Indian Navy ramps maritime arsenal with Boeing’s 10th P-8I anti-submarine aircraft

Boosting the maritime capabilities, the Indian Navy has obtained the 10th P-8I anti-submarine warfare aircraft from America-based aerospace company Boeing.

This is the second of the four additional P-8I aircraft contracted by India under an optional clause inked in 2016. In 2009, the first contract was signed by the Defence Ministry for eight P-8I aircraft. Later in 2016, the second pact was inked for four additional P-8I aircraft. The remaining two are expected to be delivered later this year.

The patrol aircraft has been an integral part of the Indian Navy’s fleet and has surpassed 30,000 flight hours since it was inducted in 2013. In addition to unmatched maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare capabilities, the P-8I has been deployed to assist during disaster relief and humanitarian missions.

Notably, the Indian Navy is the first international fleet, which operated P-8I along with the U.S. Navy, the Royal Australian Air Force and the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force.

Further, Boeing along with India’s P-8I fleet has been involved in the training of Indian Navy flight crews, spare parts, ground support equipment and field service representative support.

Training Support and Data Handling Centre at INS Rajali

At present, Boeing is involved in the construction of the Training Support & Data Handling Centre at INS Rajali, Arakkonam, Tamil Nadu. In addition, a secondary maintenance training centre at the Naval Institute of Aeronautical Technology, Kochi, Kerala will be set up to facilitate training and support packages.

The new indigenous, ground-based training will enable Indian Navy crew to ramp up mission proficiency swiftly while reducing on-aircraft training time resulting in increased aircraft availability.

Earlier this year in February, Boeing announced strategic collaboration agreements with Air Works of India for the Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) of the P-8I fleet and the VIP transport fleet of the Indian Air Force (IAF).

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