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Acquisition of P-8A Poseidon aircraft approved

A new surveillance aircraft will play an important role in maritime protection for Australia."

Funding has recently been approved for the acquisition of eight Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft. The purchase should ensure Australia is able to conduct future maritime operations with maximum effectiveness, keeping country borders safe.

These impressive aircraft are designed for maritime surveillance, anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface warfare. Additionally, they're able to travel vast distances in order to gather intelligence and conduct broad-area maritime scans.

Boasting an internal fuel capacity of nearly 34 tonnes, the aircraft has a range of up to 7,500 kilometres - an important feature for surveillance operations.

The Australian Poseidon aircraft will patrol Australia's marine jurisdiction, an area of over 2.5 million square kilometres - almost 4 per cent of global oceans. The first aircraft is set to be delivered in 2017, with others coming over the following years. 

Support facilities are being constructed at Royal Australian Air Force base Edinburgh in South Australia, in order to maintain the aircraft throughout operational life.

The purchase of the Poseidon aircraft does mean the retirement of the AP-3C Orions, aircraft that have been in service with the Australian Air Force for over forty years. New Zealand will continue to operate a variant of the aircraft in similar roles to Australia.

New Zealand operates the P-3K variant and is currently upgrading the equipment on board the aircraft. Additionally, ground systems will also receive upgrades to support the aircraft,

The modernisation of Australia's Air Force is progressing steadily, with the F-35 multi-role jets ready to replace ageing F/A-18 aircraft. New Seahawk helicopters have begun operations with the Navy, in a similar maritime surveillance role to the Poseidon, albeit on a smaller scale.

A US Navy P-8A aircraft has flown to Australia to conduct exercises with the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Australian Navy. These exercises will help to familiarise Australian personnel with the aircraft before delivery in 2017.

Interconnect Systems has a comprehensive background in both defence and aerospace engineering, being an industry leader for more than 20 years.

It provides electrical interconnect products and solutions, including cable and wire harness manufacture.

For more information on cable harness solutions, contact Interconnect Systems today on 1800 812 214.

By Phillip Shelley

Interconnect Systems

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