Passenger Jetliner Turns into Maritime Surveillance Aircraft

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The U.S Navy is asking Boeing to build 11 more P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol and surveillance aircraft under terms of a $1.6 billion order. Nine aircraft will be built for the Navy, and two for Australia.

The P-8 is a militarized version of the Boeing 737-800 single-aisle passenger jetliner hardened for long-range ocean missions like surveillance, maritime patrol, and anti-submarine warfare. The P-8A is replacing the Lockheed Martin P-3 Orion maritime patrol turboprop aircraft.

The P-8A’s avionics flight management system and the stores management system have been developed by GE Aviation Systems. The cabin has as many as seven operator consoles.

Ultimately, the US Navy plans to buy 108 P-8A aircraft from Boeing.

The Poseidon’s MX-20HD digital electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) multi-spectral sensor turrets come from L3Harris. The MX-20HD is gyro-stabilized and can have as many as seven sensors, including infrared, CCDTV, image intensifier, laser rangefinder, and laser illuminator.

Raytheon Technologies is providing the AN/APY-10 advanced airborne radar systems for the P-8A. The AN/APY-10 maritime, littoral, and overland surveillance radar is a relatively new design for the P-8A, which is replacing the previous-generation AN/APS-137 radar.

The AN/APY-10 is integrated into the Boeing mission control and display system aboard the Poseidon for control, display and data distribution. The radar also will provide ultra-high-resolution imaging modes for maritime and overland operations. The radar fits in the nose of the Poseidon, according to