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United Kingdom
Naval Aviation

Current Title: Fleet Air Arm
Abbreviation: FAA


Narrative Summary:
Fleet Air Arm History

Key Dates:
1 April 1918    Royal Naval Air service absorbed into the Royal Air Force
1924    Royal Navy takes operational control of RAF units at sea.
1937    Admiralty resumes full control of Fleet Air Arm units
1939-1945    FAA makes a vital contribution to the Second World War
1946    Fleet Air Arm renamed Naval Aviation
1950-1953    FAA carrier operations in the Korean War
March 1954    Fleet Air Arm title restored
1978    HMS Ark Royal withdrawn from service
1982    FAA operations in the Falkands War
1991    FAA participates in First Gulf War
2003    Second Gulf War

Current Status:
To be added.

Future Plans:
Convert all Lynx HAS.3 to HMA.8 standard.
Lockheed Martin F-35 will replace the Harrier from 2012.
Replace the three 'Invincible' class carriers with two larger 'CVF' carriers from 2012.
30 Merlin HM.1 will be upgraded to HM.2 from 2010.

National Insignia:
Current --- Historical

Aircraft Serial Numbering System(s):
Aircraft serial numbering follows the RAF system.

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


Aircraft Designation System(s):
Aircraft and helicopters are each given a name, although this is normally the manufacturers product name e.g. Lynx. The variant is defined by two or three prefix letters and a mark number, e.g. HAS.1. Common FAA prefixes are ASaC (Airborne Surveillance and Area Control), HAS (Helicopter Anti-Submarine), HM (Helicopter Multi-Role) and HU (Helicopter Utility transport).

Current Aircraft Inventory:
Table of Current Service Aircraft

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


Main Headquarters:
RNAS Yeovilton.

Current Organisational Structure:
The basic FAA unit is the Squadron. Frontline units are numbered in the 800 series and secondline units in the 700 series. 815 Sqn and 829 Sqn are relatively large units which supply helicopters on detachment to Destroyers and Frigates as required.

Current Order of Battle:
Table of Current Order of Battle

Historical Orders of Battle:
To be added

All-Time Flying Units List:
List of Fleet Air Arm Units - to be added.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases:
Table of Current Air Bases to be added.

All-Time Air Bases Used List:
To be added

More Information


Fleet Air Arm Bibliography


World Air Power Journal No.2 p.148-150
Air Forces Monthly February 1996


The Royal Navy
(Official navy news, history, careers, current structure, links, FAQ etc)

Alex's Royal Navy Page
(Aircraft carriers details, FAA aircraft, current FAA orbat, Sea Harrier serials, lots more RN info)

FRAviation Website
(FR Aviation supply aircraft for FRADU)

(Royal Navy organisation, formations, equipment etc)

Fleet Air Arm Archive 1939-1945

wikipedia: Fleet Air Arm

Sea Your History


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First Created: 14 February 1995 - Last Revised: 29 June 2008
Copyright 1995 John Hayles.    e-mail: john@aeroflight.co.uk