Indian Navy procured P-81, a long-range, multimission maritime patrol aircraft, from American defence and aerospace major Boeing in a bid to protect the vast coastline and territorial waters of India. It is a variant of the P-8A Poseidon operated by the US Navy. P-8I is planned to replace the ageing fleet of Tupolev Tu-142 aircraft that are in service with the Indian Navy. P-81 can conduct Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), Anti-Surface Warfare (AsuW), maritime patrol, intelligence and surveillance and reconnaissance missions.
Boeing was selected by the Government of India, in January 2009, to supply eight P-8I maritime reconnaissance aircraft to the Indian Navy. India signed a deal worth over $1 billion to procure four more P-8I aircraft. The Indian Navy is the first international customer for the aircraft.
The first P-8I aircraft was delivered to the Indian Navy in December 2012. The remaining aircraft were delivered between 2013 and 2015. The India's Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) approved the acquisition of four additional Boeing P-8I aircraft in mid-2016.
The P-8I aircraft, powered by two CFM56-7 engines supplied by CFM International, can fly at a maximum speed of 789km/h and can reach a maximum altitude of 12,496m. The aircraft has a maximum range of 2,222km with four hours on station.
Each engine of P-81 aircraft provides a take-off thrust of 27,300lb. It is based on the Boeing Next Generation 737-800 aircraft. The aircraft has a length of 39.47m, wing span of 37.64m and a height of 12.83m. The maximum take-off gross weight of the P-8I is 85,139kg. (Image Source wikimedia)
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