Airbus MPA

TYPE: Maritime surveillance twin-jet.

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: International

PROGRAMME: Alenia Aeronaurica/Finmeccanica and EADS Military Aircraft revealed at Farnhorough Air Show in July 2002 that they had joined forces to submit proposal based on Airbus A320 to satisfy joint German/Italian MPA-R (Maritime Patrol Aircraft Replacement) requirement. Joint concept by EADS Deutschland (Ottobrunn) and EADS France (Toulouse). Ventral search radar, undernose EO/IR sensor; capacity for internal torpedo carriage in wing/body box; seven operator stations in cabin. Total development time expected to be five years.

Request for proposals issued in November 2002 by German-Italian management team, with Airbus offer anticipating production of 24 MPA320 aircraft (10 German and 14 Italian), as well as provision of training simulators and a complete package of logistic and customer support services. Contract award was expected in mid-2003 to permit first delivery in October 2008. Competing bids received by 26 July 2002 from Boeing, L-3 Communications and Lockheed Martin; result still awaited in mid-September 2003.

In second quarter of 2003, EADS Military Aircraft revealed MP A319; based on commercial A319, this version targeted at customers seeking smaller and less costly maritime patrol aircraft than the MPA320- MPA319 would feature ventral 'canoes' before and behind main landing gear in which weapons, including torpedoes and air-to-surface missiles, would be contained. Mission system equipment expected to include retractable radar and electro-optical sensor turrets in nose section. MPA319 customers will be able to specify IAE V25O0 or CFM International CFM 56 turbofan power plants.


Description for MPA 320 generally as for Airbus A320, except that below:

WEIGHTS AND LOADINGS:
Weight empty: manufacturer's 35,400 kg (78,044 lb)
operational 44,600 kg (98,326 lb)
Max weapon load 4,900 kg (10.803 lb)
Max fuel weight 27,200 kg (59.966 lb)
Max TO weight 77,000 kg (169,755 lb)
Max landing weight 66,000 kg (145.505 lb)
PERFORMANCE (estimated):
Turn radius, clean less than 1,850 m (6,070 ft)
Ferry range 4.200 n miles (7,778 km: 4,833 miles)
 

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