The United States Air Force's 505th Command and Control Wing is organized under the USAF Warfare Center. The wing is dedicated to improving readiness through integrated training, tactics development and operational testing for command and control of air, space and cyberspace. It hosts the Air Force's only Air Operations Center Formal Training Unit at Hurlburt Field, Florida.
The unit was first activated in 1947 under Air Defense Command (ADC) as the 505th Aircraft Control and Warning Group. It controlled radar units in the northwest until inactivating in February 1942 during a general reorganization of ADC.
It was activated again during the Vietnam War in November 1965. It initially commanded both aircraft warning units and forward air control squadrons, but in December 1966, those units were transferred to the 505th Tactical Air Control Group. It continued to manage the airspace over South Vietnam until the American withdrawal in 1973.
The mission of the 505th is to improve capability through command and control testing, tactics development and training. While the mission focuses on Component Numbered Air Forces (C-NAF) attached and assigned forces, the wing is also tasked with supporting joint and coalition forces engaged in all aspects of command and control, or C2. C2 is where the integration of air, space and cyber happens. Through a multi-disciplinary approach to training and development of tactics, techniques and procedures (TTP) for C-NAF Headquarters; testing and training of key C2 systems; comprehensive, realistic, cutting-edge operational through tactical-level live, virtual and constructive exercises, the 505th is postured to provide the best possible support to US soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines.
The 505th CCW is responsible for developing the combat capability of the Air and Space Operations Center (AOC) and for developing and integrating joint live, virtual and constructive training capabilities within the US Air Force Distributed Mission Operations Center. In addition to hosting the Air Force's only AOC Formal Training Unit, the 505th CCW delivers realistic, cutting-edge operational C2 training through Blue Flag, Virtual Flag, Joint Expeditionary Force Experiment and equivalent overseas Combatant Command and Service exercises and executes operational test for all elements of the Theater Air Control System including E-3A AWACS, E-8 Joint STARS, Command Reporting Center, AOC, Air Force Digital Common Ground Station and Tactical Air Control Party. Through the Operational Command Training Program, retired Air Force three-star general officer Senior Mentors train Air Force, joint and coalition operational-level commanders and their staffs.
Detachment 1 of Wing headquarters at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas advises the United States Army Combined Arms Center Commanding General and key staff on all aspects of air and space power doctrine and employment and integrates realistic air and space capabilities in the Army's worldwide Battle Command Training Program. Det 1 integrates a doctrinally-correct representation of air power in Army Mission Rehearsal Exercises and Warfighter Exercises.
The unique mission of the 84th Radar Evaluation Squadron is to provide Department of Defense radar planning, integration and evaluations while simultaneously monitoring the US radar grid.
Through a multi-disciplinary approach to training and development of tactics, techniques, and procedures for the AOC; testing and training of key C2 systems; and comprehensive, realistic, state-of-the-art operational and tactical live, virtual and constructive exercises, the 505th CCW prepares Air Force, joint and coalition forces for crisis, contingency and combat operations.Detachment 1 - Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
505th Training Group
505th Test and Evaluation Group - Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada
On 21 May 1947, the wing was activated by Air Defense Command (ADC) as the 505th Aircraft Control and Warning Group. Stationed at McChord Field, becoming the first post-World War II aircraft control and warning unit in ADC. For the remainder of 1947 the group supported two radar stations, one at Arlington, Washington, and one at Half Moon Bay near San Francisco. These stations worked with fighter squadrons to improve ground-control and interception techniques. The group included a fleet of B-25 Mitchells used extensively to perform radar calibration flights. The experience gained from operating the two sites proved invaluable to air defense planners who were in the process of designing a nationwide early warning radar network.
As tensions increased between the US and the USSR, the importance of the 505th mission grew. In September 1949, the group no longer operated B-25s, yet they remained focused on early warning systems, supporting detachments along the Pacific Northwest coast. The group provided early warning operating radar systems including the AN/TPS-1. On 15 March 1950, the reserve 564th ACWG was activated as a Corollary unit at Silver Lake, sharing the 505th's equipment and facilities. The 564th was called to active duty on 10 May 1951 and was inactivated, with its personnel used as fillers for the 505th. With a growing movement to assign homeland defense to reserve units, the 505 ACWG inactivated on 6 February 1952. However, this would not mark the end of the 505th. The Air Force would revive the unit and its expertise with radars 13 years later
On 2 November 1965, the 505 ACWG was re-activated as the 505th Tactical Control Group (TCG). Replacing the 6250th Tactical Air Support Group that activated three months earlier, 505 TCG called Tan Son Nhut Air Base in South Vietnam home. The 505th was responsible with providing Command and Control (C2), for the Tactical Control System in Southeast Asia (SEA). This mission included the operation of numerous radar sites throughout South Vietnam and Thailand from 1965 to 1973. In addition to the radar sites, the group managed O-1 Bird Dog observation aircraft assigned to five squadrons from late 1965 through 1966. These O-1 units included the 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23d Tactical Air Support Squadrons, operating from various bases throughout SEA. Forward Air Controllers (FACs) flew the "Bird Dogs" to find and mark enemy activity, direct air strikes and perform battle damage assessment.
Initially assigned to the 2d Air Division in Vietnam, the 505th re-aligned under the Seventh Air Force on 1 April 1966. Soon afterward, the 505th received approval for its emblem and official motto - "Search and Direct". The group eventually lost its flying squadrons but the radar mission grew. The 505th distinguished itself as the only unit to furnish all of SEA an electronics ground environment system for aircraft control and warning and radar services. After eight years of service in Vietnam the group earned thirteen campaign streamers and five Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards with Combat "V" devices. With the American withdrawal in 1973 came the unit’s inactivation.
The 505th’s lineage continued with the activation of the 4442d Tactical Control Group on 1 March 1980. Functioning as the 4442d, the unit aligned under the USAF Tactical Air Warfare Center. The group established a headquarters at Hurlburt Field, Florida where it managed a command, control, communications (C3) and intelligence complex. Along with the C3 operations, the unit conducted operational tests and evaluated tactical air control elements. It also provided training on tactical air control and operated the USAF Air Ground Operations School until 1997. The 505th has remained at Hurlburt since 1980 but received several name changes to match the evolution of its mission.
With the elimination of MAJCOMs in 1991, the unit re-designated as the 505th Air Control Group. In April 1993, when the 505th began operating the new USAF Battlestaff Training School, the Air Force renamed the unit 505th Command and Control Evaluation Group. At the same time, the mission expanded to include a new detachment at Kirkland AFB, New Mexico. By 1998, with the ever-increasing importance of the Air Operations Center as a weapons system and the units expanding mission to train personnel in its use, the Air Force again changed the 505th’s name, this time to the Air Force Command and Control Training and Innovation Center (AFC2TIC). The center continued to test new command and control systems and train personnel on their use in combat. Realizing that the center incorporated more than just a building with several detachments located around the US, the Air Force gave it group status on 15 April 1999. The group carried its mission into the 21st century providing modern training and techniques to increase the command and control capabilities at the operational level of the Air Force.
After almost 54 years of re-designation, inactivation, consolidation and renaming, the group finally became a wing on 12 March 2004. Now the 505th Command and Control Wing, it controls two groups: the 505th Training Group at Hurlburt Field and the 505th Test and Evaluation Group at Nellis Air Force Base.505th Command and Control Wing
Constituted as the 505th Aircraft Control and Warning Group on 2 May 1947
Activated on 21 May 1947
Inactivated on 6 February 1952
Redesignated 505th Tactical Control Group and activated on 2 November 1965 (not organized)
Organized on 8 November 1965
Inactivated on 15 March 1973
Consolidated on 1 November 1991 with the 4442d Tactical Control Group
Redesignated 505th Air Control Group
on 1 November 1991
Redesignated 505th Command and Control Evaluation Group
on 15 April 1993
Redesignated Air Force Command and Control Training and Innovation Center
on 15 September 1998
Redesignated Air Force Command and Control Training and Innovation Group
on 15 April 1999
Redesignated 505th Command and Control Wing
on 12 March 2004
4442d Tactical Control Group
Designated as the 4442d Tactical Control Group and activated on 1 March 1980
Consolidated with the 505th Tactical Control Group as the 505th Tactical Control Group on 1 November 1991
Fourth Air Force, 21 May 1947
25th Air Division, 16 November 1949 – 6 February 1952
Pacific Air Forces, 2 November 1965 (not organized)
2d Air Division, 8 November 1965
Seventh Air Force, 1 April 1966 -15 March 1973
USAF Tactical Air Warfare Center (later USAF Air Warfare Center, 53d Wing), 1 March 1980
Air and Space Command and Control Agency (later Aerospace Command and Control Agency, Aerospace Command and Control & Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Center), 1 October 1997
Air Warfare Center (later USAF Air Warfare Center), 1 June 1992 - present
505th Distributed Warfare Group, 12 March 2004 - present
505th Operations Group, 12 March 2004 - present
505th Training Group, 12 March 2004 - present
Air Defense Command
634th Aircraft Control Squadron (later 634th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron), 21 May 1947 - 6 February 1952
635th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 21 May 1947 - 6 February 1952
636th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 21 May 1947 - February 1949, December 1949 - 25 May 1951
Condon, Oregon after 27 June 1951
637th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 21 May 1947 - 25 May 1951
Long Beach Municipal Airport until April 1948, Moses Lake Air Force Base, Washington, after January 1949, Saddle Mountain, Washington, 1 January 1951
638th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 5 May 1950 - 25 May 1951
Mount Bonaparte, Washington,
757th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 27 November 1950 – 6 February 1952
Birch Bay, Washington after 15 August 1951
758th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 27 November 1950 – 6 February 1952
Bohokus Peak, Washington
759th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 27 November 1950 – 6 February 1952
Naselle Air Force Station, Washington
760th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, 27 November 1950 - 25 May 1951
Colville Air Force Station, Washington
761st Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, Oregon, 1 February 1951 – 6 February 1952
19th Tactical Air Support Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 8 December 1966
20th Tactical Air Support Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 8 December 1966
Da Nang Air Base, South Vietnam
21st Tactical Air Support Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 8 December 1966
Pleiku Air Base, South Vietnam to September 1966 Nha Trang Air Base, South Vietnam
22d Tactical Air Support Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 8 December 1966
Binh Thuy Air Base, South Vietnam
23d Tactical Air Support Squadron, 15 April 1966 - 8 December 1966
Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base to 15 July 1966, Nakon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand
505th Tactical Control Maintenance Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 8 December 1966
506th Tactical Control Maintenance Squadron, 23 February 1966 - 8 December 1966
619th Tactical Control Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 15 March 1973
620th Tactical Control Squadron, 8 November 1965 - 15 March 1973
621st Tactical Control Squadron, 23 February 1966 - 15 March 1973
Tactical Air and Air Combat Commands
84th Radar Evaluation Squadron, April 1993 - July 1998, 1 October 2005 - 17 March 2010
505th Systems Squadron (later 505th Communications Squadron), c. 15 April 1999 - 12 March 2004
505th Exercise Control Squadron, unknown - 12 March 2004
505th Operations Squadron, 15 November 1999 - 12 March 2004
505th Test Support Squadron, 15 April 1993 - unknown
605th Test Squadron (later 605th Test and Evaluation Squadron, 15 April 1993 - 12 March 2004
727th Air Control Squadron, 1 November 1991 - 1 October 1995
Detachments11th Radar Calibration Detachment, 21 May 1947 - 11 November 1949
Detachment 1, Headquarters 505th Command and Control Wing, 23 June 2005 - present
McChord Field (later McChord Air Force Base), Washington 21 May 1947
Silver Lake Air Warning Station, Washington, 26 September 1949
McChord Air Force Base, Washington, 25 June 1951 – 6 February 1952
Tan Son Nhut Airport, South Vietnam, 8 November 1965 – 15 March 1973
Eglin Air Force Auxiliary Field #9 (Hurlburt Field), Florida, 1 March 1980 - present
North American B-25 Mitchell (1947–1949)
Cessna O-1 Bird Dog (1965–1966)
AN/USQ-163 Falconer AOC (since 2000)