In 1952, 816 Squadron participated in the Montebello Islands atomic weapons tests and in 1953 saw service in the Korean War.
Over the following 40 years, 816 Squadron was disbanded and re-formed several times as newer aircraft were introduced.
In 1967 the RAN acquired newer aircraft and Melbourne was extensively upgraded to handle the faster and heavier aircraft. 816 Squadron was re-equipped with Grumman S-2E Trackers.
On 5 December 1976, a fire was deliberately lit by a Fleet Air Arm member near the aircraft hangars at HMAS Albatross. The fire destroyed or seriously damaged twelve of the thirteen S-2E Trackers in the RAN's possession. Subsequently, 15 second-hand S2-G Trackers were purchased from the US Government and all remaining serviceable or repairable S2-E Trackers were upgraded to the S-2G standard. 816 Squadron continued to operate S-2Gs until the decommissioning of HMAS Melbourne in 1982, when the Squadron was again disbanded.
From 1984 until 1987, 816 Squadron operated Westland Wessex helicopters in an Army support role.
On 13 December 2012 it was announced that 816 Squadron will transition to the new MH-60R Seahawk, with 725 Squadron being
In summary then, the previous Aircraft flown in RAN Service include the Fairey Firefly FR.4, FR.5 & FR.6 an attack reconnaissance Aircraft, Fairey Gannet AS.1 & T.2 for Anti Submarine Warfare, de Havilland Sea Venom FAW.53 an all-weather interceptor, the Grumman S-2E & S2-G Tracker, an anti submarine warfare aircraft, and the Westland Wessex HAS 31B which was used for Army Support.
816 is currently active as a helicopter squadron equipped with S-70B-2 Seahawk helicopters, providing potent anti Submarine Warfare, Anti Shipping, Surveillance & Targeting capabilities to the fleet. The Squadron is based at HMAS Albatross (NAS Nowra) and primarily operates from the Navy's Adelaide class frigates. At the time of writing the squadron commander is Commander M.L. Pavillard