Boeing, Navy roll out new patrol jet - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Boeing, Navy roll out new patrol jet

RENTON, Wash. - Boeing Co. and the Navy have rolled out the P-8A Poseidon, the service's new patrol plane.

Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire joined Navy officials and several hundred Boeing workers and executives for the ceremony Thursday at Boeing's Renton plant. The plane, a military version of Boeing's 737-800 passenger jet, will be used for a variety of functions, including anti-submarine warfare, intelligence gathering, reconnaissance and patrol.

The Navy is buying 117 Poseidons to replace aging P-3 Orion turboprops. Flight tests are to start later this year, with the first jets in service in 2013.

The Navy plans to base Poseidon squadrons at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station in Washington state, at Jacksonville, Fla., and in Hawaii.

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