77 SQN

76 SQN

737-700 AEW&C

Reformed at Williamtown on the 7th April 2000 to fly the next generation AEW&C multi-mission surveillance aircraft to be based on the Boeing 737-700. This squadron will work together with the two new purpose built facilities of the Surveillance and Control Group (SCG) one located at Williamtown, the Eastern Regions Operations Center (Eastroc) and the other in the Northern Territory (Northroc) to provide Australia with a 24 hour a day surveillance operation.

The Squadrons History
No 2 squadron was formed in September 1916 at Kantara Egypt and after initial training in England began combat operations over the Western Front in October 1917. No 2 squadrons first aerial victory was claimed by Lieutenant Huxley on the 22 November 1917 shooting down an Albatross scout plane. From 1917 till the end of the war the squadron worked in close co-operation with No 4 squadron inflicting heavy losses on the Germans.

At the out brake of WW2, No 2 squadron with its Arvo Anions conducted Coastal patrols and convoy escorts to the Middle East then in 1941 deployed to the Dutch East Indies to perform reconnaissance and bombing operations against the advancing Japanese forces. Despite heavy losses to enemy fighters and attacks on there own bases successfully continued there operations until the end of the war for which No 2 squadron was awarded a United States presidential unit citation.

In 1967 No 2 squadron commenced operations in Vietnam. Quickly establishing itself as the most effective bomber squadron in Vietnam. After flying all most
12 000 sorties with the loss of only two aircraft No 2 squadron returned to Australia in 1971 and was awarded the Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry and a United States Air Force Outstanding Unit Commendation making No 2 squadrons the most highly decorated squadron in the RAAF. The squadron was disbanded in July 1982 then reformed at Williamtown on the 7th April 2000 in preparation for the new AEW&C aircraft.


Operational conversion unit trains graduates from No 76 Squadron in the art of flying the Hornet. Once a pilot graduates from this unit they will have all the skills required to fly the Hornet and will move on to one of the three main Hornet Squadrons (No 3 and 77 squadrons based at Williamtown or 75 squadron based at Tindall, Northern Territory) where they will continue to learn the skills required of them to be first class fighter pilots.

Although 2OCU is primarily a training unit its capability makes it comparable with any operational fighter unit. As such 2OCU is frequently tasked with operational evaluations and participates in joint and single Service exercise and RAAF displays.


No 3 Squadron is one of the two main air to air squadrons of the RAAF the other being 75 Squadron based at Tindal. These two squadrons are Australia's front line of defence and both hone there skills on a daily basis to use the Hornet in a roll it excels at, air combat.

The Squadrons History
No 3 Squadron is Australia's oldest and most illustrious fighter squadron. Formed during WW1 in Egypt on the 19th September 1916. The squadron also saw action in the Middle East, England and was the first Australian flying Corp's squadron to move to France. By the end of the WW1 No 3 squadron had flown over 10,000 operational hours in support of allied forces.

In WW2 No 3 squadron again saw action in Egypt and in the invasion of Sicily became the first allied squadron to be based on an enemy homeland. By the end of the war No 3 squadron was the highest scoring Commonwealth fighter squadron with a total of 217.5 victories in air combat.

After WW2 ended No 3 squadron spent an almost continuous 30 years stationed at Butterworth in Malaysia operating Sabers then Mirage III aircraft. In 1986 the squadron moved to Williamtown and became the first operational squadron with the Hornets.

From February 2002 as port of Australia's comitment to the fight against terrorism 3 squadron started a three month deploment to the US air base on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean returning home 21-5-2002.

F/A-18 and Pilatus PC-9/A

No 77 Squadron is a true multi-role squadron whose main role is ground attack work. Here the pilots are trained to use the Hornet in its ground attack role. A role which the hornet is quiet capable of doing but does lack the payload and range of a dedicated mud mover like the RAAF's F-111's from Amberley. The squadrons secondary role is air defence a role that the Hornet is much happier doing.

The Squadrons History
No 77 squadron was formed in Perth on the 16th March 1942 flying Kittyhawk aircraft. On the 12th August 1942 they moved to Darwin then on the 21 February 1943 amidst a Japanese air raid were relocated to Milne Bay, New Guinea. As the war expanded through the Pacific 77 squadron also saw action at Goodenough Island, Nadab, Kiriwina, Momote, Noemfoor, Morotai and Labvan in 1945. At the end of WW2 the squadron became part of the British Commonwealth occupation force in Japan untill the 25th June 1950 when the squadron was called on by the United Nations for operations in Korea at which stage the squadron was flying Mustang fighters.

In July 1951 No 77 squadron saw there role change to ground attack with the arrival of the Meteor jet. In November 1954 the squadron was relocated to Williamtown for three years in which period they received the Avon-Saber. The squadron then moved to Butterworth in Malaysia untill 1969 when they where relocated back to Williamtown.

In mid 1970 the squadron was re-equipped with the Dassault Mirage III which they operated until being replaced by the F/A-18 in the late 1980's.

On the 13 November 2001 four Hornets and about 60 Squadron personel where deployed to the US air base on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean as part of Australia's contribution to the fight against Terrorism in Afghanistan Returning home on the 17 February 2002.

Hawk 127

No 76 squadron is one of Australia's most famous fighting squadrons having distinguished itself during WW2 as a premier fighter squadron.

Reformed at Williamtown on the 1st January 1989, No 76 squadrons operational role changed to introductory fighter training useing the Aermacchi MB.326H.

In late 2000 No 76 squadron started to receive BAe systems Hawk 127's to replace the Macchi's, a move which is shore to improve the quality of pilots graduating from this squadron to the Hornets or F-111 squadrons.

The Squadrons History
Formed in Queensland in March 1942 and flying kittyhawks No 76 Squadron was deployed to Milne Bay to confront the advancing Japanese on the 24th August that same year. The proceeding battle was one of the most significant in the South West Pacific region culminating in the first land defeat of the Japanese forces in the war. After playing a vital role in this Australia victory No 76 squadron re-grouped at Potshot in Western Australia in 1943. In may 1943 No 76 squadron returned to combat operations with a succession of moves from Pacific Island bases starting at Goodenough Island north of New Guinea and ending in Labuan in support of the invasion of Borneo.

After the war No 76 squadron was re-equipped with Mustangs and deployed to Japan as part of the British Commonwealth occupation force. Returning to Australia in 1948 the squadron converted to Vampire jets before deploying to Malta in 1952 to join NATO forces in the Mediterranean area.

From 1960 No 76 squadron was based at Williamtown and in 1966 converted to the supersonic Mirage III. In 1989 the squadron lost its fighter role when its Mirages where replaced by the Aermacchi. In late 2000 76 Squadron started to receive the new Hawk 127 or LIF ( lead in fighter ) as it is commonly called. The final Hawk was delivered in October 2001 starting a new era in RAAF fighter training.

All information on this page was collected from various sources of the RAAF. Full Squadron histories can be found on the Official RAAF Home page.

Paul's RAAF base Williamtown page www.cust.idl.net.au/0999000010/paul/raaf.htm