Corrie McKeague was 23 when he went missing in the early hours of 24 September 2016 after a night out in Bury St Edmunds.
Last year an inquest was told by police that they believe he climbed into a large bin which was then tipped into a bin lorry.
He was reported missing two days later, on 26 September, after his colleagues at RAF Honington were concerned they had not seen him.
Despite extensive searches his body has never been found.
The senior coroner for Suffolk, Nigel Parsley, told a pre-inquest hearing that “I'm very minded this will not become an inquiry into the police investigation.”
An independent review of the police investigation has previously been carried out in 2017.
There has already been an independent review of the police investigation. The inquest is an inappropriate place for a further review.
The independent review said the force completed a "thorough" investigation and explored all reasonable lines of inquiry.
The inquest will be heard in front of a jury at a date to be fixed, but it is likely to start in September.
Friday's hearing in Ipswich was attended remotely by Corrie McKeague's mother Nicola Urquhart, while his father Martin McKeague, and his wife Trisha, attended in person.