April 2015: RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornets return home after Iraq combat missions

12 April 2015 © David Eyre

Six Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornets of 1 Squadron, Royal Australian Air Force have returned home to their base at RAAF Amberley in Queensland after a successful deployment to conduct air strikes again Islamic State / Daesh militants in Iraq.

The aircraft had been deployed to Al Minhad Air Base in the UAE since September 2014, as part of US led Coalition air operations, under the name Operation Okra.

A Department of Defence media release stated that the Super Hornets flew over 2900 hours, accounting for more than 400 sorties.

Other RAAF aircraft deployed as part of the RAAF Air Task Group were a Boeing E-7A Wedgetail of 2 Squadron from RAAF Base Williamtown and some Airbus KC-30A (A330-203MRTT) tankers of 33 Squadron from RAAF Base Amberley.

The two-seat F/A-18F Super Hornets returned to Australia after being replaced on the deployment by single-seat F/A-18A ‘classic’ Hornets from 75 Squadron. As part of the handover of operations, the Super Hornet crews briefed the classic Hornet crews, and the Super Hornets flew missions together with Classics for a period of two weeks.

Australia has approximately 600 Australian Defence Force personnel deployed to the Middle East to support the international coalition against IS militants, which control areas of Iraq and Syria.

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A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-205 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-5, ex 167961) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-205 has 22 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-209 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-9, ex 167965) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-209 has 20 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose. Photo © David Eyre
A44-212 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-12, ex 167968) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-212 has 32 combat mission markings painted on its nose.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © Matt Hannigan
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce - Wed 1 April 2015. One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft. Photo © David Eyre
A44-224 Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet (MSN AF-24, ex 167980) of 1 Squadron, RAAF at RAAF Base Pearce – Wed 1 April 2015.
One of six Super Hornets returning home to RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland after completing seven months of air-strike operations against Islamic State militants in Iraq since September 2014. A44-224 has 19 combat mission markings painted on its nose, and it is also one of 12 Super Hornets wired for potential conversion to EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.
Photo © David Eyre

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