The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) of UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters and associated equipment to Slovakia.
Under the estimated $450m sale, Slovakia has requested nine Black Hawk helicopters in standard US Government configuration with designated unique equipment and government furnished equipment, 20 T700-GE-701D engines, including 18 installed and two spares, and 20 embedded global positioning systems / inertial navigation systems.
The package also includes two aviation mission planning systems, one Aviation ground power unit, 11 AN/APX-123 identification friend or foe transponders, 20 very-high-frequency (VHF) / digitally selective calling AN/ARC-231 radios, 11 ARN-147 VHF omni ranging / instrument landing systems and 11 AN/ARN-153 tactical air navigation systems, as well as 11 AN/ARC-201D single channel ground and airborne radio systems radios.
Approved by the US State Department, the sale also covers ammunition, air worthiness support, facility construction and spare and repair parts, as well as support and communication equipment, personnel training and training equipment, site surveys and tool and test equipment, in addition to other related elements of programme and logistics support.
It is expected to enhance Slovakia's capability to discourage regional threats and strengthen its homeland defence, as well as support counter-terrorism operations.
If completed, the FMS will augment the country's ability to provide border patrol, rapid reaction and field expedient fire-fighting capability for its air and ground forces in counter-terrorism, border security and humanitarian operations.
In addition, it contributes to the foreign policy and national security of the US by helping to improve the security of a Nato ally.
Sikorsky Aircraft and General Electric Aircraft have been named as prime contractors for the FMS programme.
An upgraded version of the UH-60 Black Hawk, the UH-60M helicopter can be used for tactical transport, utility, combat search and rescue, airborne assault, medical evacuation, aerial sustainment, disaster relief and fire-fighting missions.
Image: A US Army UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter at Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia, US. Photo: courtesy of Capt Chad Ashe.