Flying officer (Fg Off or F/O) is a junior officer rank used by some air forces, with origins from the Royal Air Force.[1] The rank is used by air forces of many countries that have historical British influence.

Flying officer is immediately senior to pilot officer and immediately below flight lieutenant. It is usually equivalent to the rank of sub-lieutenant in the navy and of the rank of lieutenant in other services.

The equivalent rank in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force was "section officer".

Canada edit

The rank was used in the Royal Canadian Air Force until the 1968 unification of the Canadian Forces, when army-type rank titles were adopted. Canadian flying officers then became lieutenants. In official Canadian French usage, the rank title was lieutenant d'aviation.[2]

United Kingdom edit

Flying officer
Shoulder and sleeve insignia
Country  United Kingdom
Service branch  Royal Air Force
AbbreviationFg Off / FLGOFF / FGOFF
NATO rank codeOF-1
FormationAugust 1919 (1919-08)
Next higher rankFlight lieutenant
Next lower rankPilot officer
Equivalent ranks
Related articles
HistoryRoyal Naval Air Service

Origins edit

The term "flying officer" was originally used in the Royal Flying Corps as a flying appointment for junior officers, not a rank.

On 1 April 1918, the newly created RAF adopted its officer rank titles from the British Army, with Royal Naval Air Service sub-lieutenants (entitled flight sub-lieutenants) and Royal Flying Corps lieutenants becoming lieutenants in the RAF. However, with the creation of the RAF's own rank structure in August 1919, RAF lieutenants were re-titled flying officers,[3] a rank which has been in continuous use ever since.

Usage edit

The rank title does not imply that an officer in the rank of flying officer flies. Some flying officers are aircrew, but many are ground branch officers. Amongst the ground branches some flying officers have command of flights.

In the RAF, aircrew and engineer officers are commissioned directly into the rank of flying officer, while ground branches are commissioned as pilot officers for an initial period of six months. Time served in the rank of flying officer varies depending on branch before automatic promotion to flight lieutenant; aircrew and BEng qualified officers will serve for a period of 2½ years, MEng qualified engineers for 1½ years, and all other ground branches for 3½ years. A graduate entrant who has an MEng but is joining a ground branch other than engineer will serve 3½ years as a flying officer – the early promotion for MEng engineers is designed as a recruitment incentive. The starting salary for a flying officer is £30,616.80 per year.[4]

In many cases the rank of flying officer is the first rank an air force officer holds after successful completion of his professional training. A flying officer might serve as a pilot in training, an adjutant, a security officer or an administrative officer and is typically given charge of personnel and/or resources. By the time aviators have completed their training, they will have served their 2½ years and typically join their frontline squadrons as flight lieutenants.

Insignia edit

The rank insignia consists of one narrow blue band on slightly wider black band. This is worn on both the lower sleeves of the tunic or on the shoulders of the flying suit or the casual uniform. The rank insignia on the mess uniform is similar to the naval pattern, being one band of gold running around each cuff but without the Royal Navy's loop.

Gallery edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Ranks and Badges of the Royal Air Force". Royal Air Force. 2007. Archived from the original on 9 July 2011. Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  2. ^ "The RCAF". Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 22 May 2022.
  3. ^ Hobart, Malcolm C (2000). Badges and Uniforms of the Royal Air Force. Leo Cooper. p. 26. ISBN 0-85052-739-2.
  4. ^ "Rates of Pay, 2015" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 21 September 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2016.
  5. ^ "Badges of rank" (PDF). Department of Defence (Australia). Retrieved 31 May 2021.
  6. ^ "OFFICER'S RANKS". Archived from the original on 19 February 2020. Retrieved 11 October 2020.
  7. ^ "Rank Structure". Ghana Air Force. 2018. Archived from the original on 21 January 2018. Retrieved 3 March 2024.
  8. ^ "For Officers". Indian Air Force. Archived from the original on 25 February 2012. Retrieved 23 September 2021.
  9. ^ "Government Notice" (PDF). Government Gazette of the Republic of Namibia. Vol. 4547. 20 August 2010. pp. 99–102. Retrieved 20 December 2021.
  10. ^ Smaldone, Joseph P. (1992). "National Security". In Metz, Helen Chapin (ed.). Nigeria: a country study. Area Handbook (5th ed.). Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress. pp. 296–297. LCCN 92009026. Retrieved 21 October 2021.
  11. ^ "Commissioned Officers". Sri Lanka Air Force. Retrieved 24 September 2021.
  12. ^ "RAF Ranks". Royal Air Force. Retrieved 21 September 2021.
  13. ^ "Rank Chart (Commissioned Officers)". Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force. Retrieved 27 May 2021.[permanent dead link]