The first British P-8 Poseidon Maritime Patrol Aircraft has flown on a test flight.
The flight took place near Renton in the United States and the aircraft will be delivered in October this year.
The first of Britain’s new fleet of nine maritime patrol aircraft is airborne on its maiden flight. ✈️
— Royal Air Force (@RoyalAirForce) July 12, 2019
Recently, we reported that aircrew have commenced the flying phase of training to fly the Poseidon MRA Mk1.
Pilots, Weapons System Officers and Weapons Systems Operators entered the simulator and flying phase of their six-month course.
The personnel, from CXX Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth, are being trained by a mix of US Navy and RAF P-8A ‘seedcorn’ one-way exchange instructors on a course which covers a substantial range of topics.
The Poseidon is based on the Boeing 737-800NG aircraft, the supply chain for which is already supported by UK industry, providing several hundred direct UK jobs. UK manufacturers also provide specialist sub-systems for the P-8A, for example Marshalls (auxiliary fuel tanks), Martin Baker (crew seats), GE (Weapon Pylons) and GKN Aerospace (windshields).
In January, Boeing was awarded an almost $2.5 billion contract to produce 19 P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft for the US Navy, Norway and the United Kingdom.
Ten of the aircraft were for the US Navy, four for the UK and five for Norway.
The UK intends to procure 9 of the aircraft in total and had already ordered five. The January purchase brought the total UK order of P-8A Poseidon Maritime Patrol Aircraft up to 9.