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Air Force Ranks (Enlisted and Officers, Lowest to Highest)


The United States Air Force utilizes some of the most sophisticated equipment on the planet, from stealth bombers to 5th Generation Fighters.

The modern USAF was established on September 18th, 1947 following the conclusion of World War 2 but maintains a history as far back as 1907. Prior to 1947, the USAF operated as the 'United States Army Air Forces' (USAAF) and the service contributed to both World War 1 and the Second World War. The modern Air Force has seen major combat actions since the Korean War and fields a variety of aircraft to cover all manner of mission types.


Formally, USAF rank abbreviations are not displayed with an ending period. Additionally, the USAF does not maintain a 'First Sergeant' rank common to other branches of American military service. Instead, the rank is denoted by the special addition of a diamond within the insignia and observed as a duty / job title. Similarly, the diamond is replaced by a star for the Chief Master Sergeant and Command Chief Master Sergeant ranks.


Note: The Five Star rank is generally reserved for wartime but can also be used as an honorary rank.

Considering a career in the United States Air Force? Then also consider United States Air Force aircraft currently in use for more information on available equipment.

Go back to the Military Ranks index page.


Grade
Insignia
Abbrv
Title
E-1
NONE
AB
Airman Basic
E-2
E2 rank insignia
Amn
Airman
E-3
E3 rank insignia
A1C
Airman First Class
E-4
E4 rank insignia
SrA
Senior Airman
E-5
E5 rank insignia
SSgt
Staff Sergeant
E-6
E6 rank insignia
TSgt
Technical Sergeant
E-7
E7 rank insignia
MSgt
Master Sergeant
E-7
E7b rank insignia
MSgt
Master Sergeant (w Diamond)
E-8
E8a rank insignia
SMSgt
Senior Master Sergeant
E-8
E8b rank insignia
SMSgt
Senior Master Sergeant (w Diamond)
E-9
E9a rank insignia
CMSgt
Chief Master Sergeant
E-9
E9b rank insignia
CMSgt
Chief Master Sergeant (w Diamond)
E-9
E9c rank insignia
CCM
Command Chief Master Sergeant
E-9 Special
E9d rank insignia
CMSAF
Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force




O-1
2lt rank insignia
2d Lt
Second Lieutenant
O-2
1lt rank insignia
1st Lt
First Lieutenant
O-3
Captain rank insignia
Capt
Captain
O-4
Major rank insignia
Maj
Major
O-5
Lt Colonel rank insignia
Lt Col
Lieutenant Colonel
O-6
Colonel rank insignia
Col
Colonel
O-7
Brig General rank insignia
Brig Gen
Brigadier General
O-8
Major General rank insignia
Maj Gen
Major General
O-9
Lt General rank insignia
Lt Gen
Lieutenant General
O-10
General 4-star rank insignia
Gen
General Air Force Chief of Staff
Special
General 5-star rank insignia
GAF
General of the Air Force