The US government has approved a US$13.6 million FMS deal for Lockheed Martin to provide support to the Royal Australian Navy and Royal Danish Navy’s fleets of MH-60R Romeo anti-submarine warfare helicopters.
This order provides non-recurring engineering efforts to include investigations, systems engineering support, risk analysis, integration development, weight impact, publication updates, maintenance, training, tooling updates and qualification testing in support of the MH-60R aircraft for the governments of Australia and Denmark.
All work is expected to be complete by March 2024. Foreign military sales (FMS) funds in the amount of $13,621,325 will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year.
The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.
The MH-60R Seahawk is the Royal Australian Navy's next-generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter and will form a very important part of its operations for years to come.
The MH-60R is equipped with a highly sophisticated combat system designed to employ Hellfire air-to-surface missiles and the Mark 54 anti-submarine torpedo. The primary missions of the 'Romeo' helicopter is anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface warfare.
Secondary missions include search and rescue, logistics support, personnel transport and medical evacuation.
The MH-60R and its mission systems replaced the fleet’s S-70B-2 Seahawk aircraft, which retired from service on 1 December 2017.
The Australian government approved the acquisition of 24 MH-60R Seahawk ‘Romeo’ naval combat helicopters at a cost of over $3 billion. The helicopters are largely military off-the-shelf built by Sikorsky and Lockheed Martin, and were acquired through the FMS process from the US Navy.
Navy will have the capacity to provide at least eight warships with a combat helicopter at the same time, including Anzac Class frigates and the new air warfare destroyers.
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The remainder will be based at HMAS Albatross in Nowra, NSW, and will be in various stages of the regular maintenance and training cycle.