Greece receives first modernized P-3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft

The Hellenic Navy has received its first modernized P-3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft from Lockheed Martin, the Greek Defense Ministry said.

Greece receives first modernized P 3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft PIC 2 US Navy Aviation Machinist directs a P-3 Orion to a parking spot (Picture source: US Air Force)

The Lockheed P-3 Orion is a four-engine turboprop anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft developed for the United States Navy and introduced in the 1960s. Lockheed based it on the L-188 Electra commercial airliner.

Over the years, the aircraft has seen numerous design developments, most notably in its electronics packages. Numerous navies and air forces around the world continue to use the P-3 Orion, primarily for maritime patrol, reconnaissance, anti-surface warfare and anti-submarine warfare.

“The modernization of the aircraft will satisfy the Navy’s needs at least until 2040… in the Aegean Sea and Eastern Mediterranean regions” Defense Minister Evangelos Apostolakis said.

US Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt, who was also present at the event, said that Greece and the US have “discussed the opportunities that exist to find low-cost solutions to sustain and enhance Greek military capability.”

“The Greek defense industry is uniquely positioned to provide material solutions for the country’s national security requirements while at the same time leveraging Greece’s geopolitical relationships and location to once again become a major regional player,” he added.