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Originally, the PLAAF had up to 11 Air Corps (jun/kongjun jun) located throughout China, whose mission was to integrate the air defense units to protect a particular area or city. Over the past several years, some Air Corps have been abolished and some have been converted into Command Posts (zhihuisuo). Today, only four Air Corps remain active. 


Within each Air Corps Headquarters, the command staff and senior personnel are equivalent to positions in the Army at the army (jun), division (shi), and regiment (tuan) level. As a result, a person's rank is still not as important as the Army-equivalent position (zhiwu dengji) that person holds. The command staff consists of the following personnel (the deputy political commissar is sometimes concurrently the director of the Political Department): 

Position                                                                                                                                 Rank

Commander (junzhang)                                                                                                       Maj Gen

Political commissar (zhengwei)                                                                                            Maj Gen

Deputy commander(s)                                                                                                        Maj Gen/Sr Col

Deputy political commissar(s)                                                                                             Maj Gen/Sr Col

Chief of staff (Director Headquarters Dept)                                                                        Maj Gen/Sr Col

Director, Political Department                                                                                            Maj Gen/Sr Col

Director, Logistics Department                                                                                          Sr Col

Director, Aeronautical Engineering Department                                                                  Sr Col 

Each Air Corps has a Party Committee (dangwei) and Standing Committee (dangwei changwei) with the political commissar as the secretary of each. While the Standing Committee consists of the command staff, the Party Committee consists of Standing Committee plus the commanders and political commissars of all subordinate units at the next level, such as air divisions, combined brigades, radar regiments, and communications regiments. 


Like HqAF and each MRAF Headquarters, the administrative organization at an Air Corps Headquarters consists of a Headquarters Department, Political Department, Logistics Department, and Aeronautical Engineering Department (Figure 1). The chief of staff is the director and the deputy chiefs of staff are the deputy directors of the Headquarters Department. Each of the four first level departments have the same subordinate divisions (chu) as the MRAF Headquarters. The department and division directors are senior colonels and colonels. The following administrative elements have been noted in the Air Corps Headquarters, but probably also include all of those at the MRAF Headquarters.                                                               


Headquarters Department(siling bu)

 - Operations Division (zuozhan chu)

 - Air Traffic Control Division (hanaxing chu)

 - Command Post (zhihuisuo)

 Political Department (zhen zhi bu)

 Logistics Department (houqin bu)

 - Air Materiel Division (hangcai chu)

 - Health Division (weisheng chu)

 Aeronautical Engineering Department (hangkong_gon cheng bu)




Air Corps are structured like an MRAF Headquarters as an administrative and operational entity. Each Air Corps has various operational units (budui) and directly subordinate units (zhishu budui). Although Air Corps have all five branches as subordinate elements, one Air Corps has been referred to as an Aviation Troop Air Corps (hangkong binb jun). Within each Air Corps' Headquarters Department there is a Command Post (zhihuisuo), which is best translated as an operations centers. The Command Post is separate from the Operations­Department and comes under the chief of staff. There is at least one representative from each of the second-level administrative departments within each of the four first-level departments who man the Command Post. Each subordinate operational unit also has a Command Post.

 Since 1949, the PLAAF has had up to 11 air corps, but some of them have been abolished or changed to command posts (zhihuisuo) (See Map).

Air Corps Location  MRAF Remarks
First Changchun Shenyang Active
Second Dandong Shenyang Abolished
Third Dalian Shenyang Command Post
Fourth Shanghi Nanjing Command Post
Fifth Hangzhou Nanjing Abolished
Sixth Tangshan Beijing Command Post
Seventh Nanning Guangzhou Active
Eighth Fuzhou Nanjing Active
Ninth Wulumuqi Lanzhou Command Post
Tenth Datong Beijing Active
Eleventh Xian Lanzhou Command Post


The 1st Air Corps (kong 1 jun) was established in Changchun in the early 1950s. 

The 2nd Air Corps (kong 2 jun) was established in the early 1950s at Dandong and was later abolished. It was not replaced by a Command Post. 

The 3rd Air Corps (kong 3 jun) was originally formed at Dalian in the early 1950s, but was later changed to the Dalian Command Post (Dalian zhihuisuo/Dazhi). 

The 4th Air Corps (kong 4 jun) was established in Shanghai in August 1952, but was later changed to the Shanghai Command Post (Shanghai zhihuisuo/ Shangzhi). 

The 5th Air Corps (kong 5 jun) was first noted in Hangzhou in 1954, at which time it had an Air Defense Command Post (fangkong zhihuisuo) in Guangzhou and Nanchang. In July 1958, some staff members were sent to Jinjiang, Fujian Province, to set up a command post opposite Taiwan. The 5th Air Corps was abolished in the late 1980s.

 The 6th Air Corps (kong 6 jun) was originally established in Jinan, but was replaced in June 1967 by the Jinan MRAF (junqu kongjun) Headquarters. The 6th Air Corps then moved to Tangshan, where it was noted in 1976 during _the earthquake. Sometime after 1976 it became the Tangshan Command Post (Tangshan zhihuisuo/Tangzhi). 

In 1962 the Shantou Air Force Command Post (kongjun zhihuisuo) in Guangdong Province, became the 7th Air Corps (kong 7 jun). As a result of the Gulf of Tonkin Incident in August 1964, the 7th Air Corps, which at that time was in Xingning, Guangdong Province, was moved to Nanning, Guangxi Autonomous Region. The 7th Air Corps became the PLAAF's forward command post (qianzhi) during the 1979 border conflict with Vietnam. 

In September 1955, the PLA Air Defense Force's 1st Corps (fangkongjun diyi jun) was established in Fuzhou. This Corps was replaced in July 1958 by the Fuzhou MRAF (junqu kongjun), which was organized to command Fujian and Jiangxi PLAAF i.a:". , . " same time the MRAF Headquarters was established, the 5th Air Corps also sent personnel to Jinjiang, opposite Taiwan, to set up a Command Post. On 23 August 1985, the Fuzhou MRAF was abolished. The 8th Air Corps (kong 8 jun), which is currently located in Fuzhou, was first noted in 1967, when a member of the Air Corps' Command Post.directed an aircraft from the 24th Air Division in Zhangzhou, Fujian Province, on an intercept mission. In 1976, the 8th Air Corps was located in Chengdu at the same time the Chengdu MRAF Command Post (Chengdu junqu kongjun zhihuisuo) existed. At some point after 1977, the 8th Air Corps moved from Chengdu to Fuzhou.

 In November 1964 the 9th Air Corps (kong 9 jun) was established in Wulumuqi. In November 1978, it became the Xinjiang MRAF Command Post (Xinjiang junqu kongjun zhihuisuo), then changed its name to the Wulumuqi MRAF Command Post (Wulumuqi junqu kongjun zhihuisuo) on 16 April 1979. When the Wulumuqi Military Region was abolished in August 1985, it became the Wulumuqi Command Post (Wulumuqi zhihuisuo/Wuzhi). 

The 10th Air Corps (kong 10 jun) is located in Datong. 

The 11th Air Corps (kong 11 jun) was located in Hetian in the 1960s, wiu itpiaceu the Lanzhou MRAF Headquarters at Xian, when the MRAF Headquarters moved from Xian to Lanzhou. Later, the Xian Command Post (Xian zhihuisuo/ Xizhi) replaced the 11th Air Corps.






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