French Air Force
Overview
 
The French Air Force is the air force
Air force
An air force, also known in some countries as an air army, is in the broadest sense, the national military organization that primarily conducts aerial warfare. More specifically, it is the branch of a nation's armed services that is responsible for aerial warfare as distinct from an army, navy or...

 of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army
French Army
The French Army, officially the Armée de Terre , is the land-based and largest component of the French Armed Forces.As of 2010, the army employs 123,100 regulars, 18,350 part-time reservists and 7,700 Legionnaires. All soldiers are professionals, following the suspension of conscription, voted in...

, then was made an independent military arm in 1933. The French Air Force operates 780 aircraft, making it the fourth largest air force in terms of aircraft in NATO, and the second largest in the EU
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 after the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force
Royal Air Force
The Royal Air Force is the aerial warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Formed on 1 April 1918, it is the oldest independent air force in the world...

.

The French took active interest in developing the air force from 1909 and had the first WWI fighter pilots.
Encyclopedia
The French Air Force is the air force
Air force
An air force, also known in some countries as an air army, is in the broadest sense, the national military organization that primarily conducts aerial warfare. More specifically, it is the branch of a nation's armed services that is responsible for aerial warfare as distinct from an army, navy or...

 of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army
French Army
The French Army, officially the Armée de Terre , is the land-based and largest component of the French Armed Forces.As of 2010, the army employs 123,100 regulars, 18,350 part-time reservists and 7,700 Legionnaires. All soldiers are professionals, following the suspension of conscription, voted in...

, then was made an independent military arm in 1933. The French Air Force operates 780 aircraft, making it the fourth largest air force in terms of aircraft in NATO, and the second largest in the EU
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 after the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force
Royal Air Force
The Royal Air Force is the aerial warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Formed on 1 April 1918, it is the oldest independent air force in the world...

.

History

The French took active interest in developing the air force from 1909 and had the first WWI fighter pilots. During the interwar
Interwar period
Interwar period can refer to any period between two wars. The Interbellum is understood to be the period between the end of the Great War or First World War and the beginning of the Second World War in Europe....

 years, however, particularly in the 1930s, the quality fell after they compared with the Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe is a generic German term for an air force. It is also the official name for two of the four historic German air forces, the Wehrmacht air arm founded in 1935 and disbanded in 1946; and the current Bundeswehr air arm founded in 1956....

, which crushed the French during the Battle of France
Battle of France
In the Second World War, the Battle of France was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries, beginning on 10 May 1940, which ended the Phoney War. The battle consisted of two main operations. In the first, Fall Gelb , German armoured units pushed through the Ardennes, to cut off and...

.

In the post–WWII era, the French made a successful effort to develop a domestic aircraft industry. Dassault Aviation
Dassault Aviation
Dassault Aviation is a French aircraft manufacturer of military, regional and business jets, a subsidiary of Dassault Group.It was founded in 1930 by Marcel Bloch as Société des Avions Marcel Bloch or "MB". After World War II, Marcel Bloch changed his name to Marcel Dassault, and the name of the...

 led the way with delta-wing designs, which formed the basis for the Mirage
Dassault Mirage III
The Mirage III is a supersonic fighter aircraft designed by Dassault Aviation during the late 1950s, and manufactured both in France and a number of other countries. It was a successful fighter aircraft, being sold to many air forces around the world and remaining in production for over a decade...

 series of jet fighters
Fighter aircraft
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets...

. The Mirage demonstrated its abilities in the Six-Day War
Six-Day War
The Six-Day War , also known as the June War, 1967 Arab-Israeli War, or Third Arab-Israeli War, was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967, by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt , Jordan, and Syria...

 and the Gulf War
Gulf War
The Persian Gulf War , commonly referred to as simply the Gulf War, was a war waged by a U.N.-authorized coalition force from 34 nations led by the United States, against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.The war is also known under other names, such as the First Gulf...

, becoming one of the most popular jet fighters of its day, with a high quantity of sales. The French Air Force participated in several protracted colonial wars in Africa and Indochina after WWII, and continues to employ its air power in African peacekeeping. During the 1960s, France pursued a policy of nuclear armament, to deter Soviet aggression. The Dassault Mirage IV
Dassault Mirage IV
The Dassault Mirage IV was a French jet-propelled supersonic strategic bomber and deep-reconnaissance aircraft. For many years it was a vital part of the nuclear triad of the Force de Frappe, France's nuclear deterrent striking force.-Development:...

, the principal French strategic bomber, was designed to strike Soviet positions as part of the French nuclear triad.

Currently, the French Air Force is expanding and replacing aircraft inventory. The French are awaiting the A400M
Airbus A400M
The Airbus A400M, also known as the Atlas, is a multi-national four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft. It was designed by Airbus Military as a tactical airlifter with strategic capabilities. The aircraft's maiden flight, originally planned for 2008, took place on 11 December 2009 in...

 military transport aircraft, which is still in developmental stages, and the integration of the new Rafale multi-role jet fighter, whose first squadron of 20 aircraft became operational in 2006 at Saint-Dizier
Saint-Dizier
Saint-Dizier is a commune in the Haute-Marne department in north-eastern France.It has a population of 31,000 and is a subprefecture of the department...

.

After an absence lasting several decades, the French President Nicolas Sarkozy
Nicolas Sarkozy
Nicolas Sarkozy is the 23rd and current President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra. He assumed the office on 16 May 2007 after defeating the Socialist Party candidate Ségolène Royal 10 days earlier....

 confirmed that France will rejoin the NATO integrated command. France has also taken the lead in implementing the UN sponsored no-fly zone in Libya, deploying 20 fighter aircraft to Benghazi in defense of rebel held positions and the civilian population.

Status

The ALA is organised into three levels:

Central Command

The President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy
Nicolas Sarkozy
Nicolas Sarkozy is the 23rd and current President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra. He assumed the office on 16 May 2007 after defeating the Socialist Party candidate Ségolène Royal 10 days earlier....

, is Chief of the armed forces, responsible for the overall defence policy. The Prime Minister
Prime Minister of France
The Prime Minister of France in the Fifth Republic is the head of government and of the Council of Ministers of France. The head of state is the President of the French Republic...

 is responsible for national defence and the Minister of Defence
Minister of Defence (France)
The Minister of Defense and Veterans Affairs is the French government cabinet member charged with running the military of France....

 is responsible for the execution of the military policy.

He is advised by the Chief of Staff of the Armies (CEMA) in regard to the use of forces and the control of military operations. The Chief of Staff-Air Force (CEMAA) determines the air force doctrines and advises the CEMA how to deploy French
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 aerial assets. He is responsible for the preparation and logistic support of the air force. The CEMAA is assisted by the air force staff and by its subordinate services. Finally, the CEMAA is assisted by the inspection of the air force (IAA) and by the air force health service inspection (ISSAA).

Greater operational and organic commands

In the ALA the responsibilities are separated in two main types of commands: operational commands (direct responsible for force deployment) and organic commands (in charge of conditioning and logistic support). These commands are subject to change before 2010 (see Future).

CFAS—Strategic Air Command
All the air forces nuclear assets are placed in this command which is responsible for the operational condition and the eventual deployment of these weapons. The CFAS is one of the two pillars of the French nuclear deterrent. CFAS has 3 squadrons of dual capable Mirage 2000N fighter/bombers capable of carrying the nuclear Air-Sol Moyenne Portée
Air-Sol Moyenne Portée
The Air-Sol Moyenne Portée is a French air-launched nuclear missile. Part of the Force de frappe, in French nuclear doctrine it is the last-resort "warning shot" prior to a full-scale employment of strategic nuclear weapons...

 stand-off missile and a squadron of C-135FR in-flight refuelling tankers at its disposal to carry out their missions. The commanding CFAS general is responsible for the execution of the mission.

CDAOA—Air Defence and Air Operations Command
This overall command is responsible for all air operations in peacetime serving the public, for the defence of the French airspace and for all offensive and defensive air operations at war.

CFA—Joint Air Command
A new command which has been inaugurated in 2006. It is responsible to ensure and to maintain the operational condition of all branches of the air force now and for the future. At present day the CFA consists of
  • 16 fighter squadrons and 25 air defence squadrons
  • 1 electronic warfare squadron
  • simulator and instruction centres


On its airbases in Europe and abroad the CFA has 16m000 personnel, 279 fighter aircraft, 122 transport aircraft and 85 helicopters.

CASSIC—Air Surveillance, Information and Communication Systems Command
This command has already been dissolved and the 8100 personnel, working in the former CASSIC have been transferred to the other existing air force commands and to the DIRISI, the interim joint defence communication and intelligence organisation.

CDAOA, based in Paris and Lyon, plans and executes all air operations. ex-CASSIC personnel are embedded here to develop exercises and operations abroad.

CFA prepares the forces. Since 2007, 38% ex-CASSIC personnel rejoined the airspace control brigade which also controls all ground-air defence units.

CSFA, based in Bordeaux, guards the technical and logistical assets. Since 2006 it has taken over many ex-CASSIC projects.

CEAA—Air Force Training Command
Responsible for training all new air force personnel as well as on the technical and on the job training of the other air force personnel, as well as the officers and NCO training. CEAA is also responsible for all schools and training facilities.

CFPSAA—Operational Support Command
This command is responsible for the operational readiness and the deployment of all base protecting squadrons, dog-handlers, fire brigades, paratroopers and NBC and decontamination personnel. In 2007, the CFPSAA has been renamed BAFSI (Brigade Aérienne des Forces de Sécurité et d'Intervention).

Airbase Command

The air base command levels are the combat assets of the ALA. An airbase commander has authority over all units stationed on his base. Depending on the units tasks this means that he is responsible for approximately 600 to 2500 personnel.

Flying activity in France is carried out by a network of bases, platforms and French air defence radar systems
French air defense radar systems
The French air defence organisation is integrated in the military Armée de l’Air , the French Air Force.The defence of the French national airspace has always been based on 2 main aspects:* the peacetime security of the French airspace...

. It is supported by bases, which are supervised and maintained by staff, centres of operations, warehouses, workshops, and schools.

Both in France and abroad, bases have almost similar infrastructure to provide standardised support. This operational mode allows fast and easy creation of air bases outside of France.

Overseas, fighters, transport aircraft and helicopters allow quick response to any request for assistance that falls within international agreements. On average, a base platform, made up of about 1500 personnel (nearly 3500 people including family), provides a yearly economic boost to its area of about 60 million euros. Consequently, determining the sites for air bases constitutes a major part of regional planning.

Northern region

  • BA 102 Dijon airbase. Air defence squadrons equipped with Mirage 2000-5.
  • BA 103 Cambrai airbase. Units mainly equipped with Mirage 2000 RDI interceptors.
  • BA 105 Évreux airbase
    Evreux-Fauville Air Base
    Évreux-Fauville Air Base is a French Air Force base located about 2 miles east of the town of Évreux in the Eure département, on the north side of the Route nationale 13 Highway....

    . Command, operational and logistic support.
  • BA 107 Villacoublay airbase. Helicopter and heavy air transport units.
  • BA 110 Creil airbase. Heavy air transport units with Casa CN-235/100 for short distance and with Airbus A310-300.
  • BA 112 Reims airbase. Tactical recce sqn with Mirage F1 CR.
  • BA 113 Saint-Dizier airbase. Transition sqn for the new Dassault Rafale C
    Dassault Rafale
    The Dassault Rafale is a French twin-engine delta-wing multi-role jet fighter aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation. Introduced in 2000, the Rafale is being produced both for land-based use with the French Air Force and for carrier-based operations with the French Navy...

    .
  • BA 116 Luxeuil airbase
    Luxeuil Air Base
    Luxeuil is a medium size air base located at , near Luxeuil-les-Bains in the Franche-Comté region of France. It has two runways: 113/293 with a length of 2433m, and 038/218 with a length of 2315m....

    . CFA nuclear strike stockpile. Strike sqns equipped with Mirage 2000N.
  • BA 117 Paris airbase. Central command.
  • BA 123 Orléans airbase. Former CFAP and CASSIC command location. CFPSAA operational command.
  • BA 128 Metz airbase. Location of the new CFA command, mixed air transport sqn.
  • BA 132 Colmar-Meyenheim. Tactical squadrons equipped with Mirage F1-CT
    Dassault Mirage F1
    The Dassault Mirage F1 is a French air-superiority fighter and attack aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation as a successor of the Mirage III family. The Mirage F1 entered service in the French Air Force in the early seventies...

  • BA 133 Nancy Ochey airbase. Fighter squadrons Mirage 2000D, SAM sqns.
  • BA 217 Brétigny. Personnel officer/nco selection and logistic units.
  • BA 279 Châteaudun airbase. Airplane storage base.
  • BA 702 Avord airbase
    Avord Air Base
    Avord Air Base or BA 702 , named after Captain Georges Madon, is a base of the French Air Force located north northwest of Avord in central France....

    . CFAS nuclear strike stockpile. AWACS Boeing E-3 Sentry unit. Inflight refueling KC-135 unit
  • BA 705 Tours airbase. Fighter pilot training school.
  • BA 901 Drachenbronn
    Drachenbronn Air Base
    Drachenbronn Air Base of the French Air Force is located in the community of Drachenbronn-Birlenbach in the Bas-Rhin département. It houses the Centre de détection et de contrôle 05/901....

    . Air defence radar command reporting centre.
  • BA 921 Taverny
    Taverny Air Base
    rightTaverny Air Base is located in the communities of Taverny and Bessancourt in the Val d'Oise département of France, twenty kilometers north of Paris...

    . Strategic Air Command (CFAS)
  • DA 273 Romorantin air detachment. Logistic unit.
  • DA 922 Doullens air detachment. Disbanded command reporting centre.

Southern Region

  • BA 101 Toulouse airbase. Instruction air transport unit Transall C-160 NG
    Transall C-160
    |-See also:-References:* Taylor, John W. R. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982-83. London:Jane's Yearbooks, 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0748-2.-External links:*...

     and Puma SA 330
    Aérospatiale Puma
    The Aérospatiale SA 330 Puma is a four-bladed, twin-engined medium transport/utility helicopter. The Puma was originally manufactured by Sud Aviation of France.-Development:...

    .
  • BA 106 Mérignac airbase. Transport support base for the air staff.
  • BA 115 Orange airbase
    Orange-Caritat Air Base
    Orange Caritat is a tiny French Air Force base equipped with one runway and named after Capitaine de Seyne. Its location is 5 km east of Orange, a commune of the département of Vaucluse in France.It hosts:...

    . Air defence squadrons Mirage 2000D and transition sqn Mirage 2000B.
  • BA 118 Mont de Marsan Airbase. Home of CEAM, the Air Force military experimentation and trials organisation, Air defence radar command reporting centre, instruction centre for air defence control.
  • BA 120 Cazaux airbase, situated South-west of the port
    Port
    A port is a location on a coast or shore containing one or more harbors where ships can dock and transfer people or cargo to or from land....

     city of Bordeaux
    Bordeaux
    Bordeaux is a port city on the Garonne River in the Gironde department in southwestern France.The Bordeaux-Arcachon-Libourne metropolitan area, has a population of 1,010,000 and constitutes the sixth-largest urban area in France. It is the capital of the Aquitaine region, as well as the prefecture...

    . Air force airplane stockpile.44°31′28"N 01°06′36"W
  • BA 125 Istres airbase
    Istres Air Base
    Istres-Le Tubé Air Base is a large multi-role tasked French Air Force base located near Istres, northwest of Marseille, France. The airport facilities are also known as Istres - Le Tubé .- Armée de l'air :...

    . CFAS nuclear strike stockpile. Strike squadron equipped with Mirage 2000N. Transall C-160 G
    Transall C-160
    |-See also:-References:* Taylor, John W. R. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982-83. London:Jane's Yearbooks, 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0748-2.-External links:*...

     strategic communication flight. Inflight refueling unit with C-135RF. CEAM, the Air Force military experience centre.
  • BA 126 Ventiseri-Solenzara Air Base. Fighter gunnery range. SAR unit.
  • DA 277 Varennes-sur-Allier. French Airforce Stock. Known for its strategic position in the middle of France.
  • BA 278 Ambérieu airbase. Logistic support base.
  • BA 701 Salon de Provence
    Salon-de-Provence Air Base
    Salon-de-Provence Air Base is a base of the French Air Force located south Salon-de-Provence in southern France.It hosts the training facilities for the officers of the air force:* École de l'Air: for young students** pilot commissioned officers...

    . Officer instruction school. Enlisted instruction school.
  • BA 709 Cognac airbase. Basic flight training school.
  • BA 721 Rochefort-Saint-Agnant. NCO school.
  • BA 942 Lyon Mont-Verdun. Air defence radar command reporting centre. CNOA location. National Air Operations Command.
  • BA 943 Nice Roquebrune. Air defence radar command reporting centre.
  • DA 204 Mérignac. Logistic detachment.
  • EETAA 722 Saintes. Air force electronic, technical instruction also as Military basic Bootcamp.
  • EPA 749 Grenoble. Air force child support school

Overseas

  • BA 160 Dakar Ouakam, Africa. Mixed units.
  • BA 181 Reunion Island. Mixed units.
  • BA 188 Djibouti
    Djibouti
    Djibouti , officially the Republic of Djibouti , is a country in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Eritrea in the north, Ethiopia in the west and south, and Somalia in the southeast. The remainder of the border is formed by the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden at the east...

    , Africa. Mixed units.
  • Air elements Libreville
    Libreville
    Libreville is the capital and largest city of Gabon, in west central Africa. The city is a port on the Komo River, near the Gulf of Guinea, and a trade center for a timber region. As of 2005, it has a population of 578,156.- History :...

    /Gabon
    Gabon
    Gabon , officially the Gabonese Republic is a state in west central Africa sharing borders with Equatorial Guinea to the northwest, Cameroon to the north, and with the Republic of the Congo curving around the east and south. The Gulf of Guinea, an arm of the Atlantic Ocean is to the west...

    .
  • Air elements N’djamena/Chad. Mixed units.
  • BA 190 French Polynesia
    French Polynesia
    French Polynesia is an overseas country of the French Republic . It is made up of several groups of Polynesian islands, the most famous island being Tahiti in the Society Islands group, which is also the most populous island and the seat of the capital of the territory...

    . Mixed unit.
  • BA 365 Martinique
    Martinique
    Martinique is an island in the eastern Caribbean Sea, with a land area of . Like Guadeloupe, it is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department. To the northwest lies Dominica, to the south St Lucia, and to the southeast Barbados...

    . Mixed unit.
  • BA 367 French Guiana
    French Guiana
    French Guiana is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department located on the northern Atlantic coast of South America. It has borders with two nations, Brazil to the east and south, and Suriname to the west...

    , South America. Mixed units.
  • BA 376 New Caledonia
    New Caledonia
    New Caledonia is a special collectivity of France located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, east of Australia and about from Metropolitan France. The archipelago, part of the Melanesia subregion, includes the main island of Grande Terre, the Loyalty Islands, the Belep archipelago, the Isle of...

    , Pacific Air defence radar command BA 376 New Caledonia, Air defence squadrons Mirage 2000D and transition sqn Mirage 2000B, training facility
  • BA 104 Abu Dhabi
    Abu Dhabi
    Abu Dhabi , literally Father of Gazelle, is the capital and the second largest city of the United Arab Emirates in terms of population and the largest of the seven member emirates of the United Arab Emirates. Abu Dhabi lies on a T-shaped island jutting into the Persian Gulf from the central western...


Aircraft inventory

As of 2010 - 2011, according to Flightglobal
Flightglobal.com
Flightglobal.com is an online news and information website related to the aviation and aerospace industries. It also provides a community area for numerous distinct communities within the aviation and aerospace industry....

 and the French Air Force operates 790 aircraft in active service.

The French Air Force currently has 359 combat aircraft in active service. The Air 2010 concept allows for 300 combat aircraft in service by 2015, composed of the new generation multirole combat airplane Rafale
Dassault Rafale
The Dassault Rafale is a French twin-engine delta-wing multi-role jet fighter aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation. Introduced in 2000, the Rafale is being produced both for land-based use with the French Air Force and for carrier-based operations with the French Navy...

 and Dassault Mirage 2000D.

! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|Aircraft
! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|Origin
! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|Type
! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|Versions
! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|In service
! style="text-align: left; background: #aabccc;"|Notes
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Fighter aircraft
Fighter aircraft
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets...


|-----
| Dassault Mirage 2000-5
Dassault Mirage 2000C || || Fighter Aircraft
Fighter aircraft
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets...


Fighter Aircraft
Fighter aircraft
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets...

 || Mirage 2000-5
Mirage 2000C|| 31
52 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Dassault Rafale
Dassault Rafale
The Dassault Rafale is a French twin-engine delta-wing multi-role jet fighter aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation. Introduced in 2000, the Rafale is being produced both for land-based use with the French Air Force and for carrier-based operations with the French Navy...

 || || Multirole Fighter
Fighter aircraft
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets...

 || Rafale B
Rafale C || 66 ||
|-
| || || || ||Total 149 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Ground-attack aircraft
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Dassault Mirage 2000D
Dassault Mirage 2000B || || Attack Aircraft
Trainer Aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

 || Mirage2000D
Mirage2000B|| 75
15 ||
|-
| Dassault Mirage F1
Dassault Mirage F1
The Dassault Mirage F1 is a French air-superiority fighter and attack aircraft designed and built by Dassault Aviation as a successor of the Mirage III family. The Mirage F1 entered service in the French Air Force in the early seventies...

 || || Trainer Aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...


Reconnaissance
Reconnaissance
Reconnaissance is the military term for exploring beyond the area occupied by friendly forces to gain information about enemy forces or features of the environment....

/Attack Aircraft ||F1B
CR/CT || 8
58 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| || || || ||Total 156 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Nuclear strike
Nuclear warfare
Nuclear warfare, or atomic warfare, is a military conflict or political strategy in which nuclear weaponry is detonated on an opponent. Compared to conventional warfare, nuclear warfare can be vastly more destructive in range and extent of damage...


|-----
| Dassault Mirage 2000N || || Nuclear strike
Nuclear warfare
Nuclear warfare, or atomic warfare, is a military conflict or political strategy in which nuclear weaponry is detonated on an opponent. Compared to conventional warfare, nuclear warfare can be vastly more destructive in range and extent of damage...

 || Mirage 2000N || 61 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| || || || || Total 61 ||
|----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Aerial refueling,
Aerial refueling
Aerial refueling, also called air refueling, in-flight refueling , air-to-air refueling or tanking, is the process of transferring fuel from one aircraft to another during flight....

AEW &Reconnaissance
Reconnaissance
Reconnaissance is the military term for exploring beyond the area occupied by friendly forces to gain information about enemy forces or features of the environment....


|-----
| Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker || || Aerial refueling || C-135FR || 14 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Boeing E-3 Sentry || || Airborne early warning (AEW) || E-3F || 4 ||
|-----
| Transall C-160
Transall C-160
|-See also:-References:* Taylor, John W. R. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982-83. London:Jane's Yearbooks, 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0748-2.-External links:*...

 || || ELINT
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || C-160G Gabriel || 2 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| || || || || Total 20 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...


|-----
| Airbus A400M
Airbus A400M
The Airbus A400M, also known as the Atlas, is a multi-national four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft. It was designed by Airbus Military as a tactical airlifter with strategic capabilities. The aircraft's maiden flight, originally planned for 2008, took place on 11 December 2009 in...

 || || Tactical Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || A400M || 0 || 50 on order ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| SOCATA TBM
Socata TBM
|-See also:-References:* Jackson, Paul. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004. Coulsdon, UK: Jane's Information Group, 2003. ISBN 0 7106 2537 5....

 || || VIP Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || TBM 700 || 15 ||
|-----
| Airbus A340 || || Strategic Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || A340-211 || 2 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Airbus A310 || || Strategic Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || A310-304 || 3 ||
|-----
| Lockheed C-130 Hercules || || Tactical Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || C-130H/C-130H-30 || 14||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| CASA/IPTN CN-235 || || Tactical Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || CN-235-200/CN-235-200M || 20 || 8 on order
|-----
| Transall C-160
Transall C-160
|-See also:-References:* Taylor, John W. R. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1982-83. London:Jane's Yearbooks, 1982. ISBN 0-7106-0748-2.-External links:*...

 || || Tactical Transport
Military transport aircraft
Military transport aircraft are typically fixed and rotary wing cargo aircraft which are used to deliver troops, weapons and other military equipment by a variety of methods to any area of military operations around the surface of the planet, usually outside of the commercial flight routes in...

 || C-160R || 51 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| DHC-6 Twin Otter
De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter
The DHC-6 Twin Otter is a Canadian 19-passenger STOL utility aircraft developed by de Havilland Canada and currently produced by Viking Air. The aircraft's fixed tricycle undercarriage, STOL abilities and high rate of climb have made it a successful cargo, regional passenger airliner and MEDEVAC...

 || || Utility transport || DHC-6 || 4 ||
|-----
| || || || || Total 109 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Trainer aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...


|-----
| Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jet || || Trainer Aircraft (Advanced)
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

|| Alpha Jet E || 120 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Embraer EMB 121 Xingu
Embraer EMB 121 Xingú
|-See also:-References:* * Endres, Gunter and Gething, Mike. . Aircraft Recognition Guide, . New York: Harper Collins Publishers. ISBN 0-00-713721-4....

 || || Trainer Aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

 || EMB 121 || 28 ||
|-----
| Jodel D-140 || || Trainer Aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

 || || 18 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Socata TB || || Trainer Aircraft
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

 || TB 30 Epsilon || 46||
|-----
| Walter Extra 300 || || Trainer Aircraft (Aerobatic)
Trainer (aircraft)
A trainer is a class of aircraft designed specifically to facilitate in-flight training of pilots and aircrews. The use of a dedicated trainer aircraft with additional safety features—such as tandem flight controls, forgiving flight characteristics and a simplified cockpit arrangement—allows...

 || Extra 300SC || 1||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| || || || || Total 213 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Helicopters
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Eurocopter EC725 Caracal || || CSAR helicopter || EC 725 || 6 ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Eurocopter AS532 Cougar
Eurocopter AS332 Super Puma
Eurocopter AS332 Super Puma
The Eurocopter AS332 Super Puma is a four-bladed, twin-engine, medium-size utility helicopter marketed for both civil and military use. Originally designed and built by Aérospatiale, it is an enlarged and re-engined version of the original Aérospatiale Puma...

 || || Transport
Transport || AS 532UL
AS 332L || 10 ||
|-----
| Eurocopter AS555 Fennec
Eurocopter Fennec
|-See also:-References:* Jackson, Paul. Jane's All The World's Aircraft 2003–2004. Coulsdon, UK:Jane's Information Group, 2003. ISBN 0-7106-2537-5.-External links:* * *...

 || || Utility || AS 555AN || 40 || ||
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| Aérospatiale SA330 Puma || || Transport helicopter || SA 330 || 31 ||
|-----
| || || || || Total 87 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Drones
|-style="background:#efefef; color:black"
| EADS Harfang || || Drone MALE || Eagle One || 4 ||
|-----
| || || || || Total 4 ||
|-----
! style="align: center; background: lavender;" colspan="7" | Total aircraft in service
|-----
| || || || ||Total 790 ||
|}

Ranks

Future

Like most modern defence organisations the French air force is reorganising its commands, units and assets. This project to streamline the forces is called Air 2010, which is the year of the deadline for all transitions. The main targets of this project are to simplify the command structure, to regroup all military and civil air force functions and to rationalise and optimise all air force units. The solution to reach these aims seems to be changing the organisation into five major commands, instead of the former 13, and to disband several commands and units.
  • CDAOA (air defence and air operations command)
  • CFA (air force command)
  • CSFA (logistic command)
  • DRHAA (human resource direction)
  • SAGF (administration and finance service)

External links

Official websiteOfficial websiteList of air bases, appendix of the budget bill for 2006, French Senate
French Senate
The Senate is the upper house of the Parliament of France, presided over by a president.The Senate enjoys less prominence than the lower house, the directly elected National Assembly; debates in the Senate tend to be less tense and generally enjoy less media coverage.-History:France's first...

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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