497th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group

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497th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group
497th ISR Group.PNG
Active 1951 – present
Country United States
Branch United States Air Force
Garrison/HQ Langley AFB, Virginia
Decorations Outstanding Unit ribbon.svg AFOUA

The United States Air Force's 497th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group (497 ISRG) is an intelligence unit located at Joint Base Langley–Eustis, Virginia.


The 497th ISR Group delivers real-time high-confidence intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance products and services to Joint and Coalition forces and other designated government agencies.

The Group consists of two active duty Squadrons, the 30th Intelligence Squadron and 10th Intelligence Squadron, one Air National Guard unit, the 192nd Intelligence Squadron (VA ANG), and a new classic Air Reserve unit, the 718th Intelligence Squadron, stood up to support the total force integration of the Wing and combat ISR operations.


The unit was activated at Wiesbaden Air Base, West Germany in 1951 by USAFE General Order 29. Its mission was to support the tactical targeting program in Europe by furnishing photographic support such as overlays, aerial photography and photo interpretation. Remaining in Wiesbaden throughout the Cold War, the 497th increased in size and responsibility to USAFE Intelligence. It was moved from its facilities at Wiesbaden in July 1991 to RAF Molesworth, England where it was used as the basis for the formation of the current US European Command Joint Intelligent Center before being inactivated in 1992.

Reactivated in 1993 at Bolling AFB, DC, the unit has provided intelligence information in direct support of combat operations to Senior Air Force leaders, key Coalition partners and combatant commanders worldwide. Capabilities within the Group include global command and control for the collection and processing, exploitation, and dissemination of ISR data from the U-2 Dragon Lady, RQ-4 Global Hawk, MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper, in addition to numerous other ISR platforms, utilizing the Air Force Distributed Common Ground System weapon system.

Additionally, the Group conducts real-time cryptologic and signals intelligence operations in direct support of combat operations and combatant commanders worldwide.


  • Established as 497th Reconnaissance Technical Squadron, and activated on 3 May 1951
Re-designated: 497th Reconnaissance Technical Group, 22 August 1967
Organized on 1 October 1967
Inactivated on 1 July 1992
  • Re-designated 497th Intelligence Group, and activated, on 1 October 1993
Re-designated 497th Information Operations Group on 1 August 2000
Inactivated on 1 February 2001
  • Re-designated 497th Intelligence Group on 23 October 2003
Activated on 1 December 2003.
Re-designated 497th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Group, 1 January 2009


Attached to: 60th Troop Carrier Wing*, 3 May-2 June 1951
Attached to: 20th Fighter-Bomber Wing*, 24 September 1951
Attached to: Twelfth Air Force, 7 March 1952-27 April 1953
Re-designated: 480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing, 1 January 2009-Present

[1] .* Attached for logistical and personnel support


Re-designated: 495th Reconnaissance Technical Squadron, 1 September 1989-1 July 1992


Operating Location-A, Ramstein Air Base, West Germany, April 1979-July 1992 (to provide expanded imagery intelligence support to Headquarters, USAFE)
Renamed Joint Base Langley–Eustis, 1 October 2010-Present


Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards: 1 Oct – 31 Dec 1967; 1 Jan 1971 – 30 Jun 1972; 1 Jul 1973-30 Jun 1975; 1 Jul 1976 – 30 Jun 1978; 1 Jul 1978-30 Jun 1979; 1 Jul 1983 – 30 Jun 1985; 1 Jul 1986-30 Jun 1988; 1 Jul 1988 – 30 Jun 1990; 1 Jul 1990-30 Jun 1992; 1 Oct 1994 – 30 Sep 1996.


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

External links