Airbus Defence and Space has completed the delivery of nine P-3 Orion anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft to Brazil, even as it obtained a contract from the country for the supply of three C295 search and rescue (SAR) aircraft.
The ninth P-3 aircraft has been shipped from Seville in Spain to the fleet’s base in Salvador de Bahi´a, Brazil.
Airbus has installed its fully integrated tactical system and a new suite of mission sensors, communications systems and cockpit avionics in the aircraft to be deployed by the Brazilian Air Force (FAB).
The operational life of the fleet has been extended with upgrades to engines and structures.
Brazil bought the nine aircraft from the US Navy in 2006. Three more were purchased to dismantle them and use their spare parts.
Airbus Defence and Space head of commercial for military aircraft Antonio Rodri´guez Barbera´n said: "This has been a large and complex programme and we are very proud of the work done in upgrading the Brazilian P-3 fleet. The FAB now has one of the most modern fleets in its class."
The P-3 fleet is expected to be deployed by the FAB in anti-submarine, maritime patrol and SAR missions.
Meanwhile, FAB has awarded a contract to Airbus to supply three C295 SAR aircraft and provide service support to them for five years.
Scheduled to be delivered by the end of this year, the latest contract will expand FAB’s C295 fleet to 15, Airbus said.
"We are very proud of this repeat order which demonstrates Brazil ´s high level of confidence in our light and medium aircraft family as well as confirming the C295 ´s demonstrated excellence in the SAR role," Barbera´n added.
Image: The ninth P-3 aircraft has been shipped from Seville in Spain. Photo: courtesy of Airbus Defence and Space.