Boeing has been awarded a $2bn low-rate initial production (LRIP) Lot IV contract by the US Navy for the delivery of 13 P-8A Poseidon multi-mission maritime surveillance aircraft.
Under the fixed-price-incentive-firm modification contract, Boeing will also provide 13 ancillary mission equipment kits in support of the US Navy's LRIP Lot IV aircraft.
The contract also involves procurement for one lot of diminishing manufacturing sources, as well as long-lead parts associated with the manufacture of 16 P-8A full-rate production Lot I aircraft.
The P-8A Poseidon is a derivative of the Boeing's 737 commercial aircraft and is fitted with an upgraded APS-137DV5 maritime surveillance radar and signal intelligence SIGINT system to support broad-area, maritime and littoral operations for the navy.
Fitted with AN/APY-10 radar, the aircraft will be used by the US Navy to conduct long-range anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASuW) and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions.
The aircraft is capable of cruising at a speed of 333km/hr over the sea at a low altitude of 60m and can fly at a high altitude at nearly 926km/h using two CFM International CFM56-7B27A high-bypass turbofan engines.
The US Navy is considering procurement of 117 P-8A aircraft, to replace its existing turbo-prop P-3 Orion fleet.
Scheduled to be completed in April 2016, work under the contract will be carried out in Cambridge, UK, as well as in Washington, Maryland, New York, Illinois, and various other locations inside and outside of the US.
The US Naval Air Systems Command will serve as the contracting activity.
The Boeing-led team for the construction of the P-8A aircraft includes: CFM International, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Spirit AeroSystems and GE Aviation.
Image: a Boeing-built P-8A Poseidon aircraft takes off from a base. Photo: courtesy of Boeing.