Aviation Corps Officer (GSO Pilot)
The Army operates a fleet of rotary wing aircraft flown by officers of the Army Aviation Corps. Their duties can take them to anywhere within Australia and possibly overseas. There are two avenues to become an Army pilot. One avenue is to join the Army as a General Service Officer (GSO), the other is to join as a Specialist Service Officer (SSO). GSO enter service either through the Australian Defence Force Academy, gaining tertiary qualifications along the way or directly through the Royal Military College, Duntroon (RMC).
You have the opportunity to undergo testing for suitability as a pilot prior to entering RMC. The Australian Army Aviation (AAAvn) Corps is able to offer an Aviation Cadetship to applicants before entering RMC who have passed the Flight Screening Program (FSP) at the ADF Pilot Selection Agency and have been deemed competitive for a position on pilots course.
For the cadets at RMC or those that are yet to complete the FSP before joining RMC, testing for pilot training and application for a position on the FSP will be commenced in the early stages of RMC. If assessed suitable and competitive, you will attend the FSP during your course at RMC. If you pass the FSP and are deemed competitive for a position on pilots course, an Aviation Cadetship may be offered retrospectively to you while at RMC.
An Aviation Cadetship pre-selects you to join the AAAvn Corps upon graduation and reserves a position for you on pilots course.
The career of a GSO Pilot is normally long term and may encompass flying duties, non-flying appointments or command positions. The SSO Pilot Scheme is designed to produce sufficient pilots, on short-term appointments, to operate the Army's aircraft. Further information is displayed on the SSO Pilot job entry.
ROTARY WING AIRCRAFT
S70A-9 Black Hawk
The Black Hawk is one of the world's most advanced battlefield helicopters. Its tasks include tactical transport of infantry soldiers, search and rescue, medical evacuation, disaster relief and external carriage of heavy equipment including artillery howitzers and light vehicles.
The Black Hawk has a crew of two pilots and two load masters and can be armed with two machine guns. It has a cruise speed of 130 knots (240 km/h) and a range of approx. 465 km. The Black Hawk is operated by 5 Aviation Regiment (Avn Regt) in Townsville, 6 Avn Regt in Sydney and the School of Army Aviation (SAA) in Oakey.
The CH-47D Chinook is operated by C Squadron, 5 Avn Regt. C Squadron was raised on the Army order of battle in June 1995, on the return of the Chinook to Australia after re-manufacture by Boeing USA.
Tasks include logistic support to airmobile operations and battlefield support in the form of internal and external movement of fuel, stores, vehicles and heavy equipment. The Chinook cruises at a speed of 140 Knots (260 km/h) and has a range of approximately 500 km.
The MRH-90 is a single main rotor, twin engine, medium size helicopter. The MRH-90 belongs to a new generation of helicopter that boasts many leading edge technologies including a composite fuselage structure, fly by wire flight controls, an elastomeric bearing rotor hub, and an advanced avionics suite. The helicopter is designed for operations by night, day and in poor weather.
The MRH-90 has been purchased to provide an additional troop lift capability for the Army and to replace the Navy's Sea King helicopter and eventually the Blackhawk. The MRH-90 cruises at a speed of 140 Knots (260 km/h) and has a range of approximately 500 km. It is operated by 5 Avn Regt and the SAA.
The ARH provides a reconnaissance capability overmatch in order to provide situational awareness and decision superiority to the commander. The ARH employs weapons, sensor and communications systems with the capability of employment in Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Intelligence, Offensive Support, Command and Control.
The ARH is a tandem seated, armed helicopter which cruises at a speed of 125 knots (approx 240 km/hour) and has a range of 450 km without external tanks. It is operated by the 1 Avn Regt in Darwin and the SAA.
Bell 206B-1 Kiowa
The Kiowa is the military version of the popular Bell Jet ranger, and has been in service with the Army since 1972. Its tasks are battlefield reconnaissance, path finding for other aircraft, artillery observation, and control of tactical aircraft such as the FA-18. It carries a crew of two pilots and often works closely with artillery and armoured cavalry units.
The Kiowa cruises at 100 Knots (185 km/h) and has a range of approximately 460 km. It is operated by 6 Avn Regt and is the principal training aircraft at the SAA.