The overall mission of the Aerospace Engineering Duty Officer (AEDO) is to provide effective material management to all air and space weapons systems throughout their life cycle. The AEDO function is described as follows:
"To provide direction to the technical and material elements of the Navy in matters related to naval weapons, and support to the operating forces, by bringing to bear specialized technical and managerial talents combined with operating experience and viewpoint." Combs Board Report, 1944.
In essence, the AED officer provides professional management and technical direction in the entire air weapon system acquisition process: the design, development, test, procurement, engineering, production, and logistic support of Naval aircraft, spacecraft, and weapons. AEDOs bring a unique blend of operational experience, astute leadership, and technical excellence to the design, acquisition, and support of Naval weapons systems.
The AED officer laterally transfers from the aviation officer community and serves primarily in the acquisition field. Consequently, in becoming a specialist, the AEDO relinquishes the goal of command-at-sea, devoting full attention to acquisition and support duties. Major program management, AEDO command, and command-equivalent billets are available in the Naval shore establishment, and command opportunity for the AEDO officer exceeds 50%.
AEDO billets offer diversification and challenges that rival those of any profession. AEDOs are involved in the entire life cycle of most aircraft, weapon, and naval space systems-from their initial conception, through development and testing, to fleet introduction, to material readiness and product improvements throughout the system’s service, and finally until it is phased out of service. AEDOs are recognized as officers with a unique background of operational, acquisition, and technical knowledge and are called upon to manage programs involving billions of dollars of budgeted funds, working with the nation’s top research and engineering talent. As commanding officers of shore activities, AEDOs supervise thousands of civilian and military employees. For more information on becoming an AEDO, click on the links below.