The U.S. Navy’s Patrol Squadron 40 (VP-40) completed a Safe-For-Flight evaluation on May 14 for acceptance of their first P-8A Poseidon, the culminating event of a six-month transition from the P-3C Orion.
Patrol Squadron 40 represents the 12th and final active component VP squadron to transition from the P-3C Orion to the state-of-the-art P-8A Poseidon platform, a process that began eight years ago with VP-16 aboard NAS Jacksonville.
“The Fighting Marlins lived up to the incredibly high standard set by both Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island and Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville squadrons,” said Capt. Erin Osborne, Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 10. “The ability of these units to learn a completely new aircraft and seamlessly integrate into the battlespace is a testament to the agility, dedication, and professionalism of our force.”
“The completion of all twelve active VP squadron transitions represents a landmark occasion in our storied branch of Naval Aviation,” said Rear Adm. Pete Garvin, Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance Group. “I am confident that the men and women of the Fighting Marlins of VP-40 will continue to display the same level of pride and professionalism as each of their predecessors. I remain very proud of their effort to fight to the finish and the distinction they brought upon themselves and our community during the final active duty P-3C deployment.”
The last P-3C to return from that deployment, bureau number 162776, now resides at the National Naval Aviation Museum at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida and Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Force (MPRF) leadership are in the planning stages of a formal ceremony and display.
Last week also marked another milestone for the Naval Aviation and the MPRF. On May 14, the U.S. Navy has received its 100th P-8A aircraft from Boeing Defense, Space & Security. Side number 555 is the 94th addition to the fleet’s inventory of mission-capable aircraft, with six additional jets serving in developmental/operational test and evaluation roles.
The P-8A is a proven long-range multi-mission maritime patrol aircraft capable of broad-area, maritime and coastal operations. It combines superior performance and reliability with an advanced mission system that ensures maximum interoperability in the battlespace.
With an impeccable service and safety record, the globally proven airframe recently surpassed 297,500 flight hours across the worldwide fleet.