HomeAbout UsFact SheetsDisplay

TWENTY-FIFTH AIR FORCE

Current as of December 7, 201825th AF Fact Sheet

The Twenty-Fifth Air Force, headquartered at Joint Base San Antonio—Lackland, Texas, first activated Oct. 20, 1948, as the United States Air Force Security Service. It has had a number of organizational realignments and re-designations throughout its history, and today reports as a Numbered Air Force to Air Combat Command.

The Twenty-Fifth Air Force provides multisource intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) products, applications, capabilities and resources, to include cyber and geospatial forces and expertise. Additionally, it is the Service Cryptologic Component responsible to the National Security Agency/Central Security Service for Air Force matters involving the conduct of cryptologic activities, including the full spectrum of missions directly related to both tactical warfighting and national-level operations.

 

MISSION

We execute worldwide intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance to protect and defend the United States and its global interests.

 

VISION

We will employ innovative ISR, cyber and electronic warfare capabilities, fully integrated into joint multi-domain operations, to detect, disrupt, deter, destroy and defeat our adversaries.

 

ORGANIZATION

Nearly 29,000 Airmen located across the globe are assigned to Twenty-Fifth Air Force under subordinate units: the Air Force Technical Applications Center, 9th Reconnaissance Wing, 55th Wing, 70th ISR Wing, 319th Air Base Wing, 363rd ISR Wing and 480th ISR Wing; including more than 60 Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard units with ISR responsibilities.

 

Air Force Technical Applications Center

The Air Force Technical Applications Center, based at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, performs nuclear treaty monitoring and nuclear event detection. AFTAC provides national authorities quality technical measurements to monitor treaty compliance. It also performs research and development of new proliferation detection technologies to enhance or assist treaty verification to limit the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. AFTAC began as the 1035th Field Activities Group July 7, 1959 and after several organizational changes, re-designated the Air Force Technical Applications Center Oct. 1, 1980. AFTACs slightly more than 1,000 Airmen perform worldwide nuclear event detection missions.

 

9th Reconnaissance Wing

The 9th Reconnaissance Wing, headquartered at Beale Air Force Base, California, is responsible for providing national and theater command authorities with timely, reliable, high-quality, high-altitude reconnaissance products. The wing proudly carries out one of the five enduring Air Force core missions – intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.  To accomplish this mission, the wing is equipped with the nation's fleet of U-2 Dragon Lady, RQ-4 Global Hawk, and T-38A Companion Trainers and associated support equipment. The wing also maintains a high state of readiness in its expeditionary combat support forces for potential deployment in response to theater contingencies. Activated as the 9th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing May 1, 1949, the wing is composed of approximately 7,000 Airmen in four groups at Beale, one group at Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, and multiple overseas operating locations. The 9th RW Airmen pride themselves on having a strong relationship with their community in Northern California.  The installation, along with the nearly 12,000 active duty, Guard, Reserve, civilian and dependents in the area, makes up more than $600 million in annual economic impact. 

 

55th Wing

The 55th Wing, headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska, is the Twenty-Fifth Air Force’s largest wing, composed of six groups and 31 squadrons located worldwide, employing 44 aircraft, including five different RC-135 variants, and employing a workforce of more than 7,000 Airmen. The 55th Wing, constituted Nov. 20, 1940 and activated Jan. 15, 1941, at Hamilton Field, California as the 55th Pursuit Group, conducts a global flying mission with worldwide reconnaissance and treaty verification tasked by our nation's highest levels. Additionally, it provides installation support to more than 50 associate units, including U.S. Strategic Command, and a military community of more than 57,000.

 

70th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing

The 70th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing, headquartered at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland, has 34 operating locations worldwide. The wing’s more than 1,400 Airmen conduct global ISR operations in air, space and cyberspace to enable strategic, operational and tactical effects for the National Command Authority, joint warfighting team, air component operations, and Air Force mission partners. The 70th ISRW serves as the Air Force's designated lead wing for National-to-Tactical Integration (NTI) operations and synchronization, and executes global ISR missions supporting combatant command and air component operations via the Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS) and Global Cryptologic Enterprise (GCE). Additionally, the 70th ISRW is the Air Force's designated lead wing for ISR operations enabling both cyber effects and space superiority operations. The wing provides expeditionary force protection capabilities, delivers tailored adversary tactics and Integrated Air Defense System (IADS) analyses, executes federated and delegated missions with Intelligence Community partners, provides information protection and assurance services, and deploys advanced engineering and infrastructure installation capabilities globally. First activated as the 70th Observation Group, Sept. 13, 1941, the wing underwent several organizational changes until designated the 70th ISRW, Jan. 1, 2009.

 

319th Air Base Wing

The 319th Air Base Wing, headquartered at Grand Forks Air Force Base, North Dakota, is responsible for the infrastructure and operational support to the 69th Reconnaissance Group’s RQ-4 Global Hawk mission. The 2,000 Total Force Airmen assigned to the 319th ABW provide rapid combat support through mission support functions, mobility preparedness, and continuous security to Grand Forks, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Cavalier Air Force Station located in Cavalier, North Dakota. Communication professionals with the 319th Communication Squadron maintain one of two high-frequency global communications systems in the Air Force, offering 24/7 global continuity for command and control in support of the Department of Defense, Executive Branch of the U.S. Government, and Department of Homeland Security. Additionally, the wing’s innovative enhanced-use leasing initiatives provide access to unmanned aerial partnerships with community and industry professionals.
 

363d Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing

The 363rd Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing, headquartered at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, is the Air Force's premier precision targeting production, special operations ISR, and full-spectrum analytical support to the tactical warfighter unit, enabling combat power in air, space and cyberspace. The wing’s more than 1,400 Airmen provide operations planning and execution support to major commands, component Numbered Air Forces and theater Air and Space Operations Centers. The 363d ISRW is the only entity solely focused on content-dominant multi-intelligence analysis and targeting for five distinct mission sets: Air Defenses, Counter-Space, Counter-ISR, TBM/Cruise Missile Threat and Air Threat. The 363rd ISRW produces tailored geospatial and comprehensive threat analysis products to Air Force units employing airpower worldwide. Additionally, it organizes, trains, equips and deploys airborne/ground tactical ISR professionals to conduct sensitive operations in response to national taskings.

 

480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing

The 480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing, headquartered at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, is the Air Force leader in globally networked ISR operations. The wing's comprehensive ISR missions include lead wing designation for the Air Force Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS), as well as national cryptologic, information technology, cyber ISR, tactical analysis, Combined Forces Air Component Commander support and national-to-tactical signals intelligence (SIGINT) integration. Assigned around the globe, the wing’s more than 6,000 Airmen execute missions spanning the full spectrum of ISR operations; from humanitarian assistance to major theater conflict, integrating with federated mission partners to provide timely, relevant intelligence that is regionally aligned in support of major command and combatant command theater operations. Activated June 21, 1943, as the 480th Antisubmarine Group, it became the 480th ISRW after several re-designations.