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Indonesian Air Force

Indonesian Air Force
Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara
Indonesian Air Force insignia
Founded 1946
Country  Indonesia
Type Air Force
Role Defence and dominance of Indonesia's airspace and its territory
Size 37,850 personnel
510 aircraft including 110 combat aircraft
Motto Swa Bhuwana Paksa
(Sanskrit, "Wings of the Motherland")
Anniversaries 9 April 1946 (founded)
Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Ida Bagus Putu Dunia[1]
Roundel 1946-1949
Aircraft flown
Attack Su-30, Hawk Mk. 209, EMB 314 Super Tucano
Interceptor Su-27, F-16 Block 32+, F-5
Patrol 737-2X9 Surveiller, CN235MPA, NC-295 AEW
Trainer KT-1, Hawk Mk.53/Mk.109, T-34, TA-4H/J, AS/SA-202, SF.260
Transport C-130, CN-235, F-28, NC-295, NC-212, 737-2Q8

The Indonesian Air Force (Indonesian: Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara, TNI–AU) is the air force branch of the Indonesian National Armed Forces.

The Indonesian Air Force has 34,930 personnel, equipped with 110 combat aircraft. The inventory includes Su-27 and Su-30 as the main fighters supplemented by F-16 Fighting Falcons.[2]


  • History 1
    • Before Indonesian independence (1941–1945) 1.1
    • Indonesian War of Independence / Netherlands 'Police Action' (1945–1949) 1.2
    • Action against rebellions (1950–1961) 1.3
    • Soviet influence (1962–1965) 1.4
    • September 30 movement and the overthrow of Sukarno (1966–1970) 1.5
    • Rebirth (1970–1980) 1.6
    • Influence of Western products (1980–1998) 1.7
    • Embargoes 1998–2006 1.8
    • Minimum Essential Force (MEF) 2010–present 1.9
  • Force structure 2
  • Aircraft inventory 3
  • Commanders 4
  • Notable incidents 5
  • Radars and missiles 6
  • Unmanned aerial vehicle 7
  • References 8
  • Bibliography 9
  • Further reading 10
  • External links 11


Before Indonesian independence (1941–1945)

After World War II ended, Indonesia became the second country (after Thailand) in South East Asia to acquire an air force. Indonesian pilots fought against the colonial forces of the Netherlands during 1945–1949 with former Japanese aircraft abandoned at the end of World War II, as well as aircraft of the Netherlands East Indies Air Force (including Curtiss P-36 Hawk (P-36 Mohawk), Brewster F2A Buffalo and Fokker D.XXI fighters; Martin B-10 bombers; Fokker C.X reconnaissance floatplanes) left before the Japanese occupation in 1941.

Indonesian War of Independence / Netherlands 'Police Action' (1945–1949)

Captured Nakajima Ki-43 Oscar used by the Indonesians in the War of Independence. Note the early roundel version.

After the Japanese announced their surrender at the end of WWII, Indonesian nationalist leader Sukarno declared Indonesian Independence on August 17, 1945. Several days later, Indonesian People's Security Force (Badan Keamanan Rakyat) was formed to undertake security duties. The Air Division of this force was also formed, using ex-Japanese planes scattered everywhere, especially in the island of Java, including Bugis Air Base in Malang (Established on 18 September 1945). The most numerous of these airplanes were the Yokosuka K5Y1 Willow (Cureng) trainers, which were hastily used to train newly recruited cadets. At the time of the founding, there was only one Indonesian holding a multi-engine pilot license from the pre-war Dutch Flying School, Agustinus Adisucipto (but did not have an opportunity to fly during the 3.5-year Japanese occupation). He was assisted by a few Japanese pilots who decided to stay in the newly born country. The new roundel was created simply by painting white on the lower part of the Japanese Hinomaru, reflecting the red and white of the Indonesian flag. The People's Security Force was then re-organized to form a formal armed force. This marked the birth of the Indonesian Air Force on April 9, 1946. However, tensions rose as the Dutch tried to re-claim their former colony and launched an assault on July 21, 1947, destroying most of the planes on the ground. Some planes survived though and were hidden in remote bases.

July 29, 1947 was date of the first air operation by the newborn air force as three surviving aircraft, comprising two Yokosuka K5Y1 Willow(Cureng) and a Mitsubishi Ki-51 Sonia (the fourth aircraft, a Nakajima Ki-43 Oscar (Hayabusa), should also have been involved in the raid, but as of when it was launched, the aircraft was not airworthy) conducted air raids at dawn on the Dutch Army barracks in Semarang, Salatiga and Ambarawa, dropping incendiary bombs. Tactically, these raids did not have any effect on the Dutch positions, but psychologically, it was a great success as it proved that the Indonesian Air Force still existed. The Dutch had previously claimed the destruction of Indonesian Air Force in their assault before and they never expected any attack from the sky. Dutch Curtiss P-40E Warhawks tried to find all the guerrillas' planes, but they were too late to find those "ghost" aircraft which landed quickly in Maguwo Air Base, near Yogyakarta (now, Adisucipto International Airport). Indonesian pro-independence guerrillas tried to save captured aircraft in a number of remote areas, including examples of the Mitsubishi A6M Zero-Sen "Zeke", Aichi D3A "Val", and Mitsubishi G4M "Betty".

Under pressure from the United Nations, the Dutch finally agreed to acknowledge Indonesian independence. Following the 1949 Round Table Conference, sovereignty was officially transferred to the United States of Indonesia. The Dutch armed forces left (but remained in West Papua until 1963) and the airplanes were handed over to the Indonesians. These comprised, among others, North American P-51 Mustang, North American B-25 Mitchell, North American T-6 Texan, Douglas A-26 Invader, Douglas C-47 Dakota and Consolidated PBY-5A Catalina, which served as the main forces of the Indonesian Air Force for the following decade. During this era, Indonesia received its first jet aircraft; De Havilland DH-115 Vampire. It was also during this era that the national roundels were changed to the red and white pentagon.

de Havilland Vampire of the Indonesian Air Force

Action against rebellions (1950–1961)

B-25 Mitchell bombers of the AURI in the 1950s

Political instability meant that the Indonesian Air Force saw action against several regional rebellions in Indonesia such as PRRI, Permesta, Darul Islam-Tentara Islam Indonesia (DI/TII) and the Republic of South Maluku separatists.

Several Indonesian pilots scored their first kills, including Captain Ignatius Dewanto with his North American P-51 Mustang, who in 1958 shot down a Permesta Douglas B-26 Invader over Ambon. Its pilot, Allen Pope, an American CIA agent, was captured and tried in Jakarta, thus revealing the significant involvement of the CIA's "Operation Haik" in the rebellion.

The most famous Indonesian fighter pilot in this era was Rusmin Nurjadin, who became Chief of the Air Staff from 1966–69. Nurjadin commanded MiG-21 squadrons in 1962–65 and founded an acrobatic team in 1962 that flew the MiG-17F/PF Fresco over some cities in Indonesia. Small numbers of Indonesian Air Force pilots gained their reputation as aces in this era.

Soviet influence (1962–1965)

Indonesian Air Force MiG-21 in the Air Force Museum
Indonesian Air Force B-25 Mitchell at the Jakarta Armed Forces Museum

The rise of the communist party in Indonesia (Communist Party of Indonesia) drew Indonesia closer to the Eastern Block. Several Soviet-built aircraft began to arrive in the early 1960s. In 1961, Indonesia became the second country to receive and operate the new Tu-16 bombers. Around 25 Tu-16KS missile strike Badgers were delivered complete with AS-1 air-surface missiles. One crashed at the end of 1962.[3][4] Several kinds of MiG also arrived comprising MiG-15UTI from Czechoslovakia, MiG-17F/PF, MiG-19S and MiG-21F-13, in addition to Ilyushin Il-28, Mil Mi-4, Mil Mi-6, Antonov An-12 and Avia 14 also from Czechoslovakia. Indonesia also received Lavochkin La-11. Some Tupolev Tu-2 from China also arrived, intended to replace the B-25, but they never reached operational status. These aircraft served along with the remaining western aircraft such as North American B-25 Mitchell, Douglas A-26 Invader, Douglas C-47 Dakota, and North American P-51 Mustang. It was during this period that the Indonesian Air Force became the first Air Force in Southeast Asia which acquired the capability of strategic bombing by having Tupolev Tu-16, before the acquisition of Ilyushin Il-28 by Vietnam People's Air Force.

This era also marked the last confrontation with the Dutch in Papua, before the Dutch, again under pressure of the United Nations, left in 1963. The Indonesian Air Force at this time acquired many first examples of Soviet aircraft. Several missions of United States Air Force (USAF) Taiwan-based Lockheed U-2s from 35th Squadron (Black Cat Squadron in Taiwan) flew over Maluku (Mollucas) and reported to Dutch military that there was a big possibility that Dutch would lose their air superiority over Papua if they continued the war.[5] During the Operation Trikora against Netherlands' position over Papua, the air force stationed their units in :

Indonesian Air Force P-51

1. North American P-51 Mustang, with seven P-51D based at Laha airbase, Ambon. One aircraft piloted bt Second Air Lieutenant Prasetyo lost due to engine failure during the ferry flight from Makassar to Ambon. The pilot, Second Air Lieutenant Prasetyo, died after bailing out from the aircraft and landed in a high-tide seas and couldn't be rescued by the Air Forces' PBY-5 Catalina due to the extreme weather after Prasetyo's accident [6]

2. 40 MiG-17F/PF aircraft on three airfields; Morotai (in northern Maluku), Amahai (in Seram) and Letfuan (in Banda islands, located in the southwest of Papua). The aircraft have long been stationed in Morotai before Operation Trikora for their air skirmish against PRRI-PERMESTA and the Republic of South Maluku separatists. The primary role of these aircraft were to provide air cover for the airlift and logistic dropper aircraft during the early infiltration to Papua.[7] If the war broke out, these MiG-17F/PF will provide the air cover for the anti-shipping missiles mission of Tu-16 and bombing mission of Ilyushin Il-28,[8] also for intercepting Netherlands' Hawker Hunters based in Numfor, Biak.[9]

3. Four North American B-25 Mitchells and two Douglas A-26 Invaders at Letfuan airbase. Their primary role during the Operation were for transport and providing air cover for the airlift, mostly when P-51 Mustang and MiG-17F/PF had not been in the air yet.[7] Dutch Lockheed PV-2 Neptunes were known as the strongest rival for these Letfuan-based units.[10]

4. Eighteen Ilyushin Il-28s stationed first at Laha airbase, but then moved to Amahai airbase, due to the shortness of runway at Laha for the landing of the aircraft.[11]

5. Twenty-six Tupolev Tu-16s were stationed in Iswahyudi airbase near Ngawi, Jawa Timur in 41st and 42nd Squadron. Six aircraft were scrambled to Morotai airbase for the operation. USAF intelligence reconnaissance unit based at Taiwan, Lockheed U-2, flew over Iswahyudi airbase. The U-2 mission provides the evidence to the Netherlands to prove that Indonesian Air Force have had the capability of strategic bombing, which will threaten the Dutch forces in Papua.[12] These units' plan for the Operation, were to endanger the Dutch naval fleet in Papua, mostly to threaten HNLMS Karel Doorman (R81), the only aircraft carrier of the Dutch naval fleet with the brand new AS-1 missile.

6. Twenty-four Douglas C-47 Dakota s stationed at three airfields; Laha, Amahai and Letfuan. One aircraft piloted by Air Captain Djalaludin Tantu and co-pilot Second Air Lieutenant Sukandar, was downed by a Dutch Neptune.[7] All crews bailed out safely from the aircraft, but soon captured by the Dutch forces after hiding in Papua[10]

7. Ten Lockheed C-130 Hercules s stationed at Halim Perdanakusumah airbase at Jakarta. Despite the warning from United States to not use the aircraft for the operation, it soon scrambled over the Papua for the airlift mission, due to the critical problem of losing more C-47 Dakotas, it was used extensively for the Operation and were intercepted by Hawker Hunters and Lockheed P-2 Neptunes. Hercules had the advantage of not being overwhelmed by any Dutch aircraft due to its high altitude flying capability up to 33,000 feet.[7]

8. Six Douglas DC-3s and one Convair 240, under Wing Garuda 011. The aircraft were modified from civilian use to airlift operation, mostly to the cabin.[11]

9. Six anti-submarine Fairey Gannet AS.4s and several PBY-5 Catalinas and two Grumman HU-16 Albatross (UF-1 variant). These aircraft belonged to the Indonesian Naval Air Force, but supporting the air forces for the Operation. Aircraft were stationed in Liang airbase at Seram, then moved to Morotai airbase. One Gannet AS.4 was lost due to an accident when it crashed into a mountain in Seram island, killing three crew members.[11]

There are also several Bell 47s, Bell Jet Rangers, Mil Mi-4 and Mil Mi-6 helicopters which were planned to be used for the operation, but were still unprepared during the early phase of infiltration of the operation.[11] Indonesian MiG pilots received training to fly their fighter aircraft in Egypt before the infiltration campaign.[13] During the infiltration of the airlift campaign, the air forces' special forces, Pasukan Gerak Tjepat (PGT) (now known as Paskhas) landed in Klamono-Sorong, Papua.[14]

In this period, Indonesian Air Force also took part in the confrontation with the Malaysian Federation (backed by the United Kingdom) along the border of Kalimantan, the Malacca Strait and near the Singapore Border.

September 30 movement and the overthrow of Sukarno (1966–1970)

The coup attempt led by the 30 September Movement in 1965 changed everything and a new anti-communist regime from the Army, led by Major General Suharto, took power. The Air Force Chief Commander, Air Marshall Omar Dani was removed from his position and court-martialed for presumably tied with the coup-de-etat movement. Ties with the Eastern block countries were cut, and thus support and spare parts for the planes became short. By August 1968 the situation was critical, and in early 1970, the Air Force Chief-of-Staff, Suwoto Sukandar, said that the spare parts situation meant that only 15 -20 percent of aircraft were airworthy.[15] The MiG force made its farewell flight with a flypast of Jakarta in 1970. The relatively new MiG-19s were sold to Pakistan. By October 1970, only one Tu-16 was still flying, but after an in-flight engine failure, it too was grounded.[16]

Rebirth (1970–1980)

An Australian-built CAC Sabre, as used by the Indonesian Air Force.

Indonesia recovered soon by receiving former Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) CAC Sabres — an Australian re-design of the F-86 Sabre — to replace their MiG-21s. The Sabre was used by the TNI-AU until 1982. In 1973, the United States supplied military assistance including T33s trainers and UH-34D helicopters in exchange for four old MiG-21 F-13s. Over the next three years, the US supplied 16 Rockwell OV-10 Broncos counter-insurgency aircraft and F-5E/F Tiger II fighters, in exchange for which the Indonesian Air Force handed over the majority of its remaining MiG-21 F-13s, which were used to form a US Air Force Aggressor squadron.[17] The Indonesian Air Force also took part in the 1975 Indonesian invasion of East Timor. Indonesia also purchased BAE Hawk Mk 53s from United Kingdom in the 1970s.

Influence of Western products (1980–1998)

A-4E Skyhawk of the Indonesian Air Force

In the early 1980s, the Air Force, needing modern strike aircraft, organized Operation Alpha to clandestinely acquire ex-Israeli Air Force A-4 Skyhawks. Air Force personnel were sent in secret by different routes and eventually Indonesia received 32 aircraft.[18]

In 1982, Indonesia purchased 16 Northrop F-5E/F Tiger II from the United States to replace their Sabres. These were upgraded in Belgium from 1995.

During 1986–88, there was a tight competition for the contract to provide a new fighter bomber, between the General Dynamics F-16 and Dassault Mirage 2000, (especially after the Indonesian Air Show in 1986). Indonesia ordered 12 F-16A/B Fighting Falcon Block 15 OCU as a new fighter to strengthen the Indonesian Air Force in 1989. A follow-up order for 9 more F-16A Block-15 OCU was cancelled in favor of 24 Su-30 MKK,[19] this order was also cancelled due to the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis. The Indonesian Air Force had originally planned to acquire 60 F-16s to cover and defend its 12 million square kilometers of territory.[20] A total of 10 F-16A and F-16B are still in service with Indonesian Air Force: 2 planes crashed in two different accidents.

The Indonesian Air Force ordered eight BAE Hawk Mk 109s and 32 Mk 209s in 1993. The last of these was delivered by January 1997.

Embargoes 1998–2006

An Indonesian Air Force Lockheed C-130H-30 at Adisucipto International Airport

In 1999, the Indonesian Military staged a military intervention following the East Timor's referendum. The result was that more than 1,500 were civilians killed and 70 percent of Dili's infrastructure razed. In response, the United States and the European Union both imposed arms embargoes. Although the European Union chose not to renew its ban in 2000, the United States did not lift its embargo until November 2005. During this embargo the Indonesian government turned to Russia to supply them with arms including fighters, helicopters, missiles, radars and other equipment. In 2002, Indonesian Air Force continued to use all of its assets against local separatists, such as the Free Aceh Movement ("Gerakan Aceh Merdeka",GAM) and Free Papua Movement (Organisasi Papua Merdeka, OPM). In the conflict with GAM in Aceh, the Indonesian Air Force utilized OV-10Fs for counter-insurgency actions along with BAe Hawk 53 and 209 with great success.

In July 2003, the Air Force managed to scramble two fully armed F-16 to intercept five U.S. F/A-18 Hornets maneuvering over Bawean Island off the Eastern coast of Java island. The incident ended peacefully through a Friend or Foe hand signal. A US spokesman said that the naval aircraft had sought permission to enter Indonesian airspace while escorting a US aircraft carrier, but that the request arrived too late at the air force defense headquarters in Jakarta due to red tape.[21]

In that same year, the Air Force received two Sukhoi Su-27s and two Sukhoi Su-30s from Russia. The fighters were partly paid for in Indonesian palm oil. The purchase, however, did not include any weaponry. Unbeknown to most, Seven KT-1b Korean basic trainers were also purchased.

By 2005 the Air Force was experiencing a logistical crisis. The F-16 Fighting Falcons and A-4 Skyhawk, which accounted for 80% of its air combat assets, were at the minimum or nil level of combat readiness.

To respond to the crisis, in 2006, the Indonesian Air Force ordered three Sukhoi Aerospace Su-27SKM and three Sukhoi Aerospace Su-30MK2 to complete a full squadron. It was also made public that the four aircraft procured in 2003 were inactive and awaiting an upgrade of their communication systems, as they were incompatible with the Indonesian systems in use. The additional aircraft will be ordered with systems complying with the Indonesian and international standards and would also include new weaponry for all variants.[19] A further 12 KT-1b Korean basic trainers were also ordered in 2006.

Until 2008, the Indonesian Air Force had only purchased four types of missiles: KS-1 Komet, Vympel K-13, AIM-9 Sidewinder and AGM-65 Maverick. Starting from 2008, it started receiving more advanced Russian made Vympel R-73 and Vympel R-77 air-to-air missiles for its new Su-27 and Su-30 fighters. Also a limited number of air-to-ground Russian made Kh-29, Kh-31 and Kh-59 missiles were delivered for Su-30 strike fighters.[22] Russian made general purpose and cluster bombs should have been delivered for the Flankers too. Before 2008, Indonesian Flankers were only armed with Indonesian made (US licensed) Mk-82 bombs. There is a possibility that the Indonesian Air Force will also purchase extremely long range air-to-air missile Novator KS-172 AAM-L, after the Indonesian Army evaluated and showed their interest in purchasing S-300PMU "Grumble" and SA-17 "Grizzly" missiles.

Local weapons are being developed such as P-100 air-to-ground bomb manufactured by CV Sari Bahari Malang, East Java. P-100 has been successfully tested in Su-27 and Su-30 for ground attack missions. Further massive production is subject to approval from Ministry of Defence.

Minimum Essential Force (MEF) 2010–present

During the visit of US President Barack Obama on November 9–10, 2010 in Jakarta, the TNI-AU Force was offered 24 ex-USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon Block 32 for free.[23] In October 2011, the House of Representatives approved the grant. The fighter jets will be upgraded similar to the latest Block 50/52 variant with payment.[24] The TNI-AU is also progressing with the reactivation of all 10 units of F-16 Fighting Falcon Block 15 OCU, which resulted in the reactivation of TS-1606, TS-1609 and TS-1612 recently.[25] To replace the Fokker F-27s, the TNI-AU has ordered nine Spanish CASA C-295 in joint production with PT. Dirgantara Indonesia. New unmanned aerial vehicles will also be purchased to strengthen TNI-AU aerial observation and will be based at Supadio Air Force Base, Pontianak, Kalimantan Barat.

Starting in 2010,[26] Minister of Defense Purnomo Yusgiantoro stated that TNI-AU will gradually purchase a total of 180 Su-27 and Su-30 to complete the needs of 10 squadrons.[27] India also offered TNI-AU Indian-Russian made BrahMos missiles to equip its Su-27 and Su-30 Flankers.[28]

TNI-AU Boeing 737-2X9 in 2011

Indonesia signed a memorandum of understanding to participate in the KFX programme in July 2010 and the terms of agreement was signed in 2011. Indonesia will finance 20 percent of the project and will receive 50 jet fighters in return, while South Korea will get 200 jets. A Defense ministry spokesman claimed that the jet fighter would be more capable than the F-16 but less capable that the F-35. The project was started in 2009 and the first prototype will roll out in 2020. Indonesia has also signed an MOU with China to produce C-705 missiles which will arm the Sukhoi jet fighters.[29]

In April 2011,[30] Indonesia confirmed that it will buy 16 supersonic KAI T-50 Golden Eagle trainer jets from South Korea for up to $400 million after an evaluation of the Yakovlev Yak-130, Guizhou JL-9/FTC-2000 Mountain Eagle and Aero L-159 ALCA. The jet will replace the BAE Hawk MK-53 trainer jets. Deliveries were completed by January 2014 and were commissioned on February 13, 2014.[31]

In June 2011, Indonesia signed the final contract for 8 Super Tucano as the replacement for the OV-10 Bronco in the counter-insurgency role [32] with a second contract for a further 8 aircraft in July 2012.[33] The first four units arrived in March 2012 with deliveries to complete by 2014.[34]

In August 2011,[35] Indonesia announced that it would acquire 18 Grob G120TP for its basic trainer requirements which would likely replace the FFA AS-202 Bravo and Beechcraft T-34 Mentor trainers.

On December 29, 2011 Indonesia committed to purchase 6 Sukhoi Su-30MK2 jet fighters in a $470 million procurement contract signed by the Defense Ministry and Russia's JSC Rosoboronexport.[36] Deliveries will reportedly start after 2013.[37]

In January 2012, the Australian and Indonesian governments agreed to the transfer of four used Lockheed Martin C-130H Hercules aircraft from the Royal Australian Air Force to the Indonesian Air Force in 2012, which was approved by the US as the Hercules' producer. In the 1960s, Indonesia was the first foreign user of the heavy tactical transport aircraft.[38]

In January 2014, Defence Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro said that he hoped to start the replacement of the F-5 fighters under the upcoming 2015 to 2020 strategic plan. The Indonesian Air Force (TNI-AU) has selected four candidates for the replacement, consisting of the Su-35, Saab JAS 39 Gripen[39]', Dassault Rafale, and F-16 C/D Block 60.[40]

Force structure

Bases and command areas of the Indonesian Air Force [41][42]

The Indonesian Air Force is headquartered in Jakarta, Indonesia. Its Order of Battle is split into two Air Force Operational Commands (KOOPSAU) (east and west regions). Most of its airbases are located on the island of Java.[43] The Indonesian Air Force also has its own elite unit, called Air Force Special Forces Corps (Paskhas). In addition, the Air Force also manages the National Air Defense Command (KOHANUDNAS), in terms that its commander is always an Air Force two-star Marshal; however, its operational command falls directly under the Commander of TNI (due to the fact that the Command's subordinate units come from all TNI services which have air defence capabilities).


  • †These squadrons were combined to make the Air Force's aerobatics squadron and were known as The Blue Jupiter but were disbanded during the 1990s.
  • ††Aerial refueling is also assigned to this squadron

Aircraft inventory


Aircraft Photo Role Versions Inventory In service On order / Will be Delivered Note
Trainer Aircraft
KAI T-50 Golden Eagle advanced jet trainer TA-50 16[48] 16[48] . Role as Advanced Trainer, 16 ordered at a cost of USD $400 million on 25 May 2011.[49]
BAE Hawk basic jet trainer

advanced jet trainer

Hawk 53

Hawk 109





Hawk 53 to be replaced with T-50 Golden Eagle. Two units were lost in two different accidents, one with tail number TT-5304 crashed at Bendo in 1991 and another one with tail number TT-5307 crashed at Wonogiri in the same year with TT-5304.[50]
G 120TP Basic turboprop trainer GROB G120TP 14 14 4 Contract announced in August 2011. Delivery of aircraft in 2012/2013.[35][51] To replace T-34C Mentors and AS/SA 202-18A3 Bravo
KAI KT-1 Wongbee basic prop trainer KT-1B 12 11 7 Further seven were ordered in 2008.[52] One unit crashed in Ngurah Rai Airport, Denpasar during exercise.[53]
Beechcraft T-34 Mentor basic prop trainer T-34C 14 14
Total 45 44 11
Combat Aircraft
Sukhoi Su-27 Air superiority fighter Su-27SK and Su-27SKM



2 Su-27SK and 3 SU-27SKM. These fighters can be armed with locally produced bombs and rockets.[2]
Sukhoi Su-30 Multirole fighter Su-30MK and Su-30MK2



2 SU-30MK and 9 SU-30 MK2.
Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon Multirole fighter

F-16 A/B Block 15 OCU

F-16 C/D Block 32+





19 Indonesia received 12 F-16 A/B Block 15 OCU under the Peace Bima-Sena programme in the 1990s with a total of 10 remaining (TS-1604/87-0724 and TS-1607/87-0715 crashed in 1992 and 1997 respectively) in service (7 F-16 A and 3 F-16 B). Indonesia is set to receive a further 24 F-16 C/D Block 25 from the United States Air Force inventory from AMARG under the Peace Bima-Sena II programme and will be upgrade.Although all 24 F16s only can be upgrade until Block 32+ configuration but all the F16s are designated as 'F16 C/D Block 52ID' due to the upgraded that using some component from Block 52 except the radar[56][57]
BAe Hawk 209 Strike fighter Hawk 209 23[54] 23[54]
Northrop F-5E Tiger II Strike fighter F-5E/F 11 9[54] 8 F-5E and 4 F-5F were upgraded by SABCA of Belgium under the Modernisation of Avionics Capabilities for Armament and Navigation or MACAN project from the mid to late 1990s. One aircraft with tail number TS-0504 crashed at Goreng Gareng in 1981.[50] Retired since 2005 but are in reserve in case of future use. The Air Force is currently in talks to have the F-5 refurbished and upgraded in order for it to be used for up to 2020. The F-5s are to be replaced by 16 advanced fighters, with several companies submitting proposals and "five or six" options, including the F-15 Eagle, F-16 Falcon, Saab Gripen, and Sukhoi Su-35.[58]
Embraer EMB 314 Super Tucano COIN (counter-insurgency) A-29A 8[59] 8[60][61] 8 16 ordered;[62][63] To replace OV-10, expected delivery in 2012 and 2014.
Total 64 62 33
Tactical Airlift, military transport aircraft, Maritime Patrol Aircraft
Lockheed C-130 Hercules airlift/transport

aerial refuel


KC-130B Hercules





9 Contract for upgrading of 4 C-130B awarded to ST Aero in 2008.[65] Further upgrades to 6 C-130Bs were awarded to ARINC in July 2010, Jan 2011 and August 2012. One C-130H crashed in May 2009 in Magetan, Java. Indonesia will receive 4 C-130H Hercules from Royal Australian Air Force as military grants to TNI-AU (A97006, A97001, A97003, A97009).[66] A separate transfer contract for another 5 C-130H along with simulator and spare parts was signed with Australia on 26 July 2013.[67]
Lockheed L-100 transport/ VIP Transport L-100-30 6 6
CASA CN-235 airlift/transport

maritime reconnaissance

CN-235 110/220M

CN-235 MPA






† For minimal maritime defense till 2014. One unit (A-2301) crashed on 21 July 2005 at Lhokseumawe-Malikussaleh Airport.[68]
CASA C-295 airlift/transport CN-295M 9 9[45] † Indonesia agree for license C-295, 2 will be build by Airbus Military in Spain, rest will be build by Indonesian Aerospace[52][69]
CASA C-212 Aviocar airlift/transport NC-212-100




Upgrading to NC212-200/-400 versions in the near future. One unit (A-2106) crashed on 26 June 2008 near Mount Salak in West Java, Indonesia.[71]

Boeing 737 VIP Transport

maritime reconnaissance



737-2X9 Surveiller MPA





The two B737-400s (tail number A3705 and A3706) fly VVIP flights, usually the Vice President. The planes are ex-Garuda Indonesia, donated to Air Force in 2011. Minor modifications to the interior were carried out to install 8 VVIP seats.[72]

Fitted with Motorola AN/APS-135 SLAMMR (Side-looking Airborne Modular Multi-mission Radar)[73]

Fokker F28 Fellowship airlift/transport F-28 Mk 1000

F-28 Mk 3000

5 5
Total 77 77 12
Helicopters and Non Fix Winged Aircraft
Eurocopter EC725 SAR missions 6[54]

A contract was signed on the 5 April 2012 for 6 Eurocopter EC725 configured for combat search and rescue, slated for delivery in 2014.[74]

Eurocopter AS 332 Super Puma SAR missions/troop transport

VIP transport

NAS-332 Super Puma

NAS-332 Super Puma VVIP






A total of 16 has been ordered since 1998

Aérospatiale AS 330 Puma troop transport NAS 330J 11[54] 11[54]
MBB Bo 105 SAR missions NBO-105 CB






Bell 412 troop transport NBell 412S

NBell 412HP





7 † Up to 7 Bell 412EPs have been ordered since December 2011 [76]
Eurocopter EC 120 Colibri light utility helicopter EC-120B 10[54] 10[54] Replaced the Bell 47G-3B
Total 45 45 20

locally produced by Indonesian Aerospace


The following have served as Chief of the Air Staff:

No Name From To
1 Soerjadi Soerjadarma 9 April 1946 19 January 1962
2 Omar Dani 19 January 1962 24 November 1965
3 Sri Mulyono Herlambang 27 November 1965 31 March 1966
4 Roesmin Noerjadin 31 March 1966 10 November 1969
5 Soewoto Sukendar 10 November 1969 28 March 1973
6 Saleh Basarah 28 March 1973 4 June 1977
7 Ashadi Tjahyadi 4 June 1977 26 November 1982
8 Soekardi 26 November 1982 11 April 1986
9 Oetomo 11 April 1986 1 March 1990
10 Siboen Dipoatmodjo 1 March 1990 23 March 1993
11 Rilo Pambudi 23 March 1993 15 March 1996
12 Sutria Tubagus 15 March 1996 3 July 1998
13 Hanafie Asnan 3 July 1998 25 April 2002
14 Chappy Hakim 25 April 2002 23 February 2005
15 Air Chief Marshal Djoko Suyanto 23 February 2005 13 February 2006
16 Herman Prayitno 13 February 2006 28 December 2007
17 Subandrio 28 December 2007 7 November 2009
18 Marshal Imam Sufaat 7 November 2009 21 December 2012
18 Air Chief Marshal Ida Bagus Putu Dunia 21 December 2012 present

Notable incidents

  • A Fokker F-27 crashed on 6 April 2009, killing all 24 occupants. There were 6 crew, an instructor and 17 special forces trainees on board.[77]
  • A Lockheed L-100-30 Hercules, Model 382G-57C, A-1325, c/n 4917 [78][79] crashed on 20 May 2009, killing at least 97 people and injuring 15 others, including some on the ground.[79][80] The airplane was carrying 98 passengers and 14 crew at the time[81] and was travelling from Halim Perdanakusuma International Airport in Jakarta to West Papua via Sulawesi.[80] Officials have stated that the plane crashed at about 6:30 a.m. around 5–7 kilometres from the Iswahyudi Air Force Base (160 kilometres east of Yogyakarta).[80] An official statement has not been released.[79]
  • A Fokker 27 crashed on the 21 June 2012, 10 people were killed including all 7 crew on board the aircraft and 3 people on the ground. The aircraft crashed into a complex of military housing, and eight buildings were damaged or destroyed. The aircraft was conducting a routine training exercise.

Radars and missiles

In July 2011, the Indonesian Air Force has already had 18 radars from the ideal number of 32 radars. The rest will be deployed gradually in East Indonesia such as Merauke and Timika.[82]

The Air Force uses the following missiles:

Missile Origin Type Versions Note
Air-to-air missile[83]
AIM-9 Sidewinder  United States Short Range IR guided AIM-9P4 & AIM-9X on F-5E/F, F-16A/B and BaE Hawk 53/109/209
AIM-120 AMRAAM  United States Medium Range active radar homing guided AIM-120C on F-16C/D
R-73  Russia Short Range IR guided on Su-27 and Su-30
R-77  Russia Medium Range active radar homing on Su-27 and Su-30
MAA-1 Piranha  Brazil Short Range IR guided on Super Tucano[84]
Air-to-surface missile[83][85]
AGM-65 Maverick  United States Tactical missile On BaE Hawk 209 and F-16A/B
Kh-29  Russia Tactical missile On Su-30
Kh-31  Russia Supersonic Anti Ship Missile On Su-30
Kh-59  Russia TV Guided Cruise Missile On Su-30

Unmanned aerial vehicle

Indonesian Air Force will deploy one squadron of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) at Supadio Airport, West Kalimantan. The Israeli-made IAI Herons were bought on behalf of Indonesia by a Philippine Company called Kital Philippines Corp. for $48 million and will deploy in 2012. Borrowed similar UAVs have been used before during the Mapenduma Operation by the Indonesian Air Force. The UAVs can operate for up to 15 hours with range up to 200 kilometres (120 mi).[86]


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  • Aero-News Network. "Indonesian Air Force Grounds OV-10 Bronco Fleet" July 25, 2007
  • Angkasa (Sky) magazine, Gramedia, Jakarta No. 7 Year XVII April 2008
  • Crouch, Harold (2007) The Army and Politics in Indonesia, Equinox, Jakarta ISBN 979-3780-50-9
  • Davies, Steve (2008) Red Eagles: America's Secret MiGs Osprey Publishing ISBN 978846033780
  • F. Djoko Poerwoko (2001) My Home My Base: Perjalanan Sejarah Pangkalan Udara Iswahjudi 1939–2000, Publisher – Iswahjudi Air Force Base, No ISBN
  • Indonesian Embassy, Ottawa: US to help RI in repair/refurbishing 15 of 24 RI's C-130 transport
  • Grodin, Yefim & Rigmat, Vladimir (2004) Tupelov Tu-16 Badger , Aerofax, London ISBN 1-85780-177-6
  • Scramble Magazine. "Indonesian Air Arms Overview"
  • Willis, David (Ed). Aerospace Encyclopedia of the World's Air Forces. Aerospace Publishing, London, 1999 ISBN 1-86184-045-4

Further reading

  • Carlo Kopp, 'Indonesia's Air Capacity of Critical Concern to Australia,' Australian Aviation magazine, April 1993, pages 32–41

External links

  • Official Website of TNI-AU (Air Force)
  • Watch Su-30mk2 Indonesian Air Forces video from YouTube
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