GE Aviation recently achieved two significant P-8A milestones including flight management system hardware qualification and deliveries of stores management system hardware. The flight management system qualification is the final milestone prior to formal flight testing of the P-8A, due to take place later this year. The stores management system hardware deliveries follow delivery last month of key software for integration lab activity.
"GE's integrated flight management and stores management systems are designed for growth and allow rapid and affordable future technology integration to meet evolving threats and diverse mission requirements," commented Lorraine Bolsinger, president and CEO of GE Aviation Systems. "We are pleased to play a key role in advancing the mission of the U.S. Navy's P-8A."
GE's flight management system provides an integrated open architecture that is compliant with the military and commercial framework along with an inherent growth path for upgrades. The stores management system provides a comprehensive system for the electronic control of integrated weapons management and is designed for future growth.
The integrated Navy/Boeing team will begin formal flight testing of the P-8A later this year. The P-8A first flight successfully took place on April 25 and Boeing unveiled the U.S. Navy paint scheme on May 5, displaying its new U.S. Navy livery.
The P-8A, a derivative of the Next-Generation 737-800, is built by a Boeing-led industry team that includes CFM International, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Spirit AeroSystems and GE Aviation. The team currently is assembling and testing the first five P-8As.
The Navy plans to purchase 117 P-8As to replace its fleet of P-3C aircraft. Initial operational capability is planned for 2013.
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