Air and Space Operations Center
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Air and Space Operations Center
USAFCENT CAOC at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, 2009
A look inside the Gen. James H. Doolittle Combined Air and Space Operations Center facility (612th Air and Space Operations Center) at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., 2013

An Air and Space Operations Center (AOC) is a type of command center used by the United States Air Force (USAF). It is the senior agency of the Air Force component commander to provide command and control of air and space operations.[1]

The United States Air Force employs two kinds of AOCs: regional AOCs utilizing the AN/USQ-163 Falconer weapon system that support geographic combatant commanders, and functional AOCs that support functional combatant commanders.[2] When there is more than one U.S. military service working in an AOC, such as when naval aviation from the U.S. Navy (USN) and/or the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) is incorporated, it is called a Joint Air and Space Operations Center (JAOC). In cases of allied or coalition (multinational) operations in tandem with USAF or Joint air and space operations, the AOC is called a Combined Air and Space Operations Center (CAOC).[1]

An AOC is the senior element of the Theater Air Control System (TACS). The Joint Force Commander (JFC) assigns a Joint Forces Air Component Commander (JFACC) to lead the AOC weapon system. If allied or coalition forces are part of the operation, the JFC and JFACC will be redesignated as the CFC and CFACC, respectively.

Quite often the Commander, Air Force Forces (COMAFFOR) is assigned the JFACC/CFACC position for planning and executing theater-wide air and space forces. If another service also provides a significant share of air and space forces, the Deputy JFACC/CFACC will typically be a senior flag officer from that service. For example, during Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, when USAF combat air forces (CAF) and mobility air forces (MAF) integrated extensive USN and USMC sea-based and land-based aviation and Royal Air Force (RAF) and Royal Navy / Fleet Air Arm aviation, the CFACC was an aeronautically rated USAF lieutenant general, assisted by an aeronautically designated USN rear admiral (upper half) as the Deputy CFACC, and an aeronautically rated RAF air commodore as the Senior British Officer (Air).


There are five divisions in the AOC. These separate, but distinct, organizations fuse information that eventually becomes the Air Tasking Order. Staffing of these divisions consists primarily of USAF officers of various specialities in the ranks of captain, major and lieutenant colonel, supported by a smaller cohort of enlisted airmen, typically in the rank of staff sergeant and above. When conducting joint air and space operations, U.S. Army and USMC officers of similar rank and USN officers in the ranks of lieutenant, lieutenant commander and commander will also provide augmentative manning as required, the majority of whom will be aeronautically rated/aeronautically designated. Senior leadership oversight of the AOC is provided by USAF colonels and general officers and USN captains and flag officers.

Strategy Division (SRD)

  • Strategy Plans Team
  • Strategy Guidance Team
  • Operational Assessment Team
  • Information Operations Team

Combat Plans Division (CPD)

  • Target Effects Team
  • Master Air Attack Plan Team
  • Air Tasking Order Production Team
  • Command and Control Planning Team

Combat Operations Division (COD)

  • Offensive Ops Team
  • Defensive Ops Team
  • Personnel Recovery
  • Senior Intelligence Duty Officer
  • Joint Interface Control Officer
  • Weather Specialty Team
  • Naval Air Liaison Element (NALE)
    • USN + USMC; NALE also provides personnel/support to CPD and ISRD

Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance Division (ISRD)

  • Analysis, Correlation, and Fusion
  • Targeting and Tactical Assessment
  • ISR Operations

Air Mobility Division (AMD)

  • AMD Chief
  • Deputy AMD Chief
  • Superintendent
  • Air Mobility Control Team (AMCT)
    • Execution Cell
    • Mission Management
    • Flight Management
    • USAPAT Mission Planner
    • Maintenance
  • Airlift Control Team (ALCT)
    • Airlift Plans
    • DV Airlifts
    • Diplomatic Clearance
    • Requirements
  • Air Refueling Control Team (ARCT)
  • Aeromedical Evacuation Control Team (AECT)
  • Unique Missions Support Team (AMDU)

List of Air and Space Operations Centers

The table below lists the Air and Space Operations Centers currently in service in the US Air Force, the Named or Numbered Air Force (NAF) and Major Command (MAJCOM) to which they are assigned, Unified Combatant Command they support, and where they are stationed.

Inactive AOCs

  • 617th Air Operations Center (617 AOC) - Ramstein AB, Germany (Merged with 603 AOC in 2011)[13]


AOC-equipping Units


Since July 2013 The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) also uses the Combined Air Operations Centre concept at two locations (Torrejon, Spain and Uedem, Germany) with a deployable Air Operations Centre at Poggio Renatico, Italy. Previously, supporting the air component commands were 5 static Combined Air Operations Centres (CAOCs) to direct NATO air operations: in Finderup, Denmark; Eskisehir, Turkey; Larissa, Greece; Torrejon, Spain and Lisbon, Portugal. There were 2 further CAOCs with a static as well as a deployable role; Uedem, Germany and Poggio Renatico. The static CAOCs can support Allied air operations from their fixed locations, while the deployable CAOC will move where they are needed.

See also


  1. ^ a b Air Force Doctrine Document 1-2, Air Force Glossary Archived 13 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. 11 January 2007. Accessed 29 January 2011.
  2. ^ Air Force Doctrine Document 2, Operations and Organization Archived 13 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. 3 April 2007. Accessed 29 January 2011.
  3. ^ "601st Air and Space Operations Center factsheet". Archived from the original on 9 August 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  4. ^ "3rd Air Force - Units". Archived from the original on 27 December 2010. Retrieved 2011.
  5. ^ 7th Air Force - Units
  6. ^ "8th Air Force - 608th AOC". Archived from the original on 27 January 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  7. ^ Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson - 11th Air Force
  8. ^ "Factsheets : 612th Air and Space Operations Center". Archived from the original on 22 July 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  9. ^ "Factsheets : 613th Air and Space Operations Center". Archived from the original on 22 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  10. ^ "Extreme make-over: 14th Air Force becomes component numbered AF". Archived from the original on 11 March 2012. Retrieved 2011.
  11. ^ 618th Air and Space Operations Center (TACC) - Home
  12. ^ Factsheets : 624 Operations Center (AFSPC) Archived 7 May 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^
  14. ^ [1]
  15. ^ [2]
  16. ^ 112d Air Operations Squadron Homepage
  17. ^ NYANG - 152d AOG Homepage
  18. ^ Air Force Reserve News

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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