Boeing [NYSE: BA] today unveiled its state-of-the-art P-8A Multi-mission Maritime Aircraft (MMA) mobile demonstration trailer in Renton, Wash. The trailer will now embark on a nine-week cross-country tour during which Boeing will demonstrate the full spectrum of P-8A capabilities to U.S. Navy personnel, team members, suppliers and employees.
The 53-foot-long trailer houses a 737 commercial airplane cockpit with out-the-window visuals as well as functional P-8A operator workstations. Visitors will get an up-close look at the 21st century workstations and operational mission software, and can take the P-8A for a simulated test flight and experience the performance qualities the aircraft will exhibit in a tactical environment.
Additionally, high bandwidth satellite connectivity enables distributed simulations and network centric demonstrations with the trailer and Boeing Integration Centers across the country.
"This trailer gives us an opportunity to take our advanced technology on the road and show people how much we've accomplished on the program to date," said Jack Zerr, Boeing vice president and P-8A program manager. "We will demonstrate how the P-8A provides the Navy with a huge leap forward in anti-submarine warfare technology. Visitors will be able to watch or participate in realistic maritime patrol scenarios, see the systems in work and also learn about the P-8A's advanced open architecture mission system, weapon system, worldwide commercial logistics, maintenance and training among other things."
The P-8A, a military derivative of the Next Generation 737-800 commercial aircraft, is the Navy's replacement platform for the P-3C. Designed to operate with current and future forces including unmanned systems, its primary mission is to provide persistent anti-submarine warfare. The P-8A also will contribute to anti-surface warfare and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance warfighting capabilities, as defined in the Sea Shield and FORCEnet elements of the Navy's Sea Power 21 program.
The Boeing-led P-8A team, which includes CFM International, Northrop Grumman [NYSE: NOC], Raytheon [NYSE: RTN] and Smiths Aerospace [LSE: SMIN.L], will produce five test aircraft during the program's System Development and Demonstration phase. The Navy plans to purchase up to 108 aircraft to replace its aging fleet of P-3 aircraft.
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