U. S. Navy Aircraft and Helicopter Squadrons assigned to Carriers & Ships’

 

 

U. S. Shore/Land and Carrier Capable

Abbreviation

Squadron Type

Total Squadrons

VFA

Strike Fighter Squadron—STRKFITRON

39

VMFA

Marine Fighter Attack Squadrons

8

VMA

Marine Attack Squadrons

7

VMFA(AW)

Marine Fighter Attack Squadrons (All Weather)

5

VAW

Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron—CARAEWRON

11

VAQ

Carrier Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron—VAQRON

16

VMAQ

Marine Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadrons

4

VQ

Fleet Air Reconnaissance

5

VR

Fleet Logistics Support Squadron—FLELOGSUPPRON

15 - Reserve

VRC

Carrier Fleet Logistics Support Squadron

VRC 30 & VRC-40 with 5 Dets. Each, totally 10 Dets.

VS

Sea Control Squadron—SEACONRON

0

VFC

Fighter Squadron Composite, Naval Reserve Squadron

3

VT

Training Squadron

16

Total

 

139

EQNEEDF Note: In order to originate this report, every active internet address within the history summary were reviewed in order to verify information used from Wikipedia® a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization, which was used as a guide but more extensively researched and current as of September 2012. VS

 

STRATCOMMWING

TACAMO

http://www.tacamo.navy.mil

TACAMO

http://www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TACAMO

SCW-1 WEAPONS & TACTICS UNIT

SCW-1 DET FLEET INTRODUCTION TEAM

 

Other Navy Squadrons’

Abbreviation

Squadron Type

Total Squadrons

UAV

Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)

1+

VX / HX

Air Test and Evaluation Squadron

7

VP

Patrol Squadron

17

Total

 

25+

EQNEEDF Note: In order to originate this report, every active internet address within the history summary were reviewed in order to verify information used from Wikipedia® a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization, which was used as a guide but more extensively researched and current as of September 2012.

 

U. S. Navy Helicopter Squadrons

Abbreviation

Squadron Type

Active Squadrons

HM

Helicopter Mine-Countermeasures Squadron

2

HS

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadrons

9

HSC

Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron

16

HSL

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light)

12

HSM

Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadrons

7

HT

Helicopter Training Squadron

3

Total

 

49

EQNEEDF Note: In order to originate this report, every active internet address within the history summary were reviewed in order to verify information used from Wikipedia® a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization, which was used as a guide but more extensively researched and current as of September 2012.

 

COMHSMWINGPAC [Commander, Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing, U.S. Pacific Fleet]

 

On April 1, 2005, Helicopter Anti-Submarine Light Wing, Pacific transistioned to Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing, Pacific.

 

Based at NAS North Island, San Diego, Calif., Commander Helicopter Maritime Strike Wing, Pacific extends the shipboard sensor and weapons capabilities against several types of enemy threats: submarines, surface ships and patrol craft that might be armed with anti-ship missiles. The "light" squadrons deploy aboard surface ships and fly the SH-60B, but will soon be transistioning to the MH-60R. When the squadrons have transistioned to the MH-60R, they will be redesignated HSM from HSL.

 

U. S. Navy Helicopter Squadrons

Abbreviation

Squadron Type

Active Squadrons

HM

Helicopter Mine-Countermeasures Squadron

2

HS

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadrons

9

HSC

Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron

16

HSL

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light)

12

HSM

Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadrons

7

HT

Helicopter Training Squadron

3

Total

 

49

EQNEEDF Note: In order to originate this report, every active internet address within the history summary were reviewed in order to verify information used from Wikipedia® a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization, which was used as a guide but more extensively researched and current as of September 2012.

 

U. S. Marine Helicopter Squadrons

Abbreviation

Squadron Type

Total Squadrons

HMX

Marine Helicopter Squadron

1

HMT

Marine Helicopter Training Squadron

2

MALS

Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron

9

HMM

Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron

7

HMH

Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron

10

HML

Marine Light Helicopter Squadron

0

HMLA

Marine Light/Attack Helicopter Squadron

8 / 773, Det. A & B

HMLAT

Marine Light Attack Helicopter Training Squadron

1

HMMT

Marine Medium Helicopter Training Squadron

1

VMM

Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadrons

12

HX / MX / VMX

Marine Tiltrotor Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron

1

VMMT

Marine Medium Tiltrotor Training Squadron

1

VMAT

Marine Attack Training Squadron

2

VMFAT

Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron

2

VMGR

Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadrons

5

VMR

Marine Transport Squadron

1

HMA / VMO

Marine Observation Squadrons

0

VMU

Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadrons

4

Total

 

67

EQNEEDF Note: In order to originate this report, every active internet address within the history summary were reviewed in order to verify information used from Wikipedia® a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization, which was used as a guide but more extensively researched and current as of September 2012.

 

U.S. Navy Aircraft Squadron Classification Symbols - Ref. 39

 

The system of squadron designations was established to help define part of Naval Aviation's organizational structure and help identify the operational and administrative functions of aviation within the fleet. Just as the designations for ships, such as DD, CA, BB, etc., were used to define the duties of the specific units and their alignment within the fleet organization, so also were the squadron designations established to formulate the responsibilities and alignment within naval aviation and the fleet structure.

 

During naval aviation's early years there were big question marks concerning naval aviation's ability to succeed as a functional component of the fleet and whether it would survive due to the limited capabilities of the aircraft. In official publications and references, such as the Daily Aviation News Bulletin of 1 October 1919, casual terms were used to describe or identify various aircraft squadrons and units. The casual terms were used because no specific fleet aviation organizational structure for squadrons had been officially established. Prior to 1919, naval aircraft, excluding Marine Corps planes, were primarily assigned to shore stations. Therefore, in order to integrate aviation into the fleet, it was necessary to develop a fleet organization that included aviation units. The development of a system of squadron designations is discussed in Chapter 1.

 

In general terms, the Navy's system for designating naval aircraft squadrons has usually conformed to the following loose classification structure:

 

Squadron designations were based on specific letters used for indicating the missions for each particular type of squadron and its assigned aircraft. As an example, a World War II squadron operating the F4U Corsair aircraft would have been designated a fighting squadron (VF). The letter F, for fighting or fighter, was the key in identifying the type of squadron and was also used in the aircraft's designation.


(2)         Identification numbers were assigned to each squadron, such as VF-1. The number 1 separates Fighter Squadron 1 (VF-1)              from Fighter Squadron 10 (VF-10).

 

There have been many variations to this basic system throughout Naval Aviation's history. Changes were also made to the designation system when new plane types were developed and new squadrons were formed to carry out those new missions. There is no logical sequence for the numerical designation assigned the various squadrons throughout most of Naval Aviation's history. The Marine Corps did establish a logical sequence for their squadron designations, however, there are variations to this system, too.

 

As Navy squadrons were established, disestablished or redesignated, many of the same letters and numbers were reused and assigned at a later date for newly established or redesignated units, hence, the lineage of a squadron cannot always be traced or linked by using the same designation. As an example, VF-1 from World War II has no direct relationship to VF-1 established in the 1970s.

 

The rich tradition and heritage of the various squadrons in the Navy has not always been carried over because of the break in continuity between units. Once a squadron is disestablished that ends its history. If a new squadron is established using the same designation of a previous squadron it does not have any direct relationship with that unit. The reuse of many of the same letters and numerical designations adds considerable confusion to the squadron designation system. A new squadron may carry on the traditions of a previous squadron, just as a ship that has been assigned the same name more than once carries on the traditions of the past ships with the same name. However, a squadron, just like a ship, can not claim a heritage or historical link to the old unit with the same designation.

 

Consistency has been the major ingredient lacking in the Navy's squadron designation system. As an example, the use of "Plane" in squadron designations was not consistent during the 1920s. Sometimes the full designation would be written differently, depending on the squadron's assignment to the Battle Fleet, Scouting Fleet, or Asiatic Fleet. A designation such as Scouting Squadron and Scouting Plane Squadron, which used the same abbreviation, VS, was listed in the Navy Directory as Scouting Squadron under the Battle Fleet and Scouting Plane Squadron under the Scouting Fleet. The use of "Plane" in squadron designations was most likely designed to identify the squadron as an aviation unit, vice a destroyer squadron. This seems to be especially true during the 1920s when aviation was first being integrated into the fleet organization and operations. The Navy Directory, Monthly Report, Status of Naval Aircraft, and the Bureau of Aeronautics, Weekly Newsletter all list squadron designations using "Plane." The Chief of Naval Operations' "Naval Aeronautical Organization", published for each Fiscal Year, lists the squadron designations without using "Plane" in the designation. It is obvious there is no difference between the squadrons with or without the use of "Plane" in the squadron designation. The acronym remained the same, with or without the use of "Plane" in the full squadron designation. In the 1930s the squadron designations listed in all four sources identified above usually refer to the squadron using its abbreviated designation, such as VF Squadron 1 (VF-1) instead of Fighting Plane Squadron 1. In the 1940s the use of "Plane" in the full squadron designation is dropped.

 

In the late 1940s and early 1950s the VC squadron designation was used to identify a group of squadrons with several different missions but all assigned the VC designation. Missions for specific Composite Squadrons (VC) included all-weather night, attack and defense; air early warning; anti-submarine warfare; and photographic. The only identifying factor to separate the different types of Composite Squadrons was the numerical designation. In the late 1940s the single digit numbers were for the Composite Night or Attack and Defense units, those numbers in the teens were for Composite Air Warning squadrons, numbers in the 20s and 30s were for Composite Anti-Submarine units, and the numbers in the 60s were for Composite Photographic squadrons.

 

Besides the composite squadrons (VC), several patrol squadrons (VP) had specific mission requirements that were different from its normal patrol and reconnaissance duties. However, these squadrons still maintained the normal VP designation. In the late 1940s there were two VP squadrons with a primary mission of photographic and one with an air early warning mission. VP-61 and VP-62 were the photographic squadrons and VP-51 was the air early warning squadron.

 

The special VC and VP designated units, were on the cutting edge of technology, which eventually lead to the development of specialized squadron designations in the 1950s and 1960s. Squadrons such as VAW (Carrier Airborne Early Warning), VAQ (Tactical Electronic Warfare), and VQ (Electronic Countermeasures or Air Reconnaissance) were the result of technical developments in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

 

The use of an abbreviated squadron designation with different missions occurred in the early 1950s when the VJ designation was used for both photographic squadrons and weather squadrons. VJ-1 and 2 were designated Weather Squadrons or Weather Reconnaissance Squadrons. VJ-61 and 62 were designated Photographic Squadrons. The missions were totally different for these two types of squadrons but they used a common abbreviated squadron designation.

 

There are four factors that play a role in developing or changing squadron designations. They have been around since the introduction of aviation in the Navy and will continue to be the primary factors effecting squadron designations. The factors are:

 

1. the duties or mission of a squadron
2. technical advances in aircraft or equipment
3. changes in tactics or development of new tactics
4. changes in naval aviation or fleet organization

 

The following is a list of various squadron designations used by the Navy since the early 1920s. It does not include Marine Corps squadron designations. The list is in alphabetical order rather than in the chronological order of squadron development. The general time frame for when the designation was in use is listed with the squadron designation. Further elaboration on the assignment of squadrons to other organizations and their designations such as: a battle group, carrier air wing, cruiser group, fleet air force, scouting fleet, Asiatic Fleet, naval district, reserves, etc..., has not been included in this list to prevent it from becoming to confusing or extensive. The only exception to this is for the reserves. Reserve squadron designations, beginning in 1970, are included in this list. In 1970 the naval air reserve was reorganized and the squadron structure and arrangement was aligned to mirror the squadron designation system in existence for active fleet units.

Note: The chart below just covers the abbreviations of US Navy squadrons with the exception of VMA(AW)-533 and VMFA-251. Those of the Marine Corps are not listed below but these squadrons can easily be identified by the "M" in the abbreviation. For example VFA and VMFA.

 

US Navy Aircraft Squadron Classification Symbols

 

Abbreviation

Meaning

Timeframe

HAL or HA(L)

Helicopter Attack Squadron Light

1967-72
1976-88

HC

Helicopter Combat Support Squadron

1965-present

HCS

Helicopter Combat Support Special Squadron

1988-present

HCT

Helicopter Combat Support Training Squadron

1974-1977

HM

Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron

1971-present

(HMLA-167)

Marine Helicopter Light Squadron

 

HMH-362(C)

Marine Helicopter Heavy Squadron

 

HS

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron

1951-present

HSL

Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (Light)

1972-present

HT

Helicopter Training Squadron

1960-present

HTU

Helicopter Training Unit

1950-1957

HU

Helicopter Utility Squadron

1948-1965

RVAH

Reconnaissance Attack Squadron

1964-1979

RVAW

Carrier Airborne Early Warning Training Squadron

1967-1983

STAGRON

Special Air Task Force Squadron (VK)

1943-1944

TACRON

Tactical Squadron or
Tactical Air Control Squadron or
Tactical Control Squadron

1946-present

VA

Attack Squadron

1946-present

VA(AW)

All-Weather Attack Squadron

1956-1959

VAH or VA(H)

Heavy Attack Squadron

1955-1971

VA(HM)

Attack Mining Squadron

1956-1959

VAK

Tactical Aerial Refueling Squadron

1979-1989

VAL or VA(L)

Light Attack Squadron

1969-1972

VAP or VA(P)

Heavy Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron or
Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron (Heavy) or
Heavy Photographic Squadron

1956-1971

VAQ

Carrier Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron or
Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron

1968-present

VAW

Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron

1948
1956-present

VAW

Carrier Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron

1968

VB

Bombing Squadron or
Light Bombing Plane Squadron

1928-1946

VBF

Bombing Fighting Squadron

1945-1946

VC

Composite Squadron

1943-45
1948-56

VC

Fleet Composite Squadron

1965-present

VCN

Night Composite Squadron

1946-1948

VCP

Photographic Composite Squadron

1959-1961

VCS

Cruiser Scouting Squadron

1937-1945

VD

Photographic Squadron

1943-1946

VE

Evacuation Squadron

1944-1945

VF

Combat Squadron

1922

VF

Fighting Plane Squadron or Fighting Squadron

1922-1948

VF

Fighter Squadron

1948-present

VFA

Strike Fighter Squadron

1980-1983

VFA

Strike Fighter Squadron

1983-present

VF(AW)

All-Weather Fighter Squadron or
Fighter (All-Weather) Squadron

1956-1963

VFN or VF(N)

Night Fighting Squadron

1944-1946

VFP or VF(P)

Light Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron or
Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron or
Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron (Light) or
Light Photographic Squadron

1956-1987

VGF

Escort-Fighter Squadron

1942-1943

VGS

Escort-Scouting Squadron

1942-1943

VH

Rescue Squadron

1944-1946

VJ

Utility Squadron or
General Utility Squadron

1925-1946

VJ

Weather Squadron or
Weather Reconnaissance Squadron

1952-1953

VJ

Photographic Squadron

1952-1956

VK

Special Air Task Force Squadron (STAGRON)

1943-1944

VN

Training Squadron

1927-1947

VO

Spotting Squadron

1922

VO

Observation Plane Squadron or
Observation Squadron

1923-45
1947-49
1967-1968

VOC

Composite Spotting Squadron

1944-1945

VOF

Observation Fighter Squadron

1942-1945

VP

Seaplane Patrol Squadron

1922

VP

Patrol Squadron

1924-1944
1946
1948-present

VP-AM

Amphibian Patrol Squadron

1946-1948

VPB

Patrol Bombing Squadron

1944-1946

VP-HL

Heavy Patrol Squadron (landplane)

1946-1948

VPM

Meteorological Squadron

1946-1947

VP-ML

Medium Patrol Squadron (landplane)

1946-1948

VP-MS

Medium Patrol Squadron (seaplane)

1946-1948

VPP or VP(P)

Photographic Squadron or
Patrol Squadron (photographic)

1946-1948

VPU

Patrol Squadron Special Unit

1982-present

VPW

Weather Reconnaissance Squadron

1945-1948

VPW

Air Early Warning Squadron

1948

VQ

Electronic Countermeasures Squadron

1955-1960

VQ

Fleet Air Reconnaissance Squadron

1961-present

VR

Transport Squadron or
Air Transport Squadron or Fleet Logistic Air Squadron

1942-1958

VR

Fleet Tactical Support Squadron

1958-1976

VR

Fleet Logistics Support Squadron

1976-present

VRC or VR(C)

Fleet Tactical Support Squadron

1960-1976

VRC

Fleet Logistics Support Squadron

1976-present

VRE

Air Transport Evacuation Squadron

1945

VRF

Transport Ferry and Service Squadron

1943-1946

VRF

Air Ferry Transport Squadron or
Air Ferry Squadron

1943-1948

VRF or VR(F)

Aircraft Ferry Squadron

1957-1986

VRJ

Utility Transport Squadron

1945-1946

VRS

Air Ferry Service Squadron or
Ferry Command Service Squadron

1943-1946

VRU

Transport Utility Squadron

1946-1948

VS

Scouting Plane Squadron or
Scouting Squadron

1922-1946

VS

Anti-Submarine Squadron or
Air Anti-Submarine Squadron or
Carrier Air Anti-Submarine Squadron

1950-1993

VS

Sea Control Squadron

1993-present

VSF

Anti-Submarine Fighter Squadron

1965-1973

VT

Torpedo Bombing Plane Squadron or
Torpedo Bombing Squadron

1922-1930

VT

Torpedo Plane Squadron

1921

VT

Torpedo Squadron

1930-1946

VT

Training Squadron

1960-present

VTN

Night Torpedo Squadron

1944-1946

VU

Utility Squadron

1946-1965

VW

Air Early Warning Squadron or
Airborne Early Warning Squadron or
Fleet Early Warning Squadron

1952-1971

VW

Weather Reconnaissance Squadron or
Fleet Weather Reconnaissance Squadron

1967-1975

VX

Experimental Squadron

1927-approx. 1943

VX

Experimental and Development Squadron or
Operational Development Squadron or
Air Operational Development Squadron or
Air Development Squadron

1946-1968

VX

Air Test and Evaluation Squadron

1969-present

VXE

Antarctic Development Squadron

1969-present

VXN

Oceanographic Development Squadron

1969-1993

ZJ

Blimp Utility Squadron

1944-1945

ZK

Kite Balloon Squadron

1922-1924

ZP

Airship Patrol Squadron

1942-1961

ZP

Blimp Squadron

1942-1961

ZP

Airship Patrol Squadron (All-Weather Anti-Submarine) or
Airship Squadron or
LTA Patrol Squadron

1942-1961

ZW

Airship Early Warning Squadron

1956-1961

ZX

Airship Operational Development Squadron or
Airship Development Squadron

1950-1957

VMA(AW)-533

Hawks -                   Marine Attack Squadron

 

VMFA-251

Thunderbolts -             Marine Fighter Attack Squadron

 

http://www.navysite.de/terms-squads.htm

DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
WASHINGTON DC 20374-5060

http://www.history.navy.mil/branches/squades.htm

 

 

U. S. Navy Aircraft and Helicopter Squadrons assigned to Carriers & Ships’

 USS CORAL SEA (CV 43)

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw, A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy (August 1977 to February 1983)

 

A Sailors tale of his Tour of duty in the U.S. Navy - Operation Evening Light And Eagle Claw -

 

Book - ISBN NO.

978-1-4276-0454-5

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978-1-329-15473-5

 

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw (24 April 1980) Iran and Air Arm History (1941 to Present)

 

Operations Evening Light and Eagle Claw (24 April 1980) Iran and Air Arm History (1941 to Present)

 

Book ISBN NO.

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA  Vol. I (10 July 1944 to 31 December 1975)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA Vol. I (10 July 1944 to 31 December 1975) -

 

Book ISBN NO.

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USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. II (1 January 1976 to 25 August 1981)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. II (1 January 1976 to 25 August 1981) -

 

Book ISBN NO.

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USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. III (20 August 1981 to 26 April 1990)

 

USS CORAL SEA CV-42, CVB-43, CVA-43 & CV-43 HISTORY, AND THOSE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS OPERATING WITH CORAL SEA DURING HER TOUR OF SERVICE Vol. III (20 August 1981 to 26 April 1990) -

 

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U. S. AIRCRAFT CARRIER SHIP HISTORY (1920 to 2016)

 

U. S. AIRCRAFT

CARRIER SHIP

HISTORY (1920 to 2016)

 

Book - ISBN NO.

978-1-4276-0465-1

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U. S. AIRCRAFT CARRIERS REDESIGNATED AND OR RECLASSIFIED (1953 to 2016)

 

U. S. AIRCRAFT

CARRIERS

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RECLASSIFIED

(1953 to 2016)

 

BOOK - ISBN NO.

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