Australia’s newest addition to our airforce, the P-8A Poseidon, touched down in Canberra today.
CAPTION: Australia’s first P-8A Poseidon at Defence Establishment Fairbairn, parked next to an 11 Squadron P-3 Orion – the aircraft it will replace. Photo by Flight Sergeant Kev Berriman.
Poseidon is a cutting-edge surveillance and anti-submarine aircraft which will dominate the skies around the nation’s coastline.
It will greatly enhance Australia’s ability to keep our borders secure and guard our maritime approaches.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne and the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Peter Dutton, together with the Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Leo Davies welcomed the new Poseidons in Canberra today.
“These new aircraft will strengthen our existing comprehensive maritime surveillance capability, helping secure Australia’s borders, play a vital role in the fight against people smugglers and providing state-of-the-art anti-submarine defences,” Mr Turnbull said.
“The P-8A Poseidon is a modern, highly reliable aircraft based on the commercially-proven Boeing B737, modified to incorporate the latest maritime surveillance and attack capabilities.
“This aircraft has been designed by the US Navy to dominate in anti-submarine warfare and will work closely with existing Australian Border Force assets to protect our border.
“This is the first of 15 aircraft the government committed to in the 2016 Defence White Paper, with 12 already contracted to be delivered by March 2020.”
P-8A Poseidons will be based and sustained at RAAF Base Edinburgh.
“The acquisition includes development and sustainment cooperation with the United States Navy and will keep the RAAF P-8A at the forefront of maritime patrol aircraft innovation for years to come,” Mr Turnbull said.
“The 15 P-8A Poseidons and up to seven MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft will together provide an advanced maritime surveillance capability to replace the ageing AP-3C Orion platform.”
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