Amid Tensions with China, Australia to Acquire Two More P-8A Poseidon MPA

Australia will acquire an additional pair of Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, which will boost its fleet of the type to 14 examples.

The government has also approved sustainment funding for the current approved fleet of three MQ-4C Triton aircraft.

Photo: Australian Department of Defence/CPL Craig Barrett

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC said the announcement is part of the Morrison Government’s AU$270 billion investment in defence capability over the next decade.

“Together, the Poseidon and the Triton will provide Australia with one of the most advanced maritime patrol and response capabilities in the world,” Minister Reynolds said.

The additional Poseidon aircraft are to be purchased through the country’s existing cooperative program with the United States Navy. Minister Reynolds said being part of the program with the US Navy allows Australia to share in the benefits of their technical expertise and divide project costs.

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The Poseidon is a highly versatile, long endurance platform capable of a range of mission types including Maritime Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance and striking targets above and below the ocean’s surface.

The planned integration of the Long Range Anti-ship Missile (LRASM) into Air Force capability will also allow it to strike adversary surface vessels at significantly increased ranges.

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