Sunday, May 23, 2010

Work on P-8I maritime patrol aircraft to start this year

Work on the Indian Navy's latest acquisition, the long-range maritime patrol aircraft that will add strength to its ability in domain awareness and deal with threats below the surface, will get underway later this year.The Boeing Company is developing the long-range patrol aircraft for the U.S. Navy, called P8A, and the Indian Navy is getting the P8I to specifications as provided by it.The contract was signed in January 2009, with the first delivery scheduled 48 months from the date.

“The Indian Navy is the first foreign customer that Boeing is developing for the U.S. Navy,” P8I Programme Manager Leland Wight told a group of journalists from India after a tour of the Renton facility here, where the737 platform, on which the P8 is being developed, is finally assembled.The aircraft has multiple weapon stations armed with anti-submarine Harpoon missiles, torpedoes in weapons bay that can be launched into water up to 1,000 feet and advanced radar and sensors. The plane can travel 1,200 nautical miles. It can stay on for four hours before heading to its base and with mid-air refuelling, it can undertake a mission for longer hours.

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