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Civil Air Patrol observers may act as the mission commander for aircrews engaged in search and rescue, homeland defense reconnaissance, or other Air Force-authorized missions, serving as the liaison between the sortie and mission base.Observers are trained in air navigation, radio communications, and other technical subjects such as aerial direction finding.
Knowing what you, your family and your friends can expect from Air Force life will help as you take the steps to joining the Air Force and determining the path that’s the right fit for your future.
Permanent designation is attained at 200 hours for rotary wing and 400 hours for fixed wing specialists.
With the creation of the United States Air Force in 1947, aviation observers were phased out and replaced by more highly trained specialists known as Aircrew personnel.
The Observer Badge is a military badge of the United States armed forces dating from the First World War. With the advent of bombing, the Observer Badge was also initially authorized for aircraft bombardiers.
The badge was issued to co-pilots, navigators, and flight support personnel who had received a variation in the training required for the standard Pilot's Badge. A new badge was soon created for these duties, however: the Bombing Aviator Badge.
The Aircrew Badge was created prior to the Second World War; but had only been awarded to enlisted personnel.