Structure of wings, groups, squadrons, etc

Boilermaker21

New Member
Lookin through some internet stuff about different units, and im seeing terms like Air refueling wing, refueling squadron, refueling group, etc.....can anyone explain the structure of this to me, like what is the top organization, and what branches off and becomes a smaller section, etc.....Ive got my first interview with a reserve unit in the midwest for a pilot slot this coming saturday the 13th, thought i should educate myself on some basic terms.....
 

Mike Lewis

Shadow Administrator
Staff member
Major Command -> Numbered Air Force -> Wing -> Group -> Squadron -> Flight

Some squadrons are divided into divisions and sections, but that's basically it.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Copa's got it right on. To expand a bit:

All came about from the "composite wing" concept. General fighting unit is a Wing. Wing comprises of one or more Groups. Wing's found at bases with usually one to a base, running that base. The one Wing usually has 2-3 Groups comprising different duties, such as Operations Group, Logistics Group, Medical Group, etc. Within these groups, there's squadrons. Looking at an Operations Group, you'd have two or more fighter/transport/bomber squadrons. A Wing with all fighter units is called a Fighter Wing. A Wing with different types of aircraft under it's charge is called a Wing. At bases with no aircraft assigned, the Wing running the base is known as an Air Base Wing. Squadrons further break down into Flights, for easier management of personnel and equipement.

Above Wing level, there comes Numbered Air Forces. NAFs are the HQ above Wing level. In the CONUS, in ACC, the 12th AF is the HQ for all west coast/half fighter wings, and the 9th AF is the HQ for the east coast/half fighter wings. Above the NAFs are the MAJCOMS, or Major Commands. Both the 9th and the 12th AF report to Air Combat Command.

So in my unit, going from lowest up the chain of command, I'm in D-Flight of the 354th Fighter Squadron, of the 355th Operations Group, of the 355th Fighter Wing, of the 12th Air Force, of the Air Combat Command, of the USAF.

Clear as mud?
 

Boilermaker21

New Member
Some of the details are still a little hazy, but i get the general structure for the most part....hopefully they wont grill me too hard on my knowledge of how everything fits together.....wish me luck guys, ill let yall know how it turns out, good or bad......
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
I can almost guarantee they won't grill you on USAF structure.

Who you interviewing with?
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Alright! You should fine. The reason I say you won't get questions about the AF-specific stuff is because that's not what they're really looking for. Generally, they're trying to get a feel for how you'd fit in, personality, general understanding of military life (knowing about deployment possiblities, etc), ability to pass all the necessary prequisites for you to successfully end up in their unit after years of training, an understanding of what their unit mission is, etc.

BL is, they're interviewing a potential future investment in the unit's efficiency and operability. They want to know about you. The training and understanding of the finite details will come later.

Good Luck!
 

Boilermaker21

New Member
Thanks for the help guys....also, my physical results came back yesterday and they sprinkeled the holy water on it and approved me, signed and stamped.....the unit said theyd like a signed and stamped form saying you passed the physical, but im not sure i can get ahold of the paper by this weekend....hopefully theyll take my word for it that im all set
 
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