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Navy Enlisted Rating (Job) Descriptions

Aviation Ordnanceman (AO)


PACIFIC OCEAN (May 17, 2011) Aviation Ordnanceman Airman Tiffany Wilchek, from Lemoore, Calif., dismantles a rescue hoist on an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter from the Eightballers of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8 embarked aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74). John C. Stennis is participating in a composite training unit exercise off the coast of Southern California.
U.S. Navy / Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Benjamin Crossley

Aviation ordnancemen are aircraft armament (weapons) specialists in charge of storing, servicing, inspecting and handling of all types of weapons and ammunition carried on Navy aircraft. These technicians may also volunteer to fly as Naval aircrew. Aircrew performs numerous in-flight duties and operates aircraft systems in turbojet, helicopter, or propeller aircraft.

The duties performed by AOs include:

  • Inspect, maintains and repair aircraft mechanical and electrical armament/ordnance systems;
  • Service aircraft guns and accessories;
  • Stow, assembles and load aviation ammunition including aerial mines, torpedoes, missiles and rockets;
  • Service bomb, missile and rocket releasing and launching devices;
  • Load supplementary munitions;
  • Assemble, tests and maintain air-launched guided missiles;
  • Supervise operation of aviation ordnance shops, armories and stowage facilities;

Working Environment

AOs perform their duties at sea on flight decks and ashore in hangars, on flight lines at air stations, or in shops under various environmental conditions. They work closely with others, do mostly physical work and require little supervision.

A-School (Job School) Information

  • Pensacola, FL --32 calendar days
  • Pensacola, FL -- 17 calendar days

ASVAB Score Requirement: VE+AR+MK+AS=185 OR MK+AS+AO=140

Security Clearance Requirement: Secret

Other Requirements

Normal hearing required. Frequencies: 3000hz 4000hz 5000hz 6000hz Average hearing threshold level in these four frequencies must be less than 30db, with no level greater than 45db in any one frequency. If hearing level exceeds these limits, the applicant is enlistment ineligible for the rating.

Sub-Specialties Available for This Rating: Navy Enlisted Classification Codes for AO

Current Manning Levels for This Rating: CREO Listing

Note: Advancement ( promotion ) opportunity and career progression are directly linked to a rating's manning level (i.e., personnel in undermanned ratings have greater promotion opportunity than those in overmanned ratings).

Sea/Shore Rotation for This Rating

  • First Sea Tour: 60 months
  • First Shore Tour: 36 months
  • Second Sea Tour: 54 month
  • Second Shore Tour: 36 month
  • Third Sea Tour: 42 month
  • Third Shore Tour: 36 month
  • Fourth Sea Tour: 36 month
  • Forth Shore Tour: 36 month

Note: Sea tours and shore tours for sailors that have completed four sea tours will be 36 months at sea followed by 36 months ashore until retirement.

Much of the above information courtesy of the Navy Personnel Command

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