Oct 26, 2011 defense-aerospace.com
(Source: US Naval Air Systems Command; issued Oct. 25, 2011)
PATUXENT RIVER, Md. - The P-8A Poseidon successfully launched the first MK 54 torpedo during a test event in the Atlantic Test Range Oct. 13.
“The P-8A is advancing along a rigorous test schedule,” said Tony Schmidt, P-8A assistant program manager for Test and Evaluation. “The success of the first separation test of the MK 54 moves us one step closer to delivering the P-8A to the fleet on time.”
By using the Mission Computing and Display System aboard the P-8A, allowed the launching of a single torpedo from P-8A test aircraft, T-3, at 500 feet above water.
“It was a good flight and the systems worked exactly as expected,” said Lt. Larry Malone, P-8A Integrated Test Team pilot.
Unlike other platforms, the tactician performs the separation of stores and weapons from the P-8A.
“Though a large part of the team was not on the flight, the work done by the engineers, range support, and the test conductor was key to the success of the test," said Lt. Cmdr. Cecily Walsh, P-8A Integrated Test Team tactician, who praised the entire team for their part in the test exercise.
PMA-290 conducted initial torpedo release tests to verify safe separation of the MK 54 weapon from the P-8A. Future testing will include delivery accuracy, weapon integration, and end-to-end test.
"Through this milestone, the Navy has proved the successful integration of the extensive capabilities of the MK 54 lightweight torpedo into this next generation maritime surveillance aircraft," said Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems' Kevin Peppe, vice president of Seapower Capability Systems. "Our MK 54 torpedo is the Navy's tested and proven undersea warfare weapon, now arming the P-8 with a formidable capability to successfully execute anti-submarine warfare missions worldwide."
In addition to the MK 54 lightweight torpedo, Raytheon also equips the P-8 with its AN/APY-10 maritime, littoral and overland surveillance radar.