Our Purpose & Work


Find out about our core defence function, how we maintain our tactical and strategic capability, and other important roles we perform such as disaster relief and search and rescue.

Protecting the interests of Aus Protecting the interests of Aus

Defending Australia and its interests

In cooperation with the Navy and Army, the Air Force is tasked with the defence of our nation, our people, our values and our way of life. We achieve this by:

  • controlling the air,
  • acquiring intelligence through reconnaissance and surveillance,
  • providing air mobility for all operational needs, and
  • supporting combat missions through a strike capability.

Supporting Peak Strategic Capability Supporting Peak Strategic Capability

Supporting peak strategic capability

As the defence landscape changes and Australia faces threats from within as well as overseas, the Air Force adapts and evolves to maintain optimum capability. To resource this need we:

  • operate some of the most technically-advanced aircraft in the skies,
  • deploy cutting-edge intelligence and communications technology,
  • employ Australia's best and brightest men and women, and
  • train, educate and reward our personnel to perform at their peak.


Providing a force for protection, rescue and disaster relief

In addition to defending our nation, the Air Force supports a broad range of operations in Australia and overseas, including:

  • supporting international security and counter-terrorism initiatives,
  • protecting our borders from illegal activity and incursions,
  • carrying out search and rescue missions,
  • supporting peacekeeping operations, and
  • helping communities affected by natural disasters.

There’s flying then there’s flying

See how the Air Force stacks up against other pilot career paths.



Recognising rank

Our epaulets identify rank and reflect career progression through the Air Force.