Australia’s newest maritime surveillance aircraft, the RAAF’s 11th P-8A Poseidon, has been welcomed into the Royal Australian Air Force at a ceremony in Seattle, USA.
FILE PHOTO (March 2019): A Royal Australian Air Force P-8A Poseidon drops a life raft during training. Photo by Corporal Brendan Kwaterski.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said it marked another milestone in this important project to enhance Australia’s maritime security.
“The P-8A Poseidon aircraft is a cutting-edge aircraft that will conduct tasks including anti- submarine warfare, maritime and overland intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, and support to search and rescue missions,” Minister Reynolds said.
“The arrival of the latest aircraft provides the government with enhanced flexibility to support multiple operations and will play an important role in maintaining border security.”
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said the government’s continued investment in the Poseidon program was creating more Australian jobs and opportunities for Australian small businesses.
“We are committed to creating jobs in our defence industry, and this project is directly creating 120 jobs in South Australia,” Minister Price said.
“Already, more than 4000 Aussies have contributed to the broader infrastructure build at RAAF Base Edinburgh where the aircraft will be located.
“Australian small businesses will have opportunities to get involved in sustaining these aircraft.”
This 11th aircraft is now undergoing verification and validation flying in the United States before joining the rest of the fleet in Australia, based at RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia.
Ten of the total 12 aircraft are already operating in Edinburgh, with the remaining two aircraft expected to arrive in Australia by January next year.