Protecting maritime territories with Maritime Patrol Aircraft

The need for strategic protection of national waters has never been more prevalent with submarine incursions and piracy incidents on the increase. In order to meet these challenges an effective Anti-Submarine Warfare capability is required along with the ability to carry out a wide selection of Maritime ISR roles. 

These are the reasons behind Saab´s Swordfish Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA), on two brand new platforms – Bombardier's Global 6000 and Q400.

Selecting the correct platform for a nation’s MPA capability is crucial with flexibility being the constant in the MPA world. The Swordfish Maritime Patrol Aircraft solution is able to be integrated onto market leading jet and turboprop platforms. This ensures a solution without redundancy, where the operational capability matches the requirements. The high-end, Swordfish MPA mission system remains as potent as ever but can be installed onto the air platform that best serves national doctrine of the end-user. Whether it’s maritime surveillance or anti-submarine warfare, close to shore in the blue ocean, the Bombardier Global 6000 business jet and Q400 turbo-prop offer superior performance and an efficient mission footprint, says Jonas Härmä, Head of Sales and Marketing, Business Unit Airborne ISR.

Saab has nearly 80 years’ experience as an aircraft manufacturer and systems integrator as demonstrated by the success of the Gripen fighter, in operation with six countries, and the Erieye AEW&C system, in operation with eight countries on three (soon four) different aircraft platforms worldwide. A broad maritime portfolio including radars, sensors, torpedoes, navy vessels, Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) submarines and combat management systems, provides a fully interoperable networked capability with the freedom to select from the toolbox that works best for the customer.

Swordfish MPA system on two brand new platforms

Bombardier Global 6000
Swordfish MPA on the Global 6000 allows projection of maritime power from the air at significant distances from home base - in fact the platform is able to loiter on station for more than 8 hours at 1000 nautical miles (1852 km) – providing game-changing performance and endurance. Able to be equipped with torpedoes and other stores from wing mounted hard points, the aircraft is well suited to the low level environment; as well as a high dash speed it is also at ease at lower patrol speeds and undertaking the dynamic manoeuvres expected on MPA operations. The Bombardier Global family of aircraft have a legacy of successful adaption for special mission applications and provides cost efficient jet performance with substantial mission payload.

Bombardier Dash-8 Q400
The Q400’s combination of high cruise speeds, low-speed handling, economical operating costs and robust structure make it ideal to fulfil the MPA mission profile. Equally suited to littoral operations or blue water surveillance, it has a range of close to 3200 nm and max speed comparable to jet platforms at 329 knots. The long cabin at just under 18.8 metres is able to house up to six interoperable workstations from Saab. Designated observer stations, extensive sonobuoy payload and the ability to launch torpedoes ensure that the aircraft has the capability to undertake the most demanding of anti-submarine warfare tasks.


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