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Royal Canadian Air Force

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The Royal Canadian Air Force is one of three environmental commands of the Canadian Forces. The professional head of the RCAF holds the title Chief of the Air Force Staff and Commander of the RCAF. The position is currently held by Air Chief Marshal André Deschamps. The Air Command consists of 62,500 Regular Force and 35,600 Primary Reserve airmen and airwomen, supported by 16,500 civilians.

The Royal Canadian Air Force is responsible for all non-maritime aircraft operations of the Canadian Forces, enforcing the security of Canada's airspace and providing aircraft to support the missions of the Royal Canadian Navy and the Canadian Army. The RCAF is a partner with the United States Air Force in protecting continental airspace under the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). The RCAF also provides all primary air resources to the National Search and Rescue Program.

The RCAF, an independent service until 1968, developed from the Canadian Air Force, which was formed in 1920. The Canadian Air Force was incorporated into the Department of National Defence in 1923 and granted royal sanction in 1924 by King George V.

In 1968, the RCAF was amalgamated with the Royal Canadian Navy and the Canadian Army as part of the unification of the Canadian Forces. Air units were split between several different commands: Air Defence Command (interceptors), Air Transport Command (airlift, search and rescue), Mobile Command (tactical fighters, helicopters), Maritime Command (anti-submarine warfare, maritime patrol), as well as Training Command.

In 1975, some commands were dissolved (ADC, ATC, TC), and all air units were placed under a new environmental command called simply Air Command (AIRCOM) until it was renamed once more into the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) The RCAF has served in the Second World War, the Korean War, the First Gulf War and several United Nations peacekeeping missions and NATO operations. As a NATO member, the force maintained a presence in Europe during the second half of the 20th century

Force Structure[edit]

Statistics[edit]

  • Active Personnel: 62,500
  • Reserve Personnel: 35,600
  • Active Bases: 16 (Bagotville, Chatham, Cold Lake, Comox, Gander, Goose Bay, Greenwood, Iqaluit West, Nova Valley, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Toronto-Downsview, Trenton, Uplands, West Caicos, Whitehorse, Yellowknife)
  • Active Installations: 8 (Baden-Soellingen, Kelowna, Montreal-Mirabel, Moose Jaw, Vancouver, Shearwater, Winnipeg, Zweibrücken)
  • Combat Aircraft: 236
  • Special Mission: 15
  • Transport Aircraft: 156
  • Trainers: 124
  • Helicopters: 217
  • Commander of the Air Command: Air Chief Marshal André Deschamps

Aircraft Inventory[edit]

Combat Aircraft[edit]

Airborne Radar/Reconnaissance Aircraft[edit]

Transport Aircraft[edit]

Trainer Aircraft[edit]

Helicopters[edit]

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