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Luftforsvaret / Royal Norwegian Air Force - Facilities

The Air Force organisation includes a total of nine major facilities:

  1. Bodø Main Air Station
  2. Ørland Main Air Station

  3. Andøya Air Station
  4. Bardufoss Air Station
  5. Gardermoen Air Station
  6. Rygge Air Station
  7. Sola Air Station

  8. Sørreisa Air Defence Center
  9. Mågerø Air Defence Center

Bodø Main Air Station

Bodø main airstations is one of the RnoAF's largest units. The Main Air Station is settled centrally in Bodø, with the civil airport as its closest neighbour. Approximate 1000 persons have their daily work at the air station, including 400 soldiers. Bodø is one of the edge forces of the Norwegian defense forces and is producing airpower. Bodø has the largest air station in Norway and lies literally in the midst of Norway. From Bodø flies the 331 and 332 squadrons its F-16 fighting falcons. A detachment from the 330 squadron operates its 2 Sea King rescue choppers from Bodø M.A.S. as well. Bodø also educates and trains NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System) surface-to-air artillery forces and base defence infantry. Our troops are setup for the mobilization force as well as for international assignments. Bodø Main Air stations also has a boot camp at Bodin camp.

The history of Main Air Station Bodø started in 1921 where regular mailflyings begun, but it was not until 1941 a runway was constructed. The British were the first to arrive and in the beginning of 1940, 2 Sandringham flying boats arrived with engineers and their equipment to start work on the runway. Several options were studied before it was decided to build a runway at Plassmyra just outside Bodø. According to records 26 May 1940, 3 Gloster Gladiators with 3 young Englishmen landed at Bodø, and the day after they were engaged in battle with large German Air forces which were attacking in attempt to destroy Bodø harbour, medium wave transmitters and the Airfield. The German occupying forces improved the runway with concrete surface and buildt aircraft shelters etc. After the war Norwegian forces started using the Airfield, and when the Minister of Defence, Jens Chr. Hauge approved the Hernes project, the recent history of MAS Bodø started. Many histories can be told from the recent history of MAS Bodø.

Since the opening in 1956, the air station has been involved in many different incidents including the Nilsen-spycase in the sixties, U-2 operations, F-104 Starfighter operations was very important part of history. The air station has been constantly modernised. After 1988 a large Nato funding was used to prepare the station for reception of large reinforcement units in a time of crisis, and today Bodø is the most modern station in The Royal Norwegian Air Force. In addition to sufficient number of aircraft shelters to house several fighter squadrons, a paralell taxiway large enough to be used as a runway is constructed. Fuel storage on base is increased, and the accommodation has been modernised.

Assignments of Bodø M.A.S. are to:

  • keep surveilance on norwegian air space and territorial sea areas on a 24 hour basis.
  • execute land and sea rescue service with helicopters on a 24 hour basis.
  • pilots are to fly a minimum amount of 180 hours each year as a requirement.
  • train forces for international assignments; train technical personel in all the required categories for a airstrip setup, whereas these are setup in the mobilization force as well as for international assignements.
  • train air-artillery forces, base defence infantry and air national guard forces for the mobilization army. Airdefence and base defence personel are setup for international assignments as well.
In a new homeland security political situation marked by unpredictability, where the threats materializes themselves faster than before, is the Norwegian Defence Force in the process of changing its direction. The Norwegian Defence Force must be flexible and have the ability to react quickly, as well as being able to deploy home and on international assignments. The earlier invasion defence force which was supposed to protect us against one specific enemy and where there was a long time to prepare is now being replace by the quick reactionb force which is adapted to the new homeland-security political situation.

The RnoAF meet its requirements with a mobile, modular and network-based air-warfare concept. With this concept shall the forces be tied closely together, through modules and by the missions type and de shall be able to operate from places where the war effort is not pre-planned. The operations shall be network based which means that sensors, weapon-platforms, and decision makers are unified in one network. For Bodø main air station, as for the the rest of the defence force, is the main challenge to change from the invasion defence force to a effort-based defence-force and the adaption to the new air-warfare-concept

Ørland Main Air Station

Ørland is an allied training centre, much appreciated by NATO members. 338 squadron, with its F-16 Fighting Falcons, fly from here as does a detachment from 330 squadron operating Sea King search and rescue helicopters. Furthermore, Ørland is a forward operating location for the AWACS surveillance planes operated by NATO. Ørland also educates and trains NASAMS surface-to-air artillery forces and base defence infantry.

Andøya Air Station

Andøya air station is Norway's only base for marine patrol aircraft. The Norwegian air force operates its 333 squadron with Orion aircraft from an old geographically optimal location on Andøya. Andøya Air Station conducts surveillance and asserts sovereignty in the northern territories of Norway. Andøya air base consists of units from the Norwegian air force, the Norwegian Defence Logistics organization, estate district Anøya and the military intelligence service. All these units have its activites tied to the Orion aircraft.In addition, Andøya air base is the basis for other types of air activity, bodth in military and civilian direction. The base is also collaborating with Andøya Rocket Range. In addition to these, AVINOR, meteorological institute and SHELL employees on the base support the marine patrol aircrafts. Andøya air base has in conformity with the rest of the Norwegian defence forces, gone through large changes and is still going through an adaptation of its activity. The term, "compact station" was introduce already during the 50's when the station was built. There are still a few investments left before the goal of achieving a true "compact station" is reached.

On a NATO meeting in Lisbon in 1951, regarding the placement of the infrastructure program assets, it was solemnly stated a request to build an air base on Andøya. The resolution was thereby placed on the agenda and continuously discussed by the military leadership, who meant that Andøya had a superior location, both from a strategic viewpoint as well as on flight basis. In the Harstad times, on the 6th of Februrary 1952, the chief of airforce, liutenant general Finn Lambrechts, stated that Andøya was a superior location for for an airport/air base With the support in this and similar statements, rumours had it that NATO and the Norwegian defence force was planning to build an air base on Andøya. In the middle of March the same year, the minister of defence, Nils Langhelle informed the press that it was decided that there would be an air base on Andøya. There were many similar options, as well as on the sourthern, central and northern part of the island. What probably became the conclusive factor for the choice of airbase location was the access to harbor facilities. At Andenes chief engineer Holst in the governmental harbour authoritites, caught sight of a possibility to expand the harbor and to develop Andenes into a large fishery harbor. This reason probably weighed a lot.

Station Group Banak

The northernmost military airfield in Norway. Banak is a station group falling under 132. Wing in Bodø. Banak is mainly used to conduct large exercises, as it is located close to the 252 square kilometer large Halkavarre shooting range. In addition a detachment from 330 squadron operates Sea King rescue helicopters from Banak.

Bardufoss Air Station

Norway's oldest operative air base. 339 squadron became operative in 1964 and operates Bell 412SP helicopters. The main assignment is tactical deployment with Army units. 337 squadron primarily execute assignments for the Coast Guard. This squadron is equipped with Lynx MK 86 helicopters.

Gardermoen Airbase

The base is co-located with Oslo Airport. 335 squadron operate from the base with C-130J Hercules cargo planes. Gardermoen is a modern air base tailored to logistic operations.

Rygge Airbase

Located 60 kilometers south of Oslo. 720 squadron operate from the base with Bell 412 helicopters. The squadron's main assignment is tactical deployment with Army units. 717 squadron operates DA-20 Jet Falcons, which is used for electronic warfare. A detachment from 330 squadron is also based at Rygge with Sea King search and rescue helicopters.

Sola Air Station

Out of Sola 330 squadron operates Sea King search and rescue helicopters. The administration of 330 squadron is also located at Sola. 334 Squadron is also based at Sola. The squadron does currently not operate any aircraft, but was established in 2004 to prepare the implementation of the Royal Norwegian Air Force' new helicopters, NH-90.

CRC Mågerø

Mågerø is located 110km southwest of Oslo and is one of two Control and Reporting Centres (CRC) in Norway. Its main objective is to monitor and build a "Recognized Air Picture" in NATOs airspace over Norway and adjacent international waters, and to execute air control. CRC Mågerø is co-located with a national control and reporting school and a national programming center.

CRC Sørreisa

Sørreisa is one of two Control and Reporting Centers (CRC) in Norway. Sørreisa is by far the most modern CRC in NATO, both technologically and in construction. Its main objective is to monitor and build a "Recognized Air Picture" in NATOs airspace over Norway and adjacent international waters.

Air Force Academy

The academy is located in the beautiful town of Trondheim. The academy offers a bachelor education during a three year run. The education is designed to educate officers and leaders to function in an increasingly complex and demanding environment. The education is based on the same demands and approval as civilian colleges and universities.

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Page last modified: 11-07-2011 03:03:20 ZULU