The Indian Navy received its second of originally eight ordered Boeing P-8I maritime patrol and anti-submarine warfare aircraft on 14 November 2013. The first aircraft of the type was delivered in May.
The Indian P-8Is operate from Naval Station Rajali. The type is based on the Boeing 737 NG commercial airliner. The naval variant is also operated by the US Navy as P-8A Poseidon, with 12 of the 37 on order delivered by October 2013.
The second P-8I will first make a series of flight trials in the coming months. India’s first P-8I has been executing live-fire on targets tests, including firing a AGM-84L Harpoon Block II anti-ship missile and the drop of a Mk 54 torpedo.
Compared to the USN P-8A the system architecture of the P-8I has been adapted especially for the Indian navy, with a Data Link II communications suite from Bharat Electronics to enable the aircraft to communicate with Indian military units and land bases. The IFF systems also comes from Bharat. Sub-contractors of the aircraft on the American side are CFM International, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Spirit AeroSystems, BAE Systems and GE Aviation.
The Indian Navy P-8Is jet aircraft replace aging Tupolev Tu-142M turboprops used for maritime surveillance. The project is a few months behind schedule, but India already seems eager to order up to 16 P-8Is on top of the original order for eight aircraft.
Source: Boeing with additional reporting by AIRheads’ Marcel Burger
- Indian Navy: 2nd MiG-29K base on the east coast
- Indian Navy received first Hawk Mk 132
- 12th USN P-8A Poseidon delivered