The Blue Angels is the United States Navy's flight demonstration squadron. Formally known as the United States Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, the team was formed in 1946 and is based at Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola in Florida. The Blue Angels' mission is to showcase the skill and professionalism of naval aviation and to inspire and motivate the public. Show Schedule.
Key Facts about the Blue Angels:
1. Aircraft: The Blue Angels currently fly the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet, a multirole fighter aircraft. Before the Hornets, the team flew various aircraft, including the F-4 Phantom II, A-4 Skyhawk, and F-11 Tiger.
2. Team Composition: The Blue Angels typically consist of six demonstration pilots and two support pilots who fly the C-130 Hercules transport aircraft, known as "Fat Albert." The team also includes several enlisted personnel who perform maintenance and support roles.
3. Show Season: The Blue Angels perform airshows across the United States during their show season, which typically runs from March to November. The shows include thrilling aerobatic maneuvers, precision flying, and high-speed passes.
4. Blue Angel Solo Maneuvers: The show includes impressive solo maneuvers, highlighting the capabilities of the F/A-18 Hornet in the hands of skilled pilots. These maneuvers include high-speed passes, vertical climbs, and tight turns.
5. Delta Formation: One of the signature formations of the Blue Angels is the "Delta" formation, where six aircraft fly in close formation, creating an impressive display of precision and teamwork.
6. History: The Blue Angels were formed shortly after World War II to boost Navy morale and showcase naval aviation to the public. Since then, they have become one of the most recognized and respected aerobatic demonstration teams in the world.
7. Community Outreach: In addition to their airshows, the Blue Angels are actively involved in community outreach programs. They visit schools, hospitals, and events, inspiring future generations and connecting with the public.
8. Selection and Training: Blue Angel pilots are highly skilled naval aviators who undergo rigorous selection and training. They typically serve a two-year tour with the team, demonstrating their exceptional flying abilities and professionalism.
Attending a Blue Angels airshow is a thrilling experience, offering an up-close look at the precision and skill of these elite naval aviators. The team's commitment to excellence and dedication to representing the U.S. Navy make them a source of pride for the entire nation.