Defense contractor Boeing has been awarded a $2.4 billion contract by the US Navy for 16 additional P-8A Poseidon aircraft to “bolster maritime patrol capabilities.” According to a press release, the order will increase the fleet to 53, and marks the transition to full production.
Thus far, Boeing has delivered 13 P-8As to the Navy. The first patrol squadron was deployed to Kadena, Japan in December 2013. The Navy wants to buy 117 P-8As to replace its P-3 fleet.
“This milestone is a testament to the incredible effort and dedication of the team to deliver the P-8A to the fleet as planned,” Navy P-8A program manager Capt. Scott Dillon said. “The future of the Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance community has begun to make history with the P-8As already delivered to the fleet. These full-rate production aircraft will give us the opportunity to deliver the best system through a cost-effective procurement contract.”