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Argentina
Army Aviation

 

 

Current Title: Comando de Aviación de Ejército
Title in English: Army Aviation Command
Abbreviation: AE

History

Narrative Summary:
On 4.1.1945 the Air Force became an independent service and the army lost its aviation component. This situation remained until 10.6.1956, when the Aviación de Ejército was reformed with five FMA I.Ae. 20, one Piper PA-11, two Beech D18S, three Douglas C-47 Dakota, five Piper Apache, one Cessna 310, three Beech C-45 Expeditor, two Cessna 180 and eleven Piper L-21B. The first unit, the División Aviación, was formed on 17.11.1959, while the Agrupación de Aviación de Ejército I with Cessna U-17, Piper Aztec, Piper Navajo, Queen Air, DHC-6 and FH-1100 was formed in 1960.

 

The Comando de Aviación de Ejército (CAE) was established on 3.2.1964. During the following years the Army Aviation Command received an increasing number of aircraft and helicopters, which were used in a counter-insurgency operation against a Marxist guerilla group in 1975. From this year on the operational unit of the CAE was known as Batallón de Aviación de Combate 601. During the 1970s the CAE received Bell UH-1H Iroquois, Bell 205A from the United States and Aérospatiale SA.330 Puma from France as well as Aeritalia G.222 transport aircraft from Italy.

 

During the Falklands War the Batallón de Aviación de Combate 601 deployed to the Falkland Islands on 6.4.1982 together with the Grupo de Helicópteros de Asalto 601 and its three subordinated companies. Most of the heliccopters were flown to Port Stanley by Lockheed C-130H of the FAA, while some came to the Falkland Islands by ship. From 29.4.1982 two CH-47C (AE-520, 521), five Puma (AE-500, 501, 503, 505, 508), three A-109A (AE-331, 334, 337) and nine UH-1H (AE-406, 409, 410, 412, 413, 417, 418, 422, 424) were part of Agrupación Ejército Malvinas based at Moody Brook. Because of the British blockade from May 1, 1982 it was not possible to bring additional helicopters (three A-109A and eight UH-1H) to the islands. On 23.4.1982 the Agrupación Comodoro Rivadavia, based at a heliport near Comodoro Rivadavia, was formed to operated most of the remaining helicopters of this unit such as eleven UH-1H (AE-400, 401, 404, 405, 408, 414, 415, 416, 419, 420, 423) and one A-109A (AE-333), while the remaining three UH-1H (AE-420, 411, 421) and four Bell 205A (AE-426, 427, 428, 429) operated from its homebase at Campo de Mayo during the conflict.

 

In early May Compañía de Helicópteros de Asalto A with Puma and CH-47C moved to Goose Green while Compañía de Helicópteros de Asalto B with Bell UH-1H deployed to Mount Kent. Both companies were involved in a variety of operations such as search and rescue, patrolling and supply delivery. After an air raid Compañía de Helicópteros de Asalto B left Mount Kent and on 22.5.1982 two Pumas and one A-109A were shot down by British Harrier during a resupply operation to Port Howard. On 28.5.1982 Compañía de Helicópteros de Asalto A redeployed from Goose Green to Port Stanley. After the surrender British forces captured two Agusta A-109A, nine Bell UH-1H and one Boeing CH-47C Chinook. The helicopters of Agrupación Comodoro Rivadavia returned to Campo de Mayo on 22.6.1982.

After a reorganisation in 1986 the Agrupación de Aviación de Ejército 601 was formed and was composed of the Batallón de Helicópteros de Asalto 601, Escuadrón de Aviación de Exploración y Ataque 602 and Escuadrón de Aviación de Apoyo General 603, which is its current structure, with the addition of the Escuadrón de Aviación de Apoyo de Inteligencia 601, which was formed in 1994 with the recently acquired Grumman OV-1D Mohawk.

 

Key Dates:
4 January 1945    The Air Force became an independent service and the army lost its aviation component.
10 June 1956 The Aviación de Ejército was reformed.
17 November 1959 División Aviación was formed.
1960 The Agrupación de Aviación de Ejército I was established.
3 February 1964 The Comando de Aviación de Ejército (CAE) was formed.
1975   The Batallón de Aviación de Combate 601 was formed.
6 April - 22 June 1982   Falklands War
31 December 1986   The Agrupación de Aviación de Ejército 601 was formed.
 

Current Status:
Units of the Comando de Aviación de Ejército are fully operational.

Future Plans:
No information available.

Markings

National Insignia:
Current --- Historical


Aircraft Serial Numbering System(s):
The prefix MG (Ministerio de la Guerra) is used from 1956 starting with serial 1 and used in chronological order as aircraft arrived in country. In June 1958 the prefix was changed to ME (Ministerio del Ejército) and changed another time to the current AE (Aviación de Ejército) at an unknown date.

 

 

Unit/Base Aircraft Code System(s):
Coding system not used.

Aircraft

Aircraft Designation System(s):
None.

Current Aircraft Inventory:
Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List:
Alphabetical Order --- Chronological Order

Organisation

Main Headquarters:
Azopardo 250, Edificio Libertad, 1328 Buenos Aires

Current Organisational Structure:
The Argentinian Army Aviation Command is today organised into one Aviatión Group (Agrupacion Aviación de Ejército), which consists of one Aviation Battalion (Batallón de Helicópteros de Asalto), three Aviation Squadrons (Escuadrón de Aviación) and one Aviation School (Escuela de Aviación de Ejército).

Current Order of Battle:
Table of Current Order of Battle

 

 

Historical Orders of Battle:

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1962)

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1970)

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1975)

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1982) (Falklands War)

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1993)

Historical Order of Battle (as at 1999)


 

All-Time Flying Units List: (only units, which are not included in the Orders of Battle)

Batallón de Aviación Aeromóvil 601

Air Bases

Current Air Bases:
The
Comando de Aviación del Ejército currently operates one mayor airbase and nine secondary airfields.

Military Air Bases Listing

All-Time Air Bases Used List:
Military Air Bases Listing

More Information

 

Books:

 

The Falklands War - Then and Now (Gordon Ramsey)

Argentine Forces in the Falklands (Nicholas van der Bijl/Men-at-Arms Series 250)
 

'Magazines:

 

World Air Power Journal No.31 p. 140-142

Websites:

Ejército Argentino (official homepage)

Scramble: Argentina Air Arms

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First Created: 15 December 2009 - Last Revised:  15 December 2009
Copyright © 2009 Erich Klaus.    e-mail: erich.klaus@a1.net