The U.S. Navy has announced that its active duty patrol squadrons have successfully completed transition from the P-3C Orion to the newest maritime patrol aircraft P-8A Poseidon.
According to a recent service news release, the Patrol Squadron (VP) 40 Fighting Marlins has transitioned from the Lockheed P-3C Orion to the Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft.
VP-40 began the P-8A platform transition in November 2019 following its return to Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island after completing the Navy’s final active duty P-3C deployment. On this landmark deployment, the Fighting Marlins made significant contributions to international maritime security while conducting sustained operations from three continents, marking the conclusion of VP-40’s forward-deployed P-3C operations that began in 1968.
The squadron completed the last of its nine P-3C aircraft transfers with the delivery of aircraft 162776 to the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Fla., and then commenced P-8A transition training under the instruction of VP-30, the Navy’s Patrol and Reconnaissance Fleet Replacement Squadron based out of NAS Jacksonville. VP-30 has been conducting squadron transitions to the P-8A since 2012 utilizing a team of military and civilian maintenance and aircrew professionals.
With transition complete, VP-40 is now preparing to execute forward-deployed operations across the globe and across all Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance mission areas, including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, and search and rescue.
As The Drive previously reported, the Navy introduced the P-3A, originally known as the P3V-1, in 1962. The P-3C model began entering service in 1969 and subsequently went through a number of major upgrade programs. VP-40 first began flying the Orion in 1967, transitioning at the time from the SP-5B Marlin flying boat.