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Montevideo, June 10th 2023 - 11:43 UTC



Argentina to buy 4 P-3s from Norway

Saturday, May 20th 2023 - 10:43 UTC
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The P-3 Orion is a military version of the Lockheed Electra C passenger 4-engined turboprop aircraft The P-3 Orion is a military version of the Lockheed Electra C passenger 4-engined turboprop aircraft

Argentina's Defense Ministry agreed to purchase four long-range Lockheed Martin P-3 Orion aircraft from Norway at a cost of US$ 67 million to increase the South American country's patrolling capabilities in the South Atlantic, it was reported Friday in Buenos Aires.

The units will be used by the Navy to control illegal fishing up to the 200th mile, which is reportedly on the rise.

Cabinet Chief Agustín Rossi told Congress last week that this acquisition would “allow a sustained [surveilllance] system in time for the next 20 years.”

The deal to be paid for over the next three years through Argentina's National Defense Fund was reached with the Norwegian Defense Materiel Agency (NDMA), according to Buenos Aires media, which also pointed out that Washington's nod was needed for the transaction since two of the four aircraft are currently in the United States for maintenance.

The other two aircraft are operational in Norway until June and July, at which time they will be sent to the United States before being delivered to Argentina.

The equipment installed on the aircraft and the maintenance tasks were included in the negotiations.

The Lockheed P-3 Orion was developed for the U.S. Navy for maritime patrol, reconnaissance, and anti-submarine warfare.

The Orion is based on the Electra passenger transport of the same company, is a low-wing monoplane, powered by four turboprops with a ventral hold for dropping bombs, torpedoes, or anti-submarine mines, and also has sub-wing supports that allow it to increase the offensive load, including anti-ship missiles.

An external characteristic of this aircraft is its elongated tail, where the magnetic anomaly detector is installed, for the search and detection of submarines. Its autonomy is 12 hours and its radius of action covers about 1,500 nautical miles (2,780 km).

Since their technology is fully digital, these aircraft perform photographic intelligence and ship identification missions. But in addition to their maritime patrol duties, they are prepared for anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare, which is why they have historically been considered powerful combat aircraft.

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