Armed Forces Overviews
Japan Air Self-Defense Force
Japan Air Self-Defense Force
KOKU JIEITAI/Koku Bakuryoukanbu
When an anniversary is taking place, the Japanese forces are renowned for applying extra markings on their aircraft, the airshow at Naha in December 2015 was no exception. This time the theme was the establishment of 9 Kokudan (Air Wing)
Photo: Naha 13 December 2015,
Reinier Schreurs
Akita (RJSK)
Rwy: 10/28
Pos: 39°36'56"N 140°13'07"E
Elev: 313 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Akita Kyunantai
Akita Air Rescue Squadron
UH-60J
U-125A

This Akita U-125A is performing the SAR demo at Nyutabaru. The first rescue variant of the U-125, the successor for the Mitsubishi MU-2,was delivered in 1995 and low rate deliveries continue to date and 28 had been delivered by early 2015.
Photo: Nyutabaru, 5 December 2015,
Internet
The unit or base name is given on the white sticker below the Koku Kyunandan badge.
Photo: Internet
The UH-60J in the blue colours unfortunately lack the exact unit or base name below the Koku Kyunandan badge on the cabin doors, therefore not all units in the database will be correct. A visiting UH-60 tends to go in the books as belonging to the local SAR-unit.
Photo: Hamamatsu 9 April 2010, Hans Rolink
Ashiya (RJFA)
Rwy: 12/30
Pos: 33°52'59"N 130°39'10"E
Elev: 98 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
13 Hiko Kyoikudan
13 Flying Training Wing


1 Hikotai T-4


2 Hikotai T-4
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Ashiya Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
13 Hiko Kyoikudan has two Hikotai, however no distinctive markings.

Although shown here in the special 60th anniversary of the JASDF scheme, it is an example to show how the normal red/white colours of 13 Hiko Kyoikudan look like, tail would be red with the blue badge.
Photo: Naha 14 December 2014, Reinier Schreurs
Chitose (RJCJ)
Rwy: 18L/36R, 18R/36L
Pos: 42°47'40"N 141°39'59"E
Elev: 89 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Hokubu Koku Homentai
Northern Air Defence Force

2 Kokudan


201 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4


203 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Chitose Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
Koku Shien Shudan
Air Support Command
Tokubetsu Koku Yusodai
Special Airlift Group


701 Hikotai B747-47C

T-4 201 Hikotai
Photo: Hyakuri, 21 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
One of 203 Hikotai's F-15DJs seen landing at Chitose in typical autumn sky and backdrop.
Photo: Chitose, 28 October 2014,
Jochem Manders
Dramatic picture of one of the best known JASDF aircraft, B-747 20-1101 is seen lining up under an ominous sky.
Photo: Chitose, 28 October 2014,
Jochem Manders
Fukuoka (RJFF)
Kasuga
Rwy: 16/34
Pos: 33°35'12"N 130°27'01"E
Elev: 32ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Seibu Koku Homentai
Western Air Defence Force


Seibu Koku Homentai Shireibu Shien Hikotai
W-ADF HQ Support Squadron
T-4
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Kasuga Herikoputa Kuuyutai
Kasuga Heli Airlift Squadron
CH-47J

The JASDF Air Defence Command or Koku Sotai has divided its airspace geographically into four regions, each one parented by its own Air Defence Force HQ. The Western Air Defence Force Headquarter is located at Kasuga and its HQ Support Flight is at nearby Fukuoka Airport. As many as four T-4s are on strength, so hardly worth a visit by itself, however the military part also hosts a Heli Airlift Squadron with some CH-47Js.
Photo: Tsuiki 13 November 2008, Remco Broersma
Besides dedicated rescue helicopters and aircraft the Koku Kyunandan also operates sixteen CH-47J Chinook helicopters. The helos are co-based with the four Air Defence Headquarters Support units at Misawa, Iruma, Kasuga and Naha and provide the JASDF with a VTOL transport capability.
Photo: Naha 21 October 2012, Reinier Schreurs
Gifu (RJNG)
Rwy: 10/28
Pos: 35°23'39"N 136°52'08"E
Elev: 128 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kaihatsu Jikken Shudan
Air Development and Test Command


Hiko Kaihatsu Jikken Dan C-1/C-1FTB
(X)C-2
F-2A/B
F-4EJ/EJ Kai
F-15J/DJ
T-4
T-7
Overhaul facilities
Kawasaki Heavy Industries

Kawasaki Gifu Overhaul on:
C-1
C-130H
E-2C
CH-47J
T-4

C-1FTB Hiko Kaihatsu Jikken Dan
Photo: Gifu, 9 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
F-4EJ Kai Hiko Kaihatsu Jikken Dan
Photo: Gifu, 9 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Hamamatsu (RJNH)
Rwy: 09/27
Pos: 34°44'58"N 137°42'10"E
Elev: 150 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
1 Kokudan

31 Kyoiku Hikotai T-4


32 Kyoiku Hikotai T-4
Hiko Kyoiku Kokutai
Air Training Group


1 Jyutsuka Gakko
1st Technical School
Temporary instructional aircraft:
F-2A/B
F-15J
T-4
T-7
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Keikai Kokutai
Airborne Early Warning Wing


602 Hikotai E-767
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Hamamatsu Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
Hiko Keikai Kanseita (Air Warning Control Squadron) was renamed 602 Hikotai on 20 April 2014.


A pair of 1 Kokudan T-4s landing at homebase Hamamatsu. These examples are on strength of 31 Kyoiku Hikotai, as indicated by the blue line under the black/yellow checkers.
Photo: Hamamatsu 20 November 2008, Marcel J. van Bielder
Hofu (RJOF)
Rwy: 01/19, 12/30
Pos: 34°02'04"N 131°32'47"E
Elev: 7 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
12 Hiko Kyoikudan
12 Flying Training Wing


1 Hikotai T-7


2 Hikotai T-7
12 Hiko Kyoikudan has two Hikotai, however no distinctive markings.

T-7 12 Hiko Kyoikudan
Photo: Hofu, 13 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Hyakuri (RJAH)
Ibaraki Airport
Rwy: 03L/21R, 03R/21L
Pos: 36°10'54"N 140°24'53"E
Elev: 107 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Chubu Koku Homentai
Central Air Defence Force

7 Kokudan


301 Hikotai F-4EJ Kai
T-4


302 Hikotai F-4EJ Kai
T-4
Teisatsu Kokutai
Air Recce. Group


501 Hikotai RF-4E Kai
RF-4EJ Kai
T-4
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Hyakuri Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
301 Hikotai will move to Misawa in FY2020 to become the 2nd F-35A unit.
302 Hikotai is terminating F-4EJ operations and in FY2019 will take over F-35A operations of the Rinji F-35A Hikotai at Misawa.
501 Hikotai is to become a fighter Hikotai in FY2020.

An F-4EJ Kai Phantom of 301 Hikotai starting up for its return flight to home base Nyutabaru after attending the air show at Naha.
Photo: Naha 21 October 2012, Reinier Schreurs
All front-line Phantom units now operate from Hyakuri, making it the place to be for Spook lovers. The bird badge of 302 is a very stylised representation of the Hikotai number, head and body being the '3', the white tail '0' and the blue wings the '2'.
Photo: Hyakuri November 2008, Marcel J. van Bielder
Fourteen RF-4Es were delivered in 1975 and 1976. Two have been lost in accidents since. In addition to the remaining RF-4Es seventeen surplus F-4EJs have been converted for the reconnaissance role. These aircraft lack the typical recce nose but can carry three different pods for a variety of recce tasks. RF-4E 57-6906 on this picture was last seen active November 2007 and then disappeared from view. It resurfaced August 2010 as a gate guard at Hyakuri in full 501 Hikotai markings including sharkmouth.
Photo: Hyakuri, Marcel J. van Bielder
Iruma (RJTJ)
Rwy: 17/36
Pos: 35°50'30"N 139°24'36"E
Elev: 299 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Shien Shudan
Air Support Command
2 Yuso Kokutai

402 Hikotai C-1
U-4
Tokubetsu Koku Yusodai
Special Airlift Group


Hiko Tenkentai
Flight Check Squadron
YS-11FC
U-125
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Chubu Koku Homentai
Central Air Defence Force


Shireibu Hikotai
Headquarter Squadron
T-4
U-4
Koku Senjyutsu Kyododan
Tactical Air Training Command

Denshi Sakusengun
Electric Warfare Operation Group


Denshisen Shientai
EC-1
YS-11EA


Denshi Hiko Sokuteitai
YS-11EB
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Iruma Herikoputa Kuuyutai CH-47J
Koku Sotai Shireibu Hikotai and the sub-ordinate units was split up 1 August 2014 as follows:
Shien Hikotai was re-named Shireibu Hikotai under C-ADF.


Denshisen Shientai and Denshi Hiko Sokuteitai were grouped under Denshi Sakusengun. This group came under newly formed command Koku Senjyutsu Kyododan.
Koku Senjyutsu Kyododan = Tactical Air Training Command

Thirtyone locally developed Kawasaki C-1s were delivered to the JASDF between 1971 and 1981. Once serving three squadrons being 401 Hikotai at Komaki, 402 Hikotai at Iruma and 403 Hikotai at Miho, the type is now only in use with the latter two after 401 Hikotai converted to the C-130H of which sixteen are in use now.
Photo: Nyutabaru, Marcel J. van Bielder
YS-11 Hiko Tenkentai
Photo: Atsugi, 19 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Kanazawa/Komatsu (RJNK)
Rwy: 06/24
Pos: 36°23'38"N 136°24'27"E
Elev: 22ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Chubu Koku Homentai
Central Air Defence Force

6 Kokudan


303 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4


306 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
Koku Senjyutsu Kyododan
Tactical Air Training Command


Hiko Kyodogun
Aggressor Group
F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Komatsu Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
Hiko Kyodogun moved-in from Nyutabaru 10 June 2016.

F-15J 303 Hikotai
Photo: Komatsu, 16 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
F-15J 306 Hikotai
Photo: Komatsu, 1 November 2009, Dietmar Fenners
T-4 306 Hikotai
Photo: Komatsu, 16 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
The aggressors moved from Nyutabaru to Komatsu on 6 June 2016. Normally five or six Eagles are seen active, the remainder on some sort of maintenance.
Photo: Nyutabaru, Marcel J. van Bielder
Luke AFB (AZ) (KLUF)
Rwy: 03L/21R, 03R/21L
Pos: 33°32'06"N 112°22'59"W
Elev: 1090 ft
Wing Aircraft Type(s) Badge
944th FW
944th OG

Det.2 F-35A

The first four F-35As, all produced in the USA at Ft.Worth are operating from Luke AFB (AZ) to train Japanese pilots and groundcrew.
Photo: Luke AFB (AZ), 7 March 2017, Frits Jongerman
Matsushima (RJST)
Rwy: 07/25, 15/33
Pos: 38°24'19"N 141°13'07"E
Elev: 7 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
4 Kokudan

11 Hikotai (Blue Impulse) T-4


21 Hikotai F-2B
T-4
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Matsushima Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
21 Hikotai returned to Matsushima 11 March 2016.

Miho (RJOH)
Rwy: 07/25
Pos: 35°29'32"N 133°14'11"E
Elev: 20 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Shien Shudan
Air Support Command
3 Yuso Kokutai

403 Hikotai C-1
(C-2 opb 403 Flight Team)
YS-11P (wfu)
YS-11NT (wfu)


41 Kyoiku Hikotai T-400
In the very near future all remaining C-1s will be tranferred to 402 Hikotai and C-2 operations of 403 Flight Team will be taken over by 403 Hikotai.
41 Kyoiku Hikotai will move to Hamamatsu in FY2020 when the KC-46A unit will be established at Miho.

Thirteen NAMC YS11s were operated in a wide variety of roles. The YS-11EA, of which two are in use, is in service as an ECM/EW trainer, four YS11ELs have ELINT tasks, three YS11FCs serve as flight checkers, one YS11NT was a navigation trainer while the remainder were still configured for transport duties. These last four were operated by 403 Hikotai and have been all withdrawn including 02-1158.
Photo: Naha, 13 December 2015, Reinier Schreurs
T-400 41 Kyoiku Hikotai
Photo: Miho, 15 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Misawa (RJSM)
NAF
Rwy: 10/28
Pos: 40°42'11"N 141°22'06"E
Elev: 119 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Hokubu Koku Homentai
Northern Air Defence Force


Hokubu Shien Hikohan
Northern HQ Support Flight
T-4
Hokubu Koku Homentai
Northern Air Defence Force

3 Kokudan


3 Hikotai F-2A
F-2B
T-4


Rinji F-35A Hikotai F-35A
T-4
Keikai Kokutai
Airborne Early Warning Wing

Hiko Keikai Kanshigun
Air Warning Surveillance Group


601 Hikotai E-2C
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Misawa Herikoputa Kuuyutai CH-47J
3 Hikotai is schedules to move to Hyakuri FY2019.
At the moment one F-35A is assigned to Rinji F-35A Hikotai. When sufficient aircraft are available, F-4EJ operations will be terminated at Hyakuri and the unit will be renamed 302 Hikotai.
On 20 april 2014, Hiko Keikai Kanshitai (Air Warning Surveillance Squadron)
was upgraded to group status, thus becoming Hiko Keikai Kanshigun with two sub-ordinate units. The Misawa element is (again) named 601 Hikotai, the Naha detachment named 603 Hikotai.

F-2B 3 Hikotai
Photo: Misawa, 6 April 2009, Hans Rolink
T-4 Hokubu Shien Hikohan
Photo: Misawa, 6 April 2009, Menno Teunisse
From 1983 till 1998 the E-2C Hawkeye was the sole AEW platform in the JASDF. Thirteen aircraft were ordered between 1983 and 1994 initially serving the 601 Hikotai at Misawa before the unit was redesignated into the Hiko Keikai Kanshitai on 31 March 2005. The type has been augmented by four E-767s which entered service in 1998 and 1999 and are based at Hamamatsu. Another unit re-designation occured on 20 April 2014 when the Misawa unit was upgraded to group status with two sub-ordinate units, 601 Hikotai at Misawa and 603 Hikotai at Naha.
Photo: Marcel J. van Bielder
Nagoya (RJNA)
Komaki AB
Rwy: 16/34
Pos: 35°15'18"N 136°55'28"E
Elev: 46 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Shien Shudan
Air Support Command
1 Yuso Kokutai

401 Hikotai C-130H


404 Hikotai KC-767
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Kyunan Kyoikutai
Rescue Training Squadron
UH-60J
U-125A
Overhaul facilities
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries

Mitsubishi Komaki Overhaul on:
F-2A/B
F-4EJ
RF-4E/EJ
F-15J/DJ
UH-60J

C-130H 401 Hikotai
Photo: Atsugi, 8 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Naha (ROAH)
Rwy: 18/36
Pos: 26°11'45"N 127°38'45"E
Elev: 12 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Nansei Koku Homentai
South West Air Defence Force


Nansei Shien Hikohan
SW HQ Support Flight
T-4
Nansei Koku Homentai
South West Air Defence Force

9 Kokudan


204 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4


304 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
Keikai Kokutai
Airborne Early Warning Wing

Hiko Keikai Kanshigun
Air Warning Surveillance Group


603 Hikotai E-2C
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Naha Herikoputa Kuuyutai CH-47J


Naha Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
9 Kokudan badges are toned down.
603 Hikotai is the former E-2C detachment, established 20 April 2014.
The Nansei Koku Konseidan was upgraded to Homentai level 1 July 2017. The HQ flight could also be sub-ordinate to 9 Kokudan.
9 Kokudan is the former 83 Kokutai, it was upgraded December 2015.

The South West Air Defence Force has its own HQ Support Flight. One of its T-4s is seen here starting up the engines with the flight-crew keeping the hands in the air to ensure the safety of the ground-crew. Note this T-4 is now flying with 204 Hikotai.
Photo: Naha 23 January 2011,
Reinier Schreurs
Naha offers a great mix of civil and military traffic. A 204 Hikotai dual F-15DJ taxies in after performing a demo between civil operations. Normal complement for a Hikotai is two or three duals, exceptions being the Eagle units at Nyutabaru.
Photo: Naha,
23 January 2011,
Reinier Schreurs
A pair of 204 Hikotai T-4s departing Naha to begin their demo.
Photo: Naha 13 December 2015,
Reinier Schreurs
This 304 Hikotai Eagle is captured at the quay of its former base Tsuiki. The unit moved to Naha in January 2016 and joined 9 Kokudan. All three unit-badges of the Wing's units are toned-down, and therefore hard to recognise from a distance.
Photo: Tsuiki 29 October 2009, Tony Roper
603 Hikotai officially has its own squadron badge, however as the aircraft are rotated frequently with the Misawa unit, only the Group badge is carried.
Photo: Naha,
Roy Colbers
The Naha SAR unit operates a couple of UH-60Js able to be fitted with a refuelling boom.
Photo: Naha, 14 December 2014,
Reinier Schreurs
Niigata (RJSN)
Rwy: 04/22, 10/28
Pos: 37°57'20"N 139°06'42"E
Elev: 29 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Niigata Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A

Nyutabaru (RJFN)
Rwy: 10/28
Pos: 32°05'01"N 131°27'06"E
Elev: 259 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Seibu Koku Homentai
Western Air Defence Force

5 Kokudan


305 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
Koku Kyunandan
Air Rescue Wing


Nyutabaru Kyunantai UH-60J
U-125A
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
Hiko Kyoiku Kokutai
Air Training Group


23 Hikotai F-15J
F-15DJ
T-4
305 Hikotai moved to Nyutabaru 31 August 2016.

Beside the obvious exceptions, being the training units, normally a hikotai has three T-4s for liaison duties. Notable exceptions are 301 and 302 Hikotai, equiped with the F-4EJ Phantom with upto eight T-4s on strength.
Photo: Hyakuri, Marcel J. van Bielder
Tsuiki (RJFZ)
Rwy: 07/25
Pos: 33°41'06"N 131°02'25"E
Elev: 55 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Sotai
Air Defence Command
Seibu Koku Homentai
Western Air Defence Force

8 Kokudan


6 Hikotai F-2A
F-2B
T-4


8 Hikotai F-2A
F-2B
T-4
8 Hikotai moved to Tsuiki at the end of July 2016.

Probably the most famous photo spot at Tsuiki, the quay, where this 6 Hikotai F-2A was captured. 6 Hikotai was the second frontline unit to transition to the F-2, unfortunately withdrawing the Mitsubishi F-1/T-2. In adverse weather conditions, getting the serials of the F-2 can be quite challenging.
Photo: Tsuiki 29 October 2009, Tony Roper
8 Hikotai took up residence at Tsuiki during July/August 2016 after almost fourty years Misawa as home-base.
Photo: Misawa, 6 April 2009, Menno Teunisse
Utsunomiya (RJTU)
Rwy: 01/19
Pos: 36°30'52"N 139°52'15"E
Elev: 334 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Overhaul facilities
Fuji Heavy Industries

Fuji Utsunomiya Overhaul on:
T-7
U-125
U-125A

U-125 Hiko Tenkentai
Photo: Kanoya, 11 April 2010, Menno Teunisse
Yaizu/Shizuhama (RJNY)
Rwy: 09/27
Pos: 34°48'46"N 138°17'53"E
Elev: 23 ft
Squadron Aircraft Type(s) Badge
Koku Kyoiku Shudan
Air Training Command
11 Hiko Kyoikudan
11 Flying Training Wing


1 Hikotai T-7


2 Hikotai T-7
11 Hiko Kyoikudan has two Hikotai however no distinctive markings. The aircraft have either red or blue tail stripes, indicating which of the two maintenance squads is responsible for a particular aircraft.

11 Hiko Kyoikudan or Flying Training Wing was the last unit to fly with the T-3, the predecessor of the T-7,in the training role. Some T-3s kept on flying at Gifu till April 2007. With the T-3, half of the Wings aircraft had yellow propellor spinners, the other half red. This changed with the T-7, they have either red or blue stripes on the tail.
Photo: Shizuhama 20 November 2008, Joost de Bruin
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