Military Wiki
RAAF Base Edinburgh
Airport type Military
Operator RAAF
Location Edinburgh, a suburb of Adelaide, South Australia
Elevation AMSL 67 ft / 20 m
Coordinates 34°42′09″S 138°37′15″E / 34.7025°S 138.62083°E / -34.7025; 138.62083Coordinates: 34°42′09″S 138°37′15″E / 34.7025°S 138.62083°E / -34.7025; 138.62083

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Direction Length Surface
m ft
04/22 1,962 6,437 Grass
18/36 2,560 8,399 Asphalt
Sources: Australian AIP and aerodrome chart[1]

Royal Australian Air Force Base Edinburgh (ICAO: YPED) is located in Edinburgh, 25 km (16 mi) north of the centre of Adelaide, South Australia.

It is primarily home to No 92 Wing and their Lockheed AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft that conduct surveillance operations throughout Australia's airspace. However, after an extensive building program over the course of 2010-2011, it has also become the home of 7th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment and some smaller units. This has pushed the daily working population of RAAF Base Edinburgh beyond 4,500 from 6am-6pm.

Aerospace Operational Support Group (AOSG) conducts research and development on aircraft and weapons through the flight test squadron, ARDU, and conducts a wide range of defence systems test and evaluation activities at the Woomera Test Range (WTR), controlled through Headquarters Woomera Test Range (HQWTR), a wing-level agency unit within AOSG.

RAAF Base Edinburgh is also home to No. 87 Squadron, Air Force Intelligence.


RAAF Edinburgh was constructed in 1955 as a support base for weapons development at the joint UK-Australian Weapons Research Establishment (WRE) at Woomera. This support had previously been temporarily based at Mallala.[2] The base was located alongside the wartime Salisbury Explosives factory,[3] in open fields between the then country villages of Salisbury (to the south) and Smithfield (to the north). At about the same time, the satellite town of Elizabeth was being established (to the east).

Support for WRE testing activities had greatly reduced by the late 1960s. Edinburgh's major role changed in 1977 when No. 10 Reconnaissance Squadron was relocated to South Australia from RAAF Base Townsville, which had been the centre of Australia's maritime reconnaissance operations since the Second World War. RAAF Base Edinburgh has since been home to the RAAF's Maritime Patrol Group, as well as No 1 Recruit Training Unit, the Institute of Aviation Medicine (AVMED) and the Aircraft Research and Development Unit (ARDU).[4]

Originally, RAAF Edinburgh and the DSTO were located in Salisbury, (subsequently the suburb of Salisbury - Postcode 5108), in the City of Salisbury. In 1997, the Department of Defence decided to rationalise the then "DSTO Salisbury" site and sell off about 70% of the site, and surrounding "Defence-owned" Crown land, to form the "Edinburgh Parks" industrial estate. The suburb of Salisbury was split in two, with the part containing the RAAF Base and DSTO renamed "Edinburgh" (after the RAAF Base). The new suburb was assigned the Postcode 5111.

RAAF Units

Surveillance and Response Group
No 92 Wing - maritime operations
10SQN No. 10 Squadron - Orion maritime patrol aircraft
11SQN No. 11 Squadron - Orion maritime patrol aircraft
292SQN No. 292 Squadron - Air and Ground crew training
1RSU No. 1 Radar Surveillance Unit
44WG DET EDN No. 44 Wing Detachment Edinburgh - Air Traffic Control
Aerospace Operational Support Group
Information Warfare Wing (TU 646.7.1)
JEWOSU Joint Electronic Warfare Operational Support Unit
RAAF AIS RAAF Aeronautical Information Service
87SQN No. 87 Squadron - Air Intelligence
462SQN No. 462 Squadron - information security
Air Systems Development and Test Wing (TU 646.7.2)
AFTS Aircraft Research and Development Unit (ARDU) Flight Test Squadron (AFTS)
ASES ARDU Systems Engineering Squadron (ASES)
ASCEA Aircraft/Stores Compatibility Engineering Agency (ASCEA)
AVMED Institute of Aviation Medicine (AVMED)
Woomera Test Range (TU 646.7.3)
HQWTR Headquarters Woomera Test Range (HQWTR)
WTROPS WTR Range Operations Branch
WRA RAAF Woomera Airfield
WPA Woomera Prohibited Area
WTRENG WTR Range Engineering Branch
Combat Support Group
1AFDS No. 1 Airfield Defence Squadron - Airfield Defence Guards
24SQN No. 24 Squadron - RAAF Edinburgh Combat Support

The main aircraft type operating from Edinburgh is the AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft. However, the base has recently (2006–2011) undergone a massive upgrade to accommodate 7RAR and supporting army units.

Aircraft Research and Development Unit (ARDU)

The Aircraft Research and Development Unit, first established in 1944, is now a squadron of AOSG's Development and Test Wing (DTWG). Based at RAAF Edinburgh, ARDU provides specialist Australian Defence Force aerospace testing and evaluation of new weapons and aircraft into the RAAF and ADF arsenal.

Aircraft based at ARDU[citation needed]
permanently temporarily
Pilatus PC-9 Eurocopter Tiger
Boeing F/A-18 Hornet
Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk MRH-90
Beechcraft Super King Air

Woomera Test Range (WTR)

The WTR is the Western world's largest defence systems test range and is an Australian icon. The range covers 127,000 km2 (49,000 sq mi) (roughly the size of England or the US State of Florida). It is controlled by HQWTR located at RAAF Edinburgh, but is supported directly from Woomera Village. The range is approximately 460 km (290 mi) north-west of Adelaide.

7th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment

See also

See also

  • List of airports in South Australia


  1. YPED – Edinburgh (PDF). AIP En Route Supplement from Airservices Australia, effective 29 May 2014, Aeronautical Chart
  2. Mallala, RAAF Museum
  3. The wartime Salisbury Explosives factory became the Long Range Weapons Establishment, subsequently the Weapons Research Establishment (WRE), the Defence Research Centre, Salisbury (DRCS), and now, the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO)
  4. Edinburgh, RAAF Museum

External links

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