What is Air force: Definition and 26 Discussions

An air force – in the broadest sense – is the national military branch that primarily conducts aerial warfare. More specifically, it is the branch of a nation's armed services that is responsible for aerial warfare as distinct from an army or navy. Typically, air forces are responsible for gaining control of the air, carrying out strategic and tactical bombing missions, and providing support to land and naval forces often in the form of aerial reconnaissance and close air support.The term air force may also refer to a tactical air force or numbered air force, which is an operational formation either within a national air force or comprising several air components from allied nations. Air forces typically consist of a combination of fighters, bombers, helicopters, transport planes and other aircraft.
Many air forces may command and control other air defence assets such as anti-aircraft artillery, surface-to-air missiles, or anti-ballistic missile warning networks and defensive systems. Some air forces are also responsible for operations of the military space and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM). Some nations, principally countries who modelled their militaries along Soviet lines, have or had an air defence force which is organizationally separate from their air force.
Peacetime/non-wartime activities of air forces may include air policing and air-sea rescue.
Air forces are not just composed of pilots, but also rely on a significant amount of support from other personnel to operate. Logistics, security, intelligence, special operations, cyber space support, maintenance, weapons loaders, and many other specialties are required by all air forces.

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  1. Samuel Scarborough

    Physics Navy or Air Force for Particle Physics

    I have been interested in particle physics since I was in High School, but I have struggled to keep my GPA high enough to get me into grad school and I want to serve my country. I decided that the military was the best route to get the experience I needed. I would like to work with lasers to...
  2. P

    Physics Air Force Physicist Career and AFROTC

    Hello! I am a high school student who is going to attend college this year (Phyiscs major). I was curious about the career prospects of being an Air Force Physicist, like what kind of work (research etc.) does one do, average salary, career prospects etc. Also, does one need to go through the...
  3. Drakkith

    Insights Interview with a Mentor: Drakkith - Comments

    Greg Bernhardt submitted a new PF Insights post Interview with a Mentor: Drakkith Continue reading the Original PF Insights Post.
  4. R

    Should I go to the Air Force for physics?

    Alright so I'm a freshman in college studying physics with astronomy specialization. I want to eventually get a PhD and work for a space agency or maybe even become an astronaut. I've been told that having experience in the Air force looks much better when applying to work for a space agency...
  5. M

    Physics Physics Degree and the Air Force?

    Currently I am an undergraduate physics and mathematics double major. I am looking into the air force after graduation because I heard there are a lot of opportunities for people with STEM degrees but I have no idea what kind of opportunities are available for my degree paths. Joining the Air...
  6. Andrehm99

    Schools Study in college or join the US Air Force?

    Hello, thanks to everyone who is reading this. First of all, I'm sorry if i made a mistake on my english, I'm learning. My name is Andre I will tell a brief story of my life so you can understand my situation. My parents are peruvian and traveled to usa because of all the problems that Peru...
  7. T

    Job Skills Weird Air Force admissions situation

    Anyone have any backup ideas/plans for me because it appears that my Air Force career goal isn't working out... as in they might not even bother to send me to MEPs because of an issue. Thanks!
  8. T

    Automated Air Force Lug Analysis

    Air Force Lug Analysis (section 9 here and summarized here) seems to be the best generalized method for comprehensive lug analysis. However, it relies on charts developed by the USAF in the late sixties. Every source I've found on the method uses those same images. I'm trying to make an...
  9. S

    Is joining the Air Force worth it?

    Hello all. I am new to the forums and this is my first post. So, I am currently a junior double majoring in Mechanical Engineering and Physics. My college has a 5 year program meaning I have another 2 years after the upcoming spring semester. I have grown an interest in joining the Air Force...
  10. G

    Possible new Air Force Osprey idea

    My friend in the air force was complaining that the military Osprey was bulky, weak, and could be spotted from miles away. I have an idea that uses an electro-magnetic rotated turbine instead of the large and noisy propellers. it would include the encasement of the turbine to make the vehicle...
  11. Hercuflea

    What is the role of the Air Force in the modern military?

    Hi everyone I know I might overuse these guidance forums, but I am very curious! I was thinking about the airforce as a career tonight while bored and I have quite a few questions for anyone who might know about the Air Force career paths: Please keep in mind that I'm not really...
  12. C

    Air Force Enlisted to bachelors - best/fastest route?

    Hi there, I've signed a contract with the Air Force as an enlisted personnel. Hoping everything goes fine. What's the best way to get to a bachelors while Enlisted? What are the options I have while in active service at supplementing my education? Any information much appreciated.
  13. J

    Royal Air Force to kickstart Aerospace career

    I'm about to start my final year of Undergraduate Mechanical Engineering here is South Africa but as far as my options are for jobs in the Aeronautical field (which I'm interested in) they are limited to manufacturing and maintenance. Because of this I'm thinking of joining the RAF after my...
  14. C

    Air Force Scientist - Should I Pursue Career?

    Thinking about becoming an Air Force Scientist after college. I just want to know everyone's opinions.
  15. E

    I am thinking about joining the Air Force

    I am thinking about going into the Air Force ROTC program at University of Arizona if I can get accepted. Hints, tips, ideas, opinions, words of praise?
  16. A

    Physics Air Force and Physics - Should I?

    Hello all, I am currently enlisted in the Air Force (about to ship out to basic in a month) and needed to ask a question about studying physics. I would ask my recruiter but all he would do is blow smoke up my *** and sugar coat it all so I thought I'd make a post here. My question is how...
  17. P

    New to Here? Start Your Air Force Pilot Dream Here!

    new to here! Hi, everyone just a newbie here lol... well anyway, I am leaning towards wanting to become a pilot in the air force but my question is what do i need from step 1 til the end my understanding i need a bachelors to even get into becoming an officer in the military but where can i...
  18. B

    Schools Joining the air force reserves vs. borrowing money for college loans

    I am thinking about joining the air force reserves while continuing to attend college because I am no longer able to borrow money for college. I think the air force would be beneficial for me because I think it would be the perfect opportunity for me to developed my research skills in the Air...
  19. Pengwuino

    Air force one free speech webmaster = liar

    http://famulus.msnbc.com/famulusgen/ap04-21-143613.asp?t=apnew&vts=42120061600 Because security just isn't THAT lax... Where did the original thread go anyways?
  20. z-component

    News Should Graffiti on Air Force One Be Considered Freedom of Expression?

    Marc Ecko, advocate of freedom of expression, displays a video on his website of him graffiting Air Force One by accessing an airbase where this 747 was parked. If the video is legitimate, I think it's shameful that two guys can breach security like that. http://stillfree.com/ Thoughts?
  21. C

    US Air Force Developing Space Weapons: A Global Arms Race?

    It seems GWB has given green signal to US Air Force to develop space weapons. Is it really true and is it going to trigger an arms race. What are the other countries doing? I don't think UN would be of much help! :smile:
  22. L

    Programs Degree obtained form the Air Force Institute of Technology?

    Does anyone have any opinions on the quality of a post graduate degree obtained form the Air Force Institute of Technology? I will be honest and say that it is unlikely that I will be joining the Air Force, but at the same time it has always been in the back of my mind as something I'd like to...
  23. Ivan Seeking

    Air Force report calls for $7.5M to study psychic teleportation

  24. Ivan Seeking

    Oregon TV calls out the Air Force

  25. Ivan Seeking

    Mexican Air Force Pilots Videotape UFOs

    http://www.thesandiegochannel.com/news/3292542/detail.html Note: Slides and a Real Player video
  26. Ivan Seeking

    U.S. Air Force Plans for Future War in Space