The Turkish Navy received its first Alenia Aermacchi ATR-72-600 TMUA (Turkish Maritime Utility Aircraft) on July 24th, 2013, as part of an order of eight aircraft: two TMUAs and six TMPA’s (Turkish Maritime Patrol Aircraft).
Compared to the ATR72-600 basic platform the ATR-72 TMUA features new radios, an IFF (Identification Friend or Foe system) and a cabin area equipped with tactical tables and communications equipment for the crew. The aircraft can be easily reconfigured for the cargo-role. The first Turkish Navy (Türk Deniz Kuvvetleri) flying instructors just completed the training on the new aircraft at Alenia Aermacchi’s Training Centre in Caselle.
The second ATR-72-600 TMUA will be delivered within the first half of August. The following six ATR-72-600 TMPAs are being converted by TAI, Turkish Aerospace Industry in Ankara. Apart to some additional special mission equipment, TAI will integrate the Thales AMASCOS mission system, datalink Link 16, AIS (Automatic Identification System) and a weapons system. The first TMPA will be delivered to the Turkish Navy in February 2017 and deliveries will be completed by 2018.
The US Navy awarded Boeing a $1.98 billion contract for 13 additional P-8A Poseidon aircraft, continuing the modernization of U.S. maritime patrol capabilities that will ultimately involve more than 100 P-8As. Boeing announced the deal on August 1, 2013.
The US Navy has now ordered 37 of the 117 P-8As it is expected to buy. To date, 10 have been delivered. Based on the Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 commercial airplane, the P-8 provides anti-submarine, anti-surface warfare as well as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities. The P-8 is replacing the Navy’s P-3 aircraft.
Boeing assembles P-8As in the same facility where it builds all its 737s. The Poseidon team uses a first-in-industry in-line process that takes advantage of the efficiencies in the Next-Generation 737 production system. After initial assembly, the P-8A aircraft enter a separate mission system installation and checkout facility for final modifications and testing.
Initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) was completed in March; the US Navy announced July 1 that the P-8A program had passed IOT&E and the P-8A was ready for fleet introduction.
US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) received its eight of 14 upgraded Lockheed P-3 Orion on July 18th, 78 days ahead of delivery schedule, from Lockheed Martin.
During the so-called Mid-Life Update (MLU) the manufacturer replaces all fatigue life-limiting structures with enhanced-design components; and incorporates a new metal alloy that is five times more corrosion resistant than the original material. This way the operating costs of the P-3 are reduced. The MLU solution removes current aircraft flight restrictions and extends the structural service life of the P-3 up to 15,000 hours, adding more than 20 years of operational use.
Worldwide the Lockheed P-3 Orion is extensively used for maritime patrol and reconnaissance, homeland security, hurricane reconnaissance, anti-piracy operations, humanitarian relief, search and rescue, intelligence gathering, and antisubmarine warfare.
During fiscal year 2012, the CBP P-3 fleet seized or disrupted more than 117,765 pounds of cocaine valued at more than $8.8 billion, totaling 21.1 pounds seized for every flight hour, valued at $1.5 million for every hour flown.