The Royal New Zealand Air Power (RNZAF) first Boeing-built P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol plane (MPA) carried out its maiden flight within the US forward of its deliberate supply later this 12 months. The check flight was carried out forward of the techniques fitout stage and adopted the official begin of development of the primary airframe in March this 12 months. In September 2020, the inaugural Royal New Zealand Air Power crew for the P-8A graduated coaching at Jacksonville, Florida. This crew will then qualify as instructors to coach the primary RNZAF crews again in New Zealand. The primary P-8A plane is due for supply in December 2022, with the remaining three to be delivered throughout 2023.

Boeing publicly recognized the Royal New Zealand Air Power as a possible buyer in 2008, as a alternative for its P-3 Orions, due for alternative in 2025. In April 2017, the U.S. State Division authorized the potential international army sale of as much as 4 P-8As with gear and assist, valued at US$1.46 billion. In July 2018, the New Zealand authorities introduced the acquisition of 4 P-8As. 4 P-8As have been ordered in March 2019. New Zealand has procured and operated U.S. produced P-3 MSA for over 40 years, New Zealand may have no issue transitioning its MSA power to the P-8A. The RNZAF is planning to function the sort for at the very least 30 years.


The primary of Royal New Zealand Air Power 4 P-8A Poseidon plane took to the skies within the US, finishing a check flight forward of techniques fitout. This plane might be delivered to Aotearoa New Zeland later this 12 months. (Picture Boeing)

The Boeing P-8 Poseidon is an American maritime patrol and reconnaissance plane developed and produced by Boeing Protection, Area & Safety, modified from the 737-800ERX. It was developed for the USA Navy (USN). The P-8 is a militarized model of the 737-800ERX, a 737-800 with 737-900-based wings. The fuselage is just like, however longer than, the 737-700-based C-40 Clipper transport plane in service with the USN. The P-8 has a strengthened fuselage for low-altitude operations and raked wingtips just like these fitted to the Boeing 767-400ER, as a substitute of the blended winglets obtainable on 737NG variants.

The P-8 operates within the anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASUW), and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) roles. It’s armed with torpedoes, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and different weapons, can drop and monitor sonobuoys, and might function at the side of different belongings, together with the Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton maritime surveillance unmanned aerial automobile (UAV). The P-8 is operated by the USA Navy, the Indian Navy, the Royal Australian Air Power, and the UK’s Royal Air Power. It has additionally been ordered by the Royal Norwegian Air Power, the Royal New Zealand Air Power, the Republic of Korea Navy, and the German Navy.