Tuesday, 24 May 2016 07:23
Australia’s first P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft has completed its maiden flight. The aircraft flew a short distance from Renton Airfield to Boeing Field in Washington State USA, to where the P-8A’s sophisticated mission systems will be installed as part of project AIR 7000.
RAAF P-8A Poseidon maiden flight. Australian Department of Defence picture.
The $5.4 billion P-8A program will provide Australia’s future manned maritime patrol and response aircraft capability, replacing in part the AP-3C Orion aircraft. The P-8A Poseidon is 39.5 metres long, has a maximum takeoff weight of 85,820kg and a wingspan of 37.6m. Powered by two jet engines, it has a top speed is 907km/h with a maximum range of 7,500km. With a saving of US$260m compared to the initial budget, the P-8A Poseidon aircraft were acquired through a cooperative program with the United States Navy and contracted to Boeing Defence Space and Security. A Royal Australian Air Force crew will fly the aircraft to Australia in late 2016 following post-production checks and acceptance.
Based on Boeing’s Next-Generation 737-800 commercial airplane, the P-8A offers the worlds’ most advanced anti-submarine, anti-surface warfare and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. The Navy has deployed four P-8A patrol squadrons since operations began in 2013.
Link to P-8A Poseidon MPA technical datasheet
See details of P-8 Poseidon: HERE