Sikorsky To Upgrade HH-60W Helicopters Of US Air Force

The US Air Force (USAF) is to contract Sikorsky to upgrade its HH-60W Jolly Green II combat search and rescue (CSAR) helicopter to improve on the 2012 requirements baseline.

The USAF is to contract Sikorsky to undertake a series of capability upgrades for the HH-60W CSAR helicopter, after the specifications were baselined in 2012. (USAF)

The service disclosed on 11 February that the manufacturer is to bring the capabilities of the Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH) up to today’s specifications, ahead of the commencement of full rate production in fiscal year 2022.

The current system specification reflects a 2012 requirements baseline which was defined and frozen prior to the 2014 CRH contract awarded for the engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) phase,” the USAF said in its sole-source justification document posted on the US government procurement website.

During the last five years of EMD execution, the original CRH requirements baseline has evolved as a result of changes in threat conditions and evolving mission requirements.

The response to this operational need is the driver for the continuance of new capability development and integration into the CRH baseline.

In response to this requirement, the USAF is to award Sikorsky a USD980.7 million contract over a five-year ordering period, with the work itself to run for seven years.

News of the planned award came some 16 months after the USAF issued a request for information (RFI) on 1 October 2019 to assess the ability of companies and industry at large to perform development, integration, verification, production, and installation of a broad spectrum of capability upgrades for the CSAR helicopter, which at that time had only recently been cleared to enter into low-rate initial production (LRIP).

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