1. Information
  2. Partner Units

Partner Units

Last Updated :

Air Force Special Operations Training Center

An MC-130J Commando II lands on the flightline at Hurlburt Field, Fla.


The Air Force Special Operations Training Center is a primary subordinate unit of Air Force Special Operations Command. Established as a provisional group in March 2008, awaiting initial stand-up in fall 2008, the AFSOC will consist of a single commander task organized to recruit, assess, select, indoctrinate and train AFSOC personnel. AFSOC was created to align AFSOC training functions in a training organization to allow operational units to focus on warfighting. This includes conducting the MAJCOMs Training Transformation and the Joint National Training Capability Program Execution Plan. This center transforms Airmen into Air Commandos at the individual through the Joint Task Force-level.

The AFSOTC will be the command proponent for all mission qualification training for AC-130H/U, MC-130W, U-28, Aviation Foreign Internal Defense, Nonstandard Aviation (NSA), Special Tactics and ISR exploitation mission areas. Future actions include the establishment of a unit at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M.

Provisionally, the AFSOTC consists of the U.S. Air Force Special Operations School, the Advanced Skills Training Center and Special Tactics Recruitment, Combat Aviation Advisor training and AC-130H/U Gunship Training. The USAFSOS prepares special operations Airmen to successfully plan, organize and execute global special operations by providing indoctrination and education for AFSOC, other U.S. Special Operations Command components and joint/interagency/coalition partners. USAFSOS turns skilled Airmen into special operators.

The Advanced Skills Training Center trains special tactics skill-sets to Battlefield Airmen: Combat Controllers, Pararescue and Special Operations Weather Team personnel. The center provides Special Tactics Squadrons with combat ready CCT 5-skill level personnel. The AST enables Special Tactics Forces worldwide to provide airmanship expertise and establish and control the air-to-ground interface in an objective area. Combat Aviation Advisors advise foreign forces in rotary- and fixed-wing combat aviation, maintenance, base support, security and tactics. CAA personnel complete a demanding training and education curriculum intended to produce foreign language proficient, regionally-oriented, politically astute and culturally aware aviation advisory experts. The training curriculum provides extensive indoctrination in advanced field-craft skills (force protection and personal survival), instructional skills, riskmanagement and safety. CAA training and advisory capabilities in the employment arena include airpower applications, tactical employment and mission planning.

AFSOC's formal school for AC-130H, AC-130U, MC-130Wtraining and mission rehearsal is conducted at the AFSOTC. Leading the way in providing innovative solutions across the full spectrum of Joint Combat and Contingency Training and Mission Preview/Rehearsal requirements, the school is the Air Force's most advanced Weapons Instruction and Mission Rehearsal unit. Revolutionary training in close air support, air interdiction, force protection, aerial refueling, airdrops and aerial resupply provide the SOF community the world's leading mission rehearsal and training capability, preparing SOF warriors for combat.

505th Command & Control Wing

The 505th Command and Control Wing is a subordinate unit to the United States Air Force Warfare Center, Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The USAFWC serves as the lead agency to pull command and control together across the Air Force. Under the mantle of the USAFWC, the 505 CCW is the focal point for integration of all aerospace campaign command and control processes, including rapid technology assessment on behalf of the warfighter. Through their facilities at Hurlburt Field and several geographically separated groups, squadrons and detachments, the 505 CCW possesses the unique ability to test, exercise, experiment and train all elements of C2: people, processes and systems.

With exercises such as BLUE FLAG and Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment, the men and women of the 505 CCW conduct specialized training in planning and execution of joint operations for the USAF, sister services and coalition partners, as well as readiness training for Numbered Air Forces. In addition, the 505 CCW manages operational tests and evaluations and conducts acceptance tests of command, control, communications, computers and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems. Unit personnel evaluate capabilities and limitations, determine optimum operation configuration, identify operating deficiencies and recommend corrective action for United States C2 architectures.

On behalf of the USAF, the 505 CCW is proud to host the future of joint training: Joint RED FLAG. Joint RED FLAG, which is primarily staged from Nellis AFB, has expanded to include many bases throughout the U.S. including Hurlburt Field. Planners from the 505 CCW help write the exercise scenario and craft unexpected events to challenge America's warfighters. Through virtual scenarios and networked training, participants are able to participate through actual, virtual or constructive means, allowing the 505 CCW to train for tomorrow's scenarios regardless of a unit's location.

The 505 CCW is also responsible for dynamic evaluation of emerging technologies and procedures for inclusion in the Air Force's C2 architecture. The wing is comprised of a group and five squadrons located at Hurlburt Field; a group at Kirtland AFB, N.M.; a group at Nellis AFB, Nev.; and a detachment at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. The 605th Test and Evaluation Squadron has detachments in Seattle, Wash., and Melbourne, Fla. The 505th Training Squadron has a detachment at Fort McPherson, Ga., and liaisons from the Army, Navy and Marines.

U.S. Air Force Special Operations School

The U.S. Air Force Special Operations School falls under the Air Force Special Operations Training Center.

Activated in April 1967, as the USAF Special Air Warfare School under the Special Air Warfare Center, the school was redesignated USAFSOS in July 1968. The school's initial course was The Special Air Warfare Indoctrination Course designed to prepare Air Force personnel for duty in Southeast Asia. Since then, the curriculum has changed continuously to meet emerging educational needs of special operations warriors as they respond to complex world situations. USAFSOS prepares special operations Airmen to successfully plan, organize and execute global special operations by providing indoctrination and education for AFSOC, other USSOCOM components and joint/interagency/coalition partners. USAFSOS turns skilled Airmen into special operators.

USAFSOS professional development courses indoctrinate new personnel into the special operations community and mission. USAFSOS teaches one-week regional and cultural awareness courses focused on SOF areas of responsibility to orient the SOF warrior to the cultural, historical, political, economic and security issues of a particular region. USAFSOS offers courses on asymmetric warfare to educate SOF personnel on adversarial threats and operational and technological countermeasures available for consideration. USAFSOS offers joint special operations courses to provide SOF indoctrination for new Air Commandos, SOF air command and control, contemporary insurgency warfare and operational planning. The school conducts courses to prepare selected officers to command deployed operations.

Detachment 3, 342d Training Squadron

Detachment 3, of the 342d Training Squadron is a geographically separated Air Education and Training Command Unit aligned under the 37th Training Wing located at Lackland AFB, Texas. The detachment instructs these battlefield Airmen to perform as Tactical Air Control Party Apprentices and Craftsmen. Upon graduation, these "forward air controllers" work directly with U.S. Army Airborne, Air Assault, Armor, Mechanized Infantry, Light Infantry, Ranger and Special Forces units, acting as the close air support liaison to the Army. Since the graduates are assigned to Army units, they train on Army standard operating procedures, complete grueling ruck march training and they must pass the Army PT test. Detachment 3 has the follow-on mission of teaching the Craftsman course where TACPs earn their 7-level in one of the few remaining inresidence 7-level courses in the Air Force. The unit's mission is to provide our Air Force and Army commanders in the field with safe, competent and confident combat mission-ready Airmen.

Detachment 7, 373d Training Squadron

Detachment 7 of the 373d Training Squadron is a geographically separated Air Education and Training Command unit aligned under the 982d Training Group at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas. The Detachment provides advanced aircraft maintenance training to the 1st Special Operations Wing. Thirty-five instructors from 14 aircraft maintenance career fields develop and teach more than 100 formal maintenance courses covering advanced troubleshooting and in-depth theory of operation of aircraft systems, with a special focus on the highly complex aircraft systems unique to Air Force Special Operations Command. The detachment trains more than 2,000 students annually. In addition to supporting the host wing, Detachment 7 also teaches Air Force Reserve technicians from the 919th Special Operations Wing at Duke Field, Fla., AFSOC overseas en route students, aircraft technicians from other services and international students. Instructors often deploy in support of Air Staff-directed conversion training for the Air National Guard, AFR and AFSOC.

10th Combat Weather Squadron

The unit trains, equips and employs Special Operations Weather Team personnel to conduct weather operations worldwide as attached elements to U.S. Army Special Operations Command units or other special operations forces. The functions include providing detailed environmental operational impact analyses, generating mission-tailored target and route forecasts, conducting special weather reconnaissance and training foreign national or guerrilla forces.

14th Weapons Squadron

Also known as the Weapons Instructor Course (WIC), the 14thWeapons Squadron is a selectively manned unit which conducts the most intense graduate-level training for operators in the USAF. The unit is responsible for the development, execution and revision of the AC-130 and MC-130 WICs. Responsible to Air Combat Command, the course is designed to graduate weapons officers in four different aircraft who provide expertise in all aspects of joint combat employment.>

18th Flight Test Squadron

As AFSOC's independent field test agency, the 18th Flight Test Squadron evaluates aircraft, equipment and tactics in realistic battlespace environments to provide decision makers accurate, timely and complete assessments of mission capability. From concept development to system fielding, the 18th Flight Test Squadron improves the survivability and combat capability of special operations forces worldwide.

23d Special Tactics Squadron

The unit trains, equips and employs combat control, pararescue and support personnel in response to Presidential/Secretary of Defense taskings. The primary task is to integrate, synchronize and/or control the elements of air and space power in the objective area. The unit performs austere airfield control, terminal attack control, personnel rescue and recovery, assault zone assessment, battlefield trauma care, direct action and special reconnaissance.

25th Intelligence Squadron

The 25th Intelligence Squadron has a unique and critical mission to AFSOC - to provide dedicated real time threat warning and enhanced situational awareness onboard AFSOC aircraft by exploiting enemy communications and monitoring national intelligence broadcasts. The 25th IS organically trains their SILENT SHIELD teams consisting of mission commanders, Direct Support Operators, Direct Support Analysts,maintainers and technical communicators to meet the needs of multiple, ongoing AFSOC requirements. The airborne cryptologic linguist brings a unique capability to each of the 1st Special Operations Group's platforms. Their linguistic skills provide a critical component on every mission. SILENT SHIELD has proven indispensable during Operations ALLIED FORCE, ENDURING FREEDOM, IRAQI FREEDOM and other operations across the spectrum of conflict. As a result of their outstanding combattested skills and ability to adapt to any scenario, special operations demand for this unit continues to rise.

39th Information Operations Squadron

The 39th Information Operations Squadron is the U.S. Air Force's only Information Operations formal training unit. The schoolhouse teaches the Information Operations Integration Course, which is required training for Airmen assigned to Information Operations flight billets; the Signature Management Course, which teaches military deception and operational security to wing level SMC officers and NCOs; a military deception course aimed at operational level planners; and the Undergraduate Network Warfare Training course that teaches the fundamentals of all aspects of network warfare. The 39th IOS is a tenant unit to Hurlburt Field and falls under the 318th Information Operations Group, under the Air Force Information Operations Center located at Lackland AFB, Texas.

720th Special Tactics Group

The 720th Special Tactics Group is home-based at Hurlburt Field, Fla. The group is comprised of more than 900 combat control, pararescue, special operations weather and specialized mission support personnel.

The group organizes, trains and equips Special Tactics forces to provide airmanship expertise and establish and control the air-to-ground interface in an objective area, worldwide. It also provides longrange operational and logistics planning and deploys command and control elements during Special Tactics force employment.

823d Red Horse Squadron

The 823d RED HORSE Squadron, or Rapid Engineer Deployable Heavy Operational Repair Squadron Engineers, is assigned to Air Combat Command and is a partner unit on Hurlburt Field. This squadron is one of only three active duty units of its kind in the Air Force. The RED HORSE squadron is highly mobile and selfsustaining in combat and austere environments. The special skills necessary are honed through construction projects for the Air Force, Department of Defense and civilian community. RED HORSE is an Enabler unit within the AEF concept and supports numerous Joint Chiefs of Staff-assigned missions.


© 2020 - MARCOA Media