Argentina acquired four P-3 Orion aircraft from Norway – report

Maritime patrol aircraft should be received by the Argentine Navy from October

Argentina is about to have an important military reinforcement in its armed forces. The country’s government reportedly concluded an agreement at the end of August to purchase four second-hand Lockheed P-3 Orion maritime patrol aircraft from the Royal Norwegian Air Force, according to Breaking Defense.

The aircraft valued at US$ 67 million will be destined for the Argentine Navy and the first two aircraft could be delivered as early as October.

The aircraft acquired are three P-3C models configured for maritime surveillance missions and one P-3N for search and rescue operations. The Argentine Ministry of Defense or other official sources have not yet confirmed the acquisition.

Buenos Aires’ interest in Norway’s retired P-3s had been known for some time. Last month, for example, the United States State Department urgently asked the House of Representatives and the Senate in Washington to authorize the sale of Norwegian aircraft to Argentina.

In the same month, authorization was granted – along with authorization for Argentines to purchase up to 38 F-16 fighters from Denmark.

Argentine P-3B Orion (AA)

Modernized aircraft

Norway removed its last P-3 from service in June. In place of the old planes based on the L-188 Electra II commercial turboprop, the Scandinavian country’s air force took delivery of the P-8A Poseidon, which uses the Boeing 737-800 NG platform.

Although they have been retired from the active fleet, Norway’s P-3C/Ns are relatively up to date. The aircraft underwent revitalization and modernization processes between 2009 and 2016, before Oslo decided to purchase the P-8s.

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The Argentine Navy is one of three operators of the P-3 Orion in Latin America – the others are the Brazilian Air Force and the Chilean Navy.

The four aircraft of this type available in Argentina, from the P-3B series acquired in 1997, however, have been operating with limitations for many years due to the difficulty in keeping them up to date with maintenance.


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