Showing posts with label Poseidon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Poseidon. Show all posts

23 February, 2024

RAF Poseidon aircraft conducts training in Iceland

A Poseidon P8 Maritime Patrol Aircraft based at RAF Lossiemouth has conducted training with the United States Navy and the Icelandic Coast Guard flying from Keflavik Iceland.

The Poseidon from 120 Squadron, a part of the RAF Poseidon Force, conducted training as part of Exercise Icelandic Falcon.  Also taking part was a second P8 flown by the US Navy’s Patrol Squadron 9 (VP-9), the “Golden Eagles”. This squadron is based at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington on the US west coast.  

The RAF objective of the exercise was to continue the development of overseas training by the Poseidon Force as they approach Full Operating Capability. The deployment was also part of the Force’s Agile Combat Employment Capability development. This was demonstrated by the aircraft deploying with 13 aircrew to conduct the sorties and eight ground engineers to maintain and prepare the aircraft.

Another element of the exercise was to conduct cooperative Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) training with the US Navy who were flying a second Poseidon. The Poseidon sorties were controlled from the Icelandic Coast Guard-operated Control and Reporting Centre (CRC) at Keflavik. This CRC is integrated into the wider NATO Air defence system.

“Ex Icelandic Falcon is a high-value training event providing the CXX Squadron crew the opportunity to work closely with our Allies in the North Atlantic theatre.  

Squadron Leader ‘Barbs’ Barber, RAF Detachment Commander said: "We were excellently hosted by the Icelandic Coast Guard and worked closely with the US Navy to conduct Anti-Submarine Warfare training missions to improve our interoperability and ability to operate in cold climates.  The RAF Poseidon engineering team did a great job in ensuring the jet performed as expected throughout the detachment and the air and ground crews gained a huge amount of experience from this deployment."

02 December, 2023

Canada is purchasing 14 P-8A Poseidon aircraft for the Royal Canadian Air Force

Earlier this week Canadian officials confirmed the country had finalized a deal with Boeing to buy up to 16 P-8A Poseidon aircraft for the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF). Fourteen multi-mission aircraft will be procured, with options for an additional two jets. 

The P-8A will replace Canada’s current maritime patrol aircraft, the CP-140 Aurora, which has been in service for more than 40 years. As it ages, the CP-140 aircraft is becoming increasingly difficult to support, expensive to sustain, and less operationally relevant in comparison to the threats against which it must defend. The purchase of the P-8A aircraft will allow Canada to seamlessly transition to the replacement capability, ensuring the nation can continue to meet its domestic needs and international obligations.

After significant engagement and thorough analysis, we are confident that the P-8A delivers the best anti-submarine and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities for our country. The aircraft will operate seamlessly with allies. This platform is a proven capability that is operated by all our Five Eyes allies—the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand—as well as other defence partners.

12 September, 2023

RAF conducts torpedo training off the coast of Scotland

An RAF Poseidon crewed by 120 Squadron has been conducting torpedo training in the Moray Firth.

The aircraft dropped an inert torpedo into the sea as part of an exercise to train the crews in anti-submarine warfare.

Crews regularly practice dropping torpedoes in the simulator, however, live training such as this gives aircrew and ground crew the opportunity to hone their skills and demonstrate the correct procedures in real life. The recoverable exercise torpedo, or ‘REXTORP’ was then recovered by weapons specialists on board a maritime support vessel and returned to RAF Lossiemouth.

This exercise precedes the release of tomorrow’s episode of ‘Top Guns’, a Channel 4 documentary which will take viewers ‘behind the wire’ of RAF Lossiemouth and the Poseidon, showing how such a mission requires a full-team effort from station personnel, including armourers, engineers, and aircrew.

Wing Commander Livesey, Officer Commanding 120 Squadron said:  “Dropping a torpedo from Poseidon is a complex task which requires support across a large team. As we continue to grow the Poseidon Force, we will routinely undertake events such as these, to improve the lethality of Poseidon, enabled by those across the Whole Force at RAF Lossiemouth and beyond”.

The P-8A Poseidon is a Maritime Patrol Aircraft employed by the UK to carry out the roles of Anti-Submarine Warfare, Anti-Surface Warfare, and long-range Search and Rescue. Based on the Boeing 737 next-generation aircraft, it is fitted with a suite of cutting-edge sensors capable of detecting and tracking submarines and surface vessels.

01 September, 2023

RAF's P8 Poseidon aircraft playing a crucial role in protecting the North Sea from Russian navy ships

P8 Poseidon operations in August 2023

As part of their ongoing role to protect UK waters, P8 Poseidon aircraft and crews from RAF Lossiemouth have been working with the Royal Navy to monitor Russian vessels in the North Sea and North Atlantic.

The RAF’s specialist maritime reconnaissance aircraft conducted regular sorties throughout August, working closely with the Royal Navy and NATO to track a range of Russian vessels operating in close proximity to the UK. This included flying 24 hours a day for multiple days, enabled by support personnel at RAF Lossiemouth across the Whole Force within Team Lossie.

Several vessels were associated with the Russian Navy Day, which was held in St Petersburg on 30th July, others joined from the High North. Incorporating a variety of warships, Poseidon tracked and photographed Corvettes Boikiy and Grad, Cruiser Marshal Ustinov, the Udaloy-class Destroyer Severomorsk, and others.

The Poseidons flew from their home base of RAF Lossiemouth in Moray, northern Scotland and maintained a close watch on the vessels. These surveillance missions provide a greater understanding of the Russian Navy’s behaviour to help predict future activity and serves as a deterrent to ensure they do not enter UK waters.

The aircraft is flown by both 120 and 201 Squadrons and enabled by a multitude of units including 201 Squadron Engineering and the Tactical Operations Centre. A multi-role maritime reconnaissance aircraft, equipped with a range of modern sensors which give it world leading search and tracking capabilities. One of these is acoustic tracking for which sonobuoys are dropped from the aircraft to provide a network of sensors that relay acoustic data to the aircraft.

"This has been a very busy period for the team from across Poseidon and RAF Lossiemouth, once again generating live operations from UK soil. I am immensely proud of how they all stepped up to the task and just delivered in a highly professional way. The deterrence we have enabled in recent days is important to the UK and NATO, with this a key reason for why Poseidon hold operational readiness 365 days a year."

Wing Commander Livesey
Officer Commanding 120 Squadron

The crews worked closely with HMS Portland, which enabled constant monitoring from both the sea and air. During this period RAF Typhoon aircraft were also launched to intercept Russian aircraft that was believed to be working with the Russian Navy vessels.

With their collective arrays of powerful sensors for locating and tracking, the submarine-hunting frigate and maritime patrol aircraft form a formidable duo for locating and monitoring operations, allowing for constant surveillance from the sea and air.

Having detected a vessel, the aircraft communicated the position, allowing a warship to intercept and track it.

06 March, 2023

RAF Lossiemouth Poseidons arrive in Sicily for NATO Exercise DYNAMIC MANTA

Royal Air Force Poseidon jets from RAF Lossiemouth have arrived in Sicily to participate in a major NATO training exercise.

Operating from Naval Air Station Sigonella in Sicily, Exercise DYNAMIC MANTA will see CXX Squadron join aircraft and personnel from 9 allied nations for two weeks of anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare training. 

Held yearly, the maritime exercise provides participants with a complex and challenging warfare environment to enhance their interoperability and proficiency in maritime patrol operations.

Squadron Leader Birchall, Detachment Commander CXX Squadron said:  "The high-end training and complex exercise environment offered by Dynamic Manta combined with the opportunity to share best practise with so many other partners and allies is invaluable. Our presence here also demonstrates the UK’s commitment to maritime security and deepening cooperation with our NATO allies.

13 December, 2022

Boeing delivers first P-8A Poseidon to Royal New Zealand Air Force

Last week New Zealand received the first of four Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft direct from the manufacturer during a ceremony at the Museum of Flight.

“As a maritime nation, delivery of the P-8A will ensure New Zealand maintains a patrol and response capability that will protect and support law enforcement in our Exclusive Economic Zone and the Southern Ocean,” said Sarah Minson, acting Deputy Secretary Capability Delivery, New Zealand Ministry of Defence. “The P-8A will also assist our South Pacific neighbours and deliver long-range search and rescue capability.”

The milestone comes four years after the New Zealand Government entered into an agreement with the U.S. Navy for the P-8A.

“The unmatched, multi-mission maritime patrol capabilities of the P-8 will provide New Zealand the ability to extend their reach into the Pacific and beyond,” said Philip June, vice president and program manager, P-8 Programs. “New Zealand joins eight other global customers including nearby Australia that have selected or already operate the P-8 and benefit greatly from its long-range maritime surveillance and warfare capabilities.”

12 July, 2022

Boeing Delivers 150th P-8 Maritime Patrol Aircraft

First deliveries to New Zealand, Korea and Germany are scheduled for 2022, 2023 and 2024 respectively.

The newest Boeing P-8 maritime patrol, reconnaissance aircraft took to the skies over Puget Sound bringing the total number of P-8s delivered to 150. The 150th multi-mission P-8 will be operated by Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) One based at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland.

“There are now 150 P-8s around the world delivering confidence and an unmatched capability to our global customers,” said Stu Voboril, vice president and program manager, P-8 Programs. “Our focus has been, and will be, on delivering the world’s best maritime patrol aircraft.”

Amassing more than 450,000 mishap-free flight hours, the global P-8 fleet includes 112 aircraft delivered to the U.S. Navy, 12 to Australia, 12 to India, nine to the United Kingdom and five to Norway. The aircraft are designed for anti-submarine warfare; anti-surface warfare; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and search and rescue.

06 July, 2022

Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik Expand Partnership to Support German P-8A Poseidon Fleet

 Boeing, ESG Elektroniksystem- und Logistik-GmbH and Lufthansa Technik today signed a three-party agreement that reinforces joint efforts to support Germany’s new P-8A Poseidon fleet. With the new agreement, Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik will be the team responsible for executing the P-8A sustainment program in Germany.

“We are expanding our partnership with ESG and Lufthansa Technik in the form of a three-party agreement that will allow us to best support our German customer and the operational needs of the German Navy”, said Indra Duivenvoorde, Senior Director, Boeing Government Services Europe & Israel. “This partnership demonstrates our commitment to directly supporting our customer locally with German industry primes.”

The new agreement builds on two separate Memoranda of Understanding that were signed separately with ESG and Lufthansa Technik in 2021 and now involves all three parties, outlining additional detail regarding each company’s role in the German P-8A program.

"This agreement underlines our joint performance promise and our commitment to provide the Bundeswehr with urgently needed capabilities”, said Christoph Otten, CEO ESG. “At the same time, we see this as a special obligation to proactively contribute our capabilities and competencies to the programme as a long-standing technology and innovation partner of the German Armed Forces and the Naval Aviation Command, particularly in the areas of systems integration, aviation certification or secure communication.”

06 June, 2022

Boeing teams up with local aviation industry to promote P-8A Poseidon for the Canadian Multi-Mission Aircraft (CMMA) requirements....

Boeing and several Canadian industry partners announced their intent to collaborate to provide the capability and sustainability of the proven P-8A Poseidon for the Canadian Multi-Mission Aircraft (CMMA) requirement.

Team Poseidon, consisting of CAE, GE Aviation Canada, IMP Aerospace & Defence, KF Aerospace, Honeywell Aerospace Canada and Raytheon Canada, forms the cornerstone of a Canadian P-8 industrial footprint. The team builds on 81 Canadian suppliers to the platform and to more than 550 Canadian suppliers across all provinces contributing to Boeing's annual CAD $5.3 billion in economic benefit to Canada, supporting more than 20,000 Canadian jobs.

The Boeing P-8A is a proven military off-the-shelf solution with nearly 150 aircraft delivered to five nations to date. The P-8 will improve Canada’s capability to defend its northern and maritime borders while ensuring interoperability with NORAD and NATO allies.  As a leading platform for reducing the environmental impact of military aircraft, the P-8 can operate on a 50% blend of sustainable aviation fuel today with aspirations to move toward 100% with investment in new technology.

“As a dedicated partner of Canadian industry for more than a century, Boeing is proud to bring together a world-class team of companies in support of our P-8 offering to Canada,” said Heidi Grant, president, Business Development, Boeing Defense, Space & Security and Government Services. “Together, we will bolster Canada’s aerospace and defence
industry through a 100% Industrial and Technical Benefits commitment if awarded the CMMA contract.”

11 August, 2021

Norway’s First P-8A Poseidon Performs Maiden Fligh

The first of five Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft for Norway performed its maiden flight yesterday, Aug. 9. The aircraft took off at 10:03 a.m. Pacific time and flew for 2 hours, 24 minutes, reaching a maximum altitude of 41,000 feet during the flight from Renton Municipal Airport to Boeing Field in Seattle.

The first flight marks the next phase of the production cycle of this aircraft as it is moved to the Installation and Checkout facility, where mission systems will be installed and additional testing will take place before final delivery to the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency (NDMA) later this year.

“This inaugural flight is an important milestone for Norway, and the Boeing team remains committed to delivering the P-8 fleet to the NDMA on schedule,” said Christian Thomsen, P-8 Europe program manager. “The P-8 is a capability that will help Norway improve anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, and search-and-rescue missions, in addition to fostering valuable regional collaboration and interoperability with NATO nations.”

The five P-8As will eventually replace Norway’s current fleet of six P-3 Orions and three DA-20 Jet Falcons. The Royal Norwegian Air Force currently operates its P-3s from Andoya Air Station. With the introduction of the P-8s, flight operations will move to new facilities at Evenes Air Station.

To date, Boeing has delivered 136 P-8 aircraft to the U.S. Navy, the Royal Australian Air Force, the Indian Navy and the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force. Norway is one of eight nations that have selected the P-8A as their maritime patrol aircraft, along with the United States, India, Australia, the United Kingdom, Korea, New Zealand and Germany.

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15 July, 2021

Indian Navy gets its 10th Boeing P-8I Poseidon

The Indian Navy’s long-range maritime reconnaissance anti-submarine warfare capabilities have been extended with the delivery of the country’s 10th P-8I Poseidon aircraft in recent days.

This latest addition to the fleet will form an integral part of the Indian Navy’s capabilities. The other aircraft in the fleet have surpassed 30,000 flight hours since it was inducted in 2013, the aircraft's manufacturers, Boeing has revealed. 

This is the second aircraft to be delivered under an option contract for four additional aircraft that the Indian Ministry of Defence awarded in 2016. The Indian Navy was the first international customer for the P-8, which is also operated by the U.S. Navy, the Royal Australian Air Force and the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force.

09 July, 2021

£230m boost for RAF submarine-hunter fleet

A contract worth over £230 million for the RAF’s Poseidon Maritime Aircraft fleet has been signed with Boeing Defence UK (BDUK) creating more than 150 UK jobs.

The majority of the 153 BDUK jobs will be based at RAF Lossiemouth – the home of the Poseidon fleet – and will provide aircraft maintenance support and personnel alongside a comprehensive training package for aircraft crews. The remaining 46 jobs will be spread across sites at Bristol, Yeovil and Gosport.

Specialising in anti-submarine warfare, the Poseidon (P-8A) is the RAF’s multi-role maritime patrol aircraft. Working alongside the Royal Navy and close maritime allies such as the United States and Norway, Poseidon locates, identifies and tracks potentially hostile submarines operating around UK waters.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:

"Our new Poseidon fleet continues to grow from strength to strength and is already defending the UK’s maritime interests at home and abroad.

This contract with Boeing Defence UK secures our critical submarine-hunting aircraft capabilities whilst also creating a home-grown training enterprise and creating over 150 British jobs."

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said:

"This contract award and the creation of more than 100 jobs at RAF Lossiemouth is another great example of the benefits UK defence investment brings to Scotland.

The Moray station’s fleet of Poseidon submarine hunting aircraft are vital to maintaining the security of the UK and our NATO allies. And the prosperity generated by defence employment in Scotland, alongside the UK Government’s Plan for Jobs, will help us build back better from the pandemic."

This latest contract builds on the £470 million investment that the Poseidon programme has already driven to RAF Lossiemouth and the local area, creating and sustaining jobs and boosting the local economy.

The Poseidon fleet is operated from a new £100 million facility at RAF Lossiemouth, opened in September 2020. Over 300 jobs were supported during the facility’s construction. The facility has a three-bay hangar, accommodation for squadrons, training, mission support and two state-of-the art flight simulators.

RAF Lossiemouth has also undergone a £75 million upgrade to the runway and other operating surfaces. It will be the future home of the UK’s fleet of Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning surveillance aircraft, Scotland’s crucial role in UK and NATO defence and security.

DE&S P-8A Poseidon team leader, Malcolm French said: "I am extremely proud of the P-8A delivery team and what is yet another example of great delivery by DE&S. Placed to a tight timescale, and encompassing exacting requirements, this contract helps enable the full range of capability that Poseidon brings to be realised, sees our modern aircraft fully supported, and our personnel being trained from state-of-the-art facilities."

Nine Poseidon, based on the Boeing 737-800, have already been ordered from Boeing by the UK. Five aircraft named the ‘Pride of Moray’, ‘City of Elgin’, ‘Terence Bulloch’, ‘Spirit of Reykjavik’ and ‘Fulmar’ are all now operating out of Lossiemouth, with four more to come later this year.

The new investment in the Poseidon fleet is supported by the £24 billion increase to defence spending over the next four years and will ensure the aircraft can continue to undertake its vital role in securing our seas and combating rapidly evolving threats.

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03 July, 2021

Germany agrees to buy 5 Boeing P-8A Poseidon Aircraft

The German Ministry of Defense signed a letter of offer and acceptance for five Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft under the U.S. government’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS) process. With this order, Germany becomes the eighth customer of the multimission maritime surveillance aircraft, joining the United States, Australia, India, the United Kingdom, Norway, Korea and New Zealand.

“Boeing is honoured to provide Germany with the world’s most capable maritime surveillance aircraft,” said Michael Hostetter, Boeing Defense, Space & Security vice president in Germany. “We will continue to work with the U.S. government, the German government and industry to establish a robust sustainment package that will ensure the German Navy’s P-8A fleet is mission ready.”

26 June, 2021

Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik Partner for Potential German P-8A Poseidon Fleet Support

Boeing signed agreements today with ESG Elektroniksystem- und Logistik-GmbH and Lufthansa Technik that outline joint efforts to explore potential areas of collaboration in systems integration, training, support and sustainment work. The signed memorandum of understanding may lead to more definitive agreements should Germany select the P-8A Poseidon as its next maritime surveillance aircraft.

“Together with ESG and Lufthansa Technik, we will offer indigenous and cost-effective support, training and maintenance solutions that will bring the highest operational availability to the German Navy to fulfill their missions,” said Dr. Michael Haidinger, president of Boeing Germany, Central & Eastern Europe, Benelux & Nordics. “Our partnership with ESG and Lufthansa Technik is another testimony to who we are and how we operate in Germany. We are shaping meaningful and long-term industry partnerships that impact the local economy.”

Boeing, ESG and Lufthansa Technik have identified opportunities to collaborate in a number of areas and will explore these in more detail, including training and simulation, cyber security, systems integration, certification, environmental compliance, communications systems, electronic attack and electronic protect systems, aircraft and engine sustainment, component support services, predictive maintenance analysis and logistics services.

12 May, 2021

Sixth RAF Poseidon named Guernsey's Reply

To mark the Bailiwick of Guernsey’s 76th ‘Liberation Day’, the Royal Air Force is honoured to announce that the UK’s sixth Poseidon MRA Mk1 Maritime Patrol Aircraft, ZP 806, will be known as ‘Guernsey’s Reply’ to honour the close bond between 201 Squadron, the island of Guernsey and Flight Lieutenant Herbert Machon OBE.

‘Herbie’ Machon left his home in Guernsey shortly before the German occupation during WWII and joined the British Military. He was destined to fly Spitfires in the RAF and, in honour and memory of his countrymen living under occupation, he named his Mk XVI Spitfire “Guernsey’s Reply”. Herbie sadly passed away in 2004 and 201 Squadron personnel had the privilege of acting as pallbearers at his funeral.

When 201 Squadron was disbanded in 2011, it was the last maritime squadron to retain a local affiliation and carried the moniker 'Guernsey's Own' commemorating a link forged in the challenging days just before the Second World War. It was an affiliation under the Municipal Liaison Scheme, announced on 5th May 1939 by the Air Minister Sir Kingsley Wood in Guernsey when he opened Guernsey Airport. The received wisdom is that it is the last surviving affiliation under that scheme. It is also considered to be the only RAF Squadron with such an historic link. Guernsey and 201 Squadron are proud of the fact that the link has survived and will continue to flourish.

01 April, 2021

The U.S. navy orders more 11 P-8A Poseidon spy aircraft from Boeing.

The U.S. Navy has put in a $1.6 billion production contract to Boeing for the next 11 P-8A Poseidon spy aircraft. Nine aircraft will join the U.S. Navy fleet and two will go to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), a cooperative partner in the P-8A joint programme since 2009. The contract brings the total number of U.S. Navy P-8A aircraft under contract to 128 and the RAAF total to 14.

“The P-8A continues to be an invaluable asset and these additional aircraft will help deliver expanded maritime patrol and reconnaissance capabilities to the fleet,” said Capt. Eric Gardner, program manager for the U.S. Navy’s Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Program Office.  

The P-8A is a long-range anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare aircraft used by the U.S Navy. It’s vital for intelligence gathering, surveillance reconnaissance and search and rescue. Deployed around the world, with 103 aircraft in service and more than 300,000 flight-hours, the P-8’s performance and reliability delivers confidence to customers operating in an uncertain world.

24 March, 2021

Royal Air Force plans more F35 aircraft as part of Integrated Review

The UK's Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has described the plans for the UK's Royal Air Force during his announcement of the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy. The review sees an increase in the F35 fleet size as well as retiring older types of aircraft such as the old, yet reliable C130 Hercules and E3D Sentry early warning plane. 

Wallace said of the Royal Air Force:

    "Royal Air Force is now deploying world-leading capabilities, P8, Rivet Joint, A400M and the latest Typhoons. The F35 – the world’s most capable combat aircraft – is now being deployed to frontline squadrons. In recognition of its battle-winning capabilities, we will commit to growing the fleet beyond 48 aircraft.

    the E3D Sentry, two generations behind its contemporaries, will be replaced by a more capable fleet of three E7 Wedgetail in 2023. These will be based at RAF Lossiemouth, transforming the UK Airborne Early Warning and Control capabilities, as well as contributing to NATO.

    as the transport fleet improves availability we will retire the C130-J Hercules in 2023, after 24 years of service. Twenty-two A400Ms, alongside the C17s, will provide a more capable and flexible transport fleet.

19 November, 2020

Indian Navy gets its 9th Boeing P-8I patrol aircraft

Boeing has delivered the 9th P-8I patrol aircraft to the Indian Navy this week, to help with long-range maritime reconnaissance anti-submarine warfare capabilities.  The ninth P-8I is the first aircraft to be delivered under an option contract for four additional aircraft that the Indian Ministry of Defence placed in 2016. The Indian Navy was the first and is the largest international customer for the P-8 and recently completed seven years of operating the fleet. In addition to maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare capabilities, P-8I have been deployed to assist during disaster relief and humanitarian missions.

“Our focus has been, and will be, on delivering the world’s best maritime patrol aircraft to the Indian Navy,” said Surendra Ahuja, managing director of Boeing Defence India. “The P-8I, with its exceptional maritime surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, versatility and operational readiness, has proven to be an important asset to the Indian Navy. We remain committed to supporting the modernization and mission readiness of India’s defence forces.”

03 November, 2020

Fourth RAF Poseidon MRA1 maritime patrol aircraft named

The fourth Royal Air Force Poseidon MRA1 maritime patrol aircraft, which will arrive at RAF Lossiemouth tomorrow, has been named Spirit of Reykjavik in honour of the role played by the Icelandic capital and its people in enabling the Allied victory during the Battle of the Atlantic.

During World War II a lack of range prevented RAF Coastal Command aircraft and crews from covering the North Atlantic ocean from their stations in the UK. In the area they couldn’t patrol, wolf packs of German U-boat submarines wreaked havoc on the Allied ships bringing essential food and supplies to the UK, without it could not have carried on the war effort. The introduction of the long-range B-24 Liberator bomber and a new airfield, seaplane base and refuelling port at Reykjavik which extended the range of RAF aircraft and Royal Navy escort vessels, had almost immediate effect as the German submariners lost their immunity from air attack in the North Atlantic air gap.

A black and white image showing Consolidated Liberator GR.IIIs flying over the sea.
Consolidated Liberator GR.IIIs of 120 Squadron rounding the mountains of Iceland after taking off from Reykjavik to escort an Arctic convoy. (Credit: Air Historical Branch)

13 August, 2020

RAF Jet set to English Channel to support Border Force.

A Royal Air Force P-8 Poseidon patrol aircraft has flown from its base at Kinloss Barracks on Wednesday morning to support Border Force Operations in the Channel.

This is part of a package of assistance from the Ministry of Defence to the Home Office as they tackle small boats crossing in the Channel.

The Defence Secretary has also authorised the use of the Shadow R1 aircraft. Both the P-8 Poseidon and the Shadow R1 will provide further essential support to the UK Border Force over the coming weeks subject to weather conditions and the Border Force’s requirements.

The aircraft will track vessels and pass information to the Border Force who will then take any appropriate further action. This task was initially under-taken on Monday by an Atlas A-400M aircraft, which flew from RAF Brize Norton to provide surveillance over the Channel.