The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has declared initial operating capability (IOC) for the Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft, Australia’s Defence Minister Marise Payne has announced. The milestone came five months ahead of the original schedule.
To date, six out of 12 ordered P-8As have arrived in Australia and home-based in RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia. Poseidon will replace the service's AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft which will soon retire from the role after nearly 40 years of service.
Chief of Air Force, Air Marshal Leo Davies said: “The acquisition of the P-8A represents a $5 billion investment in Australia’s maritime patrol capability and along with the MQ-4C Triton, will be a very capable and effective successor to the AP-3C Orion.”