US aircraft manufacturer Boeing has been awarded a contract to set up its P-8 maritime reconnaissance aircraft training suite in India, the country’s defense ministry announced on January 4.
In addition to the crew training suite, Boeing is to deliver a maintenance simulator for the training of technical personnel.
Boeing has delivered eight P-8I aircraft to the Indian Navy so far with the first arriving in 2013. In 2016, India placed a follow-on order for four additional P-8I, the delivery of which will begin in 2020.
As the actual aircraft, the training system will be commissioned at Indian naval station Rajali.
The Rs 1949.32 crore (approx. US$307 million) contract will see Boeing build a 60,000 sq ft civil facility (training, support and data handling centre) and provide maintenance services for a period of 10 years.
Boeing’s training solution accurately simulates P-8I aircraft and mission systems. It will help Indian Navy train and realistically rehearse for sophisticated missions involving P-8I aircraft, at a fraction of the cost of live aircraft training.
The P-8I aircraft is equipped for long range anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in support of broad area, maritime and littoral operations. Its communication and sensor suite includes indigenous equipment developed by defense department public sector undertakings and private manufacturers.
According to the Indian defense ministry, the complete training facility would be commissioned at INS Rajali, Arakkonam, by March 2021.