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Maritime Patrol Aircraft Symposium Concludes

NORDHOLZ, Germany – Today, a maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) symposium wrapped up three days of briefings and discussions on current challenges, recent national operational experiences, and improved cooperation.  The symposium was organized and hosted by Naval Air Wing 3 of the German Navy at Naval Air Station Nordholz.  

From letf to right: NOR P3, DEU P3, USA P8 Poseidon and USA P3Commander Maritime Air NATO (COMMARAIRNATO) Rear Admiral Thomas Ernst spoke at the inaugural event, addressing participants from nearly all MPA and maritime surveillance aircraft operating NATO Nations and partner nations, helping to strengthen the relationships within this small and specialized community.

"The particular value of such a symposium lies in the opportunity to discuss with other MPA operators in NATO current issues, concerns and challenges at the operational level,” said Rear Admiral Ernst.  "This is a time of shrinking defence capabilities as the consequence of declining budgets, but expanded demands on MPA to support NATO operations and assurance measures.  The close cooperation amongst our navies in MPA support must be further developed.”

The event coincided with the opening of a new runway at the naval air station, and featured static display aircraft such as the venerable P-3 Orion alongside the new U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon.  Also featured were the operational flight trainer and operational tactical trainer, acoustic analysis station and electronic warfare ground station, among the tools the German Navy uses to train and evaluate its MPA crews.  

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