skip to main content

US approves follow-on Black Hawk sales to European customers

Austria and Sweden (helicopter pictured) have both been approved by the US government to buy 12 UH-60M Black Hawks apiece. (Swedish Armed Forces)

The US government has approved the follow-on sale of Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters to Austria and Sweden.

In two separate approval notifications posted by the US Defense Security and Cooperation Agency (DSCA) on 29 May, the US Department of State laid out its approval for 12 UH-60M-variant helicopters each for the two European countries, both of which already operate versions of the type.

“The proposed sale will improve Austria's/Sweden's capability to deter current and future threats and support coalition operations and the United States' and Austria's/Sweden's goal of greater military interoperability,” the DSCA said of the approvals.

While both proposed deals include related equipment, spares, training, and support, Austria's approval is valued at an estimated USD1.05 billion while Sweden's is an estimated USD900 million. This price discrepancy can be accounted for by Austria being a new customer for the UH-60M-variant (it currently fields nine of the first-generation S-70A model Black Hawk [albeit now upgraded]), while Sweden has previously received 15 UH-60M helicopters, and so already has the variant's non-recurring infrastructure in place.

Both approvals will first need to be ratified by the US Congress before proceeding to contract.

With more than 4,000 in service globally, the Black Hawk is the medium-lift helicopter by which all others are measured. As the most modern variant of the Black Hawk helicopter, the UH-60M incorporates more powerful and reliable General Electric T700-GE-701D engines, enhanced rotor blades, and a fully digital ‘glass' cockpit.

For more information on the international Black Hawk programme, please seeParis Air Show 2023: PZL Mielec prepared to increase Polish Black Hawk production to meet demand .

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...