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Thu, Jun 04, 2009

Aero-TV: On The Frontline -- CBP's P-3 AEW (Part 1)

CBP's P-3 AEW Crews -- These Folks 'Have Our Back'

Day and night, there are a number of heroic people and aviation assets prowling the skies for signs of those that would threaten America in one of many forms. One of those heroic groups is employed by US Customs and Border Protection, or CBP, for short.

CBP is one of the Department of Homeland Security’s largest and most complex components, with a priority mission of keeping terrorists and their weapons out of the US. It also has a responsibility for securing and facilitating trade and travel while enforcing hundreds of U.S. regulations, including immigration and drug laws.

One of the most critical tools in the CBP arsenal are the few Lockheed Orion P-3B AEWs in use around the world. The P-3 Airborne Early Warning (AEW) Detection and Monitoring (D&M) aircraft are the only law enforcement AEW aircraft in the world. They were developed to provide wide area search, increased command control, and communications capabilities.

CBP Air and Marine’s P-3s are high-endurance, all-weather, tactical turbo-prop aircraft, which are utilized primarily for long-range patrols along the entire U.S. border, and in source and transit zone countries, throughout Central and South America. The aircraft carries a crew of eight (pilot, copilot, flight engineer, and radar/sensor operators), are routinely sent on temporary duty to support the United States and foreign government initiatives to stem smuggling into the United States. With the escalation of terrorist threats and the commitment of DoD AEW assets in other regions of the world, CBP Air and Marine P-3s have also assumed a significant role in Homeland Security efforts.

Lockheed Orion P-3B AEW has a Vne of 300 knots, a service ceiling of 26,000 ft., a range of 3000 NM, a potential endurance of 12 hours, and a Max Gross Weight of 135,000 lbs.

Aero-TV Visits Some Unsung American Heroes... The Crews of CBP's P-3 AEW (Part 1)



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