Description: 5th Aviation Regiment collar badge pair – Current Issue.

Maker’s Name: N/A

Condition: Mint

Comments: Current issue pattern collar badges (pair) –  issued in small numbers.

The Australian 5th Aviation Regiment is an Australian Army aviation unit. The Regiment is based at Townsville and operates the majority of the Army’s transport helicopters. The Regiment currently forms part of the 16th (Aviation) Brigade.

The 5th Aviation Regiment was formed at Townsville on 20 November 1987 to operate the S-70A-9 Blackhawk and UH-1 Iroquois helicopters which had previously been operated by the Royal Australian Air Force. In 1989 No. 9 Squadron (S-70A) became the Regiment’s ‘A’ Squadron and No. 35 Squadron (UH-1) ‘B’ Squadron. ‘B’ Squadron was later re-equipped with Blackhawks.

The Regiment was expanded in 1995 when ‘C’ Squadron was formed to operate CH-47 Chinook and UH-1 Iroquois helicopters (the later in the fire support role). The fire support Iroquois helicopters were transferred to the 1st Aviation Regiment in 1998.

In late 2003 ‘A’ Squadron and the UH-1 equipped 171st Squadron swapped designations, with the former ‘A’ Squadron becoming an independent squadron supporting Special Operations Command (Australia). The ‘new’ (UH-1 equipped) ‘A’ Squadron will be re-equipped with 12 MRH-90 medium helicopters which are currently on order. ‘B’ Squadron will also be equipped with these aircraft by 2015.

Since its formation elements of the Regiment have made operational deployments to Cambodia, Papua New Guinea, East Timor, Iraq, Indonesia and Pakistan. A detachment of two CH-47 Chinook helicopters from the Regiment was deployed to Afghanistan between late March 2006 and April 2007. In early 2008 2 Chinooks were deployed with RWG 1 and than again with RWG 2 in June 2008 as part of Operation Slipper. Eight Blackhawks were deployed to East Timor in May 2006 as part of Operation Astute. Three Blackhawks helped distribute aid to victims of flooding in Oro Province, Papua New Guinea in late 2007 as part of Operation Papua New Guinea Assist.