HD H 21a Fahnenjunker FJg.svg LD B 21a Fahnenjunker.svg
Heer and Luftwaffe shoulder insignia
Country Germany
Service branch German Army
 German Air Force
RankGerman NCO rank
NATO rankOR-5
Non-NATO rankE-5
Next higher rankOberfeldwebel
Next lower rankStabsunteroffizier
Equivalent ranksSeekadett

Fahnenjunker (short Fhj or FJ, English: officer cadet; lit. colors junker) is a military rank of the Bundeswehr and of some former German armed forces. In earlier German armed forces it was also the collective name for many Officer aspirant ranks. It was established by the Presidential order of the Federal president on rank insignia and uniforms of soldiers[1]


Fahnenjunker is the entrance rank to the Officer Aspirant career. According to the salary class it is equivalent to the Unteroffizier ohne Portepee ranks Unteroffizier of the army or the air force, and Maat (rank) of Deutsche Marine. It is also grouped as OR-5 in NATO, equivalent to Sergeant, Staff Sergeant in the US Armed forces.

In army context NCOs of this rank were formally addressed as Herr/ Frau Fahnenjunker also informally / short Fahnenjunker.

The sequence of ranks (top-down approach) in that particular group is as follows:
Unteroffizier ohne Portepee

Preceded by
junior Rank
Bundeswehr Logo Heer with lettering.svg Bundeswehr Logo Luftwaffe with lettering.svg
Succeeded by
senior Rank

Rank insignia[]


An officer candidate's career is indicated by the enlisted rank with a thin silver cord on the shoulder strap in the army and the air force, and with the golden nautical star on the shoulder strap and sleeve in the Deutsche Marine.

The rank insignia of Fahnenjunker consist of shoulder straps, bordered by a golden braid that is open to the sleeve seam. Fahnenjunker of the air force wear additional Air Force wing on the open end of the braid. The rank insignia on field- and battle dress are in black colour.

Already below the lowest officer designated rank "Fahnenjunker" any military person, assigned to an officer career, has to wear additionally to the particular rank the two capital letters “OA”, indicating to the “Officer Aspirant” career.

Bundeswehr Logo Heer with lettering.svg Bundeswehr Logo Luftwaffe with lettering.svg German Navy
Flag of Germany.svg DH154-Oberfähnrich.png HD H 31a Fähnrich Pi.svg HD H 21a Fahnenjunker FJg.svg LD B 33a Oberfähnrich.svg LD B 31a Fähnrich.svg LD B 21a Fahnenjunker.svg MDS 33a Oberfähnrich zur See Trp.svg MDJA 33a Oberfähnrich zur See Trp Lu.svg MDS 31a Fähnrich zur See Trp.svg MDJA 31a Fähnrich zur See Trp Lu.svg MDS 21a Seekadett Trp.svg MDJA 21a Seekadett Trp Lo.svg
HA OS5 33a Oberfähnrich PzGren.svg HA OS5 31a Fähnrich HLog.svg HA OS5 21a Fahnenjunker PzGren.svg LA OS5 33a Oberfähnrich.svg LA OS5 31a Fähnrich.svg LA OS5 21a Fahnenjunker.svg MA OG5 33a Oberfähnrich zur See.svg MA OG5 31a Fähnrich zur See.svg MA OG5 21a Seekadett.svg
Distinction Oberfähnrich
(Senior cadet sergeant)
(Cadet sergeant)
(Officer cadet
senior grade)
(Senior aviation cadet)
(Aviation cadet)
(Officer cadet
senior grade)
Oberfähnrich zur See
(Senior midshipman)
Fähnrich zur See

(Naval cadet)

Rangcode (OR-7) (OR-6) (OR-5) (OR-7) (OR-6) (OR-5) (OR-7) (OR-6) (OR-5)
NATO Cadet sergeant Midshipman
USAF Aviation cadet and Warrant Officer
RAF Acting pilot officer


Branch Heer - decal for helmet 1942.svg German Army & COA Luftwaffe eagle gold.svg Luftwaffe Kriegsmarine insignia casco.svg Kriegsmarine Flag of the Schutzstaffel.svg Waffen-SS
Insignia None.svg Heer-Oberfähnrich.svg Heer-Fahnenjunker-Feldwebel.svg Heer-Fähnrich.svg Heer-Fahnenjunker-Unteroffizier.svg None.svg None.svg None.svg None.svg None.svg None.svg None.svg
Distinction Fahnenjunker-
Oberfähnrich zur See Fähnrich zur See Seekadett SS-Standartenoberjunker SS-Standartenjunker SS-Oberjunker SS-Junker

See also[]


  1. ^ The Federal president (publisher): Order of the Federal president (de: Bundespräsident) on rank insignia and uniform of soldiers (short title: BPräsUnifAnO), issued July 14, 1978.
  2. ^ Langenscheidt´s Encyclopaedic Dictionary of the English and German language: „Der Große Muret-Sander“, Part II German-English, Second Volume L–Z, 8th ion 1999, ISBN 3-468-01126-1; p. 1.381