Royal Australian Navy accepts first two of 24 helicopters

Jan. 27, 2014 at 2:52 PM
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CANBERRA, Australia, Jan. 27 (UPI) -- The first two of 24 Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk Romeo maritime combat helicopters have been accepted in Florida by the Royal Australian Navy.

The aircraft, which are capable of firing air-launched torpedoes and Hellfire missiles, were accepted Friday by a squadron of Australia's Fleet Air Arm, NUSQN 725, at U.S. Naval Air Station Jacksonville.

"The MH-60R is a potent maritime combat helicopter that will primarily be used in the anti-submarine warfare role," said Cmdr. David Frost, commanding officer of NUSQN 725. "The MH-60R is a potent maritime combat helicopter that will primarily be used in the anti-submarine warfare role. The aircraft will also contribute to [the] navy's anti-surface warfare role by providing an air-to-surface missile capability."

The MH-R has a twin-turboshaft engine and is based on Sikorsky's UH-60 Black Hawk. It has a maximum speed of 168 miles per hour, a range of 4,450 nautical miles and a ceiling of 12,000 feet.

Australia's Department of Defense said five more MH-60Rs will be delivered to the navy this year.

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