List of United States Navy aircraft squadrons

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This is a list of United States Navy aircraft squadrons. Deactivated or disestablished squadrons are listed in the List of Inactive United States Navy aircraft squadrons. Navy aircraft squadrons are typically composed of several aircraft (from as few as two to as many as several dozen), the officers who fly them and the men and women that maintain them. Most squadrons also have a number of other administrative support personnel. Some of the activities listed are not technically "squadrons", but they all operate U.S. Navy aircraft in some capacity.

Squadrons and their history are listed in the Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons (DANAS).

Squadron organization[edit]

Navy squadron organizational chart. (Click the diagram to enlarge it)

Active duty squadrons are typically commanded by a Commander. Second in command is the Executive Officer (XO), also a Commander. The XO typically assumes command of the squadron after approximately 15 months. There are typically four functional departments - Operations, Maintenance, Safety/NATOPS, and Administration - each led by a Lieutenant Commander functioning as the Department Head. Within the departments are Divisions (each typically headed by a Lieutenant) and Branches (headed by a Lieutenant, junior grade or a Chief Petty Officer).

Reserve squadrons are also commanded by a Commander, with another Commander as the XO who will also assume command after approximately 15 months. However, reserve squadron demographics are typically older and more senior in rank than their active duty squadron counterparts. Department Heads in reserve squadrons are typically senior Lieutenant Commanders, although some may be recently promoted Commanders. Where this difference in maturity level becomes more apparent is at the Division Officer level. Since most officers in reserve squadrons previously served on active duty in the Regular Navy in a flying status for eight to ten or more years, they are typically already Lieutenant Commanders, or achieve that rank shortly after transferring to the Navy Reserve. As a result, Lieutenants are a minority and Lieutenants, junior grade, practically non-existent in reserve squadrons. As a result, Divisions are typically headed by Lieutenant Commanders and Branches by Lieutenants, Senior Chief Petty Officers or Chief Petty Officers.

Types of squadrons[edit]

Navy aircraft are classified by Type (rotary wing, fixed wing), Model (e.g. SH-60), and Series (e.g., SH-60B versus SH-60F).[1]

Squadrons can be categorized in a number of ways: Active versus Navy Reserve, land-based versus sea-based, fixed wing versus rotary wing (helicopter) vs Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), and by mission. Unlike the USAF, US Army, and USMC, the US Navy does not refer to organizations such as maintenance (though US Navy aircraft squadrons do include their own organic maintenance departments), medical, administrative or other units as "squadrons". In the US Navy a squadron is a unit of aircraft, ships, submarines or boats. There are two exceptions: Tactical Air Control Squadrons (TACRON) consists of personnel specialized in the control of aircraft in support of amphibious operations; and the operating units of Naval Special Warfare Development Group colloquially known as "SEAL Team SIX", are called "squadrons" named by color (these squadrons are the organizational equivalent of a "regular" SEAL Team). This article concerns US Navy aircraft squadrons.

Active squadrons are those in the regular US Navy. Reserve squadrons are in the US Navy Reserve and are manned by a combination of full-time and part-time reservists. For the most part, there is no way to know by the squadron's name alone whether it is an active or reserve squadron. There are Reserve elements of many Active squadrons, and active duty personnel serving in many Reserve squadrons. In general, reserve squadrons share the same missions as their active counterparts, although there are Reserve missions (e.g., Adversary and Fleet Logistics Support) that have no Active counterpart.

At any one time, the US Navy has approximately 600 aircraft that are associated with particular ships. There are also several thousand additional Navy aircraft that are capable of shipboard operations, but are not associated with a ship. The Navy also has several hundred land-based aircraft that are not capable of shipboard operations.

Squadrons are listed here by type (fixed/rotary wing) and by mission.

Squadron designations[edit]

Navy aircraft squadrons can be properly referred to by designation or nickname. The designations describe the squadron's mission and therefor the general type of aircraft.

  • The Formal form designation (e.g., Strike Fighter Squadron EIGHT SIX) indicates the mission.
    • A subset of the formal form designation is a Navy acronym format in capital letters, e.g., STKFITRON EIGHT SIX
  • The abbreviated designation (e.g., VFA-86) also indicates the type and mission, as each of the letters has a meaning. In this case, "V" stands for fixed wing, "F" stands for fighter, and "A" stands for attack.
  • Nickname – e.g., "Sidewinders".

A single squadron can carry a number of designations through its existence. Chief Of Naval Operations Instruction (OPNAVINST) 5030.4G governs the squadron designation system. A squadron comes into existence when it is "established". Upon establishment it receives a designation, for example Patrol Squadron ONE or "VP-1". During the life of the squadron it may be "redesignated" one or more times, the Navy's oldest currently active squadron is VFA-14 and it has been redesignated 15 times since it was established in 1919. Over the history of U. S. Naval Aviation there have been many designations which have been used multiple times (re-used) resulting in multiple unrelated squadrons bearing the same designation at different times. A full description of the history and use of aircraft squadron designations along with the rules governing the lineages of U. S. Navy aircraft squadrons can be found at List of Inactive United States Navy aircraft squadrons.[2]

Fixed Wing Squadrons[edit]

Navy fixed wing squadron designations start with the letter "V" because in 1920 with issuance of General Order 541, two overall types of aircraft were identified and assigned permanent letters; lighter than air types were identified by the letter Z and heavier than air types by the letter V.[3] The use of letter abbreviations for squadrons was promulgated in the "Naval Aeronautic Organization for Fiscal Year 1923" which is the first known record associating the abbreviated Aircraft Class Designations (V-heavier than air, Z-lighter than air, and letters designating role) with abbreviated squadron designations.[4] In 1948 the Navy established its first two operational helicopter squadrons designating them as Helicopter Utility Squadrons. It departed from the established "V" heavier than air and "Z" lighter than air system and instead gave them the designation "HU" (H-Helicopter, U-Utility). From that point on heavier than air squadrons which flew rotary wing aircraft were designated with the first letter of "H" while heavier than air squadrons flying fixed wing aircraft retained the original heavier than air "V" then associating the "V" only with fixed wing squadrons. There were two exceptions during the history of Naval Aviation that violated the rule, they were; the use of "RVAH" to denote Reconnaissance Attack Squadrons which operated the RA-5C Vigilante during the 1960s and 1970s and the use of "RVAW" from 1967 to 1983 to designate the Airborne Early Warning (VAW) Fleet Replacement Squadrons.

Electronic Attack (VAQ)[edit]

The VAQ designation was established in 1968 to designate "Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron".[5] In February 1998 the name of the designation was changed to "Electronic Attack Squadron" and all VAQ squadrons then in existence were renamed from "Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron-____" to "Electronic Attack Squadron-____".

A typical Electronic Attack Squadron consists of five Boeing EA-18G Growlers. The primary mission of the Growler is Electronic Attack (EA), also known as Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses (SEAD) in support of strike aircraft and ground troops by interrupting enemy electronic activity and obtaining tactical electronic intelligence within the combat area. Navy Electronic Attack squadrons carry the letters VAQ (V-fixed wing, A-attack, Q-electronic).

Most VAQ squadrons are carrier based, however a number are "expeditionary", deploying to overseas land bases. When not deployed (either on land or carrier), they are home-ported at NAS Whidbey Island, WA. The exception is VAQ-141, which is forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan.[6]

Note: The parenthetical (Second use) and (2nd) appended to some designations in the table below are not a part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U.S. Naval Aviation to designate a squadron and that these were the second use of that designation.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft[7] Operational Commander [a] Administrative Commander [b] Squadron Lineage[8] Notes
VAQ-129
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 129 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Vikings
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAH-10: 1 May 1961-1 Sep 1970
VAQ-129: 1 Sep 1970-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS Whidbey Island
VAQ-130
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 130 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Zappers
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAW-13: 1 Sep 1959-1 Oct 1968
VAQ-130: 1 Oct 1968-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VAQ-131
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 131 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Lancers
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VP-920: 1 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-ML-70: 15 Nov 1946-Feb 1950
VP-931: Feb 1950-4 Feb 1953
VP-57: 4 Feb 1953-3 Jul 1956
VAH-4: 3 Jul 1956-1 Nov 1968
VAQ-131: 1 Nov 1968-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
USNR squadron VP-931 was activated on 2 Sep 1950 for participation in the Korean War[9]
VAQ-132
Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 132 (US Navy) inisgnia c1992.png
Scorpions
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAH-2: 1 Nov 1955-1 Nov 1968
VAQ-132: 1 Nov 1968-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
Expeditionary Squadron
VAQ-133
(Second use)
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 133 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Wizards
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-133(2nd): 1 Apr 1996-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
There was an earlier squadron designated VAQ-133 also called the "Wizards" which existed from 4 Mar 1969 to Jun 1992
VAQ-134
Electronic Attack Squadron 134 (US Navy) inisgnia 1969.png
Garudas
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-134: 17 Jun 1969-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
Expeditionary Squadron
VAQ-135
VAQ-135 (Logo).jpg
Black Ravens
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-135: 15 May 1969-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
Expeditionary Squadron
VAQ-136
VAQ-136.png
Gauntlets
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-136: 6 Apr 1973-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VAQ-137
(Second use)
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 137 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Rooks
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-137(2nd): 1 Oct 1996-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
There was an earlier squadron designated VAQ-137 also called the "Rooks" which existed from 14 Dec 1973 to 26 May 1994
VAQ-138
Electronic Attack Squadron 138 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Yellowjackets
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-138: 27 Feb 1976-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
Expeditionary Squadron
VAQ-139
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 139 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Cougars
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-139: 1 Jul 1983-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VAQ-140
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 140 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Patriots
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-140: 1 Oct 1985-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VAQ-141
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 141 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Shadowhawks
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-141: 1 Jul 1987-present Forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
VAQ-142
(Second use)
Boat patch 1.jpg
Gray Wolves
EA-18G
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
VAQ-142(2nd): 1 Apr 1997-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
There was an earlier squadron designated VAQ-142 called the "Grim Watchdogs" which existed from 1 Jun 1988 to March 1991
VAQ-209
Carrier Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 209 (US Navy) - insignia.gif
Star Warriors
EA-18G
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
VAQ-209: 1 Oct 1977-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island

Carrier Airborne Early Warning (VAW)[edit]

E-2C Hawkeye
E-2D Hawkeye

The VAW designation was first created in July 1948 with the establishment of VAW-1 and VAW-2 to designate "Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron".[10] It was in use for only one month as in August 1948 VAW-1 and VAW-2 were redesignated "Composite Squadron" VC-11 and VC-12. In 1948 the VAW designation was resurrected[11] when VC-11 and VC-12 were redesignated VAW-11 and VAW-12. In 1967, VAW-11 and VAW-12 which were large land based squadrons that provided detachments of Airborne Early Warning aircraft to deploying Carrier Air Wings were redesignated as wings and each of their detachments were established as separate squadrons.[12] Established from VAW-11 were RVAW-110 (a FRS), VAW-111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116 and established from VAW-12 were RVAW-120 (a FRS), VAW-121, 122, 123, 124.

Each Carrier Airborne Early Warning squadron consists of four E-2C or E-2D Hawkeyes except for the Fleet Replacement Squadron which has more. Transition to the E-2D Hawkeye is in progress and should be complete by 2025. The Hawkeye's primary mission is to provide all-weather airborne early warning, airborne battle management and command and control (C2) functions for the carrier strike group and Joint Force Commander. Additional missions include surface surveillance coordination, air interdiction, offensive and defensive counter air control, close air support coordination, time critical strike coordination, search and rescue airborne coordination and communications relay. The E-2 Hawkeye and C-2 Greyhound are built on the same airframe and have many similar characteristics. For this reason, both aircraft are trained for in the same Fleet Replacement Squadron.[13]

When not deployed, they are home-ported at either Naval Station Norfolk, VA or Naval Air Station Point Mugu, CA. The exception is VAW-125, which is forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [c] Administrative Commander [d] Squadron Lineage[14] Notes
VAW-113
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 113 (US Navy) patch.png
Black Eagles
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-113: 20 Apr 1967-present Homeport NAS Pt. Mugu
Established from a detachment of VAW-11
VAW-115
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 115 (US Navy) patch.png
Liberty Bells
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-115: 20 Apr 1967-present Homeport NAS Pt. Mugu
Established from a detachment of VAW-11
VAW-116
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 116 (US Navy) patch.png
Sun Kings
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-116: 20 Apr 1967-present Homeport NAS Pt. Mugu
Established from a detachment of VAW-11
VAW-117
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 117 (US Navy) patch.png
Wallbangers
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-116: 1 Jul 1974-present Homeport NAS Pt. Mugu
VAW-120
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 120 (US Navy) patch.png
Grey Hawks
E-2C
E-2D

C-2A
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
RVAW-120: 1 Jul 1967-1 May 1983
VAW-120: 1 May 1983-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NS Norfolk
RVAW-120 established from VAW-12
VAW-121
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 121 (US Navy) patch.png
Blue Tails
E-2D
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-121: 1 Apr 1967-present Homeport NS Norfolk
Established from a detachment of VAW-12
VAW-123
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 123 (US Navy) patch.png
Screwtops
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-123: 1 Apr 1967-present Homeport NS Norfolk
Established from a detachment of VAW-12
VAW-124
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 124 (US Navy) patch.png
Bear Aces
E-2C
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-124: 1 Sep 1967-present Homeport NS Norfolk
Established from a detachment of VAW-12
VAW-125
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 125 (US Navy) patch.png
Tigertails
E-2D
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-125: 1 Oct 1968-present Forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni Japan
VAW-126
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 126 (US Navy) patch.png
Seahawks
E-2D
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VAW-126: 1 Apr 1969-present Homeport NS Norfolk

Strike Fighter (VFA)[edit]

F/A-18Fs being refueled over Afghanistan in 2010
VFA-101 received its first F-35C at Eglin AFB, 22 June 2013.

The VFA designation was created in 1980 to designate "Fighter Attack Squadron". The designation was assigned to squadrons equipped with the new F/A-18A Hornet fighter attack aircraft. In 1983 the designation was changed to "Strike Fighter Squadron"[15] and all VFA squadrons in existence at the time were renamed from "Fighter Attack Squadron-___" to "Strike Fighter Squadron-___". A Strike Fighter Squadron consists of either ten F/A-18C Hornets, twelve F/A-18E/F Super Hornets,[16] or in future, ten F-35C Lightning IIs.[17][18] Training squadrons (known as Fleet Replacement Squadrons) have many more aircraft. The Hornet and Super Hornet are all-weather aircraft used for attack and fighter missions. In fighter mode, the they are used primarily as a fighter escort and for fleet air defense; in attack mode, they are used for force projection, interdiction and close and deep air support. The Hornet and Super Hornet are also used for SEAD and the Super Hornet for aerial refueling.

The F-35C is a fifth-generation strike fighter that was originally planned to replace the F/A-18C Hornet, but expiring F/A-18C service life and delays in F-35C procurement forced the Navy to increase its buy of F/A-18E and F Super Hornets to replace F/A-18C Hornets while awaiting the arrival of the F-35C. As of 2018, all but three active component F/A-18C Hornet squadrons and the single reserve component Hornet squadron had transitioned to the F/A-18E or F Super Hornet. The first deployable squadron to transition to the F-35C is a Super Hornet squadron. Ultimately the three active component Hornet squadrons will transition to either the Super Hornet or F-35C and each Carrier Air Wing will be equipped with two Super Hornet squadrons and two F-35C squadrons.

When not deployed VFA squadrons are home-ported at NAS Lemoore, CA or NAS Oceana, VA except for the squadrons of CVW-5 which are forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan

Note: The parenthetical (1st), (2nd), (3rd) etc... appended to some designations in the lineage column of table below are not a part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U.S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated. Absence indicates that the designation was used only once.

"F/A-18 Hornet strike fighter". USN Fact File. United States Navy.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [e] Administrative Commander [f] Squadron Lineage[19] Notes
VFA-2
Fighter Squadron 2 (US Navy) insignia 1973.png
Bounty Hunters
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-2(5th): 14 Oct 1942-21 Jul 2003
VFA-2: 21 Jul 2003-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-11
Strike Fighter Squadron 11 (US Navy) insignia, 2015.png
Red Rippers
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-43(4th): 1 Sep 1950-16 Feb 1959
VF-11(3rd): 16 Feb 1959-18 Oct 2005
VFA-11: 18 Oct 2005-present
Second "Red Rippers" squadron
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-14
Strike Fighter Squadron 14 (US Navy) insignia 2001.png
Tophatters
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
Air Det Pac Flt: Sep 1919-15 Jun 1920
VT-5(1st): 15 Jun 1920-7 Sep 1921
VP-1-4: 7 Dec 1921-23 Sep 1921
VF-4(1st) 23 Sep 1921-1 Jul 1922
VF-1(1st): 1 Jul 1922-1 Jul 1927
VF-1B(1st): 1 Jul 1927-1 Jul 1934
VB-2B: 1 Jul 1934-1 Jul 1937
VB-3: 1 Jul 1937-1 Jul 1939
VB-4: 1 Jul 1939-15 Mar 1941
VS-41(2nd): 15 Mar 1941-1 Mar 1943
VB-41: 1 Mar 1943-4 Aug 1943
VB-4: 4 Aug 1943-15 Nov 1946
VA-1A: 15 Nov 1946-2 Aug 1948
VA-14: 2 Aug 1948-15 Dec 1949
VF-14(2nd): 15 Dec 1949-1 Dec 2001
VFA-14: 1 Dec 2001-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
Oldest currently active aircraft squadron in the U. S. Navy
VFA-22
VFA-22 insignia.gif
Fighting Redcocks
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-63: 28 Jul 1948-Mar 1956
VA-63: Mar 1956-1 Jul 1959
VA-22: 1 Jul 1959-4 May 1990
VFA-22: 4 May 1990-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-25
Strike Fighter Squadron 25 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Fist of the Fleet
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VT-17: 1 Jan 1943-15 Nov 1946
VA-6B: 15 Nov 1946-27 Jul 1948
VA-65(1st): 27 Jul 1948-1 Jul 1959
VA-25(2nd): 1 Jul 1959-1 Jul 1983
VFA-25: 1 Jul 1983-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-27
Strike Fighter Squadron 27 (US Navy) insignia c1998.png
Royal Maces
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VA-27: 1 Sep 1967-24 Jan 1991
VFA-27: 24 Jan 1991-present
Forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
VFA-31
Felix VF-31 logo.svg
Tomcatters
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-1B(2nd): 1 Jul 1935-1 Jul 1937
VF-6(2nd): 1 Jul 1937-15 Jul 1943
VF-3(3rd): 15 Jul 1943-15 Nov 1946
VF-3A: 15 Nov 1946-7 Aug 1948
VF-31(2nd): 7 Aug 1948-1 Aug 2006
VFA-31: 1 Aug 2006-present
Second "Felix the Cat" squadron
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-32
Strike Fighter Squadron 32 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Swordsmen
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VBF-3: 1 Feb 1945-15 Nov 1946
VF-4A: 15 Nov 1946-7 Aug 1948
VF-32(2nd): 7 Aug 1948-1 Aug 2006
VFA-23: 1 Aug 2006-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-34
Strike Fighter Squadron 34 (US Navy) insignia 1999.png
Blue Blasters
F/A-18C
(to transition to F/A-18E)
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VA-34(3rd): 1 Jan 1970-30 Aug 1996
VFA-34: 30 Aug 1996-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
To transition to F/A-18E in 2019
VFA-37
Vfa-37.png
Ragin Bulls
F/A-18C
(in transition to F/A-18E)
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VA-37: 1 Jul 1967-28 Nov 1990
VFA-37: 28 Nov 1990-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
To transition to F/A-18E Super Hornet
VFA-41
Fighter Squadron 41 (US Navy) insignia 1987.png
Black Aces
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-41(4th): 1 Sep 1950-1 Dec 2001
VFA-41: 1 Dec 2001-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-81
VFA-81insignia.png
Sunliners
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VA-66(1st): 1 Jul 1955-1 Jul 1955
VF-81(4th): 1 Jul 1955-1 Jul 1959
VA-81: 1 Jul 1959-4 Feb 1988
VFA-81: 4 Feb 1988-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
Established 1 July 1955 as VA-66 and redesignated VF-81 on the same day
VFA-83
Strike Fighter Squadron 83 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Rampagers
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-916: 1 Feb 1951-4 Feb 1953
VF83(3rd): 4 Feb 1953-1 Jul 1955
VA-83: 1 Jul 1955-1 Mar 1988
VFA-83: 1 Mar 1988-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
USNR squadron VF-916 activated on 1 Feb 1951 for the Korean War
VFA-86
Strike Fighter Squadron 86 (US Navy) patch 1987.png
Sidewinders
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-921: 1 Feb 1951-4 Feb 1953
VF-84(2nd): 4 Feb 1953-1 Jul 1955
VA-86(2nd): 1 Jul 1955-15 Jul 1987
VFA-86: 15 Jul 1987-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
USNR squadron VF-921 activated on 1 Feb 1951 for the Korean War
VFA-87
Strike Fighter Squadron 87 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Golden Warriors
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VA-87: 1 Feb 1968-May 1986
VFA-87: May 1986-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-94
Strike Fighter Squadron 94 (US Navy) insignia 1990.png
Mighty Shrikes
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-94(2nd): 26 Mar 1952-1 Aug 1958
VA-94(2nd): 1 Aug 1958-24 Jan 1991
VFA-94: 24 Jan 1991-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-97
Strike Fighter Squadron 97 (US Navy) insignia c1998.png
Warhawks
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VA-97: 1 Jun 1967-24 Jan 1991
VFA-97: 24 Jan 1991-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-101
Strike Fighter Squadron 101 (US Navy) patch 2012.png
Grim Reapers
F-35C
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-101: 1 May 1952-1 May 2012
(inactive 30 Sep 2005-1 May 2012)
VFA-101: 1 May 2012-present
Second "Grim Reaper" squadron
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at Eglin Air Force Base with the USAF 33rd Fighter Wing which is the USAF F-35A training wing.
VF-101 was deactivated on 30 Sep 2005 as a F-14 FRS and reactivated[20] and redesignated VFA-101 as a F-35C FRS on 1 May 2012
VFA-102
Strike Fighter Squadron 102 (US Navy) insignia 2009.png
Diamondbacks
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VA-36(2nd): 1 Jul 1955-1 Jul 1955
VF-102(2nd): 1 Jul 1955-1 May 2002
VFA-102: 1 May 2002-present
Forward Deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
Established 1 Jul 1955 as VA-36(2nd) and redesignated VF-102(2nd) on the same day
VFA-103
Fighter Squadron 103 (US Navy) insignia 1995.png
Jolly Rogers
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-103: 1 May 1952-27 Apr 2006
VFA-103: 27 Apr 2006-present
Third "Jolly Roger" squadron
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-105
Strike Fighter Squadron 105 (US Navy) insignia 2014.png
Gunslingers
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VA-105(2nd): 4 Mar 1968-17 Dec 1990
VFA-105:17 Dec 1990-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-106
Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Gladiators
F/A-18C,
F/A-18E, F/A-18F
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VFA-106: 27 Apr 1984-present Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS Oceana
Adopted nickname and insignia of VA-106 which had been disestablished in 1969
VFA-113
Vfa113logo.gif
Stingers
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-113: 15 Jul 1948-Mar 1959
VA-113: Mar 1956-25 Mar 1983
VFA-113: 25 Mar 1983-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-115
Strike Fighter Squadron 115 (US Navy) insignia 1996.png
Eagles
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VT-11: 10 Oct 1942-15 Nov 1946
VA-12A: 15 Nov 1946-15 Jul 1948
VA-115: 15 Jul 1948-30 Sep 1996
VFA-115: 30 Sep 1996-present
Forward Deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
VFA-122
Strike Fighter Squadron 122 (US Navy) insignia 1999.png
Flying Eagles
F/A-18E, F/A-18F
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VFA-122: 1 Oct 1998-present Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS Lemoore
Adopted nickname and insignia of VA-122 which had been disestablished in 1991
VFA-125
Strike Fighter Squadron 125 (US Navy) insignia 2017.png
Rough Raiders
F-35C
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VFA-125: 13 Nov 1980-present
(inactive 1 Oct 2010-12 Jan 2017)
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS Lemoore
Adopted nickname and insignia of VA-125 which had been disestablished in 1977
Deactivated on 1 Oct 2010 as a Hornet FRS and reactivated[21] as a F-35C FRS on 12 Jan 2017
VFA-131
Strike Fighter Squadron 131 (US Navy) insignia c1984.png
Wild Cats
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VFA-131: 3 Oct 1983-present Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-136
Strike Fighter Squadron 136 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Knighthawks
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VFA-136: 1 Jul 1985-present Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-137
Strike Fighter Squadron 137 (US Navy) insignia 2012.png
Kestrels
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VFA-137: 1 Jul 1985-present Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-143
Strike Fighter Squadron 143 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Pukin' Dogs
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-871: 20 Jul 1950-4 Feb 1953
VF-123: 4 Feb 1953-12 Apr 1958
VF-53(3rd): 12 Apr 195-20 Jun 1962
VF-143(2nd): 20 Jun 1962-27 Apr 2006
VFA-143: 27 Apr 2006-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
USNR squadron VF-871 activated on 20 Jul 1950 for the Korean War
VFA-146
Strike Fighter Squadron 146 (United States Navy) (insignia).gif
Blue Diamonds
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VA-146: 1 Feb 1956-21 Jul 1989
VFA-146: 21 Jul 1989-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-147
Strike Fighter Squadron 147 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Argonauts
F-35C
(in transition)
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VA-147: 1 Feb 1967-20 Jul 1989
VFA-147: 20 Jul 1989-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
Undergoing F/A-18E to F-35C transition in 2018
VFA-151
VFA-151Logo.png
Vigilantes
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-23(2nd): 6 Aug 1948-23 Feb 1959
VF-151(4th): 23 Feb 1959-1 Jun 1986
VFA-151: 1 Jun 1986-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-154
Fighter Squadron 154 (US Navy) patch.png
Black Knights
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-837: 1 Feb 1951-4 Feb 1953
VF-154: 4 Feb 1953-1 Oct 2003
VFA-154: 1 Oct 2003-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
USNR VF-837 activated on 1 Feb 1951 for the Korean War
VFA-192
Strike Fighter Squadron 192 (US Navy) insignia c1985.png
Golden Dragons
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VF-153(1st): 26 Mar 1945-15 Nov 1946
VF-15A: 15 Nov 1946-15 Jul 1948
VF-151(2nd): 15 Jul 1948-15 Feb 1950
VF-192(2nd): 15 Feb 1950-15 Mar 1956
VA-192: 15 Mar 1956-10 Jan 1985
VFA-192: 10 Jan 1985-present
Homeport NAS Lemoore
VFA-195
Strike Fighter Squadron 195 (US Navy) insignia c2009.png
Dambusters
F/A-18E
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
VT-19: 15 Aug 1943-15 Nov 1946
VA-20A: 15 Nov 1946-24 Aug 1948
VA-195: 24 Aug 1948-1 Apr 1985
VFA-195: 1 Apr 1985-present
Forward Deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan
VFA-204
Strike Fighter Squadron 204 (US Navy) insignia, 1992.png
River Rattlers
F/A-18C
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
VA-204: 1 Jul 1970-1 May 1991
VFA-204: 1 May 1991-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Homeport NAS JRB New Orleans
VFA-211
Strike Fighter Squadron 211 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Checkmates
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VB-74: 1 May 1945-15 Nov 1946
VA-1B: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VA-24: 1 Sep 1948-1 Dec 1949
VF-24(2nd): 1 Dec 1949-9 Mar 1959
VF-211(2nd): 9 Mar 1959-1 Aug 2006
VFA-211: 1 Aug 2006-present
Homeport NAS Oceana
VFA-213
Strike Fighter Squadron 213 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Black Lions
F/A-18F
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
VF-213: 22 Jun 1955-1 Aug 2006
VFA-213: 1 Aug 2006-present
Homeport NAS Oceana

Fighter Squadron Composite (VFC)[edit]

F-5s.

The VFC designation was created in 1988 when two Fleet Composite (VC) squadrons which were dedicated adversary squadrons were redesignated to differentiate them from the remaining VC squadrons which fulfilled various miscellaneous or utility roles. In 2006 a third VFC squadron was established from what had become a permanent detachment of VFC-13. VFC squadrons provide adversary simulation for fleet squadrons. All VFC squadrons are Navy Reserve squadrons.

Two of the squadrons are based at NAS Fallon and NAS Key West to support fleet VFA squadron training at the extensive range complexes supported by those air stations. The third is based at NAS Oceana to support Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic squadron training.

Note: The parenthetical (2nd) and (3rd) appended to some designations in the lineage column of table below are not a part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U.S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated. Absence indicates that the designation was used only once.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [g] Squadron Lineage[22] Notes
VFC-12
VFC12.jpg
Fighting Omars
F/A-18A
F/A-18B
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
VC-12(3nd): 1 Sep 1973-22 Apr 1988
VFC-12: 22 Apr 1988-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Based at NAS Oceana
VFC-13
Vfc13 insigia.jpg
Saints
F-5F
F-5N
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
VC-13(2nd): 1 Sep 1973-22 Apr 1988
VFC-13: 22 Apr 1988-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Based at NAS Fallon
VFC-111
Fighter Squadron 111 (United States Navy) insignia, 1981.png
Sundowners
F-5F
F-5N
Commander, Tactical Support Wing
VFC-111: 1 Nov 2006-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Third "Sundowners" squadron
Based at NAS Key West
Adopted nickname and insignia of VF-111(3rd) which had been disestablished in 1995

Patrol (VP), Patrol Squadron Special Unit (VPU), Unmanned Patrol (VUP)[edit]

P-8A Poseidon.
P-3C Orion
MQ-4C Triton.

The VP designation is one of the oldest in the U. S. Navy and is the oldest designation currently in use. It first appeared in 1922 to designate "Seaplane Patrol Squadron" and from 1924 it has designated "Patrol Squadron".[23] In 1982 the VPU Patrol Squadron Special Unit designation was created.[24] Maritime patrol aircraft are used primarily for reconnaissance, anti-surface warfare and anti-submarine warfare. Volume 2 of the Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons contains comprehensive histories over 150 patrol squadrons. Its Appendix 7 details the lineage of every VP, VPB, VP(H), and VP(AM) squadron from 1922 through the late 1990s.

In 2016 the first "Unmanned" Patrol Squadron (VUP) was established. VUP-19 operates the MQ-4C Triton unmanned air vehicle from an operations center located at NAS Jacksonville while its aircraft with aircraft maintenance personnel are deployed around the world as required. A second VUP squadron is programmed for establishment in 2018 with an operations center at NAS Whidbey Island.

When not deployed VP squadrons are home-ported at NAS Jacksonville, FL or NAS Whidbey Island, WA except for VPU-2 which is home-ported at MCAS Kaneohe Bay.

Note: The parenthetical (1st), (2nd), (3rd) and (First use), (Second use) etc... appended to some designations in the table below are not part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U.S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated. Absence indicates that the designation was used only once.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [h] Squadron Lineage[25] Notes
VP-1
(Fifth use)
Patrol Squadron 1 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Screaming Eagles
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VB-128: 15 Feb 1943-1 Oct 1944
VPB-128: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-128: 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-ML-1: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-1(5th): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VP-4
(Second use)
Patrol Squadron 4 (United States Navy) insignia 2015.png
Skinny Dragons
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VB-144: 1 Jul 1943-1 Oct 1944
VPB-144: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-144: 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-ML-4: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-4(2nd): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VP-5
(Second use)
Patrol Squadron 5 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Mad Foxes
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VP-17F: 2 Jan 1937-1 Oct 1937
VP-17(1st): 1 Oct 1937-1 Jul 1939
VP-42(1st): 1 Jul 1939-15 Feb 1943
VB-135: 15 Feb 1943-1 Oct 1944
VPB-135: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-135: 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-ML-5: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-5(2nd): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-8
(Second use)
Patrol Squadron 8 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Tigers
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VP-201: 1 Sep 1942-1 Oct 1944
VPB-201: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-201: 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-MS-1: 15 Nov 1946-5 Jun 1947
VP-ML-8: 5 Jun 1947-1 Sep 1948
VP-8(2nd): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-9
(Second use)
Patrol Squadron 9 (US Navy) insignia 1984.png
Golden Eagles
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VP-9(2nd): 15 Mar 1951-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VP-10
(Third use)
Patrol Squadron 10 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Red Lancers
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VP-10(3rd): 19 Mar 1951-present Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-16
(Third use)
Patrol Squadron 16 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
War Eagles
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VP-906: May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-ML-56: 15 Nov 1946-Feb 1950
VP-741: Feb 1959-4 Feb 1953:
VP-16(3rd): 4 Feb 1953-present[26]
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
USNR VP-741 activated on 1 May 1951 for the Korean War
VP-26
(Third use)
Patrol Squadron 26 (US Navy) insignia 2008.png
Tridents
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VB-114: 26 Aug 1943-1 Oct 1944
VPB-114: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-114: 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-HL-6: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-26(3rd): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-30
Patrol Squadron 30 (US Navy) insignia 1993.png
Pro's Nest
P-3C
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Group
VP-30: 30 Jun 1960-present Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS Jacksonville
VP-40
(Second use)
Patrol Squadron 40 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Fighting Marlins
P-3C
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VP-40(2nd): 20 Jan 1951-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VP-45
(Third use)
Patrol Squadron 45 (US Navy) insignia 1949.png
Pelicans
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VP-205(1st): 1 Nov 1942-1 Oct 1944
VPB-205: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-205(2nd): 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-MS-5: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-45(3rd): 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-46
VP-46.png
Grey Knights
P-3C
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VP-5S: 1 Sep 1931-1 Apr 1933
VP-5F: 1 Apr 1933-1937
VP-5(1st): 1937-1 Jul 1939
VP-33(1st): 1 Jul 1939-1 Jul 1941
VP-32(2nd): 1 Jul 1941-1 Oct 1944
VPB-32: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-MS-6: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-46: 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
Second oldest currently aircraft squadron in the U. S. Navy
VP-47
Patrol Squadron 47 (US Navy) insignia 1964.png
Golden Swordsmen
P-8A
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VP-27(1st): 1 Jun 1944-1 Oct 1944
VPB-27: 1 Oct 1944-15 May 1946
VP-27(2nd): 15 May 1946-15 Nov 1946
VP-MS-7: 15 Nov 1946-1 Sep 1948
VP-47: 1 Sep 1948-present
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VP-62
(Fourth use)
VP-62.png
Broadarrows
P-3C
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
VP-62(4th): 1 Nov 1970-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
VP-69
Patrol Squadron 69 (US Navy) insignia 1971.png
Totems
P-3C
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
VP-69: 1 Nov 1970-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VPU-2
Patrol Unit 2 (US Navy) patch.png
Wizards
P-3C
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VPU-2: 1 Jul 1982-present Homeport MCAS Kaneohe Bay
VUP-11
MQ-4C
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
To be established in 2018[27]
VUP-19
Unmanned Patrol Squadron 19 insignia.jpg
Big Red
MQ-4C
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing ELEVEN
VUP-19: 1 Oct 2016[28][29]-present "Unmanned Patrol Squadron"
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
NAS Point Mugu (detachment)

Fleet Air Reconnaissance (VQ)[edit]

EP-3E Aries II
E-6B Mercury

The VQ designation was created in 1955 to designate "Electronic Countermeasures Squadron" and did so though 1959. By 1960 the VQ squadrons, rather than simply jamming communications and electronic signals, had been equipped to collect them for intelligence purposes. In January 1960 this new role of the VQ squadrons was recognized by changing the VQ designation from "Electronic Countermeasures Squadron" to "Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron."[30] Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron ONE is currently the Navy's only overt signals intelligence (SIGINT) and communications intelligence (COMINT) reconnaissance squadron. The 13 EP-3E aircraft in the Navy's inventory are based on the Orion P-3 airframe and provide fleet and theater commanders worldwide with near real-time tactical SIGINT and COMINT. With sensitive receivers and high-gain dish antennas, the EP-3E exploits a wide range of electronic emissions from deep within targeted territory.

Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadrons THREE and FOUR carry the VQ designation, but they are not reconnaissance squadrons; they are airborne command and control, and communications relay squadrons which provide survivable, reliable, and endurable airborne command, control, and communications between the National Command Authority (NCA) and U.S. strategic and non-strategic forces. The squadrons' E-6B aircraft are dual-mission aircraft, capable of fulfilling both the airborne strategic command post mission equipped with an airborne launch control system (ALCS) which is capable of launching U.S. land based intercontinental ballistic missiles[31] and fulfilling the TACAMO ("Take Charge and Move Out") mission which links the NCA with Navy ballistic missile submarine forces during times of crisis. The aircraft carries a very low frequency communication system with dual trailing wire antennae for that communications relay mission.

Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron SEVEN is the E-6B Fleet Replacement Squadron, providing initial and requalification training for pilots, aircrewmen, and maintainers. It operates E-6Bs on loan from VQ-3 and VQ-4, having returned a 737-600 it had previously operated on lease from Lauda Air.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [i] Administrative Commander [j] Squadron Lineage[32] Notes
VQ-1
Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 1 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
World Watchers
EP-3E
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing TEN
VQ-1: 1 Jun 1955-present Homeport NAS Whidbey Island
VQ-3
Vq3 logo.jpg
Ironman
E-6B
Commander, United States Strategic Command task force 124[k]
Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE
VQ-3: 1 Jul 1968-present Homeport Tinker AFB
Dets at Travis AFB and Offutt AFB
VQ-4
Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron 4 (US Navy) insignia 2015.png
Shadows
E-6B
Commander, United States Strategic Command task force 124[l]
Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE
VQ-4: 1 Jul 1968-present Homeport Tinker AFB
Det at NAS Patuxent River
VQ-7
Vq7.jpg
Roughnecks
E-6B
Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE
Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE
Naval Training Support Unit: 1992-1 Nov 1999
VQ-7: 1 Nov 1999-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron
based at Tinker AFB

Fleet Logistics Support (VR)[edit]

C-40A.
C-20.
C-130.

The VR designator was first established in 1942 to designated "Transport" or "Air Transport" or Fleet Logistic Air" squadrons. From 1958 to 1976 it designated "Fleet Tactical Support Squadron" and from 1976 to the present it designates "Fleet Logistics Support Squadron". Today all Fleet Logistics Support squadrons are U. S. Navy Reserve squadrons

Fleet Logistics Support Squadrons operate Navy Unique Fleet Essential Airlift (NUFEA) aircraft on a worldwide basis to provide responsive, flexible, and rapidly deployable air logistics support required to sustain combat operations from the sea. During peacetime, squadrons provide air logistics support for all Navy commands as well as provide continuous quality training for mobilization readiness. Fleet Logistics Support squadrons have no counterpart in the Regular Navy. They represent 100% of the Navy's medium and heavy intra-theater airlift, and operate year-round, around the world providing the critical link between deployed seagoing units and air mobility command logistics hubs. VR-1 provides dedicated airlift support to the Office of the Secretary of the Navy, Chief of Naval Operations and Commandant of the Marine Corps.

The Headquarters of the Fleet Logistics Support Wing is based at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth, TX but the squadrons of the wing are based across the country from the east coast to Hawaii. In addition to the VR squadrons, the Fleet Logistics Support Wing also operates two "Executive Transport Detachments (ETDs)" based in Hawaii and Sigonella Italy.

Note: The parenthetical (2nd), (3rd), or (Second use), (Third use) etc... appended to some designations in the table below are not part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U.S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated. Absence indicates that the designation was used only once.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [m] Squadron Lineage[33] Notes
VR-1
(Third use)
Vr1.jpg
Star Lifters
C-37B
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-1(3rd): 1 May 1997-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Joint Base Andrews
VR-51
(Second use)
Vr51 insig.jpg
Windjammers
C-20G
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-51(2nd): 1 Jun 1997-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
MCAS Kaneohe Bay
VR-53
Vr53.gif
Capital Express
C-130T
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-53: 1 Oct 1992-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Naval Air Facility Washington
VR-54
Vr54.jpg
Revelers
C-130T
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-54: 1 Jun 1991-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS JRB New Orleans
VR-55
Vr55.jpg
Minutemen
C-130T
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-55: 1 Apr 1976-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS Point Mugu
VR-56
Vr56.jpg
Globemasters
C-40A
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-56: 1 Jul 1976-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS Oceana
VR-57
Vr57 insig.jpg
Conquistadors
C-40A
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-57: 1 Nov 1977-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS North Island
VR-58
Vr58 insig.jpg
Sunseekers
C-40A
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-58: 1 Nov 1977-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS Jacksonville
VR-59
Vr59b&w.jpg
Lone Star Express
C-40A
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-59: 1 Oct 1982-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS JRB Fort Worth
VR-61
Vr-61.jpg
Islanders
C-40A
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-61: 1 Oct 1982-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS Whidbey Island
VR-62
VR-62 NOMADS Logo
Nomads
C-130T
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VR-62: 1 Jul 1985-present U S Navy Reserve Squadron
NAS Jacksonville
(Relocated from NAS Brunswick in 2009)
VR-64
VR-64.jpg
Condors
C-130T
Commander, Fleet Logistics Support Wing
VP-64: 1 Nov 1970-18 Sep 2004
VR-64: 18 Sep 2004-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Joint Base McGuire, Dix, Lakehurst
(Relocated from NAS Willow Grove in Mar 2011)

Fleet Logistics Support (VRC)[edit]

C-2A Greyhound

The VRC designation was established in 1960 to designate "Fleet Tactical Support Squadron". In 1976 the designation was changed to "Fleet Logistics Support Squadron."

There are two Fleet Logistic Support squadrons equipped with the C-2A Greyhound Carrier Onboard Delivery (COD) aircraft - one on each coast. VRC-30 is based at Naval Air Station North Island, VRC-40 is based at Naval Station Norfolk. These squadrons send two-plane detachments with each deploying Carrier Air Wing. The C-2A Greyhound, more commonly referred to as a "COD" (short for Carrier onboard delivery), is used to deliver high priority parts, supplies, people, and mail to/from the carrier and shore sites near the carrier operating area.

The E-2 Hawkeye and C-2 Greyhound are built on the same airframe and have many similar characteristics. For this reason, both aircraft are trained for in the same Fleet Replacement Squadron, VAW-120 (see VAW section).

Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY (VRC-30)[edit]

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [n] Administrative Commander [o] Squadron Lineage[34] Notes
VRC-30
Vrc30 logo.jpg
Providers
C-2A
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VR-30: 1 Oct 1966-1 Oct 1978
VRC-30: 1 Oct 1978-present
Homeport NAS North Island
VRC-30 Det 1
Logo det1.gif
Hustlers
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY
Homeport NAS North Island
VRC-30 Det 2
Logo det2.gif
Roughnecks
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY
Homeport NAS North Island
VRC-30 Det 3
Logo det3.gif
Crusaders
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY
Homeport NAS North Island
VRC-30 Det 4
Logo det4.gif
Pure Horsepower
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY
Homeport NAS North Island
VRC-30 Det 5
Logo det5.gif
Providers
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron THIRTY
Forward deployed to MCAS Iwakuni, Japan

Fleet Logistics Support Squadron FORTY (VRC-40)[edit]

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [p] Administrative Commander [q] Squadron Lineage[35] Notes
VRC-40 Det 1
Vrc-40.jpg
Rawhides
C-2A
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
VRC-40: 1 Jul 1960-present Homeport NS Norfolk
VRC-40 Det 2
Vrc-40.jpg
Rawhides
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron FORTY
Homeport NS Norfolk
VRC-40 Det 3
Vrc-40.jpg
Rawhides
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron FORTY
Homeport NS Norfolk
VRC-40 Det 4
Vrc-40.jpg
Rawhides
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron FORTY
Homeport NS Norfolk
VRC-40 Det 5
Vrc-40.jpg
Rawhides
C-2A
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commanding Officer, Fleet Logistics Support Squadron FORTY
Homeport NS Norfolk

Training (VT)[edit]

T-45 Goshawk
T-6B Texan II
T-44 Pegasus

The VT designation was one of the original designations. It was established in 1921 to designate "Torpedo Plane Squadron". From 1922 to 1930 it designated "Torpedo & Bombing Squadron" and from 1930 to 1946 "Torpedo Squadron".[36] In 1946 all remaining Torpedo Squadrons and Bombing Squadrons (VB) were redesignated "Attack Squadrons" (VA) and the VT designation was retired.[37]

From 1927 to 1947 training squadrons were designated "VN".[38] From 1947 to 1960 training units were not designated as squadrons, they were "units" or "groups" called Basic Training Groups (BTG), Advanced Training Units (ATU), Jet Transition Training Units (JTTU) or Multi Engine Training Groups (METG). On 1 May 1960 the VT designation was resurrected and existing flying training units were designated "Training Squadrons (VT)".[39] There is no relationship between training squadrons designated VT in 1960 and the Torpedo or Torpedo and Bombing squadrons of the 1920s to 1940s.

There are two types of fixed wing training squadrons: Primary training squadrons train students in the first stage of flight training leading to selection to one of three advanced training pipelines for Aviators (Rotary Wing, Strike or Multi-Engine) or two advanced training pipelines for Flight Officers (Multi Crew or Strike). The advanced training squadrons conduct the final stage of flight training leading to "winging" of the new Naval Aviators and Naval Flight Officers in the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. Navy training aircraft are painted orange and white.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [r] Squadron Lineage[40] Notes
VT-2
VT-2.png
Doerbirds
T-6B
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
BTG-2: ??-1 May 1960
VT-2: 1 May 1960-present
Primary Training, based at NAS Whiting Field
VT-3
Vt3 insig.jpg
Red Knights
T-6B
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
BTG-3: ??-1 May 1960
VT-3: 1 May 1960-present
Primary Training, based at NAS Whiting Field
VT-4
Vt-4 patch.jpg
Warbucks
Multi-Crew Simulator
Commander, Training Air Wing SIX
BTG-9: ??-1 May 1960:
VT-4: 1 May 1960-present
(inactive Dec 2010-Jun 2013)
NFO Advanced Training, based at NAS Pensacola
Deactivated in Dec 2010 as an NFO primary training squadron and reactivated[41] as an NFO advanced training squadron in Jun 2013
VT-6
Vt6 insig.jpg
Shooters
T-6B
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
METG Whiting Field: 1 Jul 1956-1 May 1960
VT-6: 1 May 1960-present
Primary Training, based at NAS Whiting Field
VT-7
Vt7 insig.jpg
Eagles
T-45C
Commander, Training Air Wing ONE
BTG-7: 1 Jun 1958-1 May 1960
VT-7: 1 May 1960-present
Advanced Training, based at NAS Meridian
VT-9
(Second training
sqdn use)
Vt9.gif
Tigers
T-45C
Commander, Training Air Wing ONE
VT-19: 2 Aug 1971-1 Oct 1998
VT-9(2nd): 1 Oct 1998-present
Advanced Training, based at NAS Meridian
(There was an earlier training squadron designated VT-9 also called "Tigers" which existed from 15 Dec 1961 to Jul 1987)
VT-10
TRARON10.jpg
Wildcats
T-6A
Commander, Training Air Wing SIX
BNAO School*: Jun 1960-15 Jan 1968
VT-10: 15 Jan 1968-present
*Basic Naval Aviation Officer School
NFO Primary Training, based at NAS Pensacola
VT-21
Vt21a insig.jpg
Redhawks
T-45C
Commander, Training Air Wing TWO
ATU-202: Apr 1951-1 May 1960
VT-21: 1 May 1960-present
Advanced Training, based at NAS Kingsville
VT-22
VT-22 logo.png
Golden Eagles
T-45C
Commander, Training Air Wing TWO
ATU-6: 13 Jun 1949-??
JTTU-1: ??-??
ATU-3: ??-??
ATU-212: ??-1 May 1960
VT-22: 1 May 1960-present
Advanced Training, based at NAS Kingsville
VT-27
Vt27a insig.jpg
Boomers
T-6B
Commander, Training Air Wing FOUR
ATU-B: 11 Jul 1951-??
ATU-402: ??-1 Jul 1960
VT-27: 1 Jul 1960-present
Primary Training, based at NAS Corpus Christi
VT-28
VT-28.png
Rangers
T-6B
Commander, Training Air Wing FOUR
ATU-611: ??-1 May 1960
VT-28: 1 May 1960-present
Primary Training, based at NAS Corpus Christi
VT-31
Vt31 b insig.jpg
Wise Owls
T-44C
Commander, Training Air Wing FOUR
ATU-601: Feb 1958-1 May 1960
VT-31: 1 May 1960-present
Advanced Training, based at NAS Corpus Christi
VT-35
Vt-35-stingrays.png
Stingrays
T-44C
Commander, Training Air Wing FOUR
VT-35: 29 Oct 1999-present Advanced Training, based at NAS Corpus Christi
VT-86
VT-86 logo.png
Sabrehawks
T-45C
Commander, Training Air Wing SIX
VT-86: 5 Jun 1972-present NFO Advanced Training, based at NAS Pensacola

Air Test and Evaluation (VX), Scientific Development (VXS)[edit]

VX-23 jets.

The VX designation was first used from 1927 to 1943 to designate "Experimental Squadron". It was again used beginning in 1946 when four "Experimental and Development" squadrons (VX-1 (still exists today), 2, 3 and 4)[42] were established to develop and evaluate new equipment and methods. From 1946 to 1968 the designation was variously "Experimental and Development" squadron, "Operational Development" squadron, "Air Operational Development" squadron and "Air Development" squadron. In 1969 the designation changed to "Air Test and Evaluation" and it remains as such today.[43]

Test and Evaluation squadrons test everything from basic aircraft flying qualities to advanced aerodynamics to weapons systems effectiveness. VX-20, VX-23, VX-30, VX-31 (as well as HX-21) conduct developmental test and evaluation of aircraft and weapons as part of the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIRSYSCOM) while VX-1 and VX-9 conduct operational test and evaluation of aircraft and weapons as part of the Operational Test and Evaluation Force (OPTEVFOR).

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [s] Squadron Lineage[44] Notes
VX-1
Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 1 (US Navy) patch 2014.png
Pioneers
P-3C
MH-60R
MH-60S
SH-60F
EP-3E
E-6B
KC-130J
E-2D
RQ-4
P-8A
Commander, Operational Test and Evaluation Force
Acft ASW Dev Det Atlantic Flt: 1 Apr 1943-17 Sep 1943
ASW Dev Det Atlantic Flt: 17 Sep 1943-15 Mar 1946
VX-1: 15 Mar 1946-present
Operational test and evaluation of ASW and other "maritime" aircraft and weapons.
Based at NAS Patuxent River[45]
VX-9
VX-9- logo.png
Vampires
F/A-18A/B/C/D/E/F
F-35B/C
EA-18G
Commander, Operational Test and Evaluation Force
VX-9: 30 Apr 1994-present Operational test and evaluation of strike aircraft and weapons.
Based at NAWS China Lake
Established from the assets of VX-4(2nd) "Evaluators" and VX-5 "Vampires" which were both disestablished in 1994
VX-20
VX20.gif
Force
E-2C
P-3C
C-130
C-2A
E-6B
T-6A
T-6B
Commander, Naval Test Wing Atlantic
Naval Force Acft Test Sqdn: 21 Jul 1955-1 May 2002
VX-21: 1 May 2002
Developmental test and evaluation of ASW and other maritime aircraft.
NAS Patuxent River[46]
VX-23
Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 23 (US Navy) patch 2014.png
Salty Dogs
F-35B/C
F/A-18A/B/C/D/E/F
EA-6B
EA-18G
T-45
Commander, Naval Test Wing Atlantic
Naval Strike Acft Test Sqdn: 21 Jul 1995-1 May 2002
VX-23: 1 May 2001-present
Developmental test and evaluation of Strike Aircraft.
NAS Patuxent River
VX-30
Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 30 (US Navy) insignia, 2004.png
Bloodhounds
C-130
P-3
NP-3D

KC-130T
UAVs
Commander, Naval Test Wing Pacific
Naval Weapons Test Sqdn, Pt Mugu: 8 May 1995-1 May 2002
VX-30: 1 May 2002-present
Range surveillance, photometric support, area clearance, and airborne telemetry on the Naval Air Systems Command Sea Test Range in support of developmental test and evaluation of airborne weapons and platform-related systems.
Based at NAS Point Mugu Bloodhound aircraft accomplish
VX-31
Vx-31 logo.jpg
Dust Devils
F/A-18A/B/C/D/E/F
EA-18G
NEA-18G
P-3
C-130
AV-8B
TAV-8B
T-39
MH-60S
AH-1Z
UH-1Y
and other variants
Commander, Naval Test Wing Pacific
Naval Weapons Test Sqdn, China Lake: 8 May 1995-1 May 2002
VX-31: 1 May 2002-present
Developmental test and evaluation of airborne weapons and platform-related systems.
Based at NAWS China Lake
VXS-1
Vxs-1.jpg
Warlocks
NP-3C
RC-12
UAVs
Commander, Naval Research Laboratory
VXS-1: 13 Dec 2004-present NRL transport and research support.
Based at NAS Patuxent River[45]
Formerly NRL's Flight detachment

Other[edit]

Blue Angels

Other than the Naval Flight Demonstration Squadrons (NFDS) "Blue Angels", the organizations in the table below are not technically "squadrons", however they either have custody of and routinely fly Navy aircraft or they routinely fly aircraft on loan from fleet squadrons for advanced training of those fleet squadrons.

The U.S. Naval Test Pilot School operates various fixed and rotary wing aircraft to train and graduate test pilots and test engineers.

The Navy Fighter Weapons School, Carrier Airborne Early Warning Weapons School and the Airborne Electronic Attack Weapons School train selected U. S. Navy Naval Aviators and Naval Flight Officers (NFO) in instructional techniques and in advanced tactics in their respective aircraft, qualifying them for assignment to their respective wing weapons schools (Strike Fighter Weapons School Lant and Pac, Electronic Attack Weapons School and Airborne Command Control and Logistics School) where they provide advanced training for each wing's squadrons utilizing squadron aircraft.


Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander Notes
USN Test Pilot School
US Naval Test Pilot School emblem 2014.png
Various
Commander, Naval Test Wing Atlantic
NAS Patuxent River
Naval Flight Demonstration Squadron
Blue Angels Insignia.svg
Blue Angels
F/A-18A/B/C/D
C-130T
Commander, Naval Air Training Command (CNATRA)
Homeport NAS Pensacola
Winter training site NAF El Centro
It has been announced that the Blue Angels are to transition to the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet
Navy Fighter Weapons School
Topgun patch.jpg
TOPGUN
F/A-18A/B/C/D/E/F
F-16A/B
Commander, Naval Aviation Warfare Development Center
Based at NAS Fallon
Carrier Airborne Early Warning Weapons School
CAEWWS NEW May 2014.png
TOPDOME
E-2C/D
Commander, Naval Aviation Warfare Development Center
Based at NAS Fallon
Airborne Electronic Attack Weapons School
AEA wea school logo gray.png
HAVOC
EA-18G
Commander, Naval Aviation Warfare Development Center
Based at NAS Fallon
Strike Fighter Weapons School Atlantic
SFWSL.jpg
F/A-18
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Atlantic
Based at NAS Oceana
Strike Fighter Weapons School Pacific
Strike Fighter Weapons School Pacific.gif
F/A-18
Commander, Strike Fighter Wing Pacific
Based at NAS Lemoore
Electronic Attack Weapons School
Navy electronic-attack-weapons-school n14499.png
EA-18G
Commander, Electronic Attack Wing Pacific
Based at NAS Whidbey Island
Airborne Command Control and Logistics Weapons School
Abn CCL Weaps School.png
E-2C/D
C-2A
Commander, Airborne Command, Control, Logistics Wing
Based at NS Norfolk
Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Weapons School
MPR Weaps Sch.jpg
P-3C
P-8A
MQ-4C
Commander Patrol and Reconnaissance Group
Based at NAS Jacksonville
Pacific Missile Range Facility
Outrider
RC-26D
EC-26D
Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands

Rotary Wing Squadrons[edit]

US Navy rotary wing squadron designations start with the letter H. The first use of the letter H to designate a helicopter squadron was in 1948 with the establishment of Helicopter Utility Squadrons (HU)[47] ONE and TWO. Prior the creation of the HU designation, the two basic types of Navy squadrons were "heavier than air" squadrons designated with V as the first letter, and "lighter than air" squadrons designated with Z as the first letter. By 1961 the Navy had disestablished its last lighter than air squadrons leaving only the V and H designations. Since that time V has in practicality become the designation for "fixed wing squadron" and H for "rotary wing squadron." The Navy today uses helicopters primarily in the antisubmarine warfare, antisurface warfare, mine countermeasures, combat search and rescue, special operations, overwater search and rescue, and vertical replenishment roles.

Helicopter Mine Countermeasures (HM)[edit]

An MH-53 delivers aid in Sumatra following the 2004 Tsunami.

The HM designation was created in 1971 to designate "Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron". HM Squadrons employ 28 total MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopters. The primary mission of the Sea Dragon is Airborne Mine Countermeasures (AMCM). The MH-53 can operate from aircraft carriers, large amphibious ships and the new expeditionary sea base and is capable of towing a variety of mine hunting/sweeping countermeasures systems.[48]

The MH-53E Sea Dragon is also a capable heavy-lift asset, with three powerful turboshaft engines and a maximum take-off weight of 69,750 pounds (31,640 kg). This gives the Sea Dragon the capability to carry an impressive amount of cargo, personnel or equipment over long distances. The Sea Dragon remains in service as the Navy's only heavy-lift helicopter and only proven mine countermeasure platform. While programmed to replace the USMC's CH-53E and not the Navy's MH-53E, the new Sikorsky CH-53K King Stallion, intended to start flying its evaluations in 2015, has an increased MTOW figure of some 84,700 lb (38,400 kg), some 14,950 lb (6,781 kg) heavier than the Sea Dragon.

The Navy's recently completed "Helicopter Master Plan" was a plan to reduce the number of type/model/series from eight down to two (MH-60R and MH-60S). It recognized that the replacement of the MH-53 in the mine countermeasures role was dependent on technology which has not yet matured. As a result, the MH-53E continues in service as the only helicopter capable now and in the near future of effectively conducting airborne mine countermeasures.

Note: The parenthetical (second use) and (2nd) in the table below are not a part of the squadron designation system. They are added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U. S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [t] Squadron Lineage[49] Notes
HM-12
(Second use)
HM-12 logo.jpg
Sea Dragons
MH-53E
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HM-12(2nd): 1 Oct 2015-present Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NS Norfolk
(There was an earlier squadron designated HM-12 also called the "Sea Dragons" which existed from 1 Apr 1971 to 30 Sep 1994)
HM-14
Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron 14 (United States Navy) emblem.png
Vanguard
MH-53E
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HM-14: 12 May 1978-present Homeport NS Norfolk
HM-15
Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron 15 (United States Navy) emblem.png
Blackhawks
MH-53E
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HM-15: 2 Jan 1987-present Homeport NS Norfolk

Helicopter Sea Combat (HSC)[edit]

MQ-8B in flight
An MH-60S Seahawk conducts vertical replenishment (VERTREP)

The Helicopter Sea Combat (HSC) Designation is one of the newest designations in Naval Aviation. It was first used in 2005 after the Helicopter Combat Support (HC) squadrons equipped with the H-46 Sea Knight had completed their transitions to the new MH-60S Seahawk. Beginning in 2007 the Helicopter Antisubmarine (HS) squadrons began their transitions from the SH-60F and HH-60H Seahawks to the new MH-60S as well. The ASW capabilities resident in the HS squadrons were lost in the transition but the new HSC squadrons combine the at sea logistics capability of the former Helicopter Combat Support (HC) squadrons with greatly upgraded Combat Search and Rescue, Naval Special Warfare Support and Anti-Surface Warfare capabilities of the former Helicopter Anti-submarine squadrons (HS).[50]

The HSC squadrons which were formerly HS squadrons are carrier based and deploy as part of a Carrier Air Wing, while the HSC squadrons which were formerly HC squadrons or were newly established are land based "expeditionary" squadrons which supply detachments for deployment aboard ships other than aircraft carriers or for land based deployments as required. The squadrons are home-ported at NS Norfolk, NAS North Island and Anderson AFB, Guam with one squadron forward deployed to NAF Atsugi, Japan. Expeditionary HSC squadrons are capable of deploying mixed detachments of MH-60S and MQ-8B aircraft.

Note: The parenthetical (2nd) used in the lineage column of table below is not a part of the squadron designation system. It is added to indicate that the designation was used more than once during the history of U. S. Naval Aviation and which use of the designation is indicated.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [u] Administrative Commander [v] Squadron Lineage[51] Notes
HSC-2
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 2 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Fleet Angels
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HC-2(2nd): 1 Apr 1987-24 Aug 2005
HSC-2: 24 Aug 2005-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NS Norfolk
(There was an earlier squadron designated HC-2 also called "Fleet Angels" which existed from 1 Apr 1948 to 30 Sep 1977)
HSC-3
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 3 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Merlins
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HC-3: 1 Sep 1967-31 Oct 2005
HSC-3: 31 Oct 2005-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS North Island
HSC-4
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 4 (US Navy) patch 2012.png
Black Knights
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HS-4: 30 Jun 1952-Mar 2012
HSC-4: Mar 2012-present
Homeport NAS North Island
HSC-5
Hsc5.png
Nightdippers
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HS-5: 3 Jan 1956-28 Feb 2009:
HSC-5: 28 Feb 2009-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
HSC-6
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 6 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Indians
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HS-6: 1 Jun 1956-Jul 2011
HSC-6: Jul 2011-present
Homeport NAS North Island
HSC-7
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 7 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Dusty Dogs
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HS-7(2nd): 15 Dec 1969-Apr 2011
HSC-7: Apr 2011-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
(There was an earlier squadron designated HS-7 called the "Big Dippers" which existed from 2 Apr 1956 to 31 May 1966)
HSC-8
HSC-8.gif
Eightballers
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HS-8(2nd): 1 Nov 1969-1 Apr 2007
HSC-8: 1 Apr 2007-present
Homeport NAS North Island
(There was an earlier squadron designated HS-8 also called "Eighballers" which existed from 1 Jun 1956 to 31 Dec 1968)
HSC-9
HSC-9 Patch with transparent background.GIF
Tridents
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HS-3: 18 Jun 1952-1 Jun 2009
HSC-9: 1 Jun 2009-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
HSC-11
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 11 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Dragon Slayers
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HS-11: 27 Jun 1957-Jun 2016
HSC-11: Jun 2016-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
HSC-12
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 12 (US Navy) patch 2009.png
Golden Falcons
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HS-2: 7 Mar 1952-1 Jan 2009
HSC-12: 1 Jan 2009-present
Forward deployed to NAF Atsugi Japan
HSC-14
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 14 (US Navy) emblem 2015.png
Chargers
MH-60S
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HS-14: 19 Jul 1984-Jul 2013
HSC-14: Jul 2013-present
Homeport NAS North Island
HSC-21
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 21 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Blackjacks
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HC-11: 1 Oct 1977-7 Nov 2005
HSC-21: 7 Nov 2005-present
Homeport NAS North Island
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-22
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 22 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Sea Knights
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HSC-22: 1 Oct 2006-present Homeport NS Norfolk
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-23
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 23 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Wild Cards
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HSC-23: 1 Oct 2006-present Homeport NAS North Island
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-25
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 25 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Island Knights
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
HC-5(2nd): 3 Feb 1984-24 Oct 2005
HSC 25: 24 Oct 2005-present
Homeport Andersen AFB, Guam
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-26
Hsc26.jpg
Chargers
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HC-6: 1 Sep 1967-24 Aug 2005
HSC-26: 24 Aug 2005-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-28
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 28 (US Navy) patch 2015.png
Dragon Whales
MH-60S
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
HC-8: 3 Dec 1984-13 May 2005
HSC-28: 13 May 2005-present
Homeport NS Norfolk
Expeditionary Squadron
HSC-85
HSC-85 Highrollers insignia.jpg
(2006)
NEW FIREHAWK small.jpg
(2011)
High Rollers (2006)
Fire Hawks (2011)
MH-60S (2006)
HH-60H (2011)
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
HS-85: 1 Jul 1970-1 Oct 1994
HC-85: 1 Oct 1994-8 Feb 2006
HSC-85: 8 Feb 2006-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Naval Special Warfare Support
Homeport NAS North Island
Expeditionary Squadron
(Adopted "Firehawks" name and insignia in 2011 from deactivated HCS-5)

Helicopter Maritime Strike (HSM)[edit]

An MH-60R prepares to conduct sonar dip operations.
MQ-8B in flight

The HSM designation is the newest designation in Naval Aviation having been first used in 2006 when the Fleet Replacement Squadron for the MH-60R Seahawk was redesignated from HSL. The first operational fleet squadron to receive the MH-60 Romeo was HSM-71 in fiscal year 2008. The new designation was created to reflect the MH-60Rs multi-mission capabilities[52] which combined the area search capabilities of the SH-60B flown by the Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light (HSL) squadrons with the dipping sonar of the SH-60F flown by the carrier based Helicopter Anti-Submarine (HS) squadrons. With the transition of the HS squadrons to HSC squadrons without any ASW capability and the disestablishment of the last Air Antisubmarine (VS) squadrons, all ship based airborne ASW capabilities now reside in the new HSM squadrons.

From 2009 to 2015 all Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light (HSL) squadrons transitioned to the MH-60R and were redesignated Helicopter Maritime Strike (HSM) squadrons. Additionally, new HSM squadrons were established in order to provide an HSM squadron to each Carrier Air Wing and to provide "Expeditionary" squadrons to supply detachments of MH-60Rs to ships other than aircraft carriers. Expeditionary HSM squadrons are capable of deploying mixed detachments of MH-60R and MQ-8B aircraft.

HSM squadrons are home-ported at NAS North Island, NAS Jacksonville, NS Mayport and MCAS Kaneohe Bay with two squadrons forward deployed to NAF Atsugi Japan

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational Commander [w] Administrative Commander [x] Squadron Lineage[53] Notes
HSM-35
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 35 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Magicians
MH-60R
MQ-8B
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSM-35: 2 May 2013-present[54] Homeport NAS North Island
Expeditionary Squadron
(There was an earlier squadron designated HSL-35 also called "Magicians" which existed from 15 Jan 1974 to 4 Dec 1992)
HSM-37
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 37 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Easyriders
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-37: 3 Jul 1975-Oct 2013
HSM-36: Oct 2013-present
Homeport MCAS Kanehoe Bay
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-40
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 40 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Airwolves
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSL-40: 4 Oct 1985-1 Nov 2009
HSM-40: 1 Nov 2009-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NS Mayport
HSM-41
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 41 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Seahawks
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-41: 21 Jan 1983-8 Dec 2005
HSM-41: 8 Dec 2005-present
Fleet Replacement Squadron based at NAS North Island
HSM-46
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 46 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Grandmasters
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSL-46: 7 Apr 1988-2012
HSM-46: 2012-present
Homeport NS Mayport
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-48
HSM48.png
Vipers
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSL-48: 7 Sep 1989-May 2014
HSM-48: May 2014-present
Homeport NS Mayport
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-49
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 49 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Scorpions
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-49: 23 Mar 1990-Apr 2015
HSM-49: Apr 2015-present
Homeport NAS North Island
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-51
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 51 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Warlords
MH-60R
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-51: 1 Oct 1991-Mar 2013
HSM-51: Mar 2013-present
Forward deployed to NAF Atsugi Japan
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-60
HSM-60 Jaguars.jpg
Jaguars
MH-60R
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
Commander, Maritime Support Wing
HSL-60: 1 Apr 2001-Jul 2015
HSM-60: Jul 2015-present
U S Navy Reserve Squadron
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
Expeditionary Squadron
HSM-70
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 70 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Spartans
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing EIGHT
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSM-70: 1 Mar 2008-present Homeport NAS Jacksonville
HSM-71
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 71 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Raptors
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing NINE
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSM-71: 1 Jan 2007-present Homeport NAS North Island
HSM-72
HSM 72 Logo.png
Proud Warriors
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ONE
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSL-42: 5 Oct 1984-Jan 2013
HSM-72: Jan 2013-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
HSM-73
HSM 73 Logo.jpg
Battle Cats
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVENTEEN
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-43: 5 Oct 1984-Feb 2012
HSM-73: Feb 2012-present
Homeport NAS North Island
HSM-74
HSM-74 Squadron Patch.jpg
Swamp Fox
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing THREE
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
HSL-44: 21 Aug 1986-Jun 2011
HSM-74: Jun 2011-present
Homeport NAS Jacksonville
HSM-75
HSM-75 Squadron Logo.jpg
Wolfpack
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing ELEVEN
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-45: 3 Oct 1986-Feb 2011
HSM-75: Feb 2011-present
Homeport NAS North Island
HSM-77
HSM77 Insignia.jpg
Saberhawks
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing FIVE
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSL-47: 25 Sep 1987-1 Feb 2009
HSM-77: 1 Feb 2009-present
Forward deployed to NAF Atsugi
(First LAMPS squadron to deploy aboard a carrier)[55]
HSM-78
HSM 78 Logo.GIF
Blue Hawks
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing TWO
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSM-78: 1 Mar 2012-present Homeport NAS North Island
HSM-79
Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 79 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Griffins
MH-60R
Commander, Carrier Air Wing SEVEN
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
HSM-79: 2 Jun 2016-present Homeport NAS North Island

Helicopter Training (HT)[edit]

US Navy TH-57C

The HT designation first appeared in May 1960 to designate Helicopter Training Squadron at the same time that the VT designation was resurrected to designate Training Squadron. In the early years of helicopter operations in the Navy, helicopter pilots were qualified fixed wing pilots who received transition training once they reported to a helicopter squadron. In 1950 a dedicated helicopter training unit was established and in 1960 that unit became the first HT squadron. As the demand for helicopter pilots increased over the decades, additional HT squadrons were established and today approximately 60% of the Student Naval Aviators from all services (Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard) are winged as helicopter pilots.

The Naval Air Training Command's Helicopter Training Squadrons provide advanced helicopter flight instruction to all Navy, US Marine Corps, and United States Coast Guard helicopter flight students as well as to international students from several allied nations. Student Naval Aviators are selected for helicopter training after completion of primary flight training in the T-6B in one of the VT squadrons. Students who successfully complete the program earn the right to wear the coveted "Wings of Gold."[56] and proceed on to their selected aircraft's Fleet Replacement Squadron.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [y] Squadron Lineage[57] Notes
HT-8
Helicopter Training Squadron 8 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Eightballers
TH-57B
TH-57C
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
HTU-1: 3 Dec 1950-Mar 1957
HTG-1: Mar 1957- 1 Jul 1960
HT-8: 1 Jul 1960-present
Advanced training based at NAS Whiting Field
HT-18
Helicopter Training Squadron 18 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Vigilant Eagles
TH-57B
TH-57C
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
HT-18: 1 Mar 1972-present Advanced training based at NAS Whiting Field
HT-28
Helicopter Training Squadron 28 (US Navy) insignia 2016.png
Hellions
TH-57B
TH-57C
Commander, Training Air Wing FIVE
HT-28: 1 Nov 2006-present Advanced training based at NAS Whiting Field

Air Test and Evaluation (HX)[edit]

Test and Evaluation squadrons test everything from basic aircraft flying qualities to advanced aerodynamics to weapons systems effectiveness. HX-21 conducts developmental test and evaluation of rotary wing and tilt rotor aircraft and weapons as part of the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIRSYSCOM).

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander [z] Squadron Lineage[58] Notes
HX-21
HX 21 Rotary wing test.jpg
Blackjack
AH-1Z
UH-1Y
MH-60R
MH-60S
MV-22B
AH-1W
UH-1N
VH-3A
CH-53E
TH-57C
SH-60F
Commander, Naval Test Wing Atlantic
Naval Rotary Wing Acft Test Sqdn: 21 Jul 1995-1 May 2002
HX-21: 1 May 2002-present
Developmental test and evaluation of Rotary Wing and Tilt Rotor Aircraft
NAS Patuxent River[59]

Other[edit]

The organizations in the table below are not technically "squadrons", however they either have custody of and routinely fly Navy aircraft or they routinely fly aircraft on loan from fleet squadrons for advanced training of those fleet squadrons. The Navy Rotary Wing Weapons School trains selected U. S. Navy Naval Aviators in instructional techniques and in advanced tactics for their respective aircraft, qualifying them for assignment to their respective wing weapons schools (Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Lant and Pac and Helicopter Maritime Strike Weapons School Lant and Pac) where they provide advanced training for each wing's squadrons utilizing squadron aircraft.

Squadron Designation Insignia Nickname Aircraft Operational and Administrative Commander Notes
Navy Rotary Wing Weapons School
RWWS color.png
SEAWOLF
MH-60S
Commander, Naval Aviation Warfare Development Center
Based at NAS Fallon
Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Atlantic
HSC WS LANT.png
MH-60S
MH-53E
MQ-8B
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic
Based at NS Norfolk
Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Pacific
HSC WS PAC.jpg
MH-60S
MQ-8B
Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific
Based at NAS North Island
Helicopter Maritime Strike Weapons School Atlantic
HSMWSL Logo.gif
Talons
MH-60R
MQ-8B
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Atlantic
Based at NS Mayport
Helicopter Maritime Strike Weapons School Pacific
HSMWSP Logo 2.jpg
Honey Badgers
MH-60R
MQ-8B
Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing Pacific
Based at NAS North Island

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol 1 Chap 1
  2. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G
  3. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I, Chap 1, pg 3
  4. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I, Chap 1, pg 9
  5. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I, app 4
  6. ^ "EA-18G Growler electronic warfare aircraft". USN Fact File. United States Navy.
  7. ^ "US Navy retires Prowler electronic attack aircraft after close to 45 years' service - IHS Jane's 360". www.janes.com. Retrieved 2015-07-04.
  8. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  9. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G encl 2
  10. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App 6
  11. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App 6
  12. ^ Naval Aviation News May 1967, pg 3
  13. ^ "E-2 Hawkeye early warning and control aircraft". USN Fact File. United States Navy. 5 February 2009. Retrieved 2014-10-20.
  14. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  15. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App 4
  16. ^ A, C, and E models are single seat. B, D, and F models are two seat.
  17. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-08-10. Retrieved 2014-11-04.
  18. ^ http://www.gao.gov/assets/250/243745.pdf
  19. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  20. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G
  21. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G
  22. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  23. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App4
  24. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App 4
  25. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  26. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol II App 7
  27. ^ Burgess, Richard. B. Seapower Magazine. "Navy Plans for Poseidon Crew Control of Triton UAV." August 13, 2013. http://www.seapowermagazine.org/stories/20130813-triton.html.
  28. ^ http://jaxairnews.jacksonville.com/military-jax-air-news/2016-11-02/story/vup-19-commissioning-ceremony
  29. ^ Stewart, Joshua. "UAV squadron to stand up Oct. 1; 1st since 2007." February 5, 2013. http://www.armytimes.com/article/20130205/NEWS/302050316/.
  30. ^ Naval Aviation News Feb 1961 pg 15
  31. ^ "E-6B Airborne Command Post (ABNCP)". United States Strategic Command. Archived from the original on 2009-01-09.
  32. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  33. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  34. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  35. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  36. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I, App 4
  37. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I Chap 1 pg13
  38. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I Appendix 4
  39. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I Appendix 4
  40. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  41. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G
  42. ^ Naval Aviation News Aug 1947 pg 24
  43. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I, Appendix 4
  44. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  45. ^ a b "Naval Air Station Patuxent River Base Guide". DCMilitary.com. Comprint Military Publications. 2008-08-12. Archived from the original on 2013-01-21. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  46. ^ "VX-20 Aircraft Platforms". Air Test and Evaluation Squadron TWO ZERO. United States Navy. 2006-06-10. Archived from the original on August 28, 2009. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  47. ^ Dictionary of American Naval Aviation Squadrons Vol I App 4
  48. ^ "MH-53E Sea Dragon". USN Fact File. United States Navy.
  49. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  50. ^ "Helicopter Sea Combat Wing, Pacific COMHELSEACOMBATWINGPAC". Global Security.
  51. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  52. ^ "MH-60R Seahawk". USN Fact File. United States Navy.
  53. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  54. ^ London, Christina. "Navy Drone Squadron First of Its Kind."[permanent dead link] NBC San Diego, 3 May 2013.
  55. ^ Utz, Curtis A; Mark L Evans; Dale J Gordon (July–August 2005). "The Year in Review 2004" (PDF). Naval Aviation News. United States Navy: 37. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-02-28.
  56. ^ "Helicopter Training Squadron 8". Global Security.
  57. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  58. ^ OPNAVINST 5030.4G Encl 2
  59. ^ Carlson, Ted (Spring 2005). "HX-21 - Blackjack". Wings of Gold. Association of Naval Aviation. Archived from the original on 2007-12-29. Retrieved 2008-12-01.