The  Poseidon MRA1, named Fulmar, flew directly from Boeing Field near Seattle.

Nine Poseidon MRA Mk.1 aircraft have been ordered for the Royal Air Force.

The Royal Air Force say here that this is the first time that a new Poseidon has been delivered to Scotland straight from the factory and the crossing took just over eight hours.

“Its arrival represents another milestone in the development of Lossiemouth’s Maritime Patrol capability and it comes at a time of unprecedented submarine activity, close to UK waters. Poseidon MPA can react quickly to track potential threats over large areas of sea or ocean and defend our own submarine fleet.

The name Fulmar is a nod to RAF Lossiemouth’s Naval past. The Station was called HMS Fulmar, itself named after a hardy sea bird, between 1946 and 1972.”

A Poseidon Commander said in a news release:

“Monitoring and tracking all activity in seas around the United Kingdom is paramount to our security. The arrival of this latest aircraft helps to ensure that we have the continued capability to defend our waters and support our NATO partners.”

The Royal Air Force say on their website that Boeing’s Poseidon MRA1 (P-8A) is a multi-role maritime patrol aircraft, equipped with sensors and weapons systems for anti-submarine warfare, as well as surveillance and search and rescue missions. It features an APY-10 radar for high-resolution mapping, an acoustic sensor system, an electro-optical / IR turret and electronic support measures.

The aircraft can also be armed with a weapons system that includes torpedoes for engaging sub-surface targets.

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Why aren’t these operated by the Navy?


traditional vested interests I suspect. Don’t think the FAA have ever operated land based multi-engine aircraft, even WW2 it was RAF Coastal Command that had this role

Douglas Newell

Ooooohhh! That’s like throwing a live grenade into a room and running away!

Mark F

The navy have been asking that question for years.


It was all part of the 1937 agreement for the reformation of the Royal Navy Air Service (RNAS). The RNAS would be responsible for manning ship’s spotter aircraft as well as supplying the aircraft carriers. Seaplanes and maritime patrol aircraft would remain with the RAF.

Mark F

Yes Davey I’m aware of that but it hasn’t stopped the navy from pushing the fact that what used to be called the kipper fleet would be better off with them in the past.


I agree, the RN would and does understand ASW better than the RAF, but the RAF does not want to give up responsability to the RN as they still have this infiriority complex of being the junior service made up from the RFC and RNAS, or in modern understanding the AAC and FAA. As for WW2 and the Coastal Command, it was constantly made up off RAF cast off’s.

John Clark

More good news, deliveries are coming at a good pace now, I only hope the RAF are managing to keep a steady flow of P8 trained airman to fill out the ranks….

I’m quietly hoping for additional P8’s in the Defence review, there is certainly a requirement for a fleet of 18 now, especially with an increased submarine threat globally and if they buy Ground Radar pods for the fleet to replace Sentinel.


if the order was increased, could they all be based at Lossie? It is a very busy station now with 6x operational squadrons. when the USN Poseidons visit, they fly from Prestwick – does that tell us that Lossie either doesn’t have the space or is not the ideal location for ALL missions? With a fleet of 18 lets say, I’d expect a permanent detachment at Waddington or even the SW with Lossie being the MOB for servicing etc. Lossie isn’t a great launchpad for missions over the SW approaches, Bay of Biscay or the med

Supportive Bloke

I agree more are required.

18 would seem a bit optimistic.

12 might be a bit nearer the plausible.

The issue is critical mass and having to duplicate all of the support infrastructure. Also the minimum critical mass to make the per unit cost for the type cheaper. That might well predicate splitting the fleet or might mean that all the deep maintenance is done in one place?


12 may squeeze into Lossie – only 3 more. 18 may be different. i do get worried about squeezing more and more into one base. if a second mission is ISTAR and more are ordered, then Waddington as a secondary base definitely makes more sense. If Wedgetail is there too, then it will be 2nd MOB anyway even though 737 variants are different.

Captain P Wash



You can find a picture of 10 P8s (3 RAF 7 USN) all line up on the apron on the Lossiemouth Twitter page, Wouldn’t have a problem with 12 operating from there.

Daniele Mandelli

KInloss and St Mawgan for detachments.

Using Lossimouth for 4 out of 7 Typhoon squadrons plus P8 force plus Wedgetail force is just wrong.

I’d have Leeming and Kinloss with front line squadrons again personally.


Don’t forget the Wedgetails which will also be at Lossiemouth. . .

Barry Larking

The Royal Air Force say here that this is the first time that a new Poseidon has been delivered to Scotland straight from the factory and the crossing took just over eight hours. Some fligh, Fulmar. A well chosen name. A researcher tagged a Fulmar on a nest in the Orkney’s with a satellite tracker. 15 days later she recovered the bird from the nest when it returned. The tiny satelite responders usally pack up quickly exposed to the elements, but this one had not. The Fulmar had covered 2,800 miles, moving from Orkney west to Iceland, Greenland than down the… Read more »

Rob N

Does anyone know what sort of weapons these planes are armed with currently? I understand that they would be armed with US torpedoes and Harpoon. Or are they using Stingray?

Daniele Mandelli

I believe the Mk46 Torpedo. Gunbuster has covered this many times on UKDJ explaining how these are inferior to our own Stingray.

Paul T

You are Correct – Harpoon and MK54 Torpedoes will be Used,the Economics of Integrating Stingray etc don’t Stack up ATM.


We ought to at least double our buy of P8s, fit the Harpoons and forward base them in Gib, the ME, Diego Garcia and Singapore.

Sean Crowley

Scenery is amazing , never associated the UK with nature .

David Flandry

“The aircraft can also be armed with a weapons system that includes
torpedoes…” Is this more fitted for but not with nonsense, or what?