Aviation Company Boeing has delivered India’s 12th maritime surveillance and anti-submarine warfare P-8I aircraft.
When it was first inducted in 2013, India became the first country outside the United States to get P-8I aircraft.
The aircraft is suitable for long-range anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASuW), and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions.
It has been designed as a “multi-mission aircraft” with technology such as state of the art sensors, proven weapons systems, and a globally recognised platform.
The first model of the aircraft flew in 2009. It has been serving in US Navy since 2013. The aircraft has been chosen by armies of six other countries apart from USA and India.
There are two variants of aircraft-- the first is P-8A Poseidon for US Navy and other countries such as Australia, UK, and Japan etc. The version used by India is P-8I.
Surveillance and reconnaissance
Search and rescue
Use in India
The aircraft was used in eastern Ladakh in 2020 and 2021, during the standoff with China, to keep an eye on Chinese troops and their manoeuvres.
These aircrafts have replaced the ageing Soviet/Russian Tupolev Tu-142s. The existing aircrafts are placed in Tamil Nadu.
They have the ability to fly as high as 41,000 ft. They have low turnaround time for transmitting data of surveillance.
The twin-engine aircraft weighs about 85,000 kg, and has a top speed of 789 km/hour. It has a range of 1,200+ nautical miles.
It holds one of the most advanced weapon systems in the world. It can serve in extreme climate including icing environments.