • Class Six - Shoppette where beer, wine & liquor is sold.
  • CMO - Civil-Military Operations or Chief Medical Officer (term for senior medical officer at each MEPS -- Military Entrance Processing Station)
  • CMSAF - Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force
  • CMSgt - Chief Master Sergeant
  • CNA - Computer Network Attack
  • CND - Could Not Duplicate
  • CND - Computer Network Defense
  • CNO - Computer Network Operations
  • CNT - Counter Narco-Terror
  • COA - Course of Action
  • Col - Colonel
  • COLA - Cost of Living Adjustment
  • COMINT - Communications Intelligence
  • CONOPS - Concept of Operations
  • CONS - Contracting Squadron
  • CONUS - Continental United States
  • COMAFFOR - Commander, Air Force Forces
  • Cop - Term for Air Force Security Forces
  • COT - Commissioned Officer Training
  • CPF - Civilian Personnel Flight
  • CPTS - Comptroller Squadron
  • Crew Chief - Generally used as an informal slang term for Aerospace Maintenance Personnel, AFSC 2A5. More formally used to refer to an individual in charge of an aircraft maintenance related task requiring multiple people.
  • CS - Communications Squadron
  • CSAF - Chief of Staff of the Air Force
  • CSAR - Combat Search and Rescue
  • CSS - Commander's Support Staff (orderly room)
  • CUI - Combined Unit Inspection
  • CWO - Commissioned Warrant Officer

D[edit]

  • D-Day - The unnamed day on which an operation begins or is to begin
  • DACBT - Dissimilar Air Combat Training
  • DART - Dumbass Radio Troop
  • DBA - Dirtbag Airman (An Airman who does not represent the Air Force Core Values)
  • DEAD - Destruction of Enemy Air Defenses
  • DEERS - Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System
  • DEROS - Date Estimated Return from OverSeas
  • Dependapotamus - Name given to overbearing & overweight bitchy dependent wives
  • DFAC - Dining Facility
  • DINSTAAR - Danger Is No Stranger To An AGE Ranger (See AGE)
  • DMSP - Defense Meteorological Satellite Program
  • DOE - Date of Enlistment
  • Dollar Ride - A pilot's first flight in an airframe
  • Doolie - nickname for a first year Air Force Academy cadet
  • DOR - Date of Rank
  • Double Dip - Term used when in a dual status and receiving income from two sources (e.g. Military Technician on civilian leave and orders)
  • DRSN - Defense Red Switch Network
  • DRU - Direct Reporting Unit
  • DSCS - Defense Satellite Communications System
  • DSN - Defense Switched Network
  • DSP - Defense Support Program
  • DSPD - Defense Support to Public Diplomacy
  • DT - Development Team
  • DTS - Defense Travel System

E[edit]

F[edit]

  • FAA - Federal Aviation Administration
  • FAC - Forward Air Controller
  • FAIP - First Assignment Instructor Pilot
  • FGO - Field Grade Officer (majors, lieutenant colonels, and colonels)
  • FIGMO - Fuck it I Got My Orders
  • Fini Flight - A pilot's last flight in the aircraft before he/she leaves a squadron
  • FLPP - Foreign Language Profeciency Pay
  • FMC - Fully Mission Capable
  • FMS - Foreign Military Sales
  • FMS -Field Maintenance Squadron
  • FNG - Fucking New Guy
  • FOA - Field Operating Agency
  • FOD - Foreign Object Damage or debris that can cause damage
  • FOUO - For Official Use Only
  • Four Fan Trash Can - Nickname for the C-130 Hercules
  • Four Fans of Freedom - Nickname for the C-130 Hercules
  • FRED - Fucking Ridiculous Economic Disaster (term for the C-5 Galaxy)
  • FS - Fighter Squadron
  • FSB - Force Shaping Board
  • FSS - Force Support Squadron
  • FTAC - First Term Airman's Center
  • FTU - Formal Training Unit
  • FTW - Flying Training Wing
  • FUBAR - Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition
  • F.U.C.K. – Fornication Under Consent (of the) King - Always used correctly by an NCO as a Verb, Noun, Adjective, Adverb, Pronoun, Preposition, Conjunction,Interjection.
  • FW - Fighter Wing

G[edit]

H[edit]

I[edit]

J[edit]

  • J-STARS - Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System
  • JA - Judge Advocate
  • JA/ATT - Joint Airborne/ Air Transportability Training
  • JAOC - Joint Air and Space Operations Center
  • JATO - Jet-Assisted Take-Off
  • JDAM - Joint Direct Attack Munition
  • JEEP - Just Enough Education To Pass
  • JEEP - Just Entering Electronic Principals
  • JFACC - Joint Forces Air Component Commander
  • JOAP - Joint Oil Analysis Program
  • JOPES - Joint Operation Planning and Execution System
  • JPATS - Joint Primary Air Training System
  • JPPT - Joint Primary Pilot Training
  • JSOW - Joint Standoff Weapon
  • JSUPT - Joint Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training
  • JWICS - Joint Worldwide Intelligence Communications System

K[edit]

  • KISS - Keep It Simple Stupid

L[edit]

  • LAPES - Low Altitude Parachute Extraction System
  • LATN - Low Altitude Tactical Navigation
  • Lawn Dart - Nickname for F-16 Fighting Falcon or any other fast, pointy, single-engine aircraft.
  • LCAP - Logistics Compliance Assessment Program
  • LEAP - Language Enabled Airman Program
  • LGB - Laser-Guided Bomb
  • LIMFAC - Limiting Factor
  • Linda LoveLace ( Reference to C-5, because it kneels and takes it from both ends )
  • LOA - Letter of Admonishment
  • LOA - Letter of Appreciation
  • LOAC - Law of Armed Conflict
  • LOC - Letter of Counseling
  • LOGI - Logistics NCOIC (Squadron, Group, Wing)
  • LOR - Letter of Reprimand
  • LOWAT - Low Altitude Training
  • LRS - Logistics Readiness Squadron
  • Lt Col - Lieutenant Colonel
  • Lt Gen - Lieutenant General
  • LWOP - Leave Without Pay

M[edit]

N[edit]

O[edit]

  • OA - Occupational Analysis
  • OA - Outstanding Airman
  • OAPT - Officer Awaiting Pilot Training.
  • OAPTer - An officer in OAPT status. While other 2nd Lt's begin their training and leadership, OAPTers complete menial tasks in support of the mission, while they wait for their assigned training date (this is known as "casual status"). It is important for all operational bases, as OAPTers are most often supplement workforce.
  • OAR - Occupational Analysis Report
  • OAY - Outstanding Airman of the Year
  • OAYA - Outstanding Airman of the Year Award
  • OCONUS - Outside the Continental United States
  • OCR - Office of Collateral Responsibility
  • OFO - Out Fucking Off
  • OG - Operations Group
  • OIC - Officer in Command
  • OL - Operating Location
  • OODA - Observe Orient Decide Act
  • OPCON - Operational Control
  • OPR - Office of Primary Responsibility
  • OPR - Officer Performance Report
  • OPSEC - Operations Security
  • OPTN - Operationalizing and Professionalizing the Network
  • ORI - Operational Readiness Inspection
  • ORM - Operation Risk Management
  • OSI - Office of Special Investigation
  • OSR - Occupational Survey Report
  • OSS - Operations Support Squadron
  • OT&E - Operational Test and Evaluation
  • OTS - Officer Training School

P[edit]

Q[edit]

  • QAF - Quality Air Force
  • Qweep - A task or duty that is completely useless and ultimately unrelated to your primary job. It is often assigned by superiors not of your career field as they assume that you have time to constantly work these tasks. Example: "I have a lot of qweep to do before I go home." "I need to finish all of this qweep before I can go fly."

R[edit]

S[edit]

  • SAASS - School of Advanced Air and Space Studies
  • SAC - Strategic Air Command
  • SAF/SECAF - Secretary of the Air Force
  • SAM - Surface to Air Missile
  • SARC - Sexual Assault Response Coordinator
  • SATCOM - Satellite Communications
  • SAV - Staff Assisted Visit
  • SBIRS - Space-Based Infrared System
  • SDF - Standard Deployment Folder
  • SEAD - Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses
  • SEADS - Southeast Air Defense Sector
  • Secret squirrel stuff - Material classified above secret or compartmentalzed information.
  • Senior - Informal shortening for Senior Master Sergeant
  • SEPCOR - Separate Correspondence
  • SERE - Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape
  • SF - Security Forces
  • SFS - Security Forces Squadron
  • Shirt - A unit first sergeant
  • SIGINT - Signals Intelligence
  • SIPR - Secret Internet Protocol Router Network
  • SKT - Specialty Knowledge Test
  • Slick Sleeve - Nickname for an Airman Basic (owing to the absence of rank insignia on an individual's sleeve)
  • SME - Subject Matter Expert
  • SMSgt - Senior Master Sergeant
  • SNAFU - Situation Normal All Fucked Up
  • SNCO - Senior Non-commissioned Officer
  • SNCOA - Senior Non-commissioned Officer Academy
  • Snacko - A highly underestimated, mission critical position held most often by Lieutenants in a new flying squadron. Doing well at the Snacko position will prompt one for a laudable career. Failing at such a job will often entail severe ridicule and, if necessary, replacement and retraining by the flying squadron.
  • SOP - Standard Operating Procedure
  • SOPS - Space Operations Squadron
  • SOS - Squadron Officer School or Special Operations Squadron
  • SOW - Special Operations Wingz
  • Spark Chaser - Nickname for most any aircraft maintenance personnel dealing with electronic, non-mechanical systems.
  • Spirit Mission - A good natured act, commonly in the form of a prank, banner, or...reacquisition...of a person/thing, to show pride for a group of individuals. Usually harmless.
  • Sq - Squadron
  • SrA - Senior Airman
  • SRC - Solid Rock Cafe (new as of 2011, found @ Sheppard AFB, Wichita Falls TX - unofficial anogram that is used by officers as well as students)
  • SSgt - Staff Sergeant
  • SST - Supervisor Safety Training
  • Staff - Informal shortening for Staff Sergeant
  • STEP - Stripe Through Exceptional Performance
  • Strike Eagle - Nickname for F15 E
  • Stink Bug - Nickname for the F-117 Nighthawk
  • STS - Special Tactics Squadron
  • SVS - Services Squadron
  • SW - Space Wing
  • SWA - Southwest Asia
  • SWAG - Scientific Wild-Ass Guess

T[edit]

  • T&A - Test and Acceptance
  • TAC - Tactical Air Command
  • TAC-P - Tactical Air Control Party
  • TACON - Tactical Control
  • TAFCSD - Total Active Federal Commission Service Date
  • TAFMSD - Total Active Federal Military Service Date
  • TAG (AG) - The Adjutant General
  • Tail-End Charlie - Person bringing up the rear of a formation or a tail gunner
  • TAP - Transition Assistance Program
  • TCNO - Time Compliance Network Order
  • TCTO - Time Compliance Technical Order
  • TDY - Temporary Duty
  • Tech - Informal shortening of Technical Sergeant
  • TFCSD - Total Federal Commissioned Service to Date
  • TGP - Targeting Pod
  • TLAR - That Looks About Right
  • TLF - Temporary Living Facility
  • TO - Technical Order
  • TOT - Time Over Target
  • Tracking - Reference to offensive avionics on combat aircraft. Following and understanding the subject at hand. (IE: "I need this done yesterday, Airman. Are you tracking?")
  • TRW - Training Wing
  • TSgt - Technical Sergeant
  • TST - Time-Sensitive Target
  • TTP - Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures

U[edit]

V[edit]

  • Viper - Nickname for the F-16 Fighting Falcon
  • VML - Vulnerable to Move List
  • vMPF - Virtual Military Personnel Flight
  • V/R - Virtual Regards or Very Respectfully (closing salutation)
  • vRED - Virtual Record of Emergency Data
  • VSP - Voluntary Separation Pay

W[edit]

X[edit]

Y[edit]

Z[edit]

  • Zero - Officer
  • Zoo - Nickname for the Air Force Academy
  • Zoomie - Nickname for an Air Force Academy graduate or cadet

See also[edit]

External links[edit]