Based at Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Amberley, Queensland, No. 1 Squadron forms part of No. 82 Wing and operates the F/A-18F Super Hornet.
No. 1 Squadron was the first unit to transition to the F/A-18F Super Hornet and is the first designated Super Hornet squadron outside of the United States of America.
No. 1 Squadron delivers combat airpower in various forms including, air-to-air, air-to-ground and air-to-surface strike capabilities.
The RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornet gives Australia an upgraded air combat capability for both air-to-air and air-to-ground missions until the full introduction into service of the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF). Twenty-four Super Hornets have replaced the F-111s at Nos 1 and 6 Squadrons at RAAF Base Amberley.
No. 1 Squadron operates the F/A-18F Super Hornet
Since the Malayan Emergency, No. 1 Squadron has not deployed on warlike operations. However, in 1999 it was placed on high alert for possible involvement in Operation WARDEN which was an Australian-led intervention in Timor Leste.
Following a request from the British Government in September 1915, Australia formed its own independent aviation force - The Australian Flying Corps (AFC). The AFC was an Army formation and part of the First Australian Imperial Force. On 1 January 1916, Lieutenant Colonel E.H. Reynolds was appointed as the first Commanding Officer of No. 1 Squadron of the AFC.
When the RAAF was formed in 1921, No. 1 Squadron (RAAF) inherited the proud traditions and the heritage from No. 1 Squadron of the AFC.
When war broke out in September 1939, No. 1 Squadron carried out patrols searching for the German ships "Lahn" and "Strassfort" off the Victorian Coast.
On December 1940, No. 1 Squadron was the first allied aircraft to spot the Japanese invasion fleet heading for northern Malaysia. Subsequently No. 1 Squadron was tasked to strike the first blows against Japan. Heavy losses of aircraft on the ground forced the withdrawal of No. 1 Squadron to Sumatra in 1942, from where reconnaissance and bombing sorties were mounted.
Finally, in March 1942, No. 1 Squadron returned to Australia with its remaining 3 Hudsons. The Commanding Officer and about 150 men were taken prisoner in Java, where they had been stranded, only half of those captured survived.
Two years later, the Squadron re-equipped with Bristol Beauforts and was involved in a major raid against Japanese shore installations in Timor in April 1944.
In January 1945, No. 1 Squadron was re-equipped with Mosquitoes with its last operation for in the war being the bombing raid on 8 August 1945 in Kuching. Two aircraft were lost.
The Squadron then returned to Australia and was disbanded in 1946.
On 23 February 1948, No. 12 Squadron, which was operating Australian-built Lincoln Bombers, was re-numbered No.1 Squadron which began another chapter in the history of the "Fighting First".
From 1950–1958, No. 1 Squadron was based in Singapore, and flew missions against communist guerrillas during the Malayan Emergency. Following its return to Australia in July 1958, the squadron was re-equipped with the Canberra jet bomber.
In 1968, No. 1 Squadron personnel departed for the United States of America to convert onto the Canberra's replacement, the F-111 swing-wing fighter-bomber. Technical difficulties delayed delivery of the F-111C and so the F4E Phantom was leased as an interim replacement between 1970 and 1973.
No. 1 Squadron operated the F-111 between 1973 and 2010 in the low-level strike role, simulating attacks on land and maritime targets.
On 03 March 2007, the Australian Government announced the acquisition of 24 F/A-18F Super Hornets to replace the F-111. On 26 March 2010, F/A-18F Super Hornets began to arrive and on 03 December, the F-111 formally retired from service.
On 21 October 2011, No. 1 Squadron received the latest of its F/A-18Fs to complete its transition from F-111 operations.