20th Intelligence Squadron

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
20th Intelligence Squadron
20th Intelligence Squadron.png
Active 1942–46; 1947–51; 1954–67; 1992–present
Country United States
Branch  United States Air Force
Type Intelligence
Size Squadron
Part of Air Combat Command
Garrison/HQ Offutt Air Force Base
Mascot(s) Yosemite Sam
Engagements World War II
Decorations Distinguished Unit Citation
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
Philippine Republic Presidential Unit Citation
20th TRS McDonnell RF-101C 56-0183 at Shaw AFB, about 1960

The 20th Intelligence Squadron is a United States Air Force unit, assigned to the National Air Intelligence Center, stationed at Offutt AFB, Nebraska.


The mission of the 20th is to provide prompt, precise intelligence enabling warfighters to safely engage and achieve global objectives. The 20th processes and analyzes raw electronic intelligence data, and prepares both operational and technical ELINT reports and studies. The 20th is organized into three flights:

Ÿ* Target Materials

The Target Material Flight produces precise coordinated measurements and mission-support materials for Air Force bomber, fighter and other airborne platforms engaged in exercise, training or actual combat operations.

Ÿ* Combat Applications

The Combat Applications Flight activities entail providing direct application support for specified combat customers. This includes an AIA node for operational dissemination of near-real time imagery to Air Force and Department of Defense users worldwide. The Combat Applications Flight is also Air Combat Command’s point of contact for premission survivability and threat assessments, target analysis, weaponeering support and post-mission combat assessments for the Conventional Air Launched Cruise Missile program.

Ÿ* Operations

The Operations Flight provides the day-to-day operating support to the other flights within the 20th. These activities are dispersed though branches who perform the activities of planning, requirements management, systems maintenance, logistics support and resource management.


The squadron was originally formed as the 20th Photographic Mapping Squadron in mid-1942.[1] In these early years, the unit worked under several different names and was stationed in the Pacific Theater as an element of Fifth Air Force. The units operated a variety of photographic reconnaissance aircraft in the South Pacific, engaging in combat reconnaissance. It moved to Japan in 1945, carrying out postwar reconnaissance and mapping of the Japanese Home Islands and Korean Peninsula as part of the War Department's Post Hostilities Mapping Project. It was inactivated June 1946[1]

The squadron was allotted to the Air Force Reserve in 1947 as the 20th Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron, a long range reconnaissance squadron. It was called to active duty during the Korean War at the start of May 1951. Its personnel were used as fillers for regular United States Air Force units and it was inactivated as administrative unit two weeks later.[1]

The squadron was reactivated in the regular Air Force as the 20th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron in 1954 under the 432d Tactical Reconnaissance Group as an RF-80A Shooting Star reconnaissance training squadron at Shaw AFB, SC. It upgraded to RF-84F Thunderstreaks in 1955. The squadron transferred to operational missions in 1959 with reassignment to the 363d Tactical Reconnaissance Wing and re-equipped with RF-101 Voodoos. The unit deployed to Florida in 1962 during Cuban Missile Crisis and flew tactical reconnaissance flights over Cuba during the Crisis. It returned to Shaw in late 1962. The squadron deployed to Tan Son Nhut AB, South Vietnam, 1963–1965 flying tactical reconnaissance in Southeast Asia. It was nactivated in 1965.

The squadron was reactivated and designated the 20th Air Intelligence Squadron under the newly formed Air Combat Command in 1992, operating out of Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. A year later, it was redesignated as the 20th Intelligence Squadron and transferred to the Air Intelligence Agency.


  • Constituted as 20th Photographic Mapping Squadron on 14 July 1942
Activated on 23 July 1942
Redesignated 20th Photographic Squadron (Heavy) on 6 February 1943
Redesignated 20th Combat Mapping Squadron on 11 August 1943;
Redesignated 20th Reconnaissance Squadron, Long Range (Photographic-RCM) on 10 May 1945
Inactivated on 20 June 1946
  • Redesignated 20th Reconnaissance Squadron (Night Photographic) on 11 March 1947 and allotted to the reserves
Activated on 25 July 1947.
Redesignated 20th Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron (Photographic Mapping) on 27 June 1949
Ordered to active service on 1 May 1951
Inactivated on 16 May 1951
  • Redesignated 20th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron (Photographic) on 14 January 1954
Activated on 18 March 1954[2]
Inactivated 1 November 1967
  • Redesignated 20th Air Intelligence Squadron and activated 1 October 1992
Redesignated 20th Intelligence Squadron on 1 October 1993





  1. ^ a b c Maurer, Combat Squadrons, pp. 107–108
  2. ^ a b c d Lineage, assignements, aircraft, and stations prior to 1963 are in Maurer, Combat Squadrons, pp. 107–108
  3. ^ Ravenstein, pp. 253–254
  4. ^ Ravenstein, pp. 225–227
  5. ^ Air Force Organization Change Status Report, Research Division, Air Force Historical Research Agency, Maxwell AFB, AL, June 2008


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website http://www.afhra.af.mil/.

External links[edit]