Aerospace Maintenance (2A5X1) Job Description

How to Get Started in Air Force Aerospace Maintenance Jobs

Image by Bailey Mariner © The Balance 2019 

Aerospace maintenance airmen in the United States Air Force maintain aircraft, support equipment (SE), and forms and records. They also perform production supervisor, flight chief, expediter, crew chief, support, aero repair, and maintenance functions. A related DoD cccupational subgroup is 600.

Duties and Responsibilities

Advises on problems maintaining, servicing, and inspecting aircraft and aerospace SE. Uses technical data to diagnose and solve maintenance problems on aircraft systems. Interprets and advises on maintenance procedures and policies to repair aircraft and SE.

Troubleshoots and maintains aircraft structures, systems, components, and SE. Tests repaired components using mockups and test equipment. Adjusts, aligns, rigs, and calibrates aircraft systems. Performs engine run-up. Accomplishes weight and balance functions. Jacks, tows, and services aircraft.

Inspects aircraft structures, systems, components, and SE. Supervises and performs aircraft and component inspections. Interprets inspection findings and determines adequacy of corrective actions. Inspects and checks components for clearances, tolerances, proper installation, and operation. Inspects and operates powered and nonpowered aerospace ground equipment. Inspects and identifies aircraft corrosion for prevention and correction. Reviews maintenance forms, aircraft records, and reports to ensure complete documentation. Inventories and maintains alternate mission equipment.

Performs production supervisor, flight chief, expediter, crew chief, aero repair, support, and maintenance functions. Coordinates maintenance plans to meet operational commitments. Supervises and assists in launching and recovering aircraft. Reviews maintenance data collection summaries to determine trends and production effectiveness. Performs crash recovery duties. Performs staff and supervisory management functions.

Specialty Qualifications


Knowledge is mandatory of: principles applying to aircraft systems; concepts and application of maintenance directives and data reporting; using technical data; Air Force supply procedures; and proper handling, use, and disposal of hazardous waste and materials.


For entry into this specialty, completion of high school with courses in pneudraulics, physics, and electronics is desirable.


For award of AFSC 2A531X, completion of a suffix specific basic aerospace maintenance course is mandatory.


The following experience is mandatory for award of AFSC indicated: (Note: See Explanation of Air Force Specialty Codes.)

  • 2A551X: Qualification in and possession of AFSC 2A531X. Also, experience in functions such as repairing and maintaining aircraft or related installed equipment.
  • 2A571: Qualification in and possession of AFSC 2A551X. Also, experience performing or supervising functions such as installing, repairing, inspecting, or overhauling aircraft structures, systems, and components.

Other. The following are mandatory as indicated:

For entry into this specialty, normal color vision as defined in AFI 48-123, Medical Examination and Standards. For award and retention of AFSCs 2A531X/51X/71, eligibility for a Secret security clearance, according to AFI 31-501, Personnel Security Program Management.

Specialty Shredouts

Suffix Portion of AFS to Which Related

A... C-9/C-20/C-21/C-22/C-141/T-39/T-43

B... C-12/C-26/C-27/C-130

C... C-5

D... C-17

E... B-1/B-2

F... B-52

G... C-18/C-135/E-3/VC-25/VC-137

H... KC-10/E-4

J... C-5/C-9/C-12/C-17/C-20/C-21/C-22/C-26/C-27/C-130/C-141/T-39/T-43

K... B-1/B-2/B-52

L... All C-135/C-18/E-3/E-4/KC-10/VC-25/VC-137

NOTE: Shredouts A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and H are applicable to the 1- and 3-skill levels only. Shredouts J, K, and L are applicable at the 5-skill level only. Shredouts A, B, C, and D merge to form shredout J at the 5-skill level. Shredouts E and F merge at the 5-skill level to form shredout K. Shredouts G and H merge at the 5-skill level to form shredout L. There are no shredouts at the 7-skill level.

Strength Req: L (2A5X1D and 2A5X1H requires a K)

Physical Profile: 333132

Citizenship: Yes

Required Aptitude Score : M-44 (Changed to M-47, effective 1 Jul 04).

Technical Training:

Course #: J3AQR2A531A 000

Length (Days): 83

Location: S

Course #: J3ABP2A531A 000

Length (Days): 10

Location: MC

Other Possible Courses (Depending on assignment and shreadout assigned):

Course #: 3AQR2A531A 002

Length (Days): 23

Location: S

Course #: J5ABO2A531A 002

Length (Days): 40

Location: Sct

Course #: J3AQR2A531B 000

Length (Days): 83

Location: S

Course #: J3ABP2A531B 000

Length (Days): 20

Location: LR

Course #: J3ABP2A531C 000

Length (Days): 30

Location: Dover

Course #: J3ABP2A531D 023

Length (Days): 23

Location: Chr

Course #: J3ABP2A531EE003

Length (Days): 27

Location: Ell

Course #: J3ABP2A531E 004

Length (Days): 33

Location: Whi

Course #: J3ABR2A531F 001

Length (Days): 59

Location: S

Course #: J3ABP2A531G 002

Length (Days): 70

Location: Tnk

Course #: J3AQR2A531H 001

Length (Days): 33

Location: S

Course #: J3ABP2A531M 001

Length (Days): 30

Location: McG

Course #: J3ABP2A531T 001

Length (Days): 30