Country Profile

Commonwealth of Australia
(Commonwealth of Australia)

Key Facts

Date of Independence:
01 January 1901
Capital City:
Total Area Ranking:
6 of 236 in the World
Population Size Ranking:
52 of 242 in the World

The Country


Australia is an island nation located in the Pacific Ocean between Antarctica and South East Asia. The country comprises the mainland of Australia, the island of Tasmania and numerous smaller islands. Australia has maritime borders across the Timor Sea with Indonesia, Timor-Leste and Papua New Guinea to the north; the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and New Caledonia across the Coral Sea to the north east and New Zealand across the Tasman Sea to the south east.

Australia’s size allows a wide variety of landscapes, which can be grouped into three main regions: the Western Plateau, the Central Lowlands and the Eastern Highlands. The western half of the country consists of a flat dry plateau, mostly covered by desert and scrub land. Forests line the northern coast and the main cultivatable land lies in the south west. To the east of the plateau lie the Central Lowlands, which cover about one third of the country. Covered by grassland and savannah, this area has Australia’s most fertile soil. The major feature of the Eastern Highlands is the Great Dividing Range, a chain of mountains that runs parallel to the eastern coastline for much of its length. Extensive grasslands lie either side of the mountains, except in the north, where tropical rain forest covers most of the land. The world’s largest coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef lies off the north east coast of Australia.

Australia has a total land area of 7,692,024 sq km (2,969,907 sq miles) and had a population of 21.5 million in 2011. The main ethnic groups are European 83.5%, Asian 12.0%, Indian 2.0%, and Aborigine 2.5%. Some 83% of the population live within 50 kms of the coast. The capital city is Canberra in New South Wales.

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National History

Summary Narrative History

Timeline – Key Dates in Australia History

Further National Information

BBC News Profile: Australia
wikipedia: Australia
wikipedia: History of Australia


Text to be added on the development of aviation in Australia.


Civil Aircraft Registrations

Australia civil aircraft initially used the registration prefix G-AUxx 1919-1929. In 1929 this was replaced by a VH-xxx prefix. The sequence VJ-xxx is used by Royal Australian Navy aircraft or call-signs. The sequence VM-xxx is used by RAAF for radio call-signs.

All-time Australia – ultralight aircraft register.
All-time Australia – civil aircraft register (G-AUaa VH-aaa) [TO BE ADDED].
[Get involved with the Aeroflight Cloud.]

Aircraft Operators

Military Air Arms

Air Force (Royal Australian Air Force)
Army Aviation (Australian Army Aviation)
Naval Aviation (Royal Australian Navy)

Historical military air arms-
Flying School (Central Flying School) [1913-1919]
Army Aviation (Australian Flying Corps) [1912-1920]

Central Government Agencies

Customs Aviation (Coastwatch)
Polar Aviation (Australian Antarctic Division)
Aviation Authority (Department of Civil Aviation, DCA) [1921-1995]
Energy Aviation (Snowy Mountains Hydroelectric Authority) [1958-1984]

Flight Inspection (Airservices Australia)
Marine Safety (Australian Maritime Safety Authority)
Mapping (Division of National Mapping) [1978-1995]

Regional Government

Government Aviation (Queensland Government Air Wing)
Government Aviation (Government of Western Australia Air Wing)
(The other four states don’t appear to have used VIP transport aircraft).

Fire Fighting (Aviation Services Unit, Victoria)
Fire Fighting (South Australian Country Fire Service)
Fire Fighting – Fire and Rescue New South Wales shared the use of the NSW Police BK117 helicopter, but this machine has now been retired.
Fire Fighting (N.S.W. Rural Fire Service)
Fire Fighting – Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) Western Australia hires aircraft for each fire season, but does not have its own fleet.
Fire Fighting – Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) hires aircraft for each fire season, but does not have its own fleet.

Parks Patrol (Department of Parks and Wildlife Western Australia)
Parks Patrol (National Parks and Wildlife Service NSW)
Forest Service (Forests NSW)
The Road Traffic Authority of Western Australia leased aircraft for highway speed enforcement from 1978, but they all on short-term leases.

Public Service Aviation

Patrol Aviation (Australian Aerial Patrol)
Medical/Rescue Aviation (Australian Aeromedical Service Providers)
Flying Doctor (Royal Flying Doctor Service)
Police Aviation (Australian Police Aviation Units)
Fire Fighting – National Aerial Firefighting Centre

Commercial Aviation

Ansett – ANA
East-West Airlines
MacRobertson Miller Airlines
Virgin Australia

wikipedia: Airlines of Australia
The World’s Airlines: Australia

Private Aviation

Private contractors for Government/Military Services-


Aircraft Manufacturers

Australian Aircraft & Engineering
Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation
De Havilland Australia
Government Aircraft Factories (GAF)
Jabiru Aircraft
Seabird Aviation
Tugan Aircraft

Aircraft Maintenance/Repair Depots

None known.


Civil Airports & Airfields

Airports in Australia

Military Air Bases & Airfields

Military Air Bases Listing – to be added.

On Show

Aviation Museums

Australian War Memorial
Australian Aviation Museum
Australian Aviation Heritage Centre
Australian Naval Aviation Museum
Aviation Heritage Museum of Western Australia
Ballarat Aviation Museum
Camden Museum of Aviation
Central Australian Aviation Museum
Classic Jets Fighter Museum
Fighter World
Fleet Air Arm Museum
Flypast Museum of Australian Army Flying
Lincoln Nitschke’s Military and Historical Aircraft Collection
Luskintyre Aviation Flying Museum
Power House Museum
Queensland Air Museum
Royal Australian Air Force Museum
South Australian Aviation Museum
Temora Aviation Museum

Airshow Dates

Key Airshow Dates

More Information

Aviation-Related Magazines

Magazines Guide for Australia

Aviation Bibliography

To be added

Web Links

Recreational Aviation Australia
The Australian Vintage Aviation Society
Australian Aviation Hall of Fame
Regional Aviation Association of Australia
Sport Aircraft Association of Australia
The Australian Sport Aviation Confederation
Aviation in Australia

** Please let me know if there are any Government or Public Service operators, (past or present), I have inadvertantly missed out.

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