Flight Officer Training
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Navy Flight Officer Wings

All Flight Officer training begins at NAS Pensacola, Florida, the “Cradle of Naval Aviation.” Young men and women report from three recruiting sources: Just under 40% come from the U.S. Naval Academy, just over 40% come from Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) units, and just over 20% from Officer Candidate School (OCS).

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Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard flight students spend about six weeks in Aviation Preflight Indoctrination (API) at the Naval Aviation Schools Command. Here they are challenged both academically and physically. Classes include: engineering, aerodynamics, air navigation, aviation physiology and water survival. All Student Naval Flight Officers (SNFO) and Air Force Navigators initially train together under the Navy syllabus. After completing API, all SNFOs and Navigators report to VT-10 or VT-4, at NAS Pensacola for primary NFO/Navigator training. SNFOs/Navigators fly the T-6 Texan II in an abridged primary training syllabus. Pipeline/aircraft selection points are made at the end of primary, intermediate and Strike Core phases of training.

If a SNFO/Navigator is selected to fly as a navigator in a large, multi-engine aircraft, Air Force students will report to the 562nd FTS at Randolph AFB, San Antonio , Texas, while Navy SNFOs will report to P-3C Orion, EP-3 Aries II, or E-6 Mercury Fleet Replacement Squadrons (FRS). Air Force Navigators report to Combat Crew Training School (CCTS) with possible follow-on assignments in the C-130, C-141, C-135s or E-3 aircraft.

Tactical Jet SNFOs/Navigators will complete intermediate training with VT-10 or VT-4. Intermediate training is conducted in the T-6, T-39 Sabreliner and T-1 Jayhawk. Upon completion of intermediate, students attend advanced training with VT-86.

SNFOs selected for Strike train to become Electronic Countermeasures Officers (ECMO) for the EA-6B while USAF Strike students become Defensive/Offensive Systems Operators for the B-1B. The SNFOs/Navigators Strike syllabus is in the T-39 and the T-45 (excluding USAF). Students in the Strike/ Fighter program train to become Navy and Marine F/A-18 Weapons Systems Officers (WSO), and Air Force F-15E WSOs.

Strike/Fighter training utilizes the T-39 and T-45. After receiving their wings, Navy and Marine SNFOs report to their respective FRS and then to a Fleet squadron. Air Force Navigators move on to CCTS and then to a Major command.

E-2C SNFOs report directly to the FRS after intermediate training to learn the Aviation Tactical Data System (ATDS).

Click to enlarge Pipeline.
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