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A list of airplanes that can be perfect for Maritime Patrol operations in the Maldives

A lot of civilian passenger aircraft that are primarily designed to be used by airlines for commercial passenger flight can be converted to use for multiple purposes such as for maritime patrol. Different aircraft are specially modified to fit for the requirements needed by the operator. In a country like the Maldives, using an aircraft that is already been used for commercial flight operations can be highly beneficial as experienced personnel’s needed for the operation would be present and spare parts urgently needed can be readily available. Aircraft mainly used for commercial passenger operations in the Maldives are the De Havilland DHC6 Twin Otter, De Havilland Dash-8 and the ATR 42/72. Here you can find a list of modified versions of these type of aircraft presently used in other countries for maritime patrol and other purposes.

The DHC-6 Twin Otter


The DHC-6 series 100, 200, 300 and 400 are all used for flight operations in the Maldives by ‘Trans Maldivian Airways’, ‘Maldivian’ and ‘Manta Air’.


The Twin Otter series has:


1. DHC-6 Series 300M

Multi-role military transport aircraft.


2. CC-138

Twin-engine STOL utility transport aircraft which is used as a search and rescue aircraft for the Canadian Forces based on the Series 300 aircraft.


3. UV-18A

Twin-engine STOL utility transport aircraft for the US Army Alaska National Guard. Six of these were built. It has been replaced by the C-23 Sherpa in US Army service. In 2019 the United States Naval Research Laboratory added a UV-18A to the Scientific Development Squadron One (VXS-1) inventory.

The De Havilland Dash-8.


The Dash-8 has four series and National airline ‘Maldivian‘ operates using series Q200 and Q300.

The 300 series has


1. DHC-8-300 MSA.

Upgraded variant with L-3 for maritime surveillance platform.


2. RO-6A.

United States military designation for the DHC-8-315 for the United States Army as a reconnaissance platform.


3. C-147A

United States military designation for the DHC-8-315 for the United States Army as a jump platform.

The ATR aircraft 42/72.


Manta Air operates using 3 ATR 72-600 while Villa Air Flyme operates using 1 ATR 72-600, 2 ATR 72-500 and 1 ATR 42-500.



The ATR has:


1. ATR Surveyor.

The ATR-42 "Surveyor" is a maritime

Patrol version of the −400.


2. P-72A ASW.

The ATR 72 ASW integrates the ATR 42 Maritime Patrol mission system with identical on-board equipment, but with additional anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capabilities. A variant of the -500 is also in production. For the ASW and ASuW missions, it is armed with a pod-mounted machine gun, lightweight aerial torpedoes, anti-surface missiles and depth charges. They are equipped with the Thales AMASCOS (Airborne Maritime Situation and Control System) surveillance system as well as electronic warfare and reconnaissance systems, enabling the type to perform maritime search and rescue duties.


Maldvies can benifit from an aircraft that can be fit for search and rescue missions and for medevac flights as these type of flights are routinely required.

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