AIR AND SPACE OPERATIONS Air & Space Operations Specialist

As an RAF Air & Space Operations Specialist you will support aircrew, Air Operations Controllers and Air Operations (Systems) Officers to facilitate the successful planning and execution of flights and missions, both in the UK and on worldwide operations.

Full-time regular Spare time reserve

Learn more about this role

Pay During First Six Months £16,235+ + Benefits

Pay Until Completion Of Phase Two Training* £20,650+ + Benefits

DAY RATE STARTS AT: £39.34 + Benefits

Is this for you?

APPLICANTS MUST:

  • Be aged 16 – 47 years old (Must attest before 48th birthday)
  • Have GCSE at Grade C/4-5 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 2/Scottish National 5 in English Language and GCSE at Grade C/4-5 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 2/Scottish National 5 in Maths
  • Be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.
  • Commit minimum 3 years post Phase Two Training
  • Meet the health and fitness criteria
  • Pass the Defence Aptitude Assessment
  • Pass a Fitness test - Detail below

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Travelling the world
  • Analysis and maths

APPLICANTS MUST:

  • Be aged 18 – 54 (Must attest before 55th birthday – Ex Regulars over the age of 55 may be considered on a case by case basis)
  • Have GCSE at Grade C/4-5 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 2/Scottish National 5 in English Language and GCSE at Grade C/4-5 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 2/Scottish National 5 in Maths
  • Be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.
  • Commit 27 days per year for 12 years minimum
  • Meet the health and fitness criteria
  • Pass the Defence Aptitude Assessment
  • Pass a General Fitness Test

GREAT FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN:

  • Being creative
  • Analysis and maths
  • Aircraft

Locations

502 Sqn, JHFS Aldergrove, Co Antrim (Extremely limited vacancies)
600 Sqn, RAF Northolt, Middlesex
602 Sqn, Glasgow, Scotland (Extremely limited vacancies)
606 Sqn, RAF Benson, Oxon
611 Sqn, RAF Woodvale, Merseyside
622 Sqn, RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire (Ex-Regular only)

VIEW ALL ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

WHAT WILL YOU DO?

TYPICAL RESPONSIBILITIES

  • The coordination of airspace for military and civilian aircraft
  • Monitoring and identifying all aircraft within UK airspace including assisting in the scrambling of Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon jets
  • Keeping watch for foreign missile launches and monitoring foreign surveillance satellites
  • Management of aircraft mission planning systems and aeronautical data

Air & Space Operations Specialists (ASOS) work across 3 Employment Pillars; Air Operations Support, Air Operations Systems and Space Operations providing specialist skills across a variety of Employment Areas.

All ASOS roles are directly involved in aviation or space in support of aircrew, UK homeland defence or airfield operations utilising modern radar, communications and IT systems. You may be operating from hardened Command and Control Centre, an Operations Room or Control Tower. You could also work in field conditions as part of a deployable unit or onboard a Royal Navy Air Defence ship.

There are opportunities for a varied career which may include working in Air Traffic Control, the Space Operations Centre, Airspace Management, Tactical Data Links and Squadron Operations to name but a few. As an ASOS you will be a member of a highly skilled and in demand specialism as part of the next generation Royal Air Force.

Throughout your career you may be required to serve overseas on detachment as part of your role for a number of months or as a full time posting to certain locations. Your duties will be similar to those at your home station but will be demanding with opportunities to work with other professions, services and nations in an operational environment contributing to security of UK overseas territories and UK.

WHY JOIN THE RAF?

Thanks to subsidised food, travel, accommodation and free gym you get more money in your pocket.

Salary
Benefits Salary
Civilian Role
RAF Role
  • Rent from £75p/m
  • Free gym
  • Subsidised food
  • Health care
  • World travel
  • 6 weeks holiday

See All Benefits

WHY JOIN THE RESERVES?

The skills you acquire as a Reserve won’t just prepare you for the RAF, they will enhance your work and civilian life.

You might be called up to assist with our operations worldwide for up to six months, during which you may be able to claim a pay award to cover your and your employer’s costs.

  • Training
  • Free gym
  • Subsidised food
  • Paid pension
  • Paid holiday

See All Benefits

TRAINING AND CAREER

TRAINING YOU’LL RECEIVE

Your career will start with a 10-week Basic Recruit Training Course at RAF Halton in Buckinghamshire. The course is designed to help you adjust to a military environment. As well as fitness and military training, you’ll also learn about the RAF lifestyle.

SPECIALIST TRAINING

The next step is the 5 week Air & Space Operations Specialist Course (ASOSC) at RAF Shawbury. You will be taught the basic theory required to operate at your first frontline Unit. On successful completion of the course you will be promoted to Leading Aircraftman and receive your first assignment.

More Details +

ADDITIONAL QUALIFICATIONS

During your specialist trade training, you will be offered the opportunity to enrol on a Level 3 IT User Skills Diploma Apprenticeship. Within this apprenticeship your training will focus on the professional elements of Flight Operations.

ONGOING TRAINING/DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES

You will undertake annual Continuous Professional Development (CPD) to ensure you build on your specialisation and Service knowledge. We will continue to train you in new skills, and you will have the opportunity to serve broader specialisation and wider RAF roles. As your seniority grows and you move up the ranks other roles will be available to you. These include training and recruitment duties or a role working for NATO. Training never stops and there will be a wide array of courses to enhance your skills and competency levels.

YOUR FIRST ASSIGNMENT

This is likely to be in the core roles of airspace monitoring at the Control and Reporting Centre or Mobile Radar Unit, Air Traffic Control, Station Operations or Area Radar. During this assignment there may be opportunities to move to another Employment Area on unit for your personal and professional development.

YOUR FUTURE CAREER PROSPECTS/PROGRESSION

After completing your first year of service, you will be eligible for promotion to Senior Aircraftsman (SAC) provided you pass specialisation training and Profession Workplace Assessment. Following your first assignment you will be assigned to another station either within the UK or overseas. As an SAC the majority of specialisation Employment Areas will be available to you through further specialist or workplace training as required. This could be supporting a variety of aircraft platforms such as F35 Lightning, E7 Wedgetail, P8 Poseidon or Remotely Piloted Air Systems. You may be employed in the Space employment area, either at the National Air and Space Operations Centre or RAF Fylingdales. As an ASOS you could be employed in support of either Air Command or UK Space Command. Further promotion to Corporal and beyond is by competitive selection for established vacancies. To be eligible for promotion you should undertake assignments across multiple Employment Areas or Pillars. If successful, to prepare you for Non- commissioned Officer (NCO) service, you will attend leadership and management training at the Aviator Command School. Upon reaching Sergeant you will be re- mustered as an Air & Space Operations Manager (ASOM).

TRANSFERABLE SKILLS

Service as an Air & Space Operations Specialist (ASOS) will develop your resilience and personal skills such as problem solving, team work and communication. The leadership and management training in addition to the qualification offered as part of your ASOS specialisation training, are as valuable in civilian world as they are in the RAF. Meaning that whenever you decide to leave the RAF, you will be well placed to find another career.

TRAINING AND CAREER

INITIAL TRAINING

Your training will start with a Basic Recruit Training Course consisting of 4 weekends at your chosen RAF Reserves Squadron, followed by a 15-day residential training course at RAF Halton in Buckinghamshire.

SPECIALIST TRAINING

After successfully completing initial training, you will be trained for your specific role in the RAF either at your squadron or another RAF station in the UK.

Commitment and location

You will have to commit to 27 days per year for 12 years minimum.


Each year includes a 15-day block for general RAF training, and 12 separate days for extra training or exercises.


You might be deployed to a UK or overseas base for up to 6 months after the first year.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

ALL APPLICANTS MUST:

Be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.

Be aged 16 – 47 years old (Must attest before 48th birthday)

*Until at least you have completed one year of service and successfully completed Professional Workplace Assessments on first posting.

ALL APPLICANTS MUST:

Be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.

Be aged 18-54 (Must attest before 55th birthday – Ex Regulars over the age of 55 may be considered on a case by case basis).

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

Have these minimum grades:

  GCSE GCSE 2017 SNE
Mathematics C Grade 4 Grade 5
English Language C Grade 4 Grade 5

You can see what the RAF accepts in lieu of GCSEs & A Levels here.

NATIONALITY & RESIDENCY

You must be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.

Whether or not you were born in the United Kingdom, you should have resided there for the 5 years immediately preceding your application. However, candidates with a minimum of 3 years will be considered.

FITNESS REQUIREMENTS

You must be physically fit to complete both initial and specialist training, and to do your role effectively. To check your fitness levels, we put every candidate through at least two separate fitness tests as part of the application process.

The first of these is the Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT) which takes place at a fitness centre local to you. This consists of the following:

  • 2.4km (1.5m) run on a treadmill (set to zero incline)
  • Achieve the required number of press-ups - within 60 seconds
  • Achieve the required number of sit-ups - within 60 seconds

The second fitness test will take place at RAF Halton as part of your three-day Pre-Recruit Familiarization Visit (PRFV). This consists of the following:

  • Achieving the required score on the Multi-Stage Fitness Test (MSFT or Bleep test)
  • Achieve the required number of press-ups - within 60 seconds
  • Achieve the required number of sit-ups - within 60 seconds

How fit you need to be to pass these tests can vary depending on role, age and gender. The requirements are listed on the charts below (Men and Women).

MEN - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Multi-Stage Fitness Test Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (Score) (No.) (No.)
15-16 11.39 9.03 20 35
17-29 11.11 9.10 20 35
30-34 11.36 9.04 19 32
35-39 12 8.09 18 29
40-44 12.26 8.03 17 26
45-47 12.54 7.07 16 23

 

WOMEN - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Multi-Stage Fitness Test Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (Score) (No.) (No.)
15-16 13.54 6.07 10 32
17-29 13.23 7.02 10 32
30-34 13.47 6.08 9 29
35-39 14.13 6.04 8 26
40-44 14.48 5.08 7 23
45-47 15.19 5.04 6 20

You can see the protocols for Press Ups & Sit Ups here:

PJFT/PRFV Protocols

You can download an MP3 file of the Multi-Stage Fitness Test below, listen to the introduction file first:

RAF MSFT: Intro

RAF MSFT: Bleep Test

You can see a video demonstration of the PRFV Fitness Test here:

RAF PRFV Fitness Test

A 12-week fitness plan with detailed information to help you get ready for all of the fitness tests can be downloaded here.

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

BEFORE YOUR APPLICATION:

There are health requirements that must be met by all applicants:

  • Body Mass Index requirements:
Age Male and female minimum Male and female maximum Male maximum with additional assessment Female maximum with additional assessment
18 + 18 28 32 30
16 to < 18 17 27 27 27
  • Eyesight requirements vary for different roles. A requirement to wear glasses or contact lenses may be allowed for aircrew.

Get in touch if you have any questions about the health criteria, or would like to find out if any additional health requirements apply to your role of interest.

DURING YOUR APPLICATION:

The Medical Risk Assessment that all candidates undergo is there to make sure that you are healthy enough for the intense training required by the RAF. Your application will be rejected if you fail to meet the minimum acceptable medical standard for entry. Your medical history is confidential and is not disclosed to those not authorised to hold this information.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

YOU MUST:

  • Declare any previous spent and unspent convictions
  • Check if you qualify under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 through this summary
  • Have a basic background check to get Security Check level clearance

DISQUALIFYING FACTORS

YOU CAN'T APPLY FOR THE RAF IF YOU:

  • Have been or are a member of a group that stirs up racial hatred and violence
  • Are waiting to appear in court, or have unspent convictions. You may also have to declare spent convictions for certain roles
  • Misuse drugs, solvents and anabolic steroids. But each case is considered upon its own merits
  • Have tattoos, brands or bead implants that are obscene or offensive. 
    Any permanent or temporary tattoos, whether ordinarily visible or not, must not be obscene or offensive (eg, racist, anti-religion or belief, crude, overtly sexist, homophobic, drug related or of an extreme political nature). Tattoos may be worn on the side and back of the neck but tattoos on the back of the neck must not extend above the natural hairline (scalp tattoos are not permitted). In addition, tattoos must not be visible below the sleeve cuff while wearing uniform, although a single finger (not thumb) tattoo that could be covered by a ring may be permitted
  • Have body piercing which causes holes that do not close up
  • Declare yourself to be an 'undischarged' bankrupt

Beard Policy: A revised facial hair policy has been agreed by the Air Force Board which will allow serving personnel to wear a smart, neatly-trimmed, full-set beard whilst maintaining high standards of appearance. The length of acceptable beards is between Grade 1 (2.5mm) and Grade 8 (25.5mm). The wearing of beards during Phase 1 and Phase 2 training is currently under consideration and details will be advised when available

EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS

Have these minimum grades:

  GCSE GCSE 2017 SNE
Mathematics C Grade 4 Grade 5
English Language C Grade 4 Grade 5

You can see what the RAF accepts in lieu of GCSEs & A Levels here.

NATIONALITY & RESIDENCY

You must be a UK citizen or have dual UK/other nationality.

Whether or not you were born in the United Kingdom, you should have resided there for the 5 years immediately preceding your application. However, candidates with a minimum of 3 years may be considered.

FITNESS REQUIREMENTS

You must be physically fit to complete both initial and specialist training, and to do your role effectively. To check your fitness levels, we put every candidate through at least two separate fitness tests as part of the application process.

The first of these is the Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT) which takes place at a fitness centre local to you. This consists of the following:

  • 2.4km (1.5m) run on a treadmill (set to zero incline)
  • Achieve the required number of press-ups - within 60 seconds
  • Achieve the required number of sit-ups - within 60 seconds

How fit you need to be to pass the test can vary depending on role, age and gender. The requirements are listed on the charts below (Men and Women).

MEN - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (No.) (No.)
15-16 11.39 20 35
17-29 11.11 20 35
30-34 11.36 19 32
35-39 12 18 29
40-44 12.26 17 26
45-47 12.54 16 23

 

WOMEN - 100% pass rates:
AGE 2.4 Km Run Press-ups Sit-ups
  (Mins) (No.) (No.)
15-16 13.54 10 32
17-29 13.23 10 32
30-34 13.47 9 29
35-39 14.13 8 26
40-44 14.48 7 23
45-47 15.19 6 20

You can see the protocols for Press Ups & Sit Ups here:

PJFT/PRTC Protocols

A 12-week fitness plan with detailed information to help you get ready for all of the fitness tests can be downloaded here.

HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

BEFORE YOUR APPLICATION:

There are health requirements that must be met by all applicants:

  • Body Mass Index requirements:
Age Male and female minimum Male and female maximum Male maximum with additional assessment Female maximum with additional assessment
18 + 18 28 32 30
16 to < 18 17 27 27 27
  • Eyesight requirements vary for different roles. A requirement to wear glasses or contact lenses may be allowed for aircrew.

Get in touch if you have any questions about the health criteria, or would like to find out if any additional health requirements apply to your role of interest.

DURING YOUR APPLICATION:

The Medical Risk Assessment that all candidates undergo is there to make sure that you are healthy enough for the intense training required by the RAF. Your application will be rejected if you fail to meet the minimum acceptable medical standard for entry. Your medical history is confidential and is not disclosed to those not authorised to hold this information.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

YOU MUST:

  • Declare any previous spent and unspent convictions
  • Check if you qualify under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 through this summary
  • Have a basic background check to get Security Check level clearance

DISQUALIFYING FACTORS

YOU CAN'T APPLY FOR THE RAF IF YOU:

  • Have been or are member of a group that stirs up racial hatred and violence
  • Are waiting to appear in court, or have unspent convictions. You may also have to declare spent convictions for certain roles
  • Misuse drugs, solvents and anabolic steroids. But each case is considered upon its own merits
  • Have tattoos, brands or bead implants that are obscene or offensive. 
    Any permanent or temporary tattoos, whether ordinarily visible or not, must not be obscene or offensive (eg, racist, anti-religion or belief, crude, overtly sexist, homophobic, drug related or of an extreme political nature). Tattoos may be worn on the side and back of the neck but tattoos on the back of the neck must not extend above the natural hairline (scalp tattoos are not permitted). In addition, tattoos must not be visible below the sleeve cuff while wearing uniform, although a single finger (not thumb) tattoo that could be covered by a ring may be permitted
  • Have body piercing which causes holes that do not close up
  • Declare yourself to be an 'undischarged' bankrupt

Beard Policy: A revised facial hair policy has been agreed by the Air Force Board which will allow serving personnel to wear a smart, neatly-trimmed, full-set beard whilst maintaining high standards of appearance. The length of acceptable beards is between Grade 1 (2.5mm) and Grade 8 (25.5mm). The wearing of beards during Phase 1 and Phase 2 training is currently under consideration and details will be advised when available

If you don’t have any of the above, you might still be able to apply. For more information contact your local AFCO.

GOT WHAT IT TAKES?

Apply here and receive an email that invites you to your full online application.

PLEASE NOTE: You are applying to become an Aviator within Air and Space Operations as an Air and Space Operations Specialist.

Register Interest

GOT WHAT IT TAKES?

Apply here and receive an email that invites you to your full online application.

Apply as a Reserve