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Boeing constructs first multimission pod for P-8

The US Navy and Royal Australian Air Force ultimately intend to upgrade their full P-8 fleets to Increment 3 Block 2 standard. No other customers for the upgrade have yet emerged. (US Navy)

Boeing has constructed a multimission pod (MMP) for its P-8 Poseidon anti-submarine aircraft, said Jon Spore, the company's business development manager for P-8 programmes, on 27 June.

“The multimission pod is something that Boeing has been developing for several years,” said Spore, who noted that it was developed via internal research and development (IRAD) funding. “And to enhance capability in the aircraft, the multimission pod is designed to carry sensors that are not organic to the P-8.

“We're working now with customers to identify sensors that they would like us to include. We're also working with suppliers of sensors that they might be able to provide,” Spore continued.

Boeing declined to identify which customers or suppliers the company was speaking with, though the company noted that the US Navy (USN) awarded a USD31.7 million contract to integrate the pod in September 2023, and told Janes , “Any sensor that fits within the size, weight, power, and cooling parameters of the MMP are potential candidates for integration with the MMP and aircraft.”

The MMP is designed for compatibility with any existing P-8. Although Boeing declined to specify the pod's dimensions, the company told Janes that it “has been very carefully engineered to add capability and versatility while maintaining P-8's flight profile”.

Flight-testing for the MMP is scheduled to begin in July, with certification trials wrapped up by the end of boreal summer.

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