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Air Expeditionary Force 7 (AEF-7)

Cycle 1

Each aerospace expeditionary force has a "lead" wing that provides contingency leadership. The lead wings provide commanders, if tasked to provide group- or wing-level leadership to a new deployed location. Five wings provided "on call" mobility operations for responding to humanitarian relief operations, disaster responses and noncombatant evacuation operations from hostile areas.Until the aerospace expeditionary forces firmly established themselves, two on-call wings provided rapid global response. They share the responsibilities and respond within 48 hours to meet unplanned "pop-up" contingencies. These wings will alternate on a 60-day schedule

The concentration of the first cycle was early notification, predictability, and stability for airmen. The goal of having 120 days deployment notice was fine-tuned.

Cycle 1
July 1, 2000 - September 30, 2000
Operation: Southern Watch
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low-Density, High Demand Forces On-Call Air Forces
2nd BW [Lead] 319th ARW [Lead]
4th FW [Lead]
366th Wing [Lead]
419th FW [AFRC] 916th ARW [AFRC]
944th FW [AFRC]

Cycle 2

The UTCs during Cycle 2 were very large and were to meant meet the strategy of being able to fight two major theater wars at the same time. So UTCs were redesigned to reflect the demands of the current world environment. The redesign effort focused on building modular, scalable UTCs that allowed force providers to respond to the full spectrum of military operations.

After September 11, 2001, the Aerospace Expeditionary Force Center had to use its "reach forward" concept to meet the requirements needed. For AEFs 7 and 8, none of 15,257 steady state deployed were extended; AEF 9 and 10 steady state airmen replaced them on schedule. Approximately 7,000 crisis-deployed airmen from AEFs 7 and 8 served extended tour lengths (up to 179 days depending on when they were deployed).

Cycle 2
September 1, 2001 - November 20, 2001
Operation: Northern Watch / OEF / ONE
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low-Density, High Demand Forces On-Call Air Forces
27th FW [Lead] 319th ARW [Lead]
4th FW [Lead]
366th Wing [Lead]
482nd FW [AFRC] 917th Wing [AFRC]
452nd AMW [AFRC]

Cycle 3

For Cycle 3, the Air Force tried, as much as possible, to get the AEFs back on a 90 day rotation. With smaller, scalable UTCs, many of the teams deployed for AEF Cycle 3 came from a single base, rather than individual members deployed from many bases. During Cycle 3, the Air Force wanted to continue to improve quality of life, enhance retention efforts and make deployments better for airmen.

On January 28, 2003 Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. John P. Jumper announced that airmen deployed for AEF 7 and AEF 8 Cycle 3 would remain deployed longer than the previously targeted three-month rotation. The change was made to meet the needs of combatant commanders. Specifically, active-duty and mobilized reserve component airmen deployed with Air and Space Expeditionary Forces 7 and 8 and those deploying as part of new taskings ordered by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld on Dec. 24, 2002 could anticipate remaining in place until further notice.

The need for additional forces was part of a buildup of air power in Southwest Asia, ready to achieve national security objectives if directed by the president. Jumper argued that the Air Force must interrupt its normal three-month AEF rotation cycle because the resources in a single AEF pair can no longer satisfy the needs of the combatant commands.

Cycle 3
December 1, 2002 - February 28, 2003
Operation: Southern Watch / OEF
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low-Density, High Demand Forces On-Call Air Forces
27th FW [Lead] 60th AMW [Lead]
11th RS
366th Wing [Lead]
15th RS
14th FS 43rd Wing
17th RS
8th FS
67th FS
38th RS
389th FS
524th FS 145th AW [ANG]
99th RS
390th FS
555th FS 167th AW [ANG] 391st FS
179th AW [ANG]
12th ACCS
20th BS
16th ACCS
393rd BS
910th AW [AFRC]
42nd ACCS
175th Wing [ANG] 911th AW [AFRC]
124th Wing [ANG] 913th AW [AFRC]
41st RQS
934th AW [AFRC]
66th RQS
103rd FW [ANG]
71st RQS
104th FW [ANG]
110th FW [ANG]
41st ECS
111th FW [ANG]
43rd ECS
917th Wing [AFRC]
603rd ACS
606th ACS
726th ACS
728th ACS
729th ACS
963rd AACS
964th AACS
965th AACS

Cycle 4

In order to put the AEF deployment schedule back on track, after operating in crisis mode during Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Air Force established two transitional AEFs. These AEFs, designated AEF Blue and Silver, replaced AEFs 1-6 during Cycle 4. The temporary AEFs lasted 120 days instead of the usual 90. AEF Blue began in July of 2003 and ran through November of 2003. AEF Silver picked up operations in November of 2003 and ran through February of 2004. In March of 2004, the regular AEF rotation resumed with AEF 7/8.


Cycle 4
March 1, 2004 - May 31, 2004
Operation: OIF/OEF
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low Density, High Demand Forces On-Call Air Forces Combat Support Forces
14th FS 2nd AS
11th RS
8th FS 3rd FW
67th FS
38th RS
9th FS 4th FW
354th FS 93rd ARS
99th RS
25th FS 35th FW
492nd FS 97th ARS 35th FS 48th FW
555th FS 912th ARS
12th ACCS
36th FS 52nd FW
80th FS 355th FW
171st AS [ANG]
41st ECS
388th FW
189th AS [ANG] 20th BS
41st RQS
325th BS 30th SW
191st ARS [ANG]
71st RQS
393rd BS 45th SW
63rd ARS [AFRC]
729th ACS
60th AMW 36th ABW
72nd ARS [AFRC]
305th AMW 99th ABW
961st AACS
62nd AMW 43rd AW
436th AW 62nd AW
437th AW 86th AW
137th AS [ANG] 347th RW
155th AS [ANG] 124th Wing [ANG]
183rd AS [ANG]
141st ARW [ANG]
68th AS [AFRC] 157th ARW [ANG]
337th AS [AFRC] 168th ARW [ANG]
756th AS [AFRC]
301st FW [AFRC]
445th AMW [AFRC] 482nd FW [AFRC]
452nd AMW [AFRC] 944th FW [AFRC]
41st RQS 434th ARW [AFRC]
71st RQS 927th ARW [AFRC]
55th Wing
57th Wing
355th Wing
93rd ACW
552nd ACW


Cycle 5

Beginning with AEF Cycle 5 in September 2004, the baseline deployment was 120 days verses 90, and the AEF cycle changed from a fifteen-month rotational cycle to a twenty-month cycle. The 20-month cycle continued to provide commanders and Airmen the ability to plan ahead, allowing a sense of predictability while providing greater continuity to the in-theater commander.

Cycle 5
September 1, 2005 - December 31, 2005
Operation: OIF/OEF
Forces are now assigned to AEF pairs (AEF 7/AEF 8), instead of individual AEFs (AEF 7)
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low Density, High Demand Forces
14th FS 43rd AW
12th AACS
27th FS 86th AW
16th AACS
67th FS
960th AACS
354th FS 317th AG
961st AACS
492nd FS 463rd AG
522nd FS
41st ECS
555th FS 517th AS
43rd ECS
34th BS 6th AMW
41st RQS
60th AMW
71st RQS
104th FW [ANG]
110th FW [ANG] 19th ARG
15th RS
124th FW [ANG]
38th RS
127th FW [ANG] 22nd ARW
99th RS
181st FW [ANG] 92nd ARW
319th ARW
729th ACS
301st FW [AFRC]
419th FW [AFRC] 127th Wing [ANG]
102nd RQS [ANG]
482nd FW [AFRC]
129th RQS [ANG]
130th AW [ANG]
136th AW [ANG]
970th AACS [AFRC]
137th AW [ANG]
139th AW [ANG]
143rd AW [ANG]
145th AW [ANG]
152nd AW [ANG]
153rd AW [ANG]
165th AW [ANG]
166th AW [ANG]
179th AW [ANG]
182nd AW [ANG]
302nd AW [AFRC]
913th AW [AFRC]
914th AW [AFRC]


Cycle 6

Cycle 6
May 1, 2007 - August 31, 2007
Operation: OIF/OEF
Forces are now assigned to AEF pairs (AEF 7/AEF 8), instead of individual AEFs (AEF 7)
Combat Air Forces Mobility Air Forces Low Density, High Demand Forces
13th FS 43rd AW
12th AACS
67th FS
16th AACS
94th FS 317th AG
128th AACS
354th FS 463rd AG
960th AACS
492nd FS
522nd FS 6th AMW
41st ECS
555th FS 60th AMW
43rd ECS
305th AMW
37th BS
41st RQS
19th ARG
71st RQS
104th FW [ANG]
110th FW [ANG] 22nd ARW
15th RS
114th FW [ANG] 92nd ARW
38th RS
124th FW [ANG] 319th ARW
99th RS
127th FW [ANG]
181st FW [ANG] 123rd AW [ANG]
606th ACS
130th AW [ANG]
726th ACS
301st FW [AFRC] 153rd AW [ANG]
482nd FW [AFRC]
101st RQS [ANG]
124th Wing [ANG]
102nd RQS [ANG]
129th RQS [ANG]
130th RQS [ANG]
210th RQS [ANG]
211st RQS [ANG]



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