Washington Post | Australia buys 24 MH-60R Seahawk ‘Romeo’ naval combat helicopters for more than $3.2 billion

June 26, 2011 § Leave a comment

By The Associated Press
Published: 15 June 2011

CANBERRA, Australia — Australia will buy 24 MH-60R Seahawk “Romeo” naval combat helicopters at a cost of more than 3 billion Australian dollars ($3.2 billion).

Defense Minister Stephen Smith said in a statement Thursday that the first two helicopters built by Sikorsky-Lockheed Martin will arrive in mid-2014 for testing and evaluation, with operations expected to begin in mid-2015.

He says the new helicopters will replace the navy’s current combat helicopter capability provided by 16 Seahawk S-70B-2 helicopters by 2020. They will also provide the air-to-surface strike capability that was to have been provided by the canceled Seasprite program.

Smith says the Romeo is a proven combat helicopter that is currently used by the U.S. Navy.

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