LONDON — Germany is extending the life of its P-3C Orion fleet in a deal with Airbus Defence and Space teamed with Lockheed Martin.
The two companies have signed a contract with the Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment to rewing the fleet of eight maritime patrol/anti-submarine warfare aircraft over the course of the eight year program.
Included in the mid-life update of the aircraft is a new outer wing, centre fuselage and horizontal stabilizers.
The US and several other countries that have already undertaken the replacement of P-3 wings.
The structures will be produced by Lockheed Martin in the US and shipped to the Manching, Germany, facilities of Airbus for integration, installation and checks.
Mark Jarvis, the director of P-3 programs at Lockheed Martin, the addition of the new wings will extend the "life of each German Navy by 15,000 hours."
First deliveries are expected to take place in November 2016.
Airbus already has the support contract for the eight German Navy P-3Cs acquired from the Dutch military in 2006.
The new wings are part of a wider program of updates planned for the German aircraft including mission avionics and an instrumental flight rules capability hike.