Washington: Boeing has successfully completed the final design review (FDR) for P-8I, a long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft that India is acquiring as part of a $2.1 billion deal for eight such planes.
The Indian Navy is the first international customer for P-8I, based on the Boeing 737 commercial airplane, a variant of the P-8A Poseidon that Boeing is developing for the US Navy.
Completion of the FDR on July 16 locks in the design for the aircraft, radar, communications, navigation, mission computing, acoustics and sensors, as well as the ground and test support equipment, Boeing announced in Seattle Monday.
It also paves the way for the programme to begin assembling the first P-8I aircraft, the St. Louis headquartered-Boeing Defence, Space & Security, said.
"For P-8I, we are incorporating not only India-unique design features, but also India-built subsystems, so this agreement that the design addresses all customer requirements is a huge milestone," said Leland Wight, P-8I programme manager for Boeing.
"It also leads us to the programme`s next stage: We are on track to start fabricating the P-8I`s empennage section before the end of this year."
During the five-day FDR held in Renton, Washington, Indian Navy officers met with Boeing representatives from Defence, Space & Security and Commercial Airplanes to review relevant design information and performance against specifications.
"The P-8I`s unique capabilities are tailored to India`s maritime-patrol requirements. It has the reach and capability to defend India`s vast coastline and maritime waters," said Vivek Lall, India country lead, Boeing Defence, Space and Security.
Boeing will deliver the first P-8I to India within 48 months of the original contract signing in January 2009 and the remaining seven by 2015.
The Defence, Space & Security unit of the Boeing Company is a $34 billion business, one of the world`s largest defence, space and security businesses, and the world`s largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft.