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Gweru-Thornhill Air Base
Airport type Military
Elevation AMSL 4,680 ft / 1,426 m
Coordinates 19°26′11″S 29°51′43″E / 19.43639°S 29.86194°E / -19.43639; 29.86194Coordinates: 19°26′11″S 29°51′43″E / 19.43639°S 29.86194°E / -19.43639; 29.86194
Zimbabwe location map
Airplane silhouette.svg
Location of the airport in Zimbabwe
Direction Length Surface
ft m
13R/31L 7,826 2,385 Asphalt
13L/31R 8,766 2,672 Asphalt
Sources: World Aero Data[1]

Gweru-Thornhill Air Base (IATA: GWE, ICAO: FVTL) is one of the two main air bases of the Air Force of Zimbabwe located near the central city of Gweru,[2] Thornhill Air Base is home to air force fighter squadrons and the Pilot Training School. According to Janes Defence Weekly of 6 September 2006 a US$41.5m simulation center was being established.

A full range of amenities and services, which include workshops, transport fleets, equipment depots, and accommodation, sporting and entertainment facilities, support the base.

It is home to these squadrons:

  • No. 2 Squadron (Cobra) - for advanced jet training and close air support. Operates 12 K-8s and about 13 BAe Hawk Mk 60s.
  • No. 4 Squadron (Hornet) - equipped with Cessna FTB337G and O-2A
  • No. 5 Squadron (Arrow) - interceptor/fighter role with Chengdu F-7 II/IIN and Guizhou FT-7BZ. Said to be scheduled to received the FC-1/JF-17 multirole fighter from China when it goes into production.
  • No. 6 Squadron (Tiger) - with SF-260M, SF-260TP and SF-260W


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