The programme to restore UK maritime patrol aircraft capability reached another milestone on 22nd July with the first weapon release from a British MRA1 Poseidon. The ability to both detect submarine targets and deliver torpedoes without warning at long ranges is one of the key advantages of the aircraft.
Maritime Patrol Aircraft
For the second time in 18 months, the Home Secretary formally requested assistance from the MoD to deal with migrants crossing the English Channel in small boats. Here we look at the background, recent actions and available options for government planners.
In two previous articles (written in 2017) we covered the background, procurement, design and equipping of the Poseidon MRA1 Maritime Patrol Aircraft being purchased by the RAF. With two of the nine aircraft having arrived in the UK in so far, here we provide an update on the progress of this project that is critical to UK naval operations.More
The axing of the troubled Nimrod MRA4 project in 2010 SDSR has left Britain unable to properly patrol its waters and left a serious gap in anti-submarine capability. In 2015 the government tacitly admitted its mistake and announced the plan to purchase nine Poseidon P-8A Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) from Boeing in the United States. In the first part of this article we will look at the programme and infrastructure behind its introduction into service, and the aircraft itself.
To compound the lack of a modern anti-ship missile for the RN surface fleet, there is also a worrying absence of airborne anti-ship capability both in the RN and the RAF. John Dunbar argues that such an important strategic asset represents good value for money, especially given the heavy investment in aircraft carriers and aircraft capable of delivering a modern generation of missiles.More
John Dunbar argues a re-branded Royal Navy Home Fleet would be understood both politically and publicly and would provide a much stronger basis to argue for the necessary resources to bolster protection of UK waters and economic interests.
In December 2014 Russia quietly signaled what maybe called the start of Cold War II when it issued a new military doctrine which lists NATO as its “main threat”. President Putin, a former KGB officer is determined to return Russia to the superpower status of the Soviet Union. Communist dogma may have gone but it has been replaced by nationalist expansionism and paranoia used to justify a military renaissance. Western nations are feeling this growing power by increasing numbers of Russian ships, aircraft and submarines to probing defences and even entering territorial waters.More