BETHESDA, Md., Dec. 11 (UPI) -- The first two of 24 MH-60R helicopters ordered by Australia were delivered to the Royal Australian Navy this week by the U.S. Navy.
The helicopters, manufactured by Sikorsky Aircraft, feature advanced mission systems and sensors from Lockheed Martin, were delivered at a ceremony held at Lockheed facility in New York State on Tuesday.
"The Seahawk Romeo is an evolutionary step forward from the Seahawk 'Classic' it replaces," said Rear Adm. Tony Dalton who heads the Australian Defense Organization's Helicopter Systems Division. "The Romeo builds on the known and trusted Seahawk air vehicle, incorporating state-of-the-art sensors in an open architecture, integrated mission system. The Romeo is a potent maritime combat helicopter."
Added Lockheed Martin Vice President of Aviation Systems Dan Spoor: "MH-60R helicopters host the complete package of sensors and systems aboard the helicopter to address today's increasing submarine and surface warfare threats. We are honored to partner with the U.S. Navy and the Royal Australian Navy to deliver these capabilities."
The MH-60R is operational with the U.S. Navy and is used for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare. It can also be used in secondary missions, such as search and rescue, vertical replenishment, naval surface fire support, personnel transport, medical evacuation, and communication relay.
The aircraft for Australia will be equipped with Hellfire air-to-surface missiles and Mark 54 anti-submarine torpedoes.
Delivery of all helicopters ordered will be completed by the end of 2016.