List of current Royal Australian Air Force aircraft

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This is a list of the current Royal Australian Air Force aircraft in operation:

Current aircraft[edit]

Aircraft Type Unit Operating Number of Aircraft Origin Image
Combat aircraft
Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet strike fighter No. 1 Squadron 24  United States A RAAF F/A-18F in 2013
No. 6 Squadron
Boeing F/A-18A/B Hornet multirole fighter No. 3 Squadron 71  United States
 Australia
A RAAF F/A-18A in 2010
No. 75 Squadron
No. 77 Squadron
No. 2 Operational Conversion Unit
Patrol aircraft
Lockheed AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft No. 10 Squadron 19  United States
 Australia
A RAAF AP-3C
No. 11 Squadron
AEW&C aircraft
Boeing E-7A Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning & Control aircraft No. 2 Squadron 6[1]  United States
 Australia
Boeing 737 AEW&C aircraft of the Royal Australian Air Force
Transport aircraft
Boeing C-17 Globemaster heavy transport No. 36 Squadron (RAAF Base Amberley) 6 (8)  United States An RAAF C-17 parked at Melbourne Airport, January 2009
Lockheed C-130J Hercules medium transport No. 37 Squadron (RAAF Base Richmond) 12  United States RAAF Lockheed C-130J-30 Hercules at Canberra Airport
Airbus KC-30A Multi-Role Tanker Transport No. 33 Squadron (RAAF Base Amberley) 5  Spain RAAF KC-30A at Brisbane Airport
Boeing BBJ (Boeing Business Jet) VIP transport No. 34 Squadron (Defence Establishment Fairbairn) 2  United States RAAF Boeing BBJ at Canberra Airport
Bombardier Challenger CL-604 VIP transport No. 34 Squadron (Defence Establishment Fairbairn) 3  Canada RAAF Bombardier at Canberra Airport
Beechcraft King Air 350 light transportA No. 38 Squadron (RAAF Base Townsville) 8  United States RAAF Lockheed C-130J-30 Hercules at Canberra Airport
Training aircraft
Pilatus PC-9/A advanced trainer Central Flying School (RAAF Base East Sale)[2] 65  Australia RAAF Pilatus PC-9A at Avalon Airport
No. 2 Flying Training School (RAAF Base Pearce)
Forward Air Control Development Unit (RAAF Base Williamtown).
BAe Hawk 127 lead-in fighter trainer No. 76 Squadron (RAAF Base Williamtown) 33  United Kingdom RAAF BAe Hawk 127 at Avalon Airport
No. 79 Squadron (RAAF Base Pearce).
Beechcraft King Air 350 light transport No. 32 Squadron (RAAF Base East Sale) 8  United States RAAF Lockheed C-130J-30 Hercules at Canberra Airport
Remotely Piloted Aircraft
IAI Heron RPA No. 5 Flight 4B  Israel RAAF Heron RPA

Future acquisitions[edit]

Air 6000 Ph2A/2B: Lockheed F-35A prototype
  • AIR 6000: Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II multirole fighter[3][4]
    • A possible total of 100 F-35As are to be purchased under Project Air 6000 to replace the Hornets and Super Hornets.
      • AIR 6000, Phase 2A/2B, Stage 1: 14 F-35A fighters have been approved for purchase for service entry from 2014.
      • AIR 6000, Phase 2A/2B, Stage 2: 58 F-35A fighters have been approved for purchase bringing total on order to 72 aircraft. Stage 1&2 will replace all F/A-18A/B fighters in service.
      • AIR 6000, Phase 2C: around 28 additional F-35A fighters planned for purchase. These will replace all F/A-18F fighters in service.


Air 7000 Ph2B: P-8A and P-3C
  • AIR 7000: ADF Maritime ISR capability replacement[5]
    • Programme to replace the AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft with a manned MPA/UAV mix.
      • AIR 7000, Phase 1B: Purchase of 7 high altitude, long endurance maritime surveillance UAV. The MQ-4C Global Hawk was originally selected for the role, but the decision has been delayed until after the manned portion is introduced.
      • AIR 7000, Phase 2B: Purchase of 8 Boeing P-8A Poseidon manned MPA has been given first-pass approval for service entry from 2018.



  • AIR 5428: Pilot Training System[9]
    • Programme to replace PC-9/A training aircraft and training syllabus.
      • Air 5428, Phase 1: Unknown number of advanced training aircraft, along with flight training screening and syllabus. Aircraft numbers are to be determined by the winning bidder, but aircraft type selected by RAAF.


  • Boeing EA-18G Growler. On 23 August 2012, the Australian Government announced that 12 RAAF Super Hornets would be fitted with Growler capability at a cost of $1.5 billion, making the Royal Australian Air Force the only military other than the U.S. to operate the Growler's electronic jamming equipment. In May 2013, Australia announced it would keep all 24 F/A-18F Super Hornets and order 12 new-built EA-18G Growlers.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

A. ^ This aircraft is considered an interim capability to cover the retirement of the de Havilland Canada DHC-4 Caribou and the introduction of its replacement under the much troubled Project Air 8000 Phase 2.
B ^ The aircraft are both leased from the Canadian firm Macdonald Dettwiler and Associates.[10] Training on the UAVs is provided by a third aircraft operated by No. 5 Flight RAAF.[11]
  1. ^ Waldron, Greg. "RAAF receives final Wedgetail AEW&C aircraft". Flight International, June 5, 2012.
  2. ^ "Pilatus PC-9/A trainer" (url). RAAF Website. Archived from the original on 2008-03-29. Retrieved 2008-03-31. 
  3. ^ "JSF Joint Strike Fighter". Royal Australian Air Force website. Archived from the original on 2008-02-27. Retrieved 2008-03-13. 
  4. ^ "Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft AIR 6000 Phase 2A/B". Defence Materiel Organisation. May 2011. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  5. ^ "AIR 7000 Phase 1B/2B". Defence Materiel Organisation. June 2011. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  6. ^ "AIR 8000 Battlefield Airlift". Defence Materiel Organisation. December 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  7. ^ Smith MP, Stephen (2012-05-10). "New Battlefield aircraft for the Air Force". Minister for Defence and Minister for Defence Materiel – Joint Media Release. Commonwealth of Australia. Retrieved 2012-05-10. 
  8. ^ Ellery, David (2012-05-10). "New airlifters confirmed for RAAF". The Sydney Morning Herald (smh.com.au: Fairfax Media). Retrieved 2012-05-10. 
  9. ^ "AIR 5428 Ph 1 Pilot Training System". Defence Materiel Organisation. December 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  10. ^ Walters, Patrick (8 September 2010). "Heron on the wing to guide Diggers". The Australian. Retrieved 7 September 2010. 
  11. ^ McLaughlin, Andrew (April 2010). "Nankeen. The RAAF enters the UAV era with Heron lease". Australian Aviation (Fyshwick: Phantom Media) (No. 270): p. 31. ISSN 0813-0876. 


External links[edit]